sochiSochi 2014: Guaranteed Snow

Organizers of the Winter Olympics chose a very to-the-point name for one especially critical program going into the games: “Sochi 2014: Guaranteed Snow.”

That is the moniker for the massive—and expensive—effort to make sure that Sochi, a subtropical beach resort along the shores of the Black Sea, has enough of the white stuff for things like ski-jumping, slaloming and swooshing down hills.

It might be natural. It might be man-made. It might even be “used” from last winter. But there will be snow for the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics from Feb. 7-23, 2014.

“The Sochi 2014 snow program will guarantee snow, whatever the weather,” Mikko Martikainen, CEO of Finnish company Snow Secure, told CNBC. (NBC and its sister networks, including CNBC, will carry broadcasts of the Winter Olympics from Sochi.)

Sochi will have 500 snow guns ready to make artificial snow, said Martikainen. His company has also “stored” 710,000 cubic meters of snow that it took from the Caucasus Mountains last winter. The huge mounds stand covered by massive insulated blankets.

Sochi has plans to quickly transport snow, if necessary, to venues such as the Rosa Khutor ski resort. But organizers said they expect to get enough natural snow, without resorting to backup measures.

“Taken together, these measures will mean that snow is guaranteed, whatever the weather,” the Sochi 2014 press office said in a statement.

Also read Winter Olympic 2014 Live

Sochi’s temperatures in February average in the high 40s Fahrenheit, said Eric Leister, a meteorologist at Olympic athletes and visitors should expect a wet, winter climate more like Seattle than Squaw Valley.

But temperatures often drop below freezing not too far away.