24/12/2018: Today's Updates... 5.55pm...
Day 10 Of The 2018/19 Chatel Ski Season:
The rain turned to snow at increasingly lower elevations this afternoon, depositing a bit of fresh snow higher up and a dusting at elevations as low as 1350m in the village area. Unfortunately, the period of snow was shortlived and it looks as though that is it now for natural snowfall for some time to come.
A jog into the Barbossine area late this afternoon found evidence of the dusting mentioned above, but also evidence of the destruction to the natural snowpack, from this mild and very wet period. There was alot of water moving down the paths and slopes in this area, which is hardly surprising.
As the skies cleared on this little excursion, the snow did get a little crunchier underfoot, heralding the re-freeze which is expected overnight and there may be some slippery surfaces tonight as those ground temperatures dip to freezing.
Updates will continue tomorrow, starting with the forecast page and continuing on this page during the day. Fingers crossed for some sunshine!
Further rain has fallen this morning on the ski area and the photos below show the difference down in the village between Saturday and today. The snow/rain limit is easing down a little bit now, but was higher than expected this morning with a very mild pulse of air affecting the area for a time. The sheer volume of rain of recent days, combined with the mild temperatures and cloud has meant a very noticeable deterioration in piste conditions and has resulted in the closure of the vast majority of the La Chapelle ski area, with any piste which does not have a mix of man made and natural snow, in big trouble. There is alot of surface water and a huge volume of water coming down the steams and water courses. As a friend noted this morning..."I guess the drought is over!".
A little bit of snow is possible this afternoon, however, the clearer skies likely from tonight onwards should bring a re-freeze to the pistes and some sort of stabilisation, allowing the piste maintenance crews to get to work.
Will temperatures fall low enough to allow some snowmaking? Possibly...
Wind and rain at the top of the Linga telecabine this morning. Snow/rain limit still high up. Damage to pistes which do not have that mix of man made and natural snow is clear to see...
Further rain has fallen overnight here in Chatel, with rain currently falling as this update is posted. The forecast page is expected to be updated at 7.45am and further updates will appear on this page today...
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