"This is the coolest book ever! This book is made for people obsessed with snow and live for powder days. Professor Powder (Dr. Steenburgh's online alter ego) gives us a behind-the-scenes tour of the science of snow, including where to find the most snow in the world, which U.S. ski area has the fluffiest snow, and how modern meteorological tools can be used to find the deepest dendrites. This is THE book that I recommend to everyone who loves to slide on snow."
—Joel Gratz, Founding Meteorologist and CEO, OpenSnow
"Utah, and particularly Little Cottonwood Canyon, is a deep powder mecca that calls to riders from around the world. Who better to explain why than someone who has spent his career skiing the Wasatch and studying the winter storms of Alta.”
—Dave Richards, Director, Alta Ski Area Avalanche Office
“As a 40-year, professional avalanche and weather forecaster, I’m constantly learning from Jim Steenburgh. I often consult his book and, of course, I’m addicted to his entertainingly informative blog, Wasatch Weather Weenies, which always gets a lot of buzz among winter outdoor geeks.”
—Bruce Tremper, retired Director, Utah Avalanche Center, and author of Staying Alive in Avalanche Terrain
Utah has long claimed to have the greatest snow on Earth—the state itself has even trademarked the phrase. In Secrets of the Greatest Snow on Earth, Jim Steenburgh investigates Wasatch weather, exposing the myths, explaining the reality, and revealing how and why Utah’s powder lives up to its reputation. Steenburgh also examines ski and snowboard regions beyond Utah, providing a meteorological guide to mountain weather and snow climates around the world.
Chapters explore mountain weather, avalanches and snow safety, historical accounts of weather events and snow conditions, and the basics of climate and weather forecasting. In this second edition, Steenburgh explains what creates the best snow for skiing and snowboarding using accurate and accessible language and 150 color photographs and illustrations, making Secrets of the Greatest Snow on Earth a helpful tool for planning vacations and staying safe during mountain adventures.
This edition is updated with two new chapters covering microclimates and climate change in greater depth. Steenburgh addresses the declining snowpack and the future of snow across the western United States, as well as the declining snow and ice in several regions of the world—the European Alps in particular. Snowriders, weather enthusiasts, meteorologists, students of snow science, and anyone who dreams of deep powder and bluebird skies will want to get their gloves on this new edition of Secrets of the Greatest Snow on Earth.
Praise for the first edition:
"Everything you always wanted to know about how snow forms, and how to follow forecasts so you see how much and where, is in the book. It's a must have for any fan of snow, sure to get you excited about winter, and give you an understanding of Utah snow, and a bevy of conversation topics for the chairlift ride."
—Utah Adventure Journal
"For backcountry enthusiasts that find themselves infatuated with weather patterns, snow water equivalents, micro-climates and Utah, this book is a dream come true."
—The Backcountry Skiing Blog
"Steenburgh shares a career’s worth of knowledge in this book. His love of both snow science and skiing are obvious, and he adds humor and personality to the scientific discussion."
—First Tracks!! Online Skiing Magazine
"When it comes to snow, the details—both small- and large-scale—do matter. If we all observed our surroundings with as much curiosity and enthusiasm as Steenburgh, the world could be a much better-tended place."