Frequently Asked Questions

How do you report your snow totals?

Vail:
We’re committed to reporting our snow accurately and transparently. With 5,289 acres, Vail is one of the largest ski and snowboard resorts in the world. That makes reporting snowfall very difficult since snow totals can vary across the 7-mile-wide area.

Vail has multiple snow stakes. Our official snow stake is located mid-mountain on the front side of the mountain at approximately 10,200 feet. However, our camera shows our snow stake located in Blue Sky Basin at more than 11,400 feet.

From our official stake, we report 24-hour snow totals from 5 a.m. to 5 a.m. We also report an overnight snow total from our official stake that’s recorded starting at 4 p.m. until the 5 a.m. reading to show how much of our official 24-hour total fell overnight.

Beaver Creek:
With 1,832 acres, Beaver Creek is one of the largest ski/snowboard areas in North America. That makes reporting snowfall very difficult since snow totals can vary across the three areas of our resort – Beaver Creek Mountain, Bachelor Gulch, and Arrowhead.  As such, we’re committed to reporting our snow accurately and transparently to the best of our abilities.

We have one snow stake that is utilized for all official snow reporting. Our official stake is located at mid-mountain in the vicinity above Spruce Saddle Lodge at 10,500 ft.

From our official stake, we report 24-hour snow totals from 5 a.m. to 5 a.m. We also report an overnight snow total from our official stake that’s recorded starting at 4 p.m. until the 5 a.m. reading to show how much of our official 24-hour total fell after the resort’s closing for that given day.

There is a second stake located in the vicinity of ski patrol headquarters, and while it’s not used for snow reporting or public information, the location is used for historical data and avalanche forecasting measurement only.

Breckenridge:
We’re committed to reporting our snow accurately and transparently, according to standard operating procedures for the industry. Although measuring and reporting snow is a simple and straightforward process, interpreting what the snow report means to the skier/snowboarder can be challenging.  

With 2,908 acres spanning five peaks and 3400 vertical feet of elevation, Breckenridge Ski Resort is a vast area. Snowfall from each storm can vary widely across our mountain, but reporting standards and consistency require that we measure snow at a single location every day, season to season.


Our snow reporting location is in the Back Bowls on Peak 8, near the bottom of 6-Chair.  At 11,237 feet, this site is almost exactly at the middle elevation of the resort  (which spans from 9,600 ft to 13,000 ft).  Most Colorado resorts report from within the upper third of their mountain's elevation. The snow stake you see on our web cam is located at this site, and this is the single location where we record the official snowfall data that is passed on to the media. We have been recording snow at this location for more than 20 years.

A small team of specially trained ski patrollers reads the snow stakes just before 5:00 AM each day.  Therefore, the official 24-hour snow report is the amount of snow which fell between 5:00 AM one morning to 5:00 AM the next day. We also read our stakes at 4:00 PM each day. That way, we can also report the amount of snow which fell overnight (from 4:00 PM to 5:00 AM) which is a fraction of the total 24-hour snow total. Most skiers like this report since it shows the amount of snow which fell after the area closed the day before. It’s the fresh snow which hasn't been skied yet.

In addition to the 24-hour snow stake, we also have a base stake that records the amount of snow on the ground at this site. Base readings are always much lower than the total amount of snow that has fallen over the season due to settlement, melting, and sublimation.

Keystone:

With three mountains back to back to back, Keystone Resort is a vast ski and snowboard resort which makes reporting snowfall very difficult since snow totals can vary across the area. We’re committed to reporting our snow accurately and transparently.

Park City:

With 7,300 acres, Park City is the largest ski/snowboard area in North America. Snow totals can vary across our nine mountains. We’re committed to reporting our snow accurately and transparently.


We have two snow stakes across the mountain, both in the mid-mountain area. Our official snow stake is located near Red Pine Lodge at about 8,700 ft. There is an additional snow stake, also at the mid-mountain area, with a live camera feed located at about 8,600 ft.

From our official stake, we report 24-hour snow totals from 5:00 a.m. to 5:00 a.m. We also report an overnight snow total that is recorded starting at 4:00 p.m. until 5:00 a.m. the next day to report how much snow fell since the resort closed.

Heavenly:
With 4,800 acres Heavenly is one of the largest ski/snowboard areas in North America. Snow totals can vary across both the Nevada and California areas of the mountain. We’re committed to reporting our snow accurately and transparently.

We have multiple snow stakes across the mountain. Our official snow stake with live camera is located near Dipper Express at 9,800 feet. There are additional snow stakes without cameras near Mott Canyon at 8,900 feet and at Sky Deck around 8,550 feet.

From our official stake at Dipper Express, we report 24-hour snow totals from 5:00 a.m. to 5:00 a.m. We also report an overnight snow total from the Dipper Express stake that’s recorded starting at 4:00 p.m. until 5:00 a.m. the next day to report how much snow fell since the lifts closed.

Northstar:
Northstar’s skiable terrain covers two mountains (Mt. Pluto and Lookout Mountain) and a large land area, which makes reporting snowfall very difficult since snow totals can vary across the area. We’re committed to reporting our snow as accurately and transparently as possible.

Kirkwood:
With 2,300 acres of terrain, Kirkwood is located on the northern edge of the high sierra and receives an average of 600 inches of snow every season. This amount of snow fall presents challenges to snow reporting but we’re committed to doing it accurately and transparently.

From our official stake, we report 24-hour snow totals from 5 a.m. to 5 a.m. We also report an overnight snow total from our official stake that’s recorded starting at 4 p.m. until the 5 a.m. reading to show how much of our official 24-hour total fell overnight.


« Back to list

X

Did you know that your browser is out of date?

To get the best possible experience using our websites we recommend that you upgrade to a newer browser. A list of the most popular web browsers can be found below.

Click on an icon to go to the download page.