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Great Conditions for the Holiday Weekend!

02.18.11 08:10 AM

Friday Friday Friday! The weekend is almost here and I’m sure all of you guys are just as ready for it as I am. My dad and sister are going to be staying at a place in Banner Elk this weekend and I’m taking them out to Beech tomorrow. My sister has never even been to the mountains and my dad hasn’t skied in 20 years probably. So needless to say, I’m pretty pumped to be able to go take them out on the slopes and show them around the area. 

<<<Sugar Mountain looked to be in great shape yesterday. The same can be said for all the ski areas across the region.

With the great snow conditions and beautiful weather this past week I’m expecting that there will be some pretty huge turnouts at the resorts this holiday weekend. The weather should be pretty cooperative, as we’ll see highs ranging from the mid 40’s to low 50’s throughout the weekend. There is a slight chance of showers for the latter part of the weekend, but as of right now it doesn’t appear to be a significant event so don’t let that deter you from getting some turns in.

I always like looking at the cams on weekends like this just to see what the crowds look like. Sometimes it can get pretty crazy! Check out the High Country Web Cams site and take a look for yourself at some point this weekend. There are some pretty cool views of the entire region, not just limited to the ski areas. The Watauga Lake View cam is now a personal favorite of mine, as I was up there yesterday for the first time working on it. If you’ve never been to Watauga Lake, I highly suggest getting up there sometime as the place is simply amazing!

Just a reminder that the trip report contest is still going on. The winner will receive 4 passes to either Cataloochee, Wolf Ridge, or Massanutten. I’ve seen a visible spike in the amount of area trip reports lately but I want to see even more! So take your camera out this weekend! Also, don’t forget about the SkiSoutheast Snowshoe Summit in two weeks. If you haven’t already made your reservations, definitely do so quickly as Snowshoe is giving SkiSoutheast members an incredible deal on rooms and lift tickets. Click here for more info.

That’s about all for today, here’s a look at the ski areas…

Ober Gatlinburg - 57° - Open on 100% of the mountain with a groomed surface. The day session begins today at 9 am and they will be skiing and riding until 10 pm tonight. Tubing is also open today and holiday rates do go into effect today.

Wisp Resort - 54°- Open on 31 of 32 trails today, with Deer Run being the only one not open. Today is Burton Demo Day where you can try the latest and greatest from Burton Snowboards, with complimentary demos available with the purchase of a lift ticket. Tonight they will also be having the second contest in their Friday Night Rail Jam series. Tubing is also open today.

Snowshoe Mountain - 43°- They are open on 59 of 60 trails today, with Sawmill Glades being the only area not open. Here’s what they have to say - "Join us today as we kick off our new Snowshoe for U program. Today's offerings including Ride Thru with the Park Crew introduction to freestyle terrain/terrain parks at 11am, and What's Under Your Feet gear clinic at 7pm. Visit for the weekend's complete schedule or stop by any front desk or On Mountain Sales location. Ride Thru with the Park Crew meets at 11am at both the Snowshoe and Silver Creek area. At Snowshoe meet at the Mountain Adventure Center at the top of the Ballhooter lift and at Silver Creek meet at the large trail map sign between Timberjack and Robertson’s Run. Our Park Crew will teach you proper approach to freestyle terrain and park etiquette.**

We have one more day of somewhat mild weather before more seasonable temperatures return. While elsewhere in the region temperatures will reach near 70 degrees, Snowshoe will see the mid-50s and then temperatures dropping to well below freezing overnight. Morning clouds may provide some very light, short-lived drizzle before clearing leads to a mostly sunny afternoon. Tomorrow that sun will stick around and temperatures aren't expected to get out of the 30s. That means that we may be able to make some snow the next two nights and certainly our expert grooming team will be out and about laying down a perfect surface for your skiing and riding enjoyment.

We've continued to be very lucky during this mild stretch; daytime temperatures have been above the norm, but overnight lows have allowed for nightly grooming and the snow has really set up nicely each evening. Yesterday afternoon the snow was soft and carvable but still tons of fun. We should see more of the same today. If spring-like conditions aren't your favorite, reduced skier traffic at the Silver Creek area has kept the snow firmer across that area. Although all of the blacks and all the blues but Timberjack were left ungroomed overnight at Silver Creek. At Snowshoe, everything but Lower Shay's was groomed overnight. Lower Shay's hasn't been groomed all week and we have some fun bumps formed in that area. We do plan to groom everything overnight tonight for a perfect corduroy surface to kick off the weekend tomorrow.

