Story by Mike Doble – [email protected]
UPDATE 10am – Wow! We’re experiencing 345 pageviews per MINUTE and I just witnessed a spike of 10 pageviews per second via the live webcams! There’s a bunch of pent up need for the white stuff! We’re seeing light to heavy snow falling as of this report.
At times it is as hard as we’ve seen this winter. The webcams are showing lots of snow falling in the North Carolina and West Virginia mountains and flurries into Tennessee and Virginia.
We’ll update you more in a bit with photos and videos. HighCountryWebCams.com is getting BOMBED but so far it’s holding its own in terms of sending all you guys the LIVE IMAGES. More to come… Kenny Griffin and I are gameplanning a state of the art 1 Gbps connection that will handle things when we see more visitors per second that there are snowflakes in the Southeast this season!
We’ve seen around 1.5 MILLION visitors to our ski and webcam network since January 1st and with all of the new cameras STILL coming online we know you guys will tell your friends about us. For right now kind of keep this site a secret, okay! Shhhh. Nobody really needs to know about this website so let’s keep it between you guys and me.
In addition to The Homestead and Sapphire coming online with streaming cams next week, we expect to see a new LIVE Stream from Banner Elk and one from Bayfield Wisconsin, right on Lake Superior!
It began snowing on Friday around mid day..,much earlier than had been forecasted. Within a normal winter that would be a great sign that even more snow than had been forecasted would fall. Everyone around our office was excited. Even those on our team who have not yet been converted into snowloving zombies. After all we’ve seen so little of the white stuff this winter.
It stopped before I could even leave the office and the darn sun came out. There was a heavy cloud bank hovering up and over Grandfather Mountain, Sugar and Beech so I could tell that they were still getting some snow.
Around 6:30pm or so we headed to Banner Elk for dinner at probably the best Mexican restaurant I or anyone who has gone with us has eaten at – Puerto Nuevo. If you’re going to be traveling to the High Country you owe it to yourself to dine there at least once.
As I passed Sugar I noticed two things. One – there wasn’t much more than a dusting of snow on the ground everywhere AND Two – Sugar wasn’t making snow.
That’s okay because Sugar and all of the ski areas in the Southeast and Mid Atlantic had made snow three nights this week although those around the state of North Carolina had not been able to since Wednesday.
It was also okay because I’d heard reports of anywhere from 1-2" of snow for Banner Elk for last night – Friday night…and then another 2-3" on Saturday with more at the higher elevations. I’d also heard reports that we were to see 3-6" of snow and perhaps 8" or more for Snowshoe.
As I crawled out of bed this morning there is a deep, heavy blanket of m-a-y-b-e .25" of snow on our rails and windshields this morning as of 7:54am.
(However NOW 6-8" is being forecasted. I’ll believe it when I see it.)
I DO MY MORNING UPDATES ON THE FLY…
I’m burning daylight this morning waiting on our ski-servers to come back online. Sometime around 11:30pm Friday night they decided to drop offline. Somehow the little gerbils that are supposed to catch such things and reboot the servers automatically when that happens – didn’t and now after I have properly admonished them – the servers are being rebooted. So I am typing while waiting for them to come back online.
Last night I noticed that some 200 of our visitors were camped out on the King Street Live Cam…and that of Winterplace’s great video stream. It seems you guys were also awaiting the heavy snow that was forecasted.
By the way, Friday afternoon’s snowfall (that lasted about ten minutes) was the prettiest I’d seen this season.
WE’RE IN A HOLDING PATTERN AS OF 8am…
It seems that my server is as slow to come alive this morning as I was. So, now I’m looking into why the heck I’m not looking at 2-3" of snow this morning. My daughter just came in and was excited to see a "millimeter" of snow. Yep, she’s one of those snow-loving zombies that we create in my world.
Anyway the NWS is now saying that the snowstorm of the last 18 hours or so – the one that has dumped a millimeter of snowfall thus far – is also in a holding pattern. We’re seeing light to moderate snowfall right now but the big stuff is on it’s way!
I know I ended the last sentence with an exclamation point but I’m not getting my hopes up. Not yet. Not this season!
According to the NWS we should see 4-6" of snow today through 6am Sunday. Dr. Ray of AveryWeather.com says 6-8"!
Okay, I know another exclamation point surfaced…but this time it’s because the webcam and ski servers just came back online! Ahhhh, the little things in life. Now all this typing that I’m doing will have a home here in a bit.
SO NOW I’M OFF TO UPDATE THE REPORTS AND TELL YOU GUYS WHERE ALL THE SNOW IS…
Hopefully I’ll find more than a millimeter. (Of course I’m certain the moment I get to Sugar’s website there will be a foot, but let’s go have a look.) WOW, they are only reporting 2"! Good for them. Of course it’s really 1.5" and that is for the last two days, not the last 24 hours, but with the scarcity of snowfall this season, we won’t gripe too much!
I’m going north to south this morning ’cause that’s how things have gone this winter with the more favorable snow and colder temps northward. Here we go…
Actually I’ve changed my mind. I’m going with Snowshoe since they’ve got so much happening up there this morning.
