The November Mountain Story: Lots of Snow

Is November 2015 actually January in disguise?

Big Bear Village

IF YOU WERE TO SEE A POST... online, at any blog or social media page or site, that had a single word repeated over and over again, you'd probably scratch your chin, "hmm" a bit, and figure someone had dropped the ball somewhere and/or a glitchy burp had occurred deep within the various bleeping lights that comprise the internet. This true fact, that a repeated one-word post can look frinky, means that we can't simply type the word "snow snow snow snow snow" several times for the next several sentences, and yet that is exactly, in happy, oh-thank-goodness spirit, what is going on at California's mountain resorts. The middle of November around some of our peaks and lower-elevation ski slopes can often look like the middle of October, just a bit freer of colorful leaves. And yet how to explain how multiple storm systems -- are we up to three now, or four? Depends on the area -- have turned November around California's mountains into full-on January? Well, here's how to explain: You might have heard, somewhere, maybe in passing, that El Niño is on its way. The ski resorts are certainly thanking it, vociferously, on their various Facebook and Instagram pages, which shouldn't surprise anyone, when anyone looks at last winter's dry ways.

THE SNOWPACK IS ROBUST... in Big Bear Village. Nearby Snow Summit and Bear Mountain are now open to skiers, and the village itself looks as though it might be early February (check out the flake-laden snapshot taken on Monday,  Nov. 16). Further north, into Mono County, there's some serious snow, and a serious drop in temperatures (the Bodie Foundation reports that the morning temperature in Bodie State Historic Park was a coat-worthy 9 degrees). And Mammoth Mountain, and other area businesses like Mammoth Brewing Company, have posted a literal snowshower of photos over the last two weeks (the base on the mountain, if you're wondering, stands at a hearty 42 inches). As for Yosemite National Park? "...we've been lucky enough to have one storm per week blow through..." says the destination's Facebook page, with the white-frosty pics to back it up. Is this truly the most Januaryish November ever? It is definitely shaping up to be solid on the slopes and anywhere a person likes to build a snowman. If you have a favorite California mountain spot, check in with their social media. There's a good chance that they, too, will have some snowy snaps up.

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