Sunday was the busiest day on the slopes in the past 10 years at the Nevis Range Ski Resort.
Earlier in the week Iain (Spike) Sykes, the founder of Nevis Range claimed that the Nevis Range Ski Resort had more snow than ever in the history of skiing at the mountain resort. The resort has now recorded snow fall for 59 consecutive days.
On Sunday 16 February almost 1700 skiers and snowboarders took to the slopes of Aonach Mor to enjoy the incredible sunny blue skies day. The snow cover was described as ‘wall-to-wall’ and the snow conditions were soft groomed snow giving excellent sliding. Average snow depths are thought to be 1.6 metres on the lower slopes, 4.5 metres on the upper slopes, with some deep gully areas estimated as being over 18m deep.
The resort was not even able to operate all of its lifts at the weekend because some lifts are still buried under the unprecedented amounts of snow. Lower mountain lifts along with the Quad chair and Warrens T bar opened early in the day. The hard working hill team continued to dig throughout the day and the Goose T bar which allows access to one of the main skiing areas finally opened late afternoon. The resort was then able to stay open late on Sunday because of the lovely overhead weather conditions.
The resort was even advising its customers to hire ski and snowboard equipment before they travelled as the on-site hire department could not meet the huge demand.
The skiers and boarders were joined by more than 500 visitors who enjoyed sledging, building snow tunnels and igloos, as well as the wonderful panoramic winter highland views from the Snowgoose restaurant & bar at 650m on the side of the mountain.
Marian Austin, MD, explained “We knew Sunday was going to be an incredible day on the slopes as we already had unprecedented levels of snow and the forecast was for sunny spells and favourable winds. Despite not being able to open all of our lifts on such a busy day, we’ve had great feedback from our customers. This is due to the strong team of staff we have here at Nevis Range. All of our staff have been working very hard in difficult conditions and the hill team have been digging out the lifts on the upper mountain almost on a daily basis.”
She continued “Our records show that it’s snowed in each 24 hour period since we opened for this winter season on 20 December 2013, so we’ve almost forgotten what it’s like not to have snow falling each day. Operations so far this season have been hampered by the strong winds, however, with the amount of snow we already have, once the weather becomes more settled, the skiing will be amazing and as long as we still have customers we’re planning to ski right into spring or maybe even summer.”