With little snowfall and over 60-degree temperatures, the few resorts that remain open have little snow left for skiers.
A snowboarder at Lake Tahoe’s Squaw Valley Ski Resort had tothread his way through patches of dirt on Saturday, March 21.
Where 16-year-old Jack Feick of Truckee was able to skim over a pond while wearing a T-shirt.
Others attempted to eke out the last days of ski season at Squaw Valley Ski Resort this weekend.
According toCurbed Ski, many nearby resorts have been affected by the drought.
Homewood Ski Resort has been closed since Feb. 23, while Sierra-at-Tahoe just announced it would be closing the lifts until (if) it gets more snow. Sierra, which normally closes at the end of April, hasn’t had a March closure since the 1970s.
Other California ski areas, like Donner Ski Ranch, Badger Pass, Dodge Ridge, Mountain High, China Peak, Soda Springs, Mt. Baldy, Mount Shasta, and Tahoe Donner are allclosed as well.
The drought is so bad that Jay Famiglietti,senior water scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and a professor at UC Irvine, wrote in an LA Times op-ed that California would run out of water in a year.
While the bold statement isn’t exactly accurate, California has recently been forced to take action.
“Last week, Governor Jerry Brown announced a $US1 billion plan to aid communities most affected by the drought, and imposed restrictions on some aspects of personal use,” according to The Atlantic. “With the state’s snowpack at just 12% of normal, Californians figure to struggle more during the traditional dry summer months.”
More than 1,000 companies, including more than 100 ski resorts and hundreds of businesses in California, have signed the Climate Declaration, which urges the public, policymakers, and business leaders to tackle climate change.
Aspen Skiing Company‘s Sustainability Director, Matthew Hamilton, explains why his company signed the declaration: “The outdoor industry contributes $US650 billion and 6.1 million jobs to the economy. Of this, snow-based recreation contributes $US67 billion and 600,000 jobs. The changing climate has a direct impact on our industry, the economy and the livelihoods of many Americans.”
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