Varying Conditions Across the Southeast’s Ski Resorts

Today’s top “story” is going to be a response to just under one hundred emails that we have received in the last few days asking about conditions on the slopes for February 1st-10th.  Some of you guys KNOW that I want to give these people heck, but this season IS different.  Due to some amazing timing on the part of Old Man Winter, we have maintained MOSTLY nice conditions for this entire season.  However, over the past several weeks those conditions have been “Teetering conditions”.  We got a strong start to Winter in late November and early December and made a lot of snow, without which we’d not be skiing today.  Then over the past several weeks we’ve received those timely bursts of cold and some snow to keep conditions to the point that they are today.

First, the quality of snow on the slopes of most all of the ski resorts is good, but definitely so borderline that ONE DAY makes the difference in good conditions and not so good. Case in point:  Sugar was beautiful on Saturday and they had many bare areas on Sunday with the rain.

Monday they looked pretty darn nice!  Today they look marvelous!

We have snowmaking temps that will allow snowmaking tonight and then around the clock until Wednesday sometime.

That will make for GREAT conditions across the board.  Now we have a couple more day of mild temps coming at the end of the week which will take us slightly back to the good side of things.

Then it appears from all of the emails that we received from our meteorologist friends – that Winter is indeed beginning to come back to us.  We have several shots at snow in the next two weeks and colder air is indeed funneling back where it belongs.  Keep the faith and THINK COLD AND SNOW and maybe we can pull a great February and March out of this.  The BEST snow we had last season was in February and March.

Varying Conditions:

Andrea Smith reported this morning that Snowshoe Mountain had received 1” of snow overnight and they also made snow.  That additional inch of snow takes Snowshoe to 98” on the season.  Anyone want to predict when they will top 100”?  I’ll bet it’s this weekend.  Snowshoe has great conditions on 57 trails today.

The other West Virginia Resorts and Wisp are all in very nice shape today with snowmaking and some light snow.

The Virginia Resorts are hurting just a little  None of them reported making snow last night. Massanutten Resort is reporting Wet Granular conditions although they’ve only changed their base depth two or three times all season!

The Homestead is now reporting Spring Conditions which is never a good sign.  They are hanging in their though.

Wintergreen is reporting a little light snow falling this morning but they are reporting that they made snow.  Here’s a morning update from Frankee Love, “The snow is falling on the mountain this morning and with the cold temperatures returning, we WILL be making snow around the clock as conditions permit in preparation for another great weekend at Wintergreen. Today, we will be skiing and riding on 13 trails and 3 lifts will be running. All trails have been groomed overnight and have a granular surface. The Plunge will be open with 2 hour sessions starting at 2:00 pm for some exciting tubing.

In North Carolina, Appalachian DID make snow

Cataloochee’s 100% open, made snow and is looking pretty snowy this morning.

Cataloochee has a reputation for being a family oriented, fun, and friendly place. They are also appreciative of Law Enforcement and to that end that are offering a special Law enforcement days package to all law enforcement and their families on february 2nd and 3rd. This special package is only $20 per person and includes a 1 1/2 hour lesson, day’s lift ticket and full set of rental equipment! The combined savings is $35 per person over Cataloochee’s regular rates! This package price is good for day skiing from 9am until 4:30pm, twilight skiing from 1pm until 10pm, or night skiing from 6pm until 10pm. And if rental and lessons are not required, the lift ticket price will be $15 per person.
To make this an even more special day, they have arranged for a special reduced rate for overnight accommodations on Thursday evening. You can visit Cataloochee’s website for more information.

Hawksnest’s Nest Games were the focus of a lot of Photo of the Day submissions by Lorrie Tomlinson (thanks Lorrie!) and Lenny and crew up at Hawksnest provided us with some results to share with you guys!  Before we get to that, Hawksnest is offering 8 trails today and groomed conditions.

Hawksnest’s staff wanted us to thank all who attended and participated in the 1st Annual Nest Games.  According to several who were there, it was a talented group of men and ladies who showed off some skills.  If you missed it this weekend, they will do it again on March 4th for the Extreme Snowboard Comp.

Here’s the results from this past Sunday’s Nest Games:


Boarder/Skier X
1. Anna Fisher
2. Dana Frankel
3. Alison Krieger

1. Anna Fisher
2. Melany Moore
3. Evi Yeh
4. Chelsea Taylor

Men’s Beginner/Intermediate

Boarder X
1. Robbie Cavagnaro
2. Keegan Skeate
3. Wesley Robinson

1. Will Elder
2. Nate Pembleton
3. Wyatt Keeter-Scarhto

Men’s Advanced

Skier X
1. Jim Bob Schell
2. Jim Bolton
3. Will Mauney

Boarder X
1. Adam Turner
2. Andy McDaniel
3. Kevin Colvard

Slopestyle Skiers
1. Ethan Suddreth
2. Jim Bob Schell
3. Jason White

Slopestyle Boarders
1. Rex Plimpton
2. Richard Bowen
3. Ian Costello

Sapphire Valley is normally closed on Tuesdays, but they are closed right now due to the weather, or lack of cold weather to be more accurate.  The snow is pretty thin right now and they are playing it by ear as to whether or not to open tomorrow.  Keep checking here.

We received an email overnight from someone who had planned a trip to Sapphire and they were giving us heck because we reported Sapphire Valley as closed yesterday!  They alluded to hearing on the radio and visiting another website that claimed that they were open with Wet Snow. (We were N-I-C-E, promise we were!) The fact is, we keep telling you guys to quit looking anywhere but right here for your information because Sapphire is INDEED closed.

For the record, we checked a couple of other sources and they are incorrectly reporting Sapphire as open. But heck they were also reporting that Appalachian didn’t make snow last night – they did; and they are incorrectly reporting Sugar’s base depth.

Moving on to Ski Beech – Ski Beech is reporting a little less than an inch of snow overnight.  One look at the webcams will support that.  They also made snow all night and conditions should be great for “Two for Tuesday” visitors.  They are skiing and riding on 12 trails today and tonight.

Sugar Mountain continues its excellent snow reporting today as they didn’t even mention the fact that they received a good trace to slightly less than an inch of snow overnight.  So we’ll mention that for them.  They also made snow all night and conditions will be great today on 17 trails.  Tubing is closed until Tomorrow.

We’re not sure why Wolf Laurel didn’t make snow, but they didn’t.  Wolf is skiing on 12 trails today and on a groomed surface.

All of the resorts that made snow last night will probably make snow as long as temps allow today and that could be an all day event at some locations.  Regardless, look for better and better conditions as they will make snow again tonight and Wednesday night.  Cold air is also arriving this weekend and through next week it is looking a LOT more like Winter is indeed coming back for a while.

We’re going on record right now to say that the Groundhog WILL see his shadow and we will have six more weeks of Winter.  We have a hit man on the scene and he has his orders to act quickly if that furry, fat rascal doesn’t cooperate!  We have a pretty cool story lined up for Groundhog Day so stay tuned!

Until Next Time!

Be sure to email photos, snow reports and comments to: [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.