Only Appalachian Ski Mountain is Open TODAY in North Carolina!

Happy SPRING everyone!  Today IS the first day of Spring 2006.  However if you’re not quite ready to put Winter to rest, we do have a little more skiing available for one more week!

Cataloochee will be back open on Tuesday as they are under their NORMAL late season scheduling , wherein they are closed on Mondays and then Cataloochee, like Appalachian will ride out the rest of this week and the weekend before closing for the season.  However for TODAY, Appalachian Ski Mountain is THE ONLY ski resort open in the State of North Carolina . Sugar Mountain called it quits earlier than usual and there’s a lot of speculation as to why Sugar closed early.  Typically they ride until the last weekend in March and they HAVE gone into April a few times. Perhaps it’s because Cataloochee beat them to the punch to get open first and since Cataloochee was also guaranteed to hold the honor of being open the most days of the season in the state…maybe Sugar decided there was no reason to remain open.

We contacted Sugar this morning and they told us that they had not planned to make anymore snow and once they got a look at this week’s forecast they decided to “go out on a high note.”  Our contact also said, “We think we made a good decision.”

There IS some light rain in the forecast for later today and Tuesday, but the rest of the week shows highs in the 30s (some 10° COLDER than normal for this time of the year) and lows in the low 20s. Dr. Ray Russell of www.AveryWeather.com local notoriety is also claiming that there’s a good chance for some natural snow by Saturday as well.

In the past a lot of us (yours truly included) speculated that Sugar was simply going to stay open as long as possible…and simply because they were skiers too. However, there’s plenty of snow on the slopes there and the weather looks to be cold all week, so…who knows.  We CAN say that Sugar had a great season and we’re betting that they broke single season attendance records this season.  Could be that they wanted to maximize their profits and that would certainly be understandable.  It’s ALWAYS a great season when THERE IS profits!

So that leaves Appalachian Ski Mountain as the LONE ski area open today in the great state of North Carolina ! We’ve been saying for the last week that App has the best snow in the state and maybe the entire Southeast, and with the added snowmaking that they laid down over the previous few nights…AND the cold temps…they are primed and ready to easily coast into this weekend’s closing ceremonies which include the popular Meltdown Games.  Looks like quite a few of the messageboard crew are planning to take part in the festivities.

Appalachian Ski Mountain is 100% open (nobody else can say that!) and they also have their top ranked Terrain Park open…as well as Ice Skating.

We want to bring a couple of notes of interest to your attention this morning.  It’s been a busy season and we would not want to close the season without recognizing a HUGE achievement by Appalachian’s longtime owner Grady Moretz. In 2005, Mr. Moretz was recognized by the National Ski Areas Association by receiving their prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award.  Each year the association recognizes an individual who has demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to the ski industry throughout his or her career. So congratulations to Grady Moretz on being the recipient of this HUGE honor.

Appalachian Ski Mountain is an amazing, family owned and operated resort that many other ski areas will do well to mimic in terms of how to run a ski area. 

Well, those of you who are fans of skiing and riding in North Carolina…we have just ONE more week, and only two ski areas to play on…but let’s do it right.  Let’s get past a day and a half of underdeveloped snow today and Tuesday and then send this season out with style.  Make plans to ski and ride at Appalachian and Cataloochee this week and weekend!

Until Next Time,

Be sure to visit www.SkiSoutheast.com for a breakdown on the ski conditions and news at ALL of the Southeast and Mid Atlantic Ski Areas.

Be sure to email photos, snow reports and comments to: [email protected]