Patterns of the disappearing seasonal snow cover are similar year after year. This could lead to the assumption that a certain areal extent of snow indicates always a corresponding volume of snow or of water stored in a given basin. Such possibility of seasonal runoff forecasts had to be dismissed in an alpine basin. Within a few years, the stored water volume and the subsequent runoff varied in the ratio of 1: 2 for a snow coverage always within the range of 40 to 45%. The areal extent of the snow cover seems to be linked rather with the ratio of the current water equivalent to its maximum value of the respective year.