My wife was kind enough to plan a ski trip for me and some buddies for my big 40th birthday in early December. We're going to Lake Louise, which is supposed to open in 3 weeks. I have been watching their webcams, and they just started snowmaking:http://www.skilouise.com/mountain_cam/
Look how few and spread out the snowguns are! And notice how little snow is on the ground even though they have been at it all morning. Now of course, they get TONS more snow than we do, but it gives you an appreciation for the snowmaking efforts that local reorts undertake!