Of course every skier and snowboarder revels in the seasons where the clouds dump fresh powder all winter long. But unfortunately that isn’t always the case and climate change isn’t going to improve snow accumulation either. Sometimes ski resorts and resort attendees suffer from these low-snow seasons because the runs and amenities weren’t designed for low-snow conditions. Heavenly Mountain Resort at Tahoe is making some improvements for the 2018/2019 season to address those times.
According to a recent article from Washington’s Top News by the Associated Press, “crews at Heavenly will begin the improvements by removing boulders and trees from several runs. Boulders that don’t present a problem when covered with feet upon feet of snow become a safety hazard with lower snowfall, especially on busy weekends.”
Heavenly Ski Resort also plans to widen dozens of trails which means the removal of hundreds or even thousands of trees. Again, this measure would be a safety precaution and to prevent bottlenecking. Crews will blast the boulders with explosives so they are no taller than 18 inches and cut trees down to six inch stumps so both can be covered by only a few feet of snow. The plan is currently under review by the Forest Service which will come up with an environmental assessment to make sure the region can support the changes.
Photos are Courtesy of Heavenly Ski Resort:
Heavenly is a popular resort on the California-Nevada border at the south end of Lake Tahoe. People who have been skiing there for decades agree that the conditions have changed along with the climate change and they support the improvements. Removal of boulders and trees would allow people to enjoy the same runs, even if the snow levels are low. The changes also keep the resort from having to create so much snow.
However, not everyone is a fan of the proposed changes. The article quotes Elizabeth Kingsland of the Nevada Department of Conservation and Natural Resources saying,
“‘It appears that the impacts cannot be fully stated without properly evaluating the long-term effects of removing thousands of healthy whitebark pine trees from the part of the Lake Tahoe Basin with the healthiest whitebark pine population.'”
The Forest Service isn’t as concerned however, stating the 6 acres of trees proposed to be cut down is still only a small portion of the entire whitebark pine forest. If you love skiing at Heavenly, you’ll have to stay tuned and see how the story unfolds. For deals on staying at Heavenly and other coupons, contact us today at skicoupons.com.