Things Are Looking A Lot More Like Early November now

Things Are Looking A Lot More Like Early November now

Story by Mike Doble – email me at [email protected] 

It was pretty while it lasted and it was a gift…and now it’s m-e-l-t-i-n-g!

Cataloochee and Sugar both opened Halloween Day and for three of the last five days things looked MUCH MORE like Winter in Maggie Valley and Sugar Mountain, North Carolina than late October and early November. Temps have been mild enough and the snow that fell early last week was wet enough that there’s enough melting happening that things look much more like the calendar would suggest they should.

<A look at Sugar Mountain’s base area this morning.

In other words, things aren’t that pretty this morning. Expect good coverage at both ski resorts, but also expect to have to maneuver yourself to the good snow across those slopes that are open. The truth is there are very few newbies (if any at all) who have taken advantage of these early, early season turns thus far.


I had inaccurately speculated on Saturday that Cataloochee Ski Area would not operate going into Monday-Thursday and rather opt for their normal early season operating practice of opening for weekends only. H-o-w-e-v-e-r you know what you get assuming, and this morning Cat reports, "Cataloochee will continue to operate on a daily basis for day skiing only, as long as conditions allow."

I’m AGAIN speculating that they won’t go too far into the week with the current conditions, however it appears that they will operate as long as decent conditions allow. Truth is their 8-12" base looks a bit better than Sugar’s 6-28" but you guys can be the judge.

The forecast ahead looks borderline for an uninterrupted start to the season. However that would have been too much to expect. I can assure you that while Cat and Sugar would have loved to get started and stay open, they aren’t bummed about the fact that they were able to open…if even for a short few days.

We’re looking at highs in the 40s and 50s for the next few days into Thursday of this week and lows should dip to the upper 20s and low 30s across the higher elevations at Sugar this week. Cataloochee’s temps might be a notch milder so snowmaking ops will be limited to non-existent there at Maggie Valley. If those temps do indeed hit at Sugar, then they will be able to make snow and remain open through the week.

Lows at Sugar should be near 31° Sunday night and then closer to the upper 20s Monday night through Thursday night. Friday and Saturday of NEXT WEEK look dramatically milder/warmer. That trend looks to remain for a time after that so take advantage of it while ya can.

Check the snow report for the details.

We’ll try to get you guys some photos and videos when and if we can get our hands on some! Until then, our hearts and prayers are with those residents and resorts in WV and Maryland.

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Mike is the Editor and founder of and Since September of 1996 he has written more than 2800 articles promoting all of the ski areas of North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and Maryland. While attending to the thousands of emails, photo submissions and On-Snow reports that come in all season long, Doble also owns and operates a full service web design and marketing company that has more than 800 clients in 30+ states and several countries.He shares that it was his passion for all things snow that prompted him to start the ski network and since that time the website has gained popularity through it's webcam and weather content as well.Mike is the father of four daughters, is an avid snow and water skier, football freak of his alma mater (the University of South Carolina) and hearty promoter of all that is Western North Carolina to West Virginia and Maryland. Mike spends his off time with his horses, playing golf, tennis and boating on Watauga Lake with his family and friends, coaching local soccer teams and oh yes...Snow Skiing!