The Saratoga Sun -

A white December after all


Heading into a winter predicted to be drier and warmer than normal, snowmobilers and skiers got some much-needed snow last week.

The snow has been slow in coming this year. Highway 130 over the Snowy range and Highway 70 over the Sierra Madre range did not close until the end of the first week in December, the latest closing in a quarter century.

Storm systems in November gave the snow pack a much-needed boost in the North Platte, White and Laramie River basins, but dry conditions in early December resulted in a 66 percent of average snow pack according to the National Resources Conservation Service.

After last week’s snowfall, the Snowies have three feet of snow on top. Dale Kirkly at the Rendezvous Lodge said Ryan Park got six inches of snow, and the Snowy Range Ski Area’s web site reported 31 inches of total base with 12 new inches last week, allowing them to open seven runs.

Conditions are similar on the other side of the mountain at the Albany Lodge.

“There hasn’t been much snow yet,” Mike Lorentz, an employee at the Lodge and an avid snowmobiler said. “The flows of snowmobilers have been slow, but more and more keep showing up with a foot of snow falling at the Lodge over three days last week.”

Lorentz said the Lodge is completely booked the week after Christmas.

Saratoga resident Jerry Fluty rode his machines over Battle Pass last Wednesday.

“It is pretty good on the Sierra Madre side,” Fluty said. “There is a four foot base and a lot of new snow.”


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