Source: Outside Online

Cover: China | A Skier's Journey

China only has one cat skiing operation in the entire country and it just got shutdown because of North Korea testing their nukes underground. Two massive earthquakes, measuring 6.3 & 4.1 on the Richter scale, shook the Changbaishan National Nature Reserve and triggered a landslide in the only part of the reserve with skiing access. Chinese officials have closed that zone of the Changbaishan Reserve indefinitely, until "the potential risks disappear." Being a hop, skip, and a cork 7 away from North Korea's underground testing area, it truly is an indefinite hold.

Powder Magazine

“For the safety and convenience of travelers, we have temporarily closed the zone of Changbai Mountain. Officials are thoroughly investigating the safety of the tourist area."

The Changbai Mountain cat operation is fueled by the ever growing interest in skiing in China, which is heavily influenced by the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games. The number of ski areas in China has risen rapidly in the past 20 years: from only 6 resorts to 568, according to Outside Online. That's over 9000% growth in 20 years!

A far-cry from the snow domes & fake snow resorts that are popping up, Changbaishan receives plenty of snow from the Siberian fronts that pass through on their way to Japan's holy grail of powder skiing; Hokkaido. Freeride World Tour has been considering Changbaishan as a potential stop in the future but who knows if that will come to fruition now. All we can do now is wait & see what happens next.