Sports

Find snow fast with modern technology

 | November 20, 2010

Technology is good to powder hounds, especially when it comes to apps. With the wealth of information literally available at your fingertips, it’s much easier to be at the right place at just the right time.

/Snow reports are invaluable tools to skiers and snowboarders who want powder. With the available snow report mobile apps, they’ll get much more than just the amount of snowfall at their favourite ski resort.

Among the hundreds of apps available, The North Face’s The Snow Report and the REI Snow Report are two of the top picks.

The North Face’s Snow Report provides comprehensive information on your favourite ski resorts. Right off the bat, the app shows the snow conditions and the amount of snowfall for your customized list of resorts, including the totals from the last 48 and 72 hours. In addition, it also includes a four-day forecast, webcams and detailed information on the resort.

The only downside is the trail map, which is too small to be of any use. You’re better off using an application like iTrailMap, which allows you to download the trail map onto your phone so you can use it on the mountain even without an Internet connection.

The updated Snow Report 2.0 version can be used for both iPhone and iPod Touch 4 and includes some nifty add-ons. The app integrates push notifications, which means you receive an alert when one of your favourite ski destinations receives snow. There’s also Twitter integration that informs you of the latest buzz and allows you to send a tweet right from the app. There’s also a handy avalanche advisory that shows the latest reports from the Canadian Avalanche Centre.

REI’s Snow Report has many of the features included in The North Face app but it gives you more information at a glance. On the selected resort’s page, you’ll see the amount of new snow in the last 24 hours, 48 hours and 5 days. It also shows the top and base mountain snow depth, which you can set to inches or centimetres depending on what setting you choose.

With your GPS turned on, you can choose up to 12 resorts to monitor in your vicinity. Compared to The North Face app, REI’s makes it easier to find Canadian ski resorts listings. You’ll also get notified when any of these resorts get snow.

On the same page, it shows the number of lifts and trails open, the temperature and the snow conditions. You can also view resort tweets from Twitter, but you won’t be able to send out your own tweet directly from the app.

There’s a five-day forecast, resort webcams and streamlined resort information which includes the phone number, e-mail address, resort website and location via Google Maps.

With these apps, you’ll have all the information needed to plan your winter ski vacation and up your chances of skiing first tracks on fresh powder.

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