Saturday and Sunday Look A Bit Wet – BUT FUN!

Appalachian Ski Mountain is reporting 51° and they are down to six trails open for today and they also have one terrain park operating. They basically closed Hard Core, Thin Slice and Candied Appal. They do have the Appal Jack Terrain Park open and remember that they have lots of fun and games ongoing for the Meltdown Games.

Snowshoe Mountain has some fun and games of their own going on this weekend. Lindsay Kutsko writes, “Welcome to the Last Hurrah Weekend! Today on the Skidder slope you can see the 5th Annual Pond Skimming Contest. And if you think you’ve got the guts… you can attempt to cross the pond yourself. Pond Skimming Contest sign-up will be on the Skidder slope from 10am-1pm. Last night all 28 open trails were groomed except Cupp Run.. We will have 4 lifts running this weekend including Ballhooter, Western Express, Powder Monkey and Skidder. The base is 10" – 22" with spring surface conditions. Please be aware of bare spots and enjoy the final days of skiing and riding at Snowshoe this season.”

Wisp at Deep Creek in Maryland is down to single digits in terms of trail openings with nine today.

Timberline Resort’s report has not been posted as yet but they had 22 trails open on Friday.

PERFECTLY MANAGED SNOW…

With the advances in snowmaking that we’ve seen over the last few years – normally when we get to March 31st, we’ve seen ski areas ending their season with quite a lot of snow left to play on. However, this has been a season to remember in terms of how hard the resorts have had to fight to maintain good snow base. Without the huge improvements in snow making technology and the capital improvements (the adding of more and more snowmaking infrastructure) many ski areas would have been closed up for days during this season which will come to an end on Sunday. However, even with what has been a strange weather winter – it has been a good one in terms of skier visits and even the quality of the product that most resorts have been able to maintain.

The four resorts which remain open for this weekend certainly came out on top in terms of being able to maintain their product. Wisp, Timberline and Snowshoe had the better weather to work with as this winter seemed to be a winter of “two halves” – a lot moreso than most seasons. Typically the temperatures are not so diverse from north to south. More often than not when you see the temperatures at McHenry, Maryland (home to Wisp) you’ll find that the temperature at Sugar is about the same. Not so this winter. Additionally, Mother Nature treated some areas further north with much more in the way of natural snow this winter. Of course, Snowshoe, Timberline and Canaan Valley always gets more annual snowfall, but I’m alluding to the percentage of snow that they achieved this season.

For example, Wisp Resort in Maryland actually received 24” MORE than their normal this season and they were consistently one of the cold spots each morning during the season – in the Southeast and Mid Atlantic. On the other hand, Snowshoe Mountain saw some 58” LESS than normal this season. However, they got MOST of that during the important month of February, so conditions were favorable for them during that period.

When you take a look at the conditions that Appalachian Ski Mountain is able to provide for this last weekend, you HAVE to be amazed since they have had much less to work with in terms of consistently cold temps and natural snowfall. App only saw 21” of snow this season and that is about 40% of what they normally get.

We’ve been asked about the snowfall at Ski Beech and they saw 40” this season, which is HALF of what they normally see in a season.

So the conditions that we’re seeing right now are a tribute to the improvements in technology, the commitment on the part of the ski area managers and the talent of the BEST snowmakers and groomers in the entire country.

In closing, yes it’s going to be a bit wet at times this weekend, but what the heck, go have some fun and send your photos to share with others!

Enjoy your day and if you’re out and about this weekend – send us you closing day photos to [email protected]  

Until Next Time…

Send comments and emails to: [email protected]

For more information about the ski resorts of the Southeast and Mid Atlantic visit www.SkiSoutheast.com  

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Mike Doble
Mike is the Editor and founder of SkiSoutheast.com, SkiNC.com and ResortCams.com. Since September 1996 he has posted more than 13,000 posts, articles, photos and videos promoting all of the ski areas of North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and Maryland.Mike is the father of four daughters, is an avid skier and enjoys golf, tennis, kayaking and hiking in the mountains. Winter snowsports and Summer boating on Watauga Lake are among his favorite pastimes.