Snowshoe Mountain – 20° – 2" of snow, 6" on the week and 76" on the season. They have 55 of 60 trails open today but one of them will be tied up with racers. Sarah or Mark posted, "We would like to welcome all of our USCSA racers to the mountain this weekend! Good luck! Cascade slope, at Silver Creek, will be closed today for a race. This weekend is jam packed with great live entertainment, games and great riding for the 24th Annual Jose Cuervo Games of Winter. The boxcar race, blind saucer course, snow volleyball and other great games will be held on Skidder Slope outside of Shavers Centre. We have some great bands lined up and a great weekend in store!"
More snow is on the way there today and tomorrow as well as into next week so things are looking pretty sweet at Snowshoe!
I’m skipping down to the home of the best LIVE STREAMING CAM view in the region – that of…
Winterplace Resort – 28° with 2" of snow overnight, 3" in the last couple of days and 34.5" on the season. Terry and his team (along with Mother Nature) have things looking sweet this weekend with 25 of 27 trails open and tubing, terrain park fun and more!
Wisp Resort – 22° – 1" of new snow in the last 24 hours, 5" this week and 61" on the season. Things are marvelous up that way with 26 of 32 trails open as well as the mountain coaster, ice skating, tubing and more!
Canaan Valley – 21° – David Lesher’s Canaan Weather is reporting 2" of new snow (officially) and 5" in the last few days and now 83.5" on the season. Canaan is reporting 13 of 39 trails open for today.
David Vance posted:
Weekend/Hope on the Slopes:
Ski, Board, Slide and Glide to help fight
cancer. Register at:
Wild Thing Event Schedule available at
Lodge & Lift Ticket package available.
Timberline Resort – 20° – 2" of new snow, 5" this week and 83.5" on the season. Timberline is hosting some Junior races today and great conditions on 27 of 40 trails.
We’ll go into Virginia now in hopes that we’ll see the same trend as we’ve seen all season.
Bryce Resort – 32° – No snow and no reports of snow or slope openings from up that way. They haven’t updated their site since Thursday and our reports show 8 of 8 trails open for today. As far as we can tell there was no snowmaking happening last night or this morning.
Massanutten Resort – 30° – No snow reported nor snowmaking but Kenny Hess, Steve Showalter and their team plan on making tons of snow tonight. There are 10 of 14 trails open and all are groomed. Tubing is open with 10 lanes as well.
The Homestead Resort – 30° – It is snowing! We’ll get you an update as per how much later. They have 4 of 10 trails open today and tonight. Matt Fussell reports, "IT’S SNOWING!!!!
***EXPECT SNOWMAKING TO CONTINUE AS LONG AS TEMPS ALLOW***
***Tubing is OPEN with 2 lanes in operation.
***Mini-snowmobiles are closed.
****Snowmobile tours are closed due to night skiing.
Thanks to Matt for getting us updated daily these days! Man that is great. We expect the new streaming camera to go LIVE up there this week!
Wintergreen Resort – 24° – No reported snowfall… – 14 of 26 trails open as well as tubing and terrain parks.
Okay so this winter’s trend isn’t applying to today’s snowfall. Only The Homestead reported natural snowfall and not a lot of snowmaking was happening in the Lover’s state. Let’s have a look into Tennessee…
Ober Gatlinburg – 24° – That’s great news as Keith and his guys can make a bunch of needed snow! They’re seeing some flurries right now but that’s about it for now. They have only 3 of 9 trails open. Snow tubing is closed due to no snow. It’s been a real challenge over there this winter. At least the snowguns are blasting right now!
SNOW IS FALLING ACROSS THE TARHEEL STATE!
Appalachian Ski Mountain – 26° – It is snowing although only a TRACE of snow is being reported officially this morning. App has see only 13" of natural snow this season. They have 9 of 12 trails open and they are hosting the Shred for the Cup Rail Jam this evening. Snowmaking is ongoing and more snow is in the forecast!
Beech Mountain – 18° – They are the coldest spot in the Southeast and Mid Atlantic right now and they’ve only seen .5" of snow thus far this morning but it is SNOWING HARD right now. When I saw HARD I mean you can’t see anything it’s snowing so hard! Let’s hope that keeps up! Beech has 11 of 15 trails and ice skating open. They are making snow as well and 6-8" is in the forecast!
Cataloochee Ski Area – 25° – They are making snow and have seen a TRACE of snow so far. Cat is still under a foot of natural snow on the season. It has been a weird one to say the least. Conditions are VERY NICE right now though at the Maggie Valley ski resort with 14 of 16 trails open and snow tubing as well.
Sapphire Valley – 31° – We have a great new partner over at Sapphire Valley Resort in Rick Stargel. He’s not only going to be updating us via an improved SkiSapphire.com but we are also shipping a new, streaming webcam over there. While it won’t be aimed at the ski area, it will provide some great views of the lake and area. That should go LIVE this week. In the meantime give Rick your support by visiting http://www.sapphirevalley.com. Rick’s another Sapphire lover and he’s pledged and committed to helping us take the valley to you guys!
Sugar Mountain – 19° – .5" of new snow in the last 24 hours and 1.5" in the last couple of days and 25.7" on the season. They have 17 of 20 trails open as well as ice skating and tubing.
Wolf Ridge – 28° – .5" of new snow. They have 10 of 22 trails open and tubing.