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Lake Tahoe area, Mammoth Mountain receive first significant snowfall of season


The Lake Tahoe area was transformed into a wintry wonderland over the weekend, much to the delight of resort operators preparing for what might be an epic El Niño-fueled skiing and snowboarding season.

All seven of the Ski Lake Tahoe resorts received a generous delivery of powder, raising hopes of October openings. Mammoth Mountain in the Eastern Sierra, likewise, received almost 8 inches and would like to open early. Mammoth has pegged Nov. 12 as opening day but that's subject to change.

Experts predict that moderate El Niño conditions will persist through the 2009-10 winter. If past El Niños are an indication, this will be a long and bountiful season on the slopes.

-- Pete Thomas

Photo of Mt. Tallac in the Lake Tahoe area courtesy of Ski Lake Tahoe

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Outposts' primary contributor is Kelly Burgess.