Boreal is hoping to open this Saturday; and technically, it's a re-opening. Skiers and snowboarders got a teaser last month, only for the snow to melt when warm temperatures to set in. But this storm could be the one that actually keeps the resorts open. But a Southern California ski resort has beat this area to the punch.
On-and-off flurries greeted visitors during Mammoth Mountain's opening day. Skiers and snowboarders were able to play in man-made show mixed in with the real stuff that fell last month.
Further north, in the Tahoe area, opening day will have to wait a little longer. The first storm that blew through last month gave people a teaser with a couple of resorts opening for a few days but then balmy weather set in, "We suspended operations, we had some really warm conditions," said Jon Slaughter with Boreal Mountain Resort. "We almost opened know that was going to be the case." Last year, the early snow came, but more didn't come until January. No one wants a repeat.
Now a new storm is blowing through giving resorts some hope they can open for good this season. The snow making machines are fired up, employees are busy stocking up on wood, and stores are putting out new merchandise for customers eager to update their winter wardrobe.
"It's good to have the door open, the storm door open, as opposed to last year, get the jet stream down, get the moisture on the hillside, bring down the temperatures and get ready for a good season," said Lincoln Kauffman with Donner Ski Ranch.
Boreal Mountain Resort is hoping it stays cold enough through the next couple of days so that they can re-open on Saturday, "It's great for when we make snow, especially because it's really cold temperatures," Slaughter said. "So our snow guns are running at the max."
Kauffman added, "We have high hopes this is going to be a good year."
Many of the area highways are under chain control. The forecast calls for six to 12 inches of snow at elevations of 7,000 feet or above.