Virginia Ski Areas OPEN and another STORM is on the way!!!

Happy Friday! Alright folks, we’ve just received another Snow Forecast from our main man Brad Panovich down in Charlotte. Let’s get to it. Calling the next few days a "roller coaster weekend, "he’s forcasting some major dumpage for our area and even more serious snow for up around the West Virginia ski areas. He was spot on with the last storm’s predictions, so my guess is that we can bet he’s going to be right on the money with this one, too!

Sunday may start out with a little bit of rain and ice, but moving in to late Sunday night, the snow arrives. By Monday night the North Carolina could see as much as 8 to 10 more inches, and here’s the kicker, up around West Virginia, Maryland and even the western part of Virginia could see as much as TWENTY, thats right, 20 more inches of snow! Monday will be cold, with wind chills dipping down below zero. Looks like we’re in for another doozy this weekend!!!!

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The headline story for this beautiful Friday belongs to the Virgina ski areas. The Virginia areas are finally starting to catch up. While some of us, and I won’t mention any names, got over 20 inches of snow out of the last big blast of arctic snow, the Virgina ski areas managed to gain a whopping "trace" out of all of it. So, they’ve relied solely on snowmaking ops. Props to those guys for getting these areas open for us!

Bryce Resort –25°OPEN TODAY for the season! Bryce is open today and coming out of the gates strong! Open on 8 of 8 trails with all 4 lifts running, and even some terrain park features for playing and sliding around on.

Massanutten -30°- OPEN TODAY for the 2010-2011 season! Open with 9 of 14 trails, including the two terrain parks, Easy Street and CMB. ParaDice opens on Saturday for all you experts…Kenny Hess writes "Most terrain and snow ever on opening day. Night skiing operations will begin next Friday, December 17." Skiing runs 9:00-4:30 this week and snow tubing from 9:00-5:00 on 8 lanes!!
Special Value: Passes are on sale for $209, valid Sunday-Friday (non holiday) and ANY night

Wintergreen – 20°- OPEN TODAY!! Wintergreen is open on all three sections of the mountain, including Highlands, which is a major treat for this time of the year considering Wintergreen’s natural snowfall totals are laughable. Wintergreen continues to pound the slopes with hopes of getting even more terrain open for next weekend…a few notable trails they’d like to get ready for us: Sunrise, Tequila, The Gap, The Upper Diamond Hill Prgression Park…and more! Wintergreen begins night session shredding on Friday, December 17 and will offer tubing sessions this Saturday and Sunday.

Appalachian Ski Mountain -23°- Open today with 8 of 12 slopes and packed powder. With all of the recent snowmaking, Appalachian should have some pretty fun terrain features beginning to open up. Check back for more updates! Remember Appalachian has debuted the "flex ticket" this season, so you’re looking at 8 hours of fun from time of purchase!

Beech Mountain Ski Resort -25°- Opens up for night skiing this Saturday. More terrain being added daily! Snowmaking continues, conditions should be excellent!

Cataloochee -28°- 70 percent of the mountain is wide open! 11 of 16 trails, one aerial lift, and one conveyor lift operating, Some terrain features available! Tammy Brown writes, "snow in the forecast! Whhooohooo!" (We second that!) Open for twilight and night skiing today, and Saturday and Sunday open for 8:30-4:310 Tube World opens for sliding
Saturday, as well!

Sugar Mountain -26°-Open today running on 14 trails with 5 lifts open. Most notable thing going on at Sugar right now…SugarFest is this weekend! Lots of fun for the whole family.

Wolf Ridge Resort -29°- Eight of 20 trails ope AND Open to the top! Great conditions going into the weekend! Snowmaking has continued as temperatures have allowed. Combine that with carefully groomed slopes and you’ve got super great conditions.

Canaan Valley -24°- Opens up tomorrow! Canaan Valley plans to have 5-7 trails ready to roll and will be running 2 lifts.

Snowshoe -21°- Snowshoe is working hard across the mountain to get more terrain open. Plans for tomorrow include opening Hootenanny and Flume trails as well as lower Ballhooter and Camp 99. SPRUCE GLADES terrain park will open tomorrow with some freshly built features…a little info from the amazing team up at Snowshoe:

"On Saturday our guns should get their first rest in 10 days, as we’ll have more mild daytime temperatures. Following that much deserved day off for our snowmaking team, they’ll make the big move over to Cupp Run and Shay’s Revenge in our famed Western Territory. With some VERY cold temperatures predicted for next week, it shouldn’t be long before those 2 trails are ready top-to-bottom, and we’ll have additional terrain available by at least Dec 17th when the Silver Creek area opens for the season. We have been making snow in that area since Dec 1st as well, so we’ll open with a variety of terrain and some GREAT conditions."

Timberline -24°- Open today with 4 trails and plans to drop the ropes on several more. Snowmaking continues as cold temperatures allow! Timberline’s cross country trails are 100% open with a solid 15′ of base.

Winterplace -28°- OPENS TOMORROW…Winterplace gets under way tomorrow, December 11 with at least 14 trails!

Wisp – 23°-Wisp continues to open up more of the mountain and will ski and ride on 16 trails with 5 lifts. Wisp is open from 9am to 9pm today. Also open…The Mountain Coaster from 5pm to 9pm! Ice skating is also up and running, you can test your skills in the rink from 1pm-9pm.

Ober Gatlinburg -31°- Opens back up today at lunch time, with 5 trails and 3 lifts taking you where you need to get to. Night and Twilight sessions available. Terrain Park is open for all you crazy freestlye dudes and dudettes.

And, to sum it all up, it’s shaping up to be one sick December. With most of the southeastern areas either open or planning to be open by next week and trail conditions in prime time, the season is looking gooooood!!

-SIDE NOTE-
By the way guys – since I’ve taken over the majority of the FirsTrax stories and content, we’ve move Mike over to his new position on what he’s calling “Open Mike”. You can check out his latest comments as he’s answering your emails and taking on some other subjects via this new column. You can find “Open Mike” right on the front page right below the SkiSoutheast Announcements.

THINK COLD! THINK SNOW!

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Mike Doble
Mike is the Editor and founder of SkiSoutheast.com, SkiNC.com and ResortCams.com. 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.