Hello Everyone –
You can tell the 2007-2008 season is starting to wind down, because the talk around town is centering on when the resorts are going to close for the season, instead of people worrying how many more times they were going to be able to make it to the slopes of their choice. Mark my words when I say, these same people will soon start comparing this season to seasons of the past and I say who cares about seasons of the past. That snow has melted a long time ago and in many cases is probably part of the water that was used for this season’s snowmaking purposes.
The month of March is upon us and other then those first turns of the season when I am extremely eager to get on any kind of snow; this is my favorite time of the year. I don’t consider myself a fair weather snowboarder, as cold temperatures to me just mean great conditions. But on the other hand, not having numerous layers on isn’t a bad thing. Plus the eye candy on the slopes on a very clear day can be distracting but none the less pleasing to the eye.
The conditions right now look very good across the region with West Virginia and Maryland being in the best shape for those final turns of the season. For the most part, snowmaking seems to be continuing as resorts are trying to put the best coverage on the slopes for the March riders and skiers. Hats off to the various mountain operation folks who have worked extremely hard to get the slopes to where they are right now. Any skier and snowboarder in this region, always needs to realize that Mother Nature can only do so much in the mountains around here. Everyone knows how we have been on a roller coaster ride this season when it comes to weather conditions.
Another benefit to those final turns of the season is that the price of playing starts to drop considerably. So if you have been watching your pennies this season, you might be able to squeeze in three or four more days instead of just one or two. Everyone is guessing what March’s weather is going to be, here is a fair warning just be aware that the national weather sites rely heavily on historical data when making long term (seven to ten day) forecasts and so the pattern this time of the year can change quickly. Anyone remember the blizzard of 93 when 38 inches dropped in West Virginia over a 24 hour period? I do and the forecasters were only calling for four to six inches up until six hours before the storm. I guess what I am trying to say is just go out there and have some fun as the snow is there just waiting for your skies or board.
That’s it for this week; more to come as the season winds down. Just remmeber as whether it be cold or whether it be hot, we’ll weather the weather, whatever the weather will be. Think about it!
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Joe Stevens, a member of the southeast ski industry since 1990 is a regular columnist for skisoutheast.com and serves as the Communications Director for the West Virginia Ski Areas Association.