The big news is the SNOW that has fallen across the high elevations from Snowshoe Mountain through North Carolina. You can take a tour of the live webcameras at www.HighCountryWebCams.com and see just how much snow many of the areas have received…or not received in some cases.
Andrea Smith at Snowshoe Mountain informed us, “Natural snowfall and cold temperatures have returned to the mountain allowing our snowmakers to keep the guns blasting non-stop. This means that Snowshoe Mountain will be opening for the winter season on Thursday, November 23. When we open on Thanksgiving, it looks like we’ll open with Skidder, Grabhammer and Powder Monkey lifts along with the following trails: Skidder, Crosscut, Spruce Glades, Powder Monkey, Heisler Way and Whistlepunk.
Snowshoe Mountain picked up about 1” of new snow, and that takes their early season tally to 4” this early.
Canaan Valley and Timberline picked up a ½ inch or so and even though the temps there are hovering around 27°, they are holding off on snowmaking ops just yet.
Winterplace Resort, south of Snowshoe, Timberline and the other Alleghany Mountain ski areas also picked up about ½ or so of new snow. They have not began their snowmaking ops either. They plan on opening December 8th so they are probably waiting on the next wave of cold temps.
Sarah Lovejoy at Wintergreen reports, “The start of the Wintergreen 2006-2007 season is just around the corner. Tonight’s low temp is forecasted to drop into the teens which should allow for some great snowmaking. As soon as temperatures permit, we will begin laying down snow.”
She stated that their snowmaking plan for the first week will include concentrating on Upper Dobie, Lower Dobie, and Eagles Swoop. In addition, they will be running guns on the Highlands, the Terrain Park and in the Plunge.
Ober Gatlinburg in Tennessee picked up a little light snow, but Kathy Doyle reports, “Beginning December 1st, will be watching the thermometer and waiting for the temperatures to drop so we can begin snowmaking. Once that happens, the snowmakers at Ober Gatlinburg will continue working around the clock while temperatures allow, until there is enough base snow to provide a quality product for skiers and snowboarders.” Looks like they may be shooting for the first weekend or two in December before opening for the season.
NORTH CAROLINA MOUNTAINS OPEN —
Beech Mountain, Sugar Mountain and Hawksnest picked up close to 2” of natural snow Sunday evening and up to this post (1pm). It is also COLD as heck out! Temperature readings are in the freezing range right now across most of the region and the cold spot right now is atop Beech Mountain where it’s 21° and still snowing some. Ray’s Weather is reporting 28° at Sugar Mountain and our weather station on top of Hawksnest is showing 25°!.
That has prompted more resorts to make snow across the region. Appalachian and Ski Beech cranked up the snow guns Sunday night and they have really out down some early coverage in these optimal conditions!
We’ve received some emails asking about why Hawksnest is not making snow. Lenny Cottom told us that were looking to open the first weekend in December. There were some last minute tweaks happening with their new conveyor lifts in the tubing and beginner areas…and with those small delays, they took a look at the long range weather forecast and decided to look to the NEXT cold wave to begin snowmaking.
SUGAR IS OPEN!
The other big news is that Sugar was able to make a ton of snow overnight with the optimal snows and cold temps and Gunther and his crew were able to pull it off and open this morning. That makes Sugar the second resort to open in the Southeast and Mid Atlantic region so congrats to them for that.
Sugar is open to the TOP of their mountain, instead of just the ¾ station. In years past they have tended to open first to the ¾ station and then after a few days go to the top.
There’s no official word on Ski Beech and Appalachian opening dates just yet but you can bet that it will be any day now…
Cataloochee WILL BE OPEN on Tuesday. They too picked up some natural snow and their snowguns have been hammering the trails since Sunday.
Things are looking good for a good start to the Holiday this week!
Until Next Time…
THING COLD – THINK SNOW!
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