It has been one awfully mild summer in Lake Tahoe, locals are talking, and Mother Nature seems to be tempting us Alpine folks with cold temperatures. These signs usually trick us into thinking winter is around the corner, but this year it just might be. In fact, there was snow on the north side of Mt. Rose until Thursday night from a front that moved through a few days before. The wind today was white-capping the lake on the South Shore just below Heavenly where frost could be seen from town a few days before. It’s been cold at night and some sporty parkas have been dawned on the south shore casinos keeping tourists warm. Sail boats seen from Cave Rock where moving quite well in 20 knot wind on Thursday with clouds coming in in the afternoon. From Castle Rock on Friday, larger clouds came across the lake with 40 mph winds. The tree branches were swaying and pine needles and forest debris was blowing. Local ski rental shops have been setting up throughout the Heavenly Valley area. Ski industry purchase have been growing at a faster rate than last year as media coverage begins to offer crazy weather predictions for the season. The oceans affect the weather, and it does appear that the current weather patterns seem similar than in past huge snow seasons here in Tahoe. One local ski rental delivery shop employee believes this year will be similar to the explosive ski season of 2005 where Heavenly, Kirkwood, and Sierra-at-Tahoe received 900″ of snow each starting with skiing in October. The concern for the winter could possibly be more rain on snow events with precipitation at different temperatures. This forecast could make it difficult for backcountry skiers to read the snow as the season progresses or just make conditions in the Sierra backcountry more precarious and dangerous. In this case, South Lake Tahoe is well endowed with lift access skiing for some of the most unique powder turns in the country.
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