Work in Progress: California Snow Documentary

Synopsis: Californians, infatuated in the 1930’s by the spine-tingling derring-do of dashing young European ski instructors, built a thriving industry around snow. Now, global warming is altering snowfall and a way of life in California’s majestic Sierra Nevada and San Gabriel Mountains. From thrill seeking skiers, dedicated snow scientists and corporate ski resort big wigs to minimum wage grocery clerks, maverick motel owners and mom and pop ski areas, they must confront the new reality of shorter snow seasons which they depend on for their livelihoods and recreation.The question remains, what is the future of snow in California and where will we ski in the future?

Genre: This is a film which follows the main character’s journey to find answers to diminishing snow and seeking connection to skiers and people in the snow business, sharing their stories and challenges. The film will use aerial footage of the Sierras and San Gabriel mountains to illustrate the snow conditions as well as skiing footage on the slopes and in the backcountry. It will include interviews with snow scientists, skiers, snow surveyors, ski resort owners impacted by snow, archival photos and footage from the exhilarating skiing obsession of the 1930’s in California.

Topics and Issues: Skiing, recreation, California history, small-town economics, environmental science, climate change.

Format/Length: The proposed format is a 60-minute high-definition video.

As an avid telemark skier and mountain biker, California holds a special place for Ms. Bonnie. Witnessing the recent changes in California’s climate and environment has been a call to action. So the California Snow Documentary project was launched in spring of 2014. It is anticipated that the documentary research and shooting will continue over winter and summer 2016 – 2018.