Ski Area Closures and Policies 

SKI AREA INFORMATION

Due to Covid-19,  all ski areas within the NWAC forecast zone are currently closed - with varying plans to reopen this season. Closure rules are specific to ski areas and are outlined below, however, across all resorts, staff will not be managing your risk when travelling in those areas.

Without ski patrol, avalanche control work, marked hazards, and emergency response, we all need to change our mindsets when engaging with terrain within closed ski area boundaries.

STEVENS PASS

CRYSTAL MOUNTAN

MT BAKER

SUMMIT AT SNOQUALMIE

MISSION RIDGE

MT HOOD MEADOWS

TIMBERLINE

WHITE PASS

SKI BOWL

As of March 24th, NWAC has suspended backcountry avalanche forecasting until further notice.

On March 23rd, Governor Inslee of Washington and Governor Brown of Oregon issued Stay at Home orders for the public regarding the COVID-19 outbreak. The directives are clear in that “to the maximum extent possible, individuals stay at home or in their place of residence.” Though we firmly believe in the value of backcountry travel, it is not an essential activity that outweighs the importance of slowing the spread of this virus.

Aside from the need to maintain congruency with the Governors' orders, we must support the well being of our employees and their families any way we can. Our operation is not immune to the same challenges other organizations and families across our region are all facing at this time. Simply put, we want our workforce and families to stay safe and healthy too.

The avalanche and snowpack observations that our field staff gather almost every day throughout the winter provide the foundation for our avalanche forecasts. However, we cannot overstate how drastically the pool of professional partners that we also rely on has shrunk over the last few weeks. With far fewer professional and public observations available to our forecasters than normal, the quality of our forecasts was jeopardized even before the Stay at Home orders. 

This decision was not taken lightly, however, to reduce the risk for our staff, populations that border trailheads, and the backcountry community at large, we need to suspend operations. We look forward to getting back into the mountains and providing you all with the tools to recreate safely in the backcountry. Until then we encourage you to stay near your home and stay healthy. 

NWAC Forecast Operations March 26th through early April:

  • Provide support to search and rescue groups

  • Respond to avalanche fatalities or serious avalanche accidents as staff resources allow

  • Reduced Mountain Weather Forecasting 

    • We will staff our forecast office daily from 8am-4pm and issue a mountain weather forecast at 2pm. There will not be a morning issuance (7am).

  • Weather Station Network Maintenance 

    • Remote network troubleshooting will continue 

    • Field repairs will be deferred except for critical outages

We will reassess all operations in early April.