Mixed offering of snow for skiers this season

The static weather pattern at the moment gives some places masses of snow and some virtually none.

| Weather, Asia, Europe, US & Canada, Asia Pacific

The northern hemisphere is sitting beneath a weather pattern that shows a great reluctance to change.

The result is that similar weather occurs perpetually in the same place. For operators of winter resorts, this is either very good or very bad news.

The resorts in the west of the US are now enjoying piles of snow. The warm eastern Pacific of this El Nino year injects the moisture into the air and the height in the Rockies means it falls as snow.

The western Canadian resorts are now doing well also but the snow is height-dependent. Lower ground, especially around Seattle, has received too much rain.

In contrast, the slopes of the north American eastern resorts are bare and temperatures are much higher than they should be, with many records broken. All this in stark comparison to last year when an unprecedented snowfall provided life-long memories.

The European Alps are suffering from warmth and lack of snow but it is cold enough higher up, at least, to use snow cannons. These provide the bizarre sight in some resorts of a river of skiable snow surrounded by greenery.

East Asia is now doing well. A sudden blast of Arctic air has buried much of northern China in snow.

It has also brought temperatures down in the Korean peninsula and Japan, bringing snow to the mountain resorts. Hokkaido has also seen quite a covering, as has the capital Tokyo, even if it was brief.

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