Merry Christmas Eve fellow snow lovers! I know that I speak for ALL of the management teams at all of the ski resorts of the Southeast and Mid Atlantic when I extend a heartfelt "Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to each and every one of you!"
I, our staff, the staffs of all of the ski areas wish you the very best of Christmas and wishes for a prosperous 2010! We pray for your health and prosperity that will allow you to succeed in all of your endeavors – and that you’ll get to ski and snowboard more this year than ever before!
Santa does his thing tonight and I have it on pretty good authority that most of you have been good boys and girls and Santa’s going to bring us a great weather forecast for the coming days!
FIRST THERE WILL BE 24 HOURS OF YUCK!
We’ll have a WHITE CHRISTMAS due to the heavy snows that fell last week! There’s a ton of natural snow everywhere and that only adds to the ambience as Christmas will be beautiful in the mountains. However, we do have some under developed snow in the form of some drizzle, freezing rain and high winds that are forecasted to make its way into the ski areas of the Southeast and Mid Atlantic by tonight. Gusts as high as 45 mph are forecasted to drive in the yucky weather as Santa attempts to make his deliveries!
You can almost SEE the arctic air and the front moving through as temps are varied across the region as of 8am this morning with low temps in the 30°-34° range in the North Carolina mountains and as cold as 9° this morning at Wisp Resort in Maryland! Snowshoe is reporting 21° and Massanutten in Virginia is showing 18°! Crazy huh?
So we’re dealing with 18-24 hours of yuck and then once that yuck gets out of the way and Santa’s back home chillin’, then cold and snow is in the forecast and the forecast for the slopes and for your Christmas through New Year’s skiing and snowboarding is for FUN, GREAT WEATHER, COLD TEMPS AND SNOW!
There’s some light snow in the forecast for Sunday into Monday and then as we get closer to New Year’s Eve more snow is the call! Highs are expected to be in the 20s to low 30s from Saturday through the entire forecast period covering right up through New Year’s day!
So the yuck ice, freezing rain, and drizzle that is forecasted is only a temporary, 18-24 hour delay in our fun and it gives us all a chance to chill with the family!
We COULD BE experiencing the dangerous winter storm that is underway in the Plains states today. Travel will be impossible as Blizzard conditions are pounding Kansas, Iowa and South Dakota. Icy conditions are already beginning to plague some areas.
WEBCAM VIEWS ARE AWESOME THIS MORNING!!!
<A view from the new Beech Mountain Quad cam this AM!
The views from the live webcams are AWESOME today! I have to really thank a guy by the name of Paul Huffman who came on board our staff a couple of months back. I had all but allowed the webcams to die on the vine and he got me re-energized about them and now just a couple of months later we are showing more views than ever and a network of awesome mountain views! You can see those at www.HighCountryWebCams.com ! We are putting the final touches on an entirely new website for the cams and that should debut the week of January 11th! We also mentioned earlier that we’re having a super server installed that should push several of our camera views to almost television quality! Can’t wait to see how that works out!
None of the North Carolina ski areas made snow on Wednesday as temps were ever so slightly above the needed, near freezing numbers. Resorts further north into Virginia, West Virginia and Tennessee all made snow! There’s TONS of base depth and perfect riding conditions for today and the surfaces should be groomed to corduroy perfection for your enjoyment today. There are some changes to the opening schedules for today and Christmas Day so let’s get to the tour.
Check the Snow Report for ALL of the details but here’s quick tour and some Christmas Eve and Christmas DAY notes. We’re going to skip around today – simply because I’m in the mood to skip around. (You gotta have some fun doing this stuff, right?)
Snowshoe Mountain is reporting EPIC CONDITIONS and 48 trails open (of 60) as they inch their way closer and closer to being 100% open. You can almost "see" Ed Galford and Snowshoe’s Director of Mountain Operations, Tex Ritter cranking out the snow and toggling more and more open trails daily! Cupp Run will have a delayed opening today but it makes its debut before noon! Laura Parquette reports that Mountaineer will open today with some LARGE rollers! Expect awesome conditions today!
Wolf Ridge Resort is open with 18 of 20 trails for day sessions only on Christmas Eve. Hats off to Rick Bussey and his staff for providing the best snow reports we’ve seen coming from them in years! They write, "It’s Thursday morning, Christmas Eve, the sky is blue and its 34 degrees. With over 16 inches of snow and a great holiday week so far, we are having a blast at the Wolf. We have 18 of our 20 runs open and should have the Breakaway ski through tunnel slope ready soon. Our Bowl run is getting awesome publicity and the slopes are in the best condition ever. We will be open until 4:30 today and be closed Christmas day. We will reopen on Saturday the 26th with slopes groomed to perfection and ready to ride. See you on the slopes today!!!"
It doesn’t get any better than that people! So Wolfie is open today for day sessions, closed on Christmas Day and reopens Saturday!
Massanutten Resort is showing 18° at 7am this morning and they are 100% open for DAY and NIGHT sessions on Christmas Eve with 100% of their terrain open (all 14 trails) and snow tubing on 8 lanes as well. Mass has both terrain parks open as well. Massanutten witll not open on Christmas DAY until 12:30 and stay open til 8pm. They are making snow on selected trails.
