Saturday Might Turn Out Okay for Riding… Sunday Looks Like a Wash Out

Appalachian Ski Mountain looks to be hold up well with all trails open. Cataloochee is now down to 5 of 16 trails open for Saturday and Saturday night. Their last day of riding is tomorrow – Sunday. Beech Mountain has closed up The Oz Run and Crossway. That gives them 13 of 15 trails going today.

Sugar is still 100% with all 20 trails operating with loose granular conditions.

Wolf Ridge Resort is open for their final day of the season today with 11 trails. There’s 100% chance of rain today and they had previously said that they’d open this weekend, weather permitting. Well evidently it permitted because they will be open for one final day today for day sessions only.

The forecast for the NC Mountains is pretty much rain everywhere you look. However there could be some early riding accomplished if you get out early and often. The heavy stuff moves in later this evening with as much as 2.5-3" of rain forecasted.


Bryce is open with 7 of 8 trails open and tubing. Massanutten is 100% open with all 14 trails. Wintergreen is nearly 100% open with 25 of 26 trails and tubing.

The weather looks to be holding off til later in the Virginia mountains with perhaps a drizzle today. Heavy rain moves in tonight.


Canaan Valley is open with 22 of 39 trails and they’re hosting their WILD THING weekend. They posted, "Come and get "wild" this weekend on the slopes of Canaan Valley Resort."

Snowshoe looks good with 56 of 60 trails open for today. Tubing and terrain parks are open as well.

Timberline is open with 32 of 39 trails. Winterplace has all 27 trails operating.


It was a great first day of the Summit. I left the High Country
at 6am and after a couple of stops along the way we made it in and got check
into Allegheny Springs, located with Snowshoe’s Village. If you guys get the
opportunity, this is an awesome lodging option among a ton of great options when
you visit Snowshoe Mountain. Allegheny’staff are about as good as it gets. Valet
parking is nice, especially on the colder, windy or "under developed" snow days.
As I drove into the unloading zone TheKenDog was right there at his car. Talk
about timing. He had just checked in. We met up with LolliPop and her husband
Chuck at The Junction after we did a quick lunch at another of Snowshoe’s great
eateries – Foxfire Grill. We suited up to make some turns at around 2pm and as
we walked out on the slopes at the top of Ballhooter we say SkiPink, Twister and
his son Parker, and jeffryc.

Again…great timing as they were hitting the slopes for the first time – at the
same time.

As we were talking TheKenDog and his lady Betsy boarded over and we all headed
down SkipJack for some warmup runs. After a couple of times down, we went over
to the Sawmill side and ran into clalexanders who was at the bottom of Soaring

All of this happened in the first hour… the mountain was relatively empty and
I suppose the SkiSoutheast early bird arrivals were on the mountain in force.

After a couple of trips down Camp 99, we headed over to the Northside of the
trails and rode up Powdermonkey so that some of us could hop over to the Western
Territory – home to The Cupp and Shays Revenge. TheKenDog, WHS15Skistar, Kenyon
and I rode Upper Shays to Lower Cupp and then Upper and Lower Cupp a couple of
times, before the legs began to burn.

We’ve been getting a lot of emails asking about conditions and I have to tell
you that for there to have been no snow and very little in the way of
snowmaking, there was good coverage and good – but not great – conditions. The
Western Territory was FAR better to ski and ride than the main side of the
mountain. Cupp was pretty darn nice top-to-botton although the snow alternated
from thick slush to a crust towards the hard-packed base. It was fast and there
was groomed spots on the trail edges that made for a sweet ride on that 1.5 mile
side of the mountain.

The main side of the trail system was getting p-r-e-t-t-y thin on some of the
heavier trafficked slopes. Some of those trails probably won’t make it too many
more days. If the rain comes in on Saturday as expected, I’m guessing some slope
closures will occur.

All in all though it was a really great two hours of riding. There were ZERO
lift lines and I can’t tell you how many turns we got in during that two hour
burst of skiing.

We chilled in our rooms for a bit and then headed to Embers for some fine
dining. When I say "fine dining" I mean that. Brian Ball and his people do magic
with their concoctions. It’s pricey (as expected because we’ve done it a few
times prior) but everyone deserves to pamper themselves to this kind of dining
at times.

Upon exiting Allegheny Springs we were meant to take the Shuttle to the
restaurant but our Valet went and grabbed a car and drove us there. Too cool!

We enjoyed some Bloody Mary Shrimp Cocktails, salad wedges with some sweet
dressing and we dined on Duck Macaroni, Garlic and Local Wildflower Honey
Roasted Chicken and New York Strips. I have no clue what kind of magic rub is
on those steaks but they were awesome. Our waitress, Karen took great care of us
and hooked us up with some freebie Lobster Bisque that was beyond outrageous.

Post meal we had some kind of crazy cotton candy thingy – compliments of Karen
and Embers.

After a great meal we took the shuttle to the Village and went over to The Big
Top to work off some of the meal. We played around with their Sticky Wall, Bull
Riding and a ton of games. The gal behind the counter was from Elgin, South
Carolina and hooked us up with several freebie bull rides and other activities.
The guys running the bull gave us some free rides as well.

…I’m telling you these people are in an "end-of-season great mood"!

After a long day that began by getting up at 5am, I’m turning in.

We’ll look for those of you who are here at the buffet in the morning and on the
hill for some photo ops at the top of Ballhooter at 8:40am or so.


I can tell you that I received several emails from "insiders" at several of the
ski areas and many are looking at perhaps March 13th as a probably closing date
due to the diminishing quality of the snow. A couple had previously said they’d
go til March 27th and now there’s some wavering on that and a couple of ski
areas may close March 20th …again due to the weather. I know we called over to
Sugar the other day and were told that they’d go til the end of the month –
perhaps the 27th, but again we heard rumors today that there’s some talk at
Sugar that they too might be looking at the 13th as their last day as well.

Snowshoe was in pretty good shape…great shape really on some trails. Other
trails were pretty thin and there are numerous bare areas and thin coverage
trails. With Snowshoe looking a little worn…I can only imagine what kind of
shape some of the other ski areas are in. Bear in mind Snowshoe and Wintergreen
have made some snow this last week.

The forecast for the NC Mountains is for a 90% chance of rain. SkiSoutheast
Summit people are smiling a little right now after a good day of riding the snow
on Friday, the forecast for Saturday is:

Saturday: Showers likely, mainly after 5pm. Cloudy, with a high near 49. Breezy,
with a south wind between 21 and 24 mph, with gusts as high as 39 mph. Chance of
precipitation is 60%. New rainfall amounts of less than a tenth of an inch

I’ll take that! Maybe we’ll miss it until at least the First Tracks stuff on
Sunday morning.

I spoke with a lot of people riding up the lifts on Friday and everybody’s
sentiment seems to be …"this is their last turns of the season".

If you have the opportunity…go ride while you can. There are not many days


We’re very fortunate to have a snow loving meteorologist in News Channel 36
Meteorologist Brad Panovich. He’s done a fabulous job keeping us all informed
about the weather all season long. No other source has an official weather guy
putting up high rez video for them all season long. We’re lucky as heck and
appreciate the heck out of him. He’s predicting some chances of snow for us up
here at the Summit and we all hope he’s right. This last few weeks has been
tough for anyone to forecast.

Thanks again Brad for all you do…

Drop me an email at [email protected]  

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Mike Doble
Mike is the Editor and founder of, and 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.