‘The Best Powder Day In Years’ Has Hit North Carolina’s High Country

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“It’s the best powder days in years right now!”
– Brad Panovich. Meteorologist. January 15 at 7:35 p.m. on the SkiSoutheast Discord channel.

If you need any more of a stamp of approval beyond Brad’s, you can keep reading, I guess. But really, what Brad says, goes. Especially today.

I hope you’ve been saving up your sick days at work, because anyone who’s getting out on the slopes today is going to have a pretty sick day, if you catch my drift.

It has absolutely dumped snow in North Carolina’s high country today. Beech is the proud recipient of 14 inches. I repeat. FOURTEEN INCHES of snow at Beech Mountain. Sugar landed around 7 inches, and Beech is the recipient of 6 inches.

While the High Country is the big winner this morning, Sapphire Valley Resort landed 4 inches this morning, even though its operations are closed, and Hatley Pointe has 6 inches of fresh snow (though they have not started operations yet this season). Cataloochee has 3 inches this morning.

There is some bad news that’s accompanying this crazy dump of snow though. Beech Mountain Parkway was pure chaos last night. State and local police shut down the roads after a number of accidents. People have been asked to avoid the area, and Beech Mountain Police put out a hazardous travel alert. Multiple cars were stranded, and the parkway was at a standstill upon closure of the resort last night. 

How do I know all of this? Well, SkiSoutheast editor and founder Mike Doble was reporting live last night, as he was stuck in that traffic after enjoying the epic powder day at Beech. He made it back to his home around 11 p.m. last night, but there were fears that he and his family would be sleeping in the truck overnight. After seeing the heavy traffic coming down the mountain and some debate over whether to just head to Sugar Mountain and skip the madness, Mike and his crew pushed on to Beech.

“Literally, Beech Mountain Parkway became a parking lot coming down,” he told me last night.

But when trying to leave parking lot 2 around 7:30 p.m., Mike realized that things were going to take a while. There were cars blocking the parking lot exit itself, and state troopers were telling people that they weren’t going to allow the roads to open until 7 a.m. Some cars were just abandoned, with people walking down on foot. Not because of any accidents, just simply to get home.

“I’m thinking. Was it worth it?” Mike said to me last night.

“Absolutely. The powder is fantastic.”

More on that powder in a minute. But, man. I picked a bad week to travel to Florida. Here’s what you need to know around the southeast today.


Four chairs spinning. Fifteen trails open, including all three terrain parks. (But don’t go to the terrain park today. Come on now. It’s a powder day) West Bowl and Carolina Caribbean are the only closed trails today.

Here’s Mike’s report:

I just have to tell you that I don’t normally like deep powder, but this powder was just amazing to ski. There were so many powder stashes pretty much all over, coming down Robbins Run that I just had a ball. I ended up going across a pretty nice ice patch that was no fault to Beech’s grooming. It was just the way it was, and then I kind of launched into a foot and a half stash of powder and I went ahead and bailed on it and that’s the first time I’ve fallen in a few years. But, you’re not doing it right if you don’t fall in powder. We came back in, had a brew and some snacks and I actually made it one time over towards White Lightning. It was absolutely wonderful. Fantastic. I haven’t seen snow like that in years.”

Appalachian Ski Mountain

Six fresh inches and the mountain is 100% open!

Reader and Discord user Steven Cooley was back at App yesterday. He fit in 26 runs, good for a total of 7.2 miles during the powder day, and dropped us a trip report after:

It was a NC powder day for sure!!! Flakes were flying all day and heavy at times too! It was a wet snow and a little heavy, but conditions could not have been any better. The crowds were lite I thought for a MLK Monday. Never waited more than five six minutes in a lift line. One of the best days I’ve had in a very long time!”


Discord user Random Snowboarder headed to Sugar in hopes of taking advantage of the forecasted 3.5 inches yesterday. Then Sugar got dumped on.

“There were some crazy powder pockets on the sides of Gunther’s Way and Tom Terrific,” they said. “My board was completely immersed in snow.”

It’s going to get really chilly tonight! Zero degrees is in the forecast.


After a dry start to the season, Bryce was hit with 3.6 inches of snowfall. The upper part of Revenuers Run opened yesterday, according to ski patroller Bill Nabers. Just Hangover to Item is standing between being 100% open.

Photo courtesy of Bill Nabers.

It’s cold this morning. But there’s also 6 inches of powder. Go on and get to the goods.

There are 43 open trails and 12 spinning lifts.

From the Snowshoe team:

It’s acceptable to call in to the office the day after a long weekend, right? Asking for our friends…they’ve come down with a sudden case of mid-week shreddies! With the natural snow fall we’ll be opening up a couple of our favorite glade runs and backcountry snowmobile tours will start rolling out tomorrow! With all this fresh pow stoke is high, just remember to be safe while you’re having a good time. Please keep off closed terrain, it may look like we’re hiding powder stashes, but jokes aside ropes and signage are there to protect you from hazards you may not always see.”


Cold and snowy. There are 3 inches of freshies today, making it a total snowfall of 16 inches in the past week. There are 19 trails open. The low temperature is 1 degree, so bundle up.


Few skiers and snowboarders have been as patient as frequenters of The ‘Nutt this season, and it looks like that patience is starting to pay off. Massanutten has 4.2 inches of fresh snow for you today. The slopes are open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

From the Massanutten team:

The roads on the mountain are clear so come on out and enjoy the snow. Stay tuned for more terrain opening tomorrow! Cloudy with lingering flurries and dropping temps throughout the day. Check out our Facebook page for some limited specials on slope use tickets today.”

The resort is hoping to have 100% of its terrain open my Friday!

For today only, if your school is closed due to weather, come ski/snowboard at Massanutten for cheap.

The discounted price is $35 for one 8-hour slope-use ticket and $25 for one 8-hour equipment rental, and limited to the first 200 guests only. Tickets have to be purchased online, with the promo code: NOCLASS4ME.

Ober Mountain

If there is one group of skiers and riders that has been more patient that those at Massanutten, it’s the Ober Mountain folks. We finally have substantial fresh snow at Ober. Three inches this morning, and couple with another 3 inches of snowmaking, it’s shaping up to be one heck of a day out there


There’s 3 inches of fresh snow out there and 16 of 18 trails are open. All five lifts are spinning.


There are six lifts spinning, 18 trails open, and 7 inches of fresh snow at Winterplace this morning. Snow showers are expected today as well. The low temperature will be around 10 degrees. Snowmaking resumes today, and Woods Run is closed for snowmaking. Last Chance and Last Run will be closed tomorrow for snowmaking.


I leave you with Sammy Carlson skiing powder in Teton Gravity Research’s 2015 film “The Sammy C Project.”

The Rest

Don’t forget: Clear your calendar from February 9-11. That’s when Massanutten and SkiSoutheast will host team up to host our summit. It’s a great way to meet like-minded, snow-loving people, and possibly make some lifelong friends in the process.

Thanks to everyone that has already joined us on Discord.

Think snow!

Think cold!

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.


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