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Australian snow update

Ben Domensino, Friday July 10, 2020 - 14:43 EST

Australia's alps are having their slowest start to a snow season in five years according to the latest natural snow depth readings taken this week.

Snowy Hydro records weekly measurements of the natural snow depth at Spencers Creek, which is located at 1830 metres above sea level in the NSW alps.

Image: Snow depth being measured at Spencers Creek snow course in 2017.

These weekly snow-depth readings have been taken at the same site since 1954, making this as close as you can get to Australia's official snow depth record.

This week's snow depth at Spencers Creek was 33.9cm, which is up from 21.6cm the previous week and a new high point for the season. However, it's less than half the long-term average snow depth for this far into winter and the lowest depth for this late in July since 2015.

Further down the mountain, there's currently no snow at Snowy Hydro's Three Mile Dam measuring site, which sits at 1460 metres elevation.

Fortunately, frequent cold nights have allowed some ski resorts to produce lots of artificial snow in recent weeks to top up the lagging natural snow base. This has helped provide enough cover for people to go skiing and snowboarding in the opening weeks of the season.

Australia's natural snow depth usually peaks around late August and early September, so there's still plenty of time for big dumps of snow in the mountains this season.

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