Gooooooooood morning everyone!  It’s Friday woohoo!  I don’t know why I’m so excited about it being the weekend almost because the last few days have been pretty fun for me.  Nothing like getting paid to go snowboarding!  Well, I definitely wasn’t just snowboarding as we did a live First Trax broadcast yesterday morning at Winterplace and then filmed the West Virginia Ski Areas Association press conference that talked about January being Learn to Ski & Snowboard Month.  It was a good time and worked out well.  We didn’t have any Internet connectivity issues like the last few times.  I was pretty pumped it worked.  Check out the recorded video of that press conference below.

Watch the WVSAA Learn to Ski and Snowboard Month Press Conference Live at 10:30am

I’m going to edit the raw video I have and mix in some clips I took and then re-upload.  That also might help fix some of the audio issues.

I had a great time though and did manage to get some pictures from the slopes.  If you follow us on Instagram and Twitter you know this, as I posted a number of shots from the mountain.  It was my first time there and I definitely want to go back.  I love riding new terrain and the top part of the mountain looked like it has some nice and steep stuff that I was itching to ride, but it’s not quite open yet.  So I shall have to wait.  It gives me some extra incentive to head up there soon though.  Here are some of those photos.  Click each to enlarge.

A big thanks to Tom Wagner and Terry Pfeiffer for having me up there.  Things couldn’t have gone better.

What a Week

What a week is right.  It’s been quite a successful 7 days to say the least.  Below is a photo comparing the top of Snowshoe from last Thursday to yesterday.  Astounding.

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Now they did see some natural snow this week, but most of that is manmade.  It is quite amazing just how good snowmaking is these days.  This time last week we had a single resort open in the region.  Tomorrow, every single ski resort in the region will be open.  Every.  Single.  One.  All hail the snowmakers!

Unfortunately, it looks like we are going to hit a minor bump in the road this weekend with some underdeveloped snow.  I’m already seeing some water droplets on one of our ski cams.  Blegh.  The good news is that we could see a little Northwest flow snow Sunday night on the backside of this system and then we are in for a week of cold.  Brad Panovich talks about this in his latest forecast.

It shall be fun to keep an eye on next weekend’s snow potential.  Many people will be flocking to the mountains for MLK weekend and after the Christmas bust, a snowy MLK weekend would be the perfect way to follow it up.  Snow or no snow, it’s going to be COLD.  Many resorts will be making snow around the clock from late Sunday into next weekend, so there is going to be a ton of snow and plenty of open terrain.  So if you have a trip planned, get pumped.  It’s shaping up nicely.  We’ll keep you updated between now and then, so stay tuned.

On another note, next weekend is the MLK holiday already?!  Sheesh.

Even More Resort Openings

You can add two more to the list of open ski resorts in the region.  Oglebay Resort in northern West Virginia is now open for business and Sapphire Valley in Southwestern North Carolina is open as well.  Sapphire has been offering tubing sessions all week and now they have the slopes open too.

The only remaining resort left to open is The Homestead in Virginia.  They will be opening up shop for the season tomorrow and as I’ve already mentioned when that happens we’ll have every resort in the region open for skiing and riding.  Awesome!  Just a note, they replaced their old webcam with a new one so that is why it is currently down.  I believe it should be up later today once their IT person gets everything configured.  I’ll make sure to tweet it out from our Twitter account.

Notables

App Ski Mtn is 100% open now, including Hardcore. Click to enlarge.
App Ski Mtn is 100% open now, including Hardcore. Click to enlarge.

I’ll finish up with some tidbits of info that I found interesting…

  • Appalachian Ski Mountain is now 100 percent open.  I believe this happened yesterday so they are the first to accomplish this feat in the region.  David McCue (davidski) sent the photo you see to the right.  It was snapped out at App yesterday.  I have heard they have some jumps in Appal Jam now.  That intrigues me.
  • Snowshoe has bumped their trail count to 21 today.  From their site…”We’ve added Upper Hootenanny as well as Mid and Lower Flume, and the last section of Upper Whistlepunk.”  Those 21 trails puts them at the most in the region right now.
  • Wisp Resort does something cool that I did not know about until this morning.  Apparently season pass holders get early access to a couple of the lifts out there…”Chair 2 or 3 opens at 8am every Saturday in January & February for Season Pass & Multi-day Ticket Holders only. ”  I find that to be super cool.
  • Beech Mountain is celebrating their Winterfest Beer Festival this weekend.  There’s going to be several North Carolina breweries out there sampling a variety of craft beers.  Live music from Acoustic Syndicate is also a part of the event.  For more information, CLICK HERE.  Mike and I might be out there tomorrow but I’m not sure if he’s feeling better yet so we shall see.

This successful week is over for me.  What a ride!  It was kind of hard to keep up with things earlier this week, what with resort openings, snowmaking, snowfall, trail openings, etc.  Exciting times for skiers and snowboarders here in the Southeast.  Next week should be just as fun.  Mike is with you all this weekend.  Talk to you all Monday!

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Kenny Griffin
Kenny grew up in Concord, NC, which is right outside of Charlotte. He graduated from UNC Charlotte in December 2010 with a degree in meteorology and joined Ski Southeast immediately thereafter. In addition to his Appnet duties, he helps with day to day operations of Ski Southeast and is also in charge of our sister site, ResortCams.com. In his own words... "I discovered this website a few years back and visit it on a daily basis. I lurked on the messageboard for a while before becoming actively involved and have met some very cool people because of it. Needless to say, I am VERY stoked to be a part of the team and I think I have a unique insight into what people want from the site seeing as I used to be on the outside looking in. I'm sure some people who are reading this have seen me on the mountain before. I am frequently at Beech Mountain and it’s not hard to spot me, as I usually have a camera on my head. I love to document my days on snow and have posted some videos on the messageboard before. If you ever see me out there, feel free to say hey!" You can email Kenny directly at [email protected]