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Original Issue


A late roundup of snow conditions in America from a picked group of local skiers

CO=corn snow; GR=granular; PO=powder; IC=icy condition; HP= hard-packed snow; W= wet; HB=hard base; SB=soft base; NS=new snow; BC=breakable crust; BS=bare spots; CL=trail or slope closed; DC=dangerous condition; UC=unbreakable crust.


Skiing excellent in Northwest and New England. Northern Rockies having good luck, but Southern Rockies, Midwest, and California need more snow

NEW ENGLAND: FRANCONIA, N.H.: 5 to 26 HB on Cannon Mt. with 2 to 6 PO on upper and lower trails, open slopes excellent. Middle Hardscrabble, Tramway, Easy Way and Red Ball closed for construction and occasional BS.

WILMINGTON, VT.: Mt. Snow now in daily operation with 1,800-foot and 3,700-foot monorail double chair lifts and rope tows. Beginners and pros testing trails with built-in shoulders, bumps and dips. 7 to 20 rain-settled HB with new 4 PO. Reservations available at inns in Wilmington, Brattleboro and Bennington.

MANCHESTER, VT.: Big Bromley good—3 packed PO on. 11-20 frozen GR. Shin Cracker, Avalanche, Blue Ribbon trails good to excellent.

BELKNAP, N.H.: Fair on Phelps, good on Stone Bar, Red Hat with 2 NS on HB. T-Bar will be operated all week, chair if crowds appear.

STOWE, VT.: All slopes good to excellent with 4 new PO on 21-36 HB. Chair lift, T-Bar, rope tows operating on Mansfield and Spruce Peak areas.

MAD RIVER GLEN, VT.: 18-32 HB with packed PO surface makes skiing good to excellent on all trails.

NORTH CONWAY, N.H.: Mt. Cranmore fair to good upper area, fair to poor lower. Rattlesnake and Lower Arlberg trails good. First snow trains from Boston begin Jan. 2.

QUEBEC: MONT TREMBLANT: 27-44 HB with 4 PO on top, skiing generally excellent. Tower HP with 4 PO on top, except for few rocks showing. Nansen and Sissy Schuss HP. Tascherault, Flying Mile, Ryan Run, Kandahar CL.

LAC BEAUPORT: 2 PO on 25-30 HB at Lake Mt. with temp. 20 above. Skiing very good.

NEW YORK: WHITEFACE MT.: Best early conditions in years, some NS on 8 to 10 HP GR. Novices (and pros) may take comfort now that ski patrolmen have completed first-aid refresher courses. Swiss ski school holding daily classes.

LAKE PLACID: 12 to 14 HB, skiing good on all four slopes. Advance reservations advised. Olympic bobsled run open.

BELLEAYRE: Best December in area's history with Roaring Brook and Winnisook trails drawing biggest crowds. 1 packed PO over 3-6 HB, best results two-thirds of way up to bottom of mountain.

PENNSYLVANIA: LIGONIER: 2 to 18 packed GR over entire Laurel Mt. slope; need one more snowfall to make conditions excellent. New trail, Dream Highway, seven-eighths of a mile long, now open.

MIDWEST: RIB MT., Wis.: Thaw hurt here, but conditions fair to good on lower slopes. Some BS, IC on upper slopes. Need 4-5 NS for ideal skiing. New T-Bar operating daily, handles 850 skiers per hour.

BOYNE MT., MICH.: Heavy warm rains washed out skiing through most of state. Weather bureau predicts more snow this week.

TERRY PEAK, S.D.: 4 PO on 12-14 packed PO and HB. All slopes are open.

NORTHWEST: MT. BAKER, WASH.: Magnificent is the word for skiing under bright blue sky, 20 NS on 57 HB. All trails skiable with best on north slope of Panorama Dome and Austin Pass. Uncovered rocks on chute under chair lift, novices stay away. All lifts in operation, Peanut Hill open for the kiddies. Use chains or snow tires to get here. Temperature 20 degrees and getting colder.

MT. HOOD, ORE.: Timberline area now 10 PO on 50 HB, making skiing excellent. Sky is clear, temperature 12 24 with light wind. At Govt. Camp, 8 PO on 16 base. All rope tows at summit operating. Best bet for beginners: Mt. Hood Ski Bowl, new chair lift now at work.

GROUSE MT., B.C.: Peak and Big Hill perfect with 15 PO on 49 HB. Plateau and Paradise also excellent with 15 PO on 45 HB. Traffic heavy, but no waiting at twin chair lift.

SNOQUALMIE PASS, WASH.: All tows open seven days a week, skiing excellent on main hill. Night skiing under lights Wednesdays and Saturdays with baby sitter service provided for those attending ski school Thursdays.

ROCKY MTS.: STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, COLO.: 4 PO on 14 SB upper runs Emerald Mt., 10 HP lower runs, skiing good on both.

WHITEFISH, MONT.: 10 PO fell on Christmas, covering 12 HB on upper mountain, 8 HB on lower. Limited space in lodges. Use snow tires or chains if driving.

ALTA, UTAH: Skiing on all trails is excellent with 6 PO on 26 HB. 10-minute wait weekends for lift, no wait week days. However, most of northern Utah is blanketed by fog and Alta is only place where sun is visible.

ASPEN, COLO.: Snow beginning to wear, but skiing still good on main trails. Buckhorn, Tourtellote Park, Spar Gulch are best. Bell Mt. still closed.

WINTER PARK, COLO.: Skiing generally good on Bradley's Bash, Main Balch and Lower Hughes. 11-15 HB on all slopes, all tows operating daily.

ARAPAHOE, COLO.: 17 total at midway, some NS. Skiing only fair, with IC on main runs, some PO on open slopes. Lifts running daily.

SUN VALLEY, IDAHO: Skiing good on Baldy and Half Dollar. Driving on Shoshone Sun Valley Road good. Temperature has been in upper 30s, skies cloudy.

SANTA FE, NEW MEX.: Not enough snow yet for skiing, but skating rink is in full operation.

BANFF, ALBERTA: Badly need 18-24 NS to make skiing worth-while here. Some skiing done on Lone Pine practice slope. Chair lift's chief value at present is for sightseeing.

FAR WEST: RENO, NEV.: Ski Bowl area has 58 HP and windblown on 12 HB. All facilities operating, need NS for really good skiing.

SQUAW VALLEY, CALIF.: Continuing to play to capacity houses, with 2 feet packed PO on 6 feet of HB on top of mountain, 3 feet at base of mountain, i.e., skiing excellent. Best runs is Flying Saucer lift area, which has 3 feet packed PO on 5 feet of HB.

MT. BALDY, CALIF.: No skiing here—2 icy base and bare spots on upper slopes; but low temperatures promise snow, possibly this week. Nearby Mammouth Mt. getting some play with 4 feet packed PO.