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Thread: Longest snow cover?

  1. #16
    Senior Member skiguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blacknblue View Post
    1997. Mount Washington got over 90" of snow in May alone. In mid-June, there was still 3-4 feet of snow on places like Twinway. The AMC shelters and campsites had a hard time digging out and getting up and running. People were skiing the Tucks headwall past August 1. I had lunch on the Jefferson snowfield on July 4th and it was still sizable.
    For some of us 1997 was an endless Winter. In other words Mount Washington was skied 12 Months in a row.
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  2. #17
    Senior Member TEO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skiguy View Post
    This year is more the norm of what it was like back in the 60’s and 70’s. Yea I know I’m older than dirt and I’m usually a perpetually cranky kind of guy with no real name. But skiing in Tuck’s until late June into early July was common much of the time.
    I'm not so sure of that. Here's the data from the Stake on Mt. Mansfield, which is next to the Toll Road at 3,900'. In the '60s and '70s, only '68–'69 surpassed '18–'19, in terms of the high-water mark. '74–'75 and '70–'71 are the only others that came close in those two decades. In fact, since '54, when the snow depth records for the Stake began, only '68–'69 and '00–'01 beat this past winter. That said, like '00–'01, the snowpack this spring is disappearing more quickly than more than a few big years. Granted the Stake is but one data point, and in Vermont, but at least among skiers it is the primary reference point for comparing winters in New England.

  3. #18
    Senior Member skiguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TEO View Post
    I'm not so sure of that. Here's the data from the Stake on Mt. Mansfield, which is next to the Toll Road at 3,900'. In the '60s and '70s, only '68–'69 surpassed '18–'19, in terms of the high-water mark. '74–'75 and '70–'71 are the only others that came close in those two decades. In fact, since '54, when the snow depth records for the Stake began, only '68–'69 and '00–'01 beat this past winter. That said, like '00–'01, the snowpack this spring is disappearing more quickly than more than a few big years. Granted the Stake is but one data point, and in Vermont, but at least among skiers it is the primary reference point for comparing winters in New England.
    Some great data. But it ain’t Tuck’s! The thing that is always interesting is that statistical information needs to be interpreted. For instance my notes show skiing Tucks July 3rd and 4th,1978. Which is a year not in the top 3 of snowfall in your chart. IMO comparing the Snow Stake at 3900 feet on Mt.Mansfield is not representative of the Ravine. For instance is the toll road skiable at this point? Possibly. But the Ravine certainly is and will be long after The Mansfield Toll Road which is more the norm.
    Last edited by skiguy; 05-13-2019 at 01:12 PM.
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  4. #19
    Senior Member TEO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skiguy View Post
    Some great data. But it ain’t Tuck’s! The thing that is always interesting is that statistical information needs to be interpreted. For instance my notes show skiing Tucks July 3rd and 4th,1978. Which is a year not in the top 3 of snowfall in your chart. IMO comparing the Snow Stake at 3900 feet on Mt.Mansfield is not representative of the Ravine. For instance is the toll road skiable at this point? Possibly. But the Ravine certainly is and will be long after The Mansfield Toll Road which is more the norm.

    You're right, it definitely isn't Tucks, but I'd argue that for a single data point, it's probably a better for basing a generalization for the quality of the winter in the mountainous regions of New England. For one, it isn't nearly as susceptible to wind-loading. (Whether or not the Toll Road is skiable has no bearing on this discussion.) The Stake, which is in a sheltered location, gives an indication of the total snowfall over the course of the winter at a relatively high elevation, and from it we can also infer a little about the localized climate over the course of the year. Note that if you compare '77–'78 and '96–'97 to the Great Winters of '68–69 and '00–'01 and this winter, '96–'97 outlasted them all and '77–'78 out-performed '68–'69, '00–'01, and '18–'19 so far in the month of May, which correlates with your personal records for Tucks trips. While this was a good winter in terms of snow depth, it's falling off more quickly than a number of years in the '60s and '70s.

