Deer Valley Resort president Bob Wheaton called it a "highly localized weather event." He was referring, of course, to the blizzard of snowmaking activity that unleashed billows of shimmering crystals above the ski runs, and much of the city, this week.

Deer Valley, Park City Mountain Resort and Canyons have each made significant investments in new snowmaking equipment and the results are remarkable. Thanks to the newest technology AND hard work of resort employees, holiday visitors can look forward to excellent skiing and snowboarding conditions. (And, until they get here, we'd be happy to do some product testing.)

Let's not forget that just a couple of weeks ago the slopes were bare and local merchants were chewing their fingernails. A nice wet snowstorm right after Thanksgiving helped break the high pressure system but it blew through quickly.

Fortunately, the snow was followed by a cold wave and that's when the resorts jumped into action. The slopes have been lined with machines blowing fresh jets of snow ever since and dedicated employees have been slathering it on the runs and terrain parks.

Nevertheless, we can't thumb our noses at Mother Nature completely. Snowmaking isn't possible without cold temperatures and there are plenty of locals who remember a few mild, dry Decembers when the ski season was delayed until after Christmas.

Those were tough years and while snowmaking technology has offered a measure of insurance so our winter-based economy can withstand fickle weather patterns, the resorts and the community have also taken broader steps to "save our snow.


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" Environmental initiatives to reduce carbon output, to explore alternative energy sources and to conserve natural resources are also part of that effort.

So, while you are looking up at that beautiful snowstorm that seems to be falling on just the right spots at your favorite resort, do your part too by car pooling, recycling and picking the "greener" alternative whenever possible.

Some local resources include:

www.powdr.com/site/environmental-vision/save-our-snow

www.canyonsresort.com/environment.html

parkcitygreen.org/