I’m sure you’ve heard about Christmas in July, but what about spring skiing in December?
That’s what it felt like during my first day of the season at Beech, Sunday. And man, was it awesome.
The parking lot was empty and the lift lines were short upon my arrival around 11 a.m., likely because the early morning raindrops and threatening dark clouds scared people away. But about an hour into my day, skiers and riders began to file in.
There wasn’t a ton of variety, as far as open trails go. But Upper and Lower Shawneehaw were ripping. I lapped those runs over and over again, with a few detours down Crossover.
While the terrain park is not yet open at Beech, there were some great side hits set up along the Shawneehaw runs. They’re really well dug, and really poppy. Just be hyper aware of the left side, immediately after you get off the lift. There’s a chance someone will be landing in the center of your line after throwing a 360.
Beech is back at it again with three chairlifts and five runs today. And the temperatures are getting closer to what you typically see in December. There’s even a chance of snow in the North Carolina mountains on Wednesday.
Here’s what else you need to know today.
Great news for anyone trying to get some midweek turns in Davis, West Virginia: Timberline has overdelivered. While the team there originally said that it would halt the chairlifts after a preview weekend, there is considerably less precipitation in the forecast for the upcoming week, and they have decided to extend preview weekend until Thursday.
Here’s what the team had to say:
“With the forecast calling for winter weather and more snowmaking opportunities beginning Monday, we’re making the call to remain open through the week of December 4th and beyond. Our goal is to continue snowmaking through the week to open even more terrain by next weekend.”
I hit App last night for my first ever night session. My lift ticket was just $12, and I finally got to see firsthand what all the hype was about.
On the first Sunday of every month, you and ski and ride at App during its half-night special for $12. The first day was last night. The following dates will be on January 7, February 4, and March 3.
While there’s a bit of a snow shortage in the region after the rain North Carolina got over the weekend, there was plenty to go around last night. Of course there are the usual December grass patches, but much of the mountain looks snow-covered this morning on our ResortCams. Snowmaking will resume when the temperatures allow for it.
After dropping the ropes this past weekend, Bryce will be closed today through Thursday. The tubing hill, beginner area, and Bootlegger all are holding strong to a solid base, the resort said. Skiing and riding will start back up on Friday, this time, for the rest of the season.
As snowmaking temperatures return to the region, Massanutten is suspending its skiing and riding from today through Thursday, in order to gain some headway with its snowmaking. The team anticipates snow sports resuming Friday.
If you have not yet picked up your season pass, that window will be open all week from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. The ice skating rink is open for the season.
I was reminded of just how awesome hanging out in your local ski and board shop is on Sunday when I dropped by Edge of the World Snowboard Shop in between sessions for a new pair of snowboard socks.
When it comes to being outdoors, I’m a notorious overpacker. I never want to show up for a hike, climb, bike ride, or day of snowboarding missing that one thing that could make or break my experience. But with some of my gear still up north in Massachusetts, I misplace a headlamp or a chalk bag or a pair of ski socks sometimes.
New socks – real, cushy, wool blend ski and snowboard specific socks – are the kind thing that can make or break your day, especially in the early season. I needed them before my night session, and of course, $23 later the team at EOW had hooked me up. After, I nerded out on snowboard boots with the staff, took home some stickers, and left with a way better experience than I would have at any of the big retailers.
And as SkiSoutheast’s Joe Stevens mentions in his piece from yesterday, people are flocking to their local shops to get their bases waxed and edges sharpened before their first day on the mountain. Those shops likely have some killer deals on last year’s skis, boots, and outerwear, too.
Be sure to check out the chatter about resort openings happening over on our new SkiSoutheast Discord channel.
Also click here to join us on our new SkiSoutheast Discord channel. It is a great way to meet new snow loving friends and shares experiences, ask questions, and more!
And as always, email me at [email protected] with your thoughts and photos.
Keep skiing the southeast.