Twenty-three feet of snow in the Andes but ski areas closed due to Covid-19

  • Ski areas in both Argentina and Chile await green light to open.
  • Seven meters (23 ft) of snow.
  • International crossings closed.
  • Difficult or impossible to travel between towns and cities.
  • Cattle starving to death. Temperatures drop to minus 23C.
  • None of the three countries, Argentina, Chile and Ecuador remember such a cold and snowy start to winter in the last decade.
  • Snowfall in Pillaró, Ecuador.

16 July 2020 – As the storm passed through Argentina and Chile, heavy snowfalls left international crossings closed, with walls on both sides of the route of up to 5 meters (16 1/2 ft) of snow (national 242); extreme temperatures with thermometers that have marked 23 negative degrees.

The storm in Ecuador in the Andean area of ​​Píllaro, in the center of the country and entrance to the Llanganates National Park, left a snowy surprise of up to 30 cm (12 inches).

Since the end of June, Patagonia has been punished with heavy snowfalls and severe low temperatures which make it difficult or impossible to travel between towns and cities. Asphalt or gravel roads are the basis of these accumulations of ice and snow, which in many cases are very dangerous to travel. For example, National Route 40 at night, in some sections, is closed. Route 237 that goes to Neuquén also presents a similar panorama.

One of those places is the La Hoya Ski Center, which shows a significant amount of snow on its slopes but unfortunately cannot be opened due to the pandemic.

The same at Cerro Catedral Alta Patagonia, Cerro Chapelco, Corralco or Nevados de Chillán, to give just a few examples of winter centers overflowing with snow -in some cases it reaches 7 meters- but empty, and awaiting permission from the authorities to start the 2020 ski season.

The first two ski centers with limited opening dates are Cerro Catedral Alta Patagonia (on July 21) and Chapelco on August 1.

Meanwhile, images such as the struggle of some peons in Chubut to prevent their cows and sheep from starving to death amidst the white blanket, images of rivers, lakes and streams transformed into huge mirrors of ice, or images of a man digging a tunnel under the snow to leave his home in Caviahue are difficult to remember in recent winters.

Copahue and the surrounding town are covered by snow, which reaches seven meters in this Neuquén paradise.


Surprise snowfall in Pillaró, in the Poaló area, in Ecuador.

The Pichi Leufu River of Río Negro, Argentina

Buried to the knees try to reach to feed the animals

Thanks to Argiris Diamantis for these links

7 thoughts on “Twenty-three feet of snow in the Andes but ski areas closed due to Covid-19”

  1. The real reason they can’t open has more to do with amount of snow if you ask me.
    With so much snow along with the upcoming ice age cycle, they can always go cross country if they can’t get to the ski resorts, or if they’re closed for some reason.

    • it’s also their punishment for being so communist and because they’re destroying Christian churches and crosses…etc.. They had a huge roaring sound they could not explain coming right out of the mountains for 10 days. Possibly another sign of additional severe punishment?

  2. It’s a shame ski resorts are closed and can’t take advsntage of it. May be hardship elsewhere.

    The summer monsoon is kicking in around the Southwest more than a month late. It’s heat activated. Does that tell you it’s warmer? (It may have seemed like it there for a while, until they get doused next week and beyond.

    • Living in Phoenix, I can attest to the fact that this years monsoon is late but is finally starting to get active. We have had some activity over the high country over the last week or two but nothing that is remotely close to normal. However, they are expecting that to change starting this week with heavy monsoons being predicting. Its a wait and see game now.
      As for the temperatures so far this summer, it hasn’t been extremely hot. Yes, we have had temperatures over 110 but not until the end of June and the start of July. Usually we are there by the beginning of June and it gets hot. Those few weeks of really hot weather usually coincides with the start of the monsoons which start around the middle of June for the high country and the beginning of July for the valley. This year, we are off by about two to three weeks which makes sense with the more mild temperatures we have been seeing so far.
      We are ready for the monsoons to begin!

Comments are closed.