(I TOLD you guys I was skipping around.)
Appalachian Ski Mountain is 100% open with superb conditions today. App is open for night sessions tonight as well.
Midnight Blast Weekends Debut this Saturday, December 26th! This will mark Appalachian Ski Mtn’s first Midnight Blast ski and snowboard session. With 2 additional hours at no additional cost, this new session is their best deal for skiing and snowboarding. In addition to the slopes, Appalachian’s ski shop, gift shop, restaurant, and rental department will provide service through midnight on these special nights. Offered only on Friday and Saturday nights, the December 26th session will be the first of 17 Midnight Blast Weekend sessions, ending on Saturday, February 20.
Canaan Valley made snow and is open for day sessions today with 31 of 39 trails open! They offer ice skating as well and some of the best Christmas ski and snowboarding conditions in several years!
Beech Mountain Resort added another TWO open trails to the system today and they now offer 11 of 15 slopes and trails for day and night sessions on Christmas Eve. Lower Southern Star and Lower White Lightning are open! You can get to both from the little "Crossway" connector trail. We noticed some "s" turns on White Lightning this morning via the Beech Mountain Quad Cam!
Beech is reporting that their terrain park is open today so we’ve toggled that on within our snow report, but we’re wondering if maybe they’ve added some features on another open trails as we don’t see the dedicated terrain park trail as open on their trail map. We’ll try to get you word on that asap.
Beech is looking m-a-r-v-e-l-o-u-s this morning!
Beech reports, "The terrain park is now open with seven features! Ice Skating is open! The Beech Tree Bar and Grille will offer live music this Saturday starting at 8pm."
Timberline Resort is open despite a couple of reporting services reporting otherwise. They are open with 22 of 37 trails for Christmas Eve. Kim Falls, Timberline’s Marketing Director wrote, "Winterset, Upper Dew Drop, White Lightning, and Twister should open soon!" They also have some cross country terrain open as well.
Winterplace Resort is open with 19 of 28 trails and Missy posted, "Plunge and Nosedive to open at 1 pm today!" They have their popular snow tubing park open as well.
Ober Gatlinburg will be open with 5 of 8 trails for day sessions only on Christmas Eve. Tubing and Terrain park features are available as well.
Cataloochee Ski Area is also 100% open with primo conditions but for day sessions only today for Christmas Eve. Then on Christmas DAY, Cat will open at 1pm and ski and ride until 10pm. So NO morning session on Friday at the Cat.
Sapphire Valley Ski Area and their popular Frozen Falls Tubing Park are open, contrary to some inaccurate reporting services. You can Ski or Snowboard 9 am to 9 pm Daily through Wednesday, December 30th. Christmas Eve: 9am-5pm, Christmas Day: Noon-5pm. New Years Eve: 9am-5pm. New Years Day: 9am-9pm.
Wintergreen Resort is showing 32° this AM but they DID make snow overnight and today offer 24 of 26 trails open! They have done a fantastic job of blanketing the slopes and are nearly 100% open for today and they will be open for day and night sessions until 8pm this evening. Tubing and terrain parks are open as well!
Wisp Resort is showing 9° this morning and they are making snow and open for day sessions today on 24 of 32 trails, mountain coastering, ice skating, snow tubing and about anything else you can think of doing for winter fun! Their Pro Park at the Base of Face terrain park is open as well! We’re getting more and more visitation to the Wisp Resort content this season which is cool to see that the word is getting out to a lot of our audience that Wisp should be on your must visit list each year. It is a great resort with a great feel all its own. Cross Country skiing enthusiasts should make not that they have a lot of Nordic terrain open today with a base of 6-12"!
Bryce Resort is showing FOURTEEN DEGREES this morning and that is via two separate weather stations! They are open for day sessions only today with 100% of their 8 trails open and tubing as well.
The Homestead has not updated any reporting service in a couple of days, but they are showing temps around 30° so they may be making snow and as of last count they had 6 trails open and ice skating. We’d suggest calling ahead if you’re heading there and are interested in skiing or snow tubing. Last we heard they were having some problems with the tubing lift system as well.
Sugar Mountain Resort is still skiing and snowboarding on 16 of 20 trails for DAY SESSIONS ONLY today and then they will reopen on Christmas Day at noon to allow their staff’s families some time to celebrate the season. Tubing and Ice Skating are also open today.
Hawksnest Tubing and Zip Lining has 20 lanes open for Holiday Tubing. Hawksnest posted, "Another beautiful day on Hawksnest Mountain, Come up and enjoy, the roads are clear. 20 lanes of snow tubing open. Zipline tours available, too.
"Hawknest Resort set a North Carolina first on Friday December 18, as the Engel family from Bryson City became the first people to zipline as the snow was falling in North Carolina. The Engel family ziplined after more than one foot of snow had fallen at the resort."
That’s it for today! Enjoy your time with family and friends today and we’ll see you in the AM!
You can check the snow reports for all of the ski resorts of West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland, Tennessee and North Carolina via http://www.skisoutheast.com/skireports.php as well as videos, photos and more.
Send your comments, videos, photos, trip reports and questions to: [email protected]
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