A Snowy Sunday Awaits Many of You at the Slopes! Great Conditions Everywhere!

First Trax

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Snow is falling around the region and we’ve updated the SLOPE REPORTS with some numbers. We had a busy, late day on Saturday with the Summit up at Ski Beech and I have been busy putting some numbers together to share what we raised for the Helena Jolly Education Fund during the late afternoon auction – so we are combining the reports this morning. I’m sharing them today as I came to them. There’s some great conditions out and about today with natural snow falling across much of West virginia, Maryland, Tennessee (2") and North Carolina. Seems the Virginia ski areas missed out on this one.

A quick sidebar before we dive into today

We received dozens of emails from all over the region reporting icy conditions at many resorts and on many trails.  Many questioned whether it was icy at xyz resort. We can’t be at more than one place at a time, so it is great to receive your input! I can say that I thought Ski Beech’s conditions were AWESOME for first tracks and we skied very crisp corduroy until 10:30 or so with only three places that I thought were a bit icy.  Things got scraped off as skier traffic picked up and there were many icy areas around the hill. That seems consistent with several reports from other attendees of the Summit.  However as the day went on, things did soften somewhat and there were some pretty nice conditions especially along the sides of trails. A little icy here and there but pretty decent considering that it was mild last week, then rainy, then things turned frigid and all of the ski areas blasted snow, but that was on top of a hard pack.  So conditions were pretty nice but once that top surface was scraped off – things were a little icy. 

Ditto that same assessment EVERYWHERE on Saturday.  We heard from several people who raced at Sugar on Saturday and things were pretty dicey there as well. We also received emailed reports from Wolf, Cat, Massanutten, Wintergreen, Winterplace, Canaan, Wisp, and Snowshoe – all of which included reports of icy conditions particularly after lunchtime.  That’s about what you guys have to expect since we had a milder period, followed with some rain, snow, and then COLD temps. Even the areas that had more substantial snows reported some icy conditions. With some added snow and cold, snowmaking opportunities today expect some darn good conditions today and things should be great most everywhere over the next few days.

The bottom line is that you can’t have it PERFECT all of the time. But it’s pretty darn near perfect and it beats the heck out of a mild thaw and no snow. We’ve got great bases out there, although I STILL maintain that there are resorts reporting more base than they have across all of their mountain. Nevertheless, there’s great bases out there and we’re seeing snowmaking and good natural snows across the region. Smile, and go enjoy it!

SkiBeech Summit Quick Notes:

I promise to share much more from what went down on Saturday at Ski Beech, and I hope you guys will check back on Monday for some final numbers, but we want to THANK ALL OF YOU who showed up. Rough estimates are that we had approximately 200 people attending and the skiing was very good, the weather was perfect, the meets and greets wonderful – and the auction was very successful in raising funds for Helena. We’ll compile some final totals and I don’t want to throw out any numbers because it would be speculation right this second. In addition to what SkiNC donated, additional funds were raised from SkiNC hoodie and tee shirt sales, and we auctioned off FOUR vacations for a nice sum of moola as well! Beech’s Event Coordinator, Talia Freeman did a fabulous job of working up the event and with some personable emceeing by Dane (I’ll get Dane’s last name by Monday) a LOT of items were auctioned off such as snowboards, skis, goggles, sunglasses, clothing, bags, and more. We sold all items and a lot of people had a part in raising several thousands of dollars. Ski Beech’s ski patrol is donating 20% from the proceeds that they raised and the word is that they sold out of food!  Talia, Dane and our SkiNC team had a lot of support from staff and friends and I want to say thanks to Lisa Herring and Thomas Probst who stayed cool under pressure and took in a lot of credit cards and helped dispersed product.  Also I know Talia and Dane had some help. I saw a number of young people helping out with photo taking, DJ-ing, and helping in many ways.

So as you can see, there was a flurry of activity and lots of funds were generated. All of you guys who won vacations – we will be communicating with you on Monday as per how you will recieve your lodging, lift passes and free rental equipment! Thanks again for doing what you did and you know who you are! Thanks again!

Thanks again to John and Ryan Costin, Rhyne Garris and Talia Freeman of Ski Beech for working with us to make this thing huge! Thanks to Jeb Brown and other Ski Beechers for there support as well. Thanks to several of you SkiNC messageboard peeps for opening your checkbooks and throwing down your credit cards. Also thanks to NCSUsKing (man I could not remember that messageboard name when I was on the mic last evening!) but thanks for starting the ball rolling and Zone Alarm and others for jumpstarting things. The event took on a life of its own to become what went down.

The skiing was great and we had so many late comers that we NEVER did get a group pic but that’s okay, we’re proud of the fun had by all and we’ll be posting a lot of photos and video from the event.

