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~ Sunday 21st January 2018

"... above average snow depths for this juncture of the season; far above average snow depths on the northern Alpine Ridge, in the Valais, in northern Grisons and in the Lower Engadine."

Swiss Avalanche Bulletin

Well, that sums up the 2018 ski season in a sentence. It started snowing early prompting the usual excitement and forecasts of "bumper" snowfall, but this time they were right! Snow depths in the Valais are currently around double the average - this time last year we were still skiing on rocks and grass!

Heavy snowfall has disadvantages and has taken a particularly heavy toll on the mountain roads - keeping them open is hard enough and needs an army machines and drivers, but rockfalls and landslides have made life even harder this year. Arolla has been cut off for a record number of days, Zermatt has been inaccessible by road and now by train, and the Col de la Forclaz is closed until at least early March!

It's good news for skiers though. Exceptional conditions in resorts and (between storms!) some excellent touring. It now looks certain that there's going to be plenty of snow for the main touring season too.