These past few days have proven to me how fickle some snow storms are! This massive snow storm that was headed our way with all of the ingredients to bomb us all with snow, left MAYBE 4" at my house! I’m not complaining (oh I guess I am) because snow is snow. But I was looking for so much more! According to my kids though, that place where snow goes to die (over towards Beech Mountain where my horses are) was near knee deep in spots. So I guess I can’t complain too much, because all I have to do is drive fifteen minutes and I can get to the deep stuff!
That’s the way this storm was. We’ve received a ton of emails talking of nothing more than a dusting at lower levels near the Blue Ridge, to 3-6" across most of the region, to 6-12" at the highest elevations nearest the NC/TN line. Widespread differences that’s for certain.
Even though it’s been a phenomenally snowy period, the BIG STORY is the COLD temperatures. Today will be sunny, but it will be another cold one with highs in the 20s and lows again tonight that will dip back into the single digits. Friday will start off cold but then the BIG MILD UP COMES. After all of these cold, frigid temps, it is going to feel like Summer over the next few days as highs this weekend will get into the mid 40s for Friday, mid 50s (and maybe even some low 60s) on Saturday and Sunday! It will be a GORGEOUS weekend to come skiing and snowboarding because there is TONS of snow around the area and on the slopes and there’s so much base that ski conditions will be awesome no matter where you want to head this weekend.
All of the ski areas are at the highest elevations of the state so we’re seeing reports of from 6 to 9 to 11" of snow in the last two days at the resorts. Check out the tour for details.
A FEW NOTES HERE AND THERE…
Appalachian Ski Mountain – For the second night in a row, App saw ZERO degree lows overnight. They picked up another couple of inches of snow and for the first time in a few nights they MADE SNOW and they are in awesome shape on 100% of their terrain.
Cataloochee Ski Area – Second night in a row for them to see ZERO degree temps as well. They saw another TRACE of snow and 7" in the last 48 hours. They made snow and report a base of 46-100" and Packed Powder conditions on 100% of their terrain (14 trails) and snow tubing opens up again today.
Ski Beech – -5° – That’s MINUS 5° last night and as of this report (8:20am). They are reporting another 4" of snow in the last 24 hours. The official tally kept by the snow reporter on Beech is 1.1" on February 3rd, 5.9" on February 4th and another 3.8" on February 5th. That is a SWEET 10.8" of snow and I think we can give them that extra quarter of an inch! Can anyone say – POWDER!!!
…and in case you didn’t notice, Beech opened up Upper and Lower Southern Star, which gets them to 13 trails open, with only the dedicated Terrain Park and Oz Run not open at this time. With the way that the terrain park has worked out on Powder Bowl, they may opt to keep it there and look toward Oz next. We’ll see if we can’t get a word with Ryan and let you guys know. Things are definately looking great for what should be a great day to ride up at Beech today and this weekend.
Sugar Mountain – -5° and they are reporting another 2" of snow and that is how this crazy storm went yesterday. Just one ridge over one way and there was a bit more snow. One ridge over the other way and we saw maybe another one inch. Anyway, Sugar has seen 9-10" of snow from this storm and things simply could not be much nicer there and they are 100% open with all except ice skating today. Twenty trails and it’s another snow day for Avery and Watauga kids. That will be a popular place to be today! Sugar made snow last night but they will not be making snow during open sessions.
Wolf Ridge Resort – They are now reporting that they picked up 8" of snow from this past two-to-three day storm and things are in great shape at The Wolf with 10 trails open and snow tubing as well. We’ve seen some nice images from over that way over the last few days and we’ll try to get those up for you guys. We’re not sure why more of their trails aren’t open yet (we’ve been asked that a lot), but we’ll see if we can’t get word for you. We heard some rumors as to why, but we won’t share those because that’s not the way we roll!
Hawksnest Tubing Park – Opens back up today after sitting out the snow storm.
Sapphire Valley Ski Area – Still closed on Thursdays. Will reopen on Friday.
BIG WARMUP FOR THE NEXT FIVE DAYS; THEN AN EXCITING FEBRUARY!
Matthew East provides a nice video that tells us what to expect for the next week. The summary of the update: Ski conditions could not be better right now and there’s so much snow that conditions will be great through these next few days that mild up across the region. It will be a SUNNY weekend with very mild temps all weekend long. The beginning and particularly the middle of next week looks continued mild and wet with some rain. (We haven’t seen that in a while so no major complaints. (Its mid week and all that!))
However, the pattern is in place with all of the ingredients that look very much like a continued cold and snowy second half to the month of February, particularly from about Valentine’s Day forward. Matthew says that all of the players are in place and that the second half of the month should provide plenty of cold periods, and several shots at all the moisture we need to make for a stormy, snowy, cold second half of February!
I am not certain that I have seen a spell of consistently cold and snowy weather like these last few weeks and conditions are simply awesome. You guys need to be here and see how great everything is! Get online and make some reservations and get up here!
Until Next time…
Be sure to click over to www.SkiSoutheast.com to see what’s happening into the Virginias, Tennessee, and Maryland ski resort areas.
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