Any of you guys who shot photos and video during the day or at the auction, please email them to me at [email protected]  or [email protected]  (or you can post your video somewhere and tell me where to go get it). I’d love to create a nice compilation of all of the great happenings of the day.

I’m certain that Jon Jolly was smiling down on all of you and it was especially sweet to hear from Jon’s wife, Christine Jolly and to see Helena as well. What a beautiful young lady, and I am proud of and for all of you for doing something special that will be paying dividends for decades to come in the form of providing a contribution towards educating this young gal.

I enjoyed seeing several of our messageboard members again. I met several of you guys and ladies for the first time and it was really cool to meet up. Hopefully most of you can make it for the SkiSoutheast.com / Snowshoe Summit as we will have THREE DAYS to be able to bond a bit more and spend some dedicated time on the slopes and during some Apres Ski fun. We’ll be sharing more about that great weekend planned for March 6-8th beginning Monday…but for now we want to say THANKS for a great, great Saturday.

Here’ the notables for today!

Appalachian Ski Mountain – 18° – a TRACE of snow – Base reported: 79-104" – 100% open with 10 trails, both terrain parks and ice skating.

Cataloochee Ski Area – 18° – No report of snow – Base reported: 49-94" – 100% open for day skiing only today. 14 trails and tubing is open as well. They made snow last night.

Ski Beech – 11° – Reporting 1-2" of new Snow! – Base reported: 32-62" – 12 trails open and tubing & ice skating as well. They made snow.

Sugar Mountain – 11° – Reporting 2" of Snow! – Base reported: 47-84" – 100% open with 20 trails, snow tubing and ice skating. Sugar’s Spyder Sale continues – Receive 30% off all 2009-10 Spyder Sample items. Quantities and sizes are limited, so come early. Additionally you’ll receive up to 60% off other Spyder Sample items. You won’t find this kind of a sale anywhere else!

You can also join Sugar Mountain Resort’s resident mascot, Sugar Bear and his friends for a fun birthday celebration today. Activities include the Great Bear Race, special treats, cake and ice cream.

Wolf Ridge Resort – 22° – Reporting a TRACE of snow! – Base reported: 48-68" – Open with 12 trails and snow tubing.

Bryce Resort – 34° – No report of snow – Base reported: 34-59" – 100% open with all 8 trails. No snowmaking in several days.

Massanutten Resort – 32° – No report of snow – They did not make snow – Base reported: 40" – They are 100% open with all 14 trails and snow tubing. They also have an SARA race on Diamond Jim from 9am- 12:30pm. There is a Snowboard competition on the CMB terrain park from 10am-3:00pm.

Wintergreen Resort – 34° – No report of snow – They did not make snow – Base reported: 40-60". They are open with 25 of 26 trails and snow tubing. Also Anne Marie shared that HEAD Pro Skier, Greta Eliason is at Wintergreen for the second straight season. She writes, "Wintergreen Slopestyle Competition Today! Our second of three Slopestyle events will be taking place in our advanced park today, come out and participate or marvel at the talent. We have Terrain Park Events scheduled for the next 4 weekends including: the final Double Cross, Slopestyle, Rail Jam and The Slide and Splash Bash! Next Weekend, HEAD Pro Skier and Freeride Champion Grete Eliason will be here making turns with guests and helping out with the Freestyle Double Cross. HEAD will provide demos all weekend and the Oakley “O Lab” will be here showing off their products. Snow conditions are incredible, come up for some fun!"

Canaan Valley – 26° – 2" of new snow and another 1-3" is expected today! – Reported base: 20-40" – They did not make snow – They have 24 trails open for day skiing only today.

Snowshoe Mountain – 17° – 1" of new snow and 8" in the last 3 days (172" on the season!) They are looking at more snow for today! They made snow overnight and have a reported bas: 56". They are open with 59 of 60 trails and snow tubing, all terrain parks, snowmobiling and more!

Timberline Resort = 26° – 2" of new snow. They have not updated a report for a couple of days but conditions should be great on 31 trails. Reported base: 30-70"

Winterplace Resort – 22° – 2" of new snow! They did not make snow and report all 28 trails (100%) and terrain parks and snow tubing is open! Reported base: 40-80"

Wisp Resort – 16° – 2" of new snow and 8" over the last few days! They now have seen 107" on the season and they are open with 29 trails, tubing, mountain coastering and all terrain parks for DAY sessions only on Sunday! They have a reported base of: 20-58".

Ober Gatlinburg – 25° and 2" of new snow and 17" on the season! We are happy to report POWDER conditions at Ober. They made snow, report a base of 48-76" and have 6 trails and snow tubing open.

Send your comments, photos, videos and trip reports to: [email protected]


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