Vancouver ski resorts struggle with snow scarcity

Source:Xinhua Published: 2015-1-29 15:09:57

Lying in the outskirts of Vancouver, the Cypress Mountain, which used to bustle with tourists in past winters, runs with less than 50 percent of its capacity this year due to serious lack of snow.

Only nine of 54 ski runs are open this week in Cypress Mountain, which hosted free-style ski and snowboard events during the 2010 Winter Olympics. Other local ski hills in the Vancouver area have also been pretty quiet.

Katie Wang, a Vancouver snowboarder, told Xinhua at Cypress Mountain that it was okay in last December, but has worsened since then because there has not been a lot of new snow.

Experts blame on a warming climate as well as El Nino, which had caused warmer weather and less precipitation in Vancouver's North Shore mountains.

"The conditions could get worse as we go along, so for the next few years -- we can't really predict for the next 20 or 30 years -- I would say that in the future there's a less likely chance of good snow conditions for the mountains around Vancouver," said Professor David McClung, an expert on snow and avalanche at the University of British Columbia.

Stations recording snow in British Columbia showed warmer weather conditions and less snow over the last 30 year, noted McClung.

The lack of snow is strangling the ski resort business in Vancouver and forcing travel agencies to adjust their programs for visitors from China and other parts of Asia who come to the area for skiing.

Alice Lin from Cal Travel Tours said they are taking their Asian visitors away from Vancouver for ski trips to other resorts in the interior that have more snow.

"We don't hear too much people asking for local ski resorts. Mostly we advise them to go for either Whistler or the B.C. inland," said Lin.

Posted in: Winter Sport

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