COLDEST DAY OF WINTER TO DATE; UP TO 6″ OF SNOW FELL AS WELL

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Photo of the Day by Steve Skarupa of Snowshoe Mountain.

I woke up this morning to a bit of a surprise snowfall. It wasn’t much (1″) but it was snow! As I got my brain cranked up and began checking all the data, it was cool to see at least a trace of snow fell at about every resort in the region. 3″ of snow fell at Canaan Valley and Wisp resorts. The usual big winner was Snowshoe Mountain which reported 6″ of new snow (from their official NWS reporting station).

Steve Skarupa snapped a few photos and sent those along for us to share below. Thanks Steve! (click to enlarge)

Be sure to check the SNOW REPORT for all the deets, including the frigid temperatures observed at all of the mountain tops….OR you can watch the video snow report below.

 

Probably the Best News for the Regional Snow Sports Industry this morning

…is the fact that Ober Gatlinburg reopened for skiing and snowboarding this morning. I had hinted at the prospects of that happening on our Sunday report because the amount of snow that they were blasting the slopes with just LOOKED like they could reopen today.

Ober sent this along…and you can check out the full press release on the front of SkiSoutheast right now.

With a winter finally arriving, Ober Gatlinburg is happy to announce the reopening of Tennessee’s only Ski and Snowboard Area this morning, MLK Day at 9am. Mogul, Upper Bear, Cub Way, Castle Run and Ski School will all open at 9 am with a 12”-24” base. Ober Gatlinburg Snowmakers have been busy through the weekend have continued to make snow since. New automated snowmaking technology allows Snowmakers the ability to adjust water and air pressure remotely on several snow guns to optimize snowmaking output. Slopes at Ober Gatlinburg have been open for 25 days of Skiing and Snowboarding so far this year beginning December 20th but had to close on January 3rd due to unseasonably warm temperatures. Slopes are reopening with the best conditions so far this year.

 

Kenny Griffin Headed to Cataloochee Today

Kenny texted me as he was arriving in beautiful, downtown Maggie Valley this morning. He shared that he was on his way up to Cataloochee to make some turns. I’m sure we’ll see some posts on Instagram, Facebook, etc. and we’ll share those as they are available. (Hopefully he can get us some intel on why long-time, marketing sweetheart, Tammy Brown abruptly left Cataloochee this past weekend. Depending on the news, bear in mind that we may or may not be able to share that information. As they say – we’ll see. That was certainly a shocker.)

Can’t Even Tell You the Last Time I Checked CoCoRaHs reports for natural snowfall around here!

We’ve certainly been on a snow-starved stretch here in the High Country. this winter. While even the WV ski areas are well below normal for the halfway mark of the season, we’re seeing even more of an absence of natural snow here in the mountains of North Carolina.

Traditionally, at the half-way point in a winter season, we’d see 40″ of snow around Beech and Sugar Mountains and 10-15″ at locations like Cataloochee, Wolf Ridge, Appalachian, etc. As of today, here are the NC resort snowfall numbers on the season.

3.5″ – Appalachian Ski Mountain
16″ – Beech Mountain Resort
5″ – Cataloochee Ski Area
1″ – Sapphire Valley
14″ – Sugar Mountain Resort
4.2″ – Wolf Ridge Resort

Editor’s Note: For those that might email me about Sugar’s reported 20.2″ (“confirmed by AveryWeather.com), they simply have not had that much snowfall this season. According to AveryWeather.com, Beech Mountain has only had 11″ and Sugar 20.2”. Both would be pitiful numbers at this point in the season, however BOTH are inaccurate. The 16″ at Beech and 14″ at Sugar are based on multiple, independent snow spotter’s reports and from independent people on those mountains. (Part of our ‘no-bull reporting’.)

WHILE I’M SHARING SEASON SNOWFALL NUMBERS…

WEST VIRGINIA RESORTS

45.8″ – Canaan Valley Resort (David Lesher has THE BEST reporting station!)
36″ – Snowshoe Mountain Resort (They are only reporting 33″ as they don’t start counting until they open.)
12.2″ – Winterplace Resort

VIRGINIA RESORTS

9″ – Bryce Resort
4.8″ – Massanutten Resort
5″ – Omni Homestead Resort
9″ – Wintergreen Resort

6.5″ – Ober Gatlinburg
25″ – Wisp Resort

LAST 24 HOURS…

6″ at Snowshoe
3.1″ at Canaan Valley (4.5″ the last 72 hours or so)
3″ at Wisp Resort
1″ at Winterplace
1″ at Beech Mountain
1″ at Sugar Mountain
.5″ at Appalachian
.5″ at Ober
.5″ at Cataloochee
.5″ at Wolf

1″ at “No Snow” Foscoe – from CoCoRaHs.

Despite a fair amount of sunshine to finish the day it remains very cold and is easily the coldest day of winter thus far.

Here are many of the temperature readings from this morning:

2° Snowshoe
6° Canaan
4° Beech
5° Sugar
9° Seven Devils
10.8° Sugar base
5° Sugar top
22° Gatlinburg
12° Appalachian Ski Mountain
13° Cataloochee
19° Bryce
12° Massanutten
19° Sapphire Valley
9° Wintergreen
11° Winterplace
15° Wisp
8° at Wolf

It’s a holiday today and many school have a teacher workday tomorrow – so that will make this normal, 4-day weekend into a longer one for some people. Conditions will be prime – and cold…so bundle up if you are headed to the slopes.

That will do it for today.

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