If you're joining us on the mountain this weekend, remember that we'll have lots of friends joining us for the long holiday weekend. Silver Creek usually has less skier traffic, even on busy weekends and typically provides nearly ride-on access to the lifts. So if you're looking for more time on snow, take our fast free shuttle system to that area and take full advantage of the 244 acres of skiable terrain accessed with your Snowshoe lift ticket! And don't forget about night skiing from 4:30-9pm at Silver Creek. If you're looking for something to do off the slopes, think about heading over to the Comedy Cellar, or Hoot's for some live music. Both Hoot's and Moonshine will also provide live entertainment tomorrow night! And definitely be sure to check out our full Snowshoe for U programming schedule. Find out the best inside information for mountain living from the locals who do it every day. From how to dress for any weather to what new gear might be for you.

If you haven't made plans to head to the mountain yet, it looks like we'll see some up and down weather next week, with the chance for snow and some additional day with more mild temperatures, but more seasonable temperatures move in as we head into March. Snowshoe averages nearly 30" of snow in March, so we may not be done with powder days yet this season. And with 4-10 FEET of snow across our 244 acres, we'll have terrific conditions through the end of the season! Call 877-441-4386 for our best rates and packages. Kids Ski Free beginning Feb 21st with any 4+ night stay and we have great events and Spring Break packages throughout the month!

Canaan Resort - 50°- Open today on 38 of 39 slopes with a groomed surface. Today is College Friday, where college students who present a valid ID will receive half price lift tickets and rental equipment for the day. Tubing, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, and skating are also open today.

Timberline - 50°- They are open on 37 of 39 trails today. This weekend they will be featuring three days of continuous music from early until 2am on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday in the Timbers Pub. Later night performances will feature rhythm, blues, rock, and karaoke until 1am. Sounds like it should be a fun weekend up there.

Winterplace - 49°- Open today on 100% of the mountain. Both of their terrain parks are open and they will have tubing sessions today. They still have some really good stay and ski for free lodging packages available from now until the end of the season so make sure to check out their website for more info on that.

Bryce Resort - 57°- Open today on 100% of the mountain with a groomed surface. They will have night skiing as well as tubing today, starting at 6 pm.

Massanutten - 59°- Open today on 100% of the mountain with loose granular conditions. Both terrain parks are open with a number of features set up. Tubing is also open today from 9am to 9pm. This weekend is Jeep President’s Weekend as Massanutten. On Saturday night they will have fireworks beginning at 10pm, late night tubing sessions lasting until midnight, and live music at the lodge starting at 8pm.

Wintergreen - 50° - Open today on 100% of the mountain with a groomed surface. They will have night skiing tonight, and tubing will open at 2pm today. Their terrain park also continues to be top notch.

Appalachian Ski Mountain - 53°- Open today on all 12 slopes with a groomed surface. They have a new page on their website that will keep you up to date on the current terrain park features set up on the mountain, so if that’s your thing make sure to check it out before heading to the mountain. As always, conditions at App will be great and I’d imagine they will see some pretty big crowds out there this weekend. Ice skating is also open.

Beech Mountain Resort - 43°- Open today on 100% of the mountain with a groomed surface. The terrain park is open with a multitude of fun features. Ice skating is also open today.

Cataloochee – 48.2°- They are open on 100% of the mountain with a groomed surface today. Tubing is open today and sessions will begin at 10 am. Also, just a reminder that it's Learn to Ski and Snowboard Season at Cataloochee and with the purchase of rentals you get a free 1.5 hour beginner lesson!

Sapphire Valley - 44°- Open today on 100% of the mountain. Tubing is also open and they will have night skiing tonight. Don’t forget that Sapphire Valley will be hosting their Annual Outhouse Races on Saturday!

Sugar Mountain – 43.7°- Open today on 100% of the mountain with a perfectly groomed surface. It should be great skiing and riding as always up there. Skating and tubing are also open. This weekend Sugar will be featuring the acoustic sounds of High Country bluegrass artist Boss Hawg on Saturday from four until six. A NASTAR event will also be taking place on Big Red on both Saturday and Sunday.

Wolf Ridge - 47° - Open on 14 of 23 slopes today with a groomed surface. They will have night skiing and tubing today and the Upper Lodge will be opening up at some point.Well that’s all I have for today.

Send me photos, stories, or any questions to and enjoy your weekend!

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