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A Bitter Sweet Weekend

03.22.14 07:53 AM

I’m writing this morning with a bit of a heavy heart.  On the one hand there is lots of fun to be had at the resorts today and tomorrow, on the other hand these are the final days for a few of our member resorts.

First off, today is the final day to ski at Beech Mountain in North Carolina.

Slopeside at Beech Mountain
The slopeside cam at Beech

Those of you who follow these posts know that we’ve spent quite a bit of time at Beech.  You could say it’s our home mountain.  I’ve met a lot of you guys and gals up there where we’ve carved turns together, got stuck on the quad together, and have had our share of fun up at the 5,506.  Thank you Beech for all of the good times this season – you will be missed!

And that’s all I’ve got to say about that.

This is also the final weekend at Appalachian Ski Mountain, also in North Carolina.  App is going out with a bang with the Meltdown Games.

Current conditions at Appalachian Ski Mountain
Prepping for a good time at Appalachian Ski Mountain

I grew up at Appalachian Ski Mountain.  Those runs are forever carved into my soul.  To this day, just about any 80’s song that comes on the radio takes me back to a memory on that mountain (App pumps music out which you can hear on the chairs going up).  Growing up, we didn’t have terrain parks and such – we had to make do with the natural terrain.  Back in those days getting air was a risky proposition that would get your ticket marked for the first [caught] infraction, and booted off the mountain with the second.  Having your ticket marked was a badge of honor, and we would save every ticket to compare at the end of the season.  App is one of those places where you always know what to expect.  The snow is consistently good and they do a masterful job with the groomers.  It never gets easier seeing the last days at App – it’s like losing a good friend every year.

After tomorrow, Sugar Mountain will be the lone open resort in the North Carolina High Country.

While it is easy to get bummed this time of year, it is also a great time to be a southeast snow rider.  This is the time when the jackets come off, the side zippers on the pants are vented, and google and boot tans rule the day.  There is still plenty of time and much skiing and boarding still to be done this season.  Many more of our member resorts will still be operating after this weekend comes and goes.  In fact, it appears that we’ll be making turns into April. 

A lot is riding on the next winter storm we’re expecting in a few days, but you wouldn’t be able to tell that something is brewing today as temps this morning are already in the 40’s – near 50 down here in NC.  However looking ahead to Tuesday, the chance of snow just keeps going up as the storm gets closer and the weather folks feel more confident in the models.  Our buddy Herb Stevens, the skiing weatherman, has an update for us you will not want to miss.

Herb Stevens - The Skiing Weatherman

While a few friends will be leaving us this weekend, we will be far from alone.  If you have not already, make your plans now to get in those final turns.  If you don’t, you’ll end up kicking yourself all summer long for missing out on one of the better springs we had in a long time.

Take Care!

Tim Bahlke
Drop me an email at tim@skisoutheast.com to let me know what you think or with suggestions on what we could be doing better.

 





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