  5. #20
    Senior Member skiguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TEO View Post
    You're right, it definitely isn't Tucks, but I'd argue that for a single data point, it's probably a better for basing a generalization for the quality of the winter in the mountainous regions of New England. For one, it isn't nearly as susceptible to wind-loading. (Whether or not the Toll Road is skiable has no bearing on this discussion.) The Stake, which is in a sheltered location, gives an indication of the total snowfall over the course of the winter at a relatively high elevation, and from it we can also infer a little about the localized climate over the course of the year. Note that if you compare '77–'78 and '96–'97 to the Great Winters of '68–69 and '00–'01 and this winter, '96–'97 outlasted them all and '77–'78 out-performed '68–'69, '00–'01, and '18–'19 so far in the month of May, which correlates with your personal records for Tucks trips. While this was a good winter in terms of snow depth, it's falling off more quickly than a number of years in the '60s and '70s.
    Agreed. But back to OP. Maybe The “The Longest Snow Cover” does not mean the same thing to everyone. Yes you can throw statistical data at it but again that is up to interpretation. Is Mount Mansfield your yardstick or is Tuckerman’s Ravine? Maybe it is how long it takes for The Subway to be passable in Kings Ravine. To me a lot of it is semantics. Primarily using the snow stake at Mt. Mansfiled as an annual snow gauge for the entirety of New England is IMO a bit arbitrary. For instance most years just up the road at Jay Peak they usually thump Mount Mansfield on Total snowfall. So should we be using that Mountain instead? I’m going to stick to my notes as I know what I did an experienced. If you would like to see it differently that is your opinion statistically or not. Thanks for the data. Certainly interesting and open to interpretation.
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  7. #22
    Senior Member TJsName's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skiguy View Post
    Agreed. But back to OP. Maybe The “The Longest Snow Cover” does not mean the same thing to everyone. Yes you can throw statistical data at it but again that is up to interpretation. Is Mount Mansfield your yardstick or is Tuckerman’s Ravine? Maybe it is how long it takes for The Subway to be passable in Kings Ravine. To me a lot of it is semantics. Primarily using the snow stake at Mt. Mansfiled as an annual snow gauge for the entirety of New England is IMO a bit arbitrary. For instance most years just up the road at Jay Peak they usually thump Mount Mansfield on Total snowfall. So should we be using that Mountain instead? I’m going to stick to my notes as I know what I did an experienced. If you would like to see it differently that is your opinion statistically or not. Thanks for the data. Certainly interesting and open to interpretation.
    As long as the assumptions are explicit, it's fine to use a smaller data set, but it does make it harder to generalize. I'm sure there are larger data sets available, and that they are being analyzed by climatologist, which is why climate change isn't semantics or subject to interpretation.
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  8. #23
    Senior Member TEO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skiguy View Post
    Agreed. But back to OP. Maybe The “The Longest Snow Cover” does not mean the same thing to everyone. Yes you can throw statistical data at it but again that is up to interpretation. Is Mount Mansfield your yardstick or is Tuckerman’s Ravine? Maybe it is how long it takes for The Subway to be passable in Kings Ravine. To me a lot of it is semantics. Primarily using the snow stake at Mt. Mansfiled as an annual snow gauge for the entirety of New England is IMO a bit arbitrary. For instance most years just up the road at Jay Peak they usually thump Mount Mansfield on Total snowfall. So should we be using that Mountain instead? I’m going to stick to my notes as I know what I did an experienced. If you would like to see it differently that is your opinion statistically or not. Thanks for the data. Certainly interesting and open to interpretation.
    It's not entirely arbitrary. Most importantly, the Stake has accurate, daily—to my knowledge—National Weather Service records going back to 1954, that are easy for the public to view and make graphic comparisons. Its location is also more central and less anomalous than say Jay Peak,Tuckerman Ravine, or King Ravine's Subway. (While Jay does get significant snowfall, the accuracy of the ski area's marketing department has been questioned greatly in the past.) Also, I'm assuming that your personal records are qualitative rather than quantitative.

    If you're wondering if there will be snow left on higher-elevation trails in New England, along the lines of Spencer's original post—and you didn't have access to trip reports or Facebook—I would argue that the Stake would be more representative than the latest picture of the Bowl from the Mount Washington Avalanche Center or calling Jay Peak's marketing department. ;-) That said unlike hiking trails, the snow at the Stake is not compressed by hikers of the course of the winter, so there's a good chance the monorails around 4k' would outlast the snow at the Stake.
    Last edited by TEO; 05-13-2019 at 03:00 PM.

  9. #24
    Senior Member skiguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TEO View Post
    It's not entirely arbitrary. Most importantly, the Stake has accurate, daily—to my knowledge—National Weather Service records going back to 1954, that are easy for the public to view and make graphic comparisons. Its location is also more central and less anomalous than say Jay Peak,Tuckerman Ravine, or King Ravine's Subway. (While Jay does get significant snowfall, the accuracy of the ski area's marketing department has been questioned greatly in the past.) Also, I'm assuming that your personal records are qualitative rather than quantitative.

    If you're wondering if there will be snow left on higher-elevation trails in New England, along the lines of Spencer's original post—and you didn't have access to trip reports or Facebook—I would argue that the Stake would be more representative than the latest picture of the Bowl from the Mount Washington Avalanche Center or calling Jay Peak's marketing department. ;-) That said unlike hiking trails, the snow at the Stake is not compressed by hikers of the course of the winter, so there's a good chance the monorails around 4k' would outlast the snow at the Stake.
    OK you win!We can split hairs but when I stated “more the norm” I was referring to the Ravine and skiing longevity. Take it for what it’s worth objective or subjective. I’ll leave the rest up to you statisticians.
    Last edited by skiguy; 05-13-2019 at 03:23 PM.
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  10. #25
    Senior Member skiguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TJsName View Post
    As long as the assumptions are explicit, it's fine to use a smaller data set, but it does make it harder to generalize. I'm sure there are larger data sets available, and that they are being analyzed by climatologist, which is why climate change isn't semantics or subject to interpretation.
    Agreed. But today I’m using a smaller data set. Here’s a pic from the Avalanche Center.
    "I'm getting up and going to work everyday and I am stoked. That does not suck!"__Shane McConkey

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