February Thaw? – North Carolina Ski Areas May See 2-4 Inches of SNOW!

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Good Morning! It’s Tuesday, February 8th and IT’S SNOWING AGAIN!! Hip Hip Hooray! It’s been several day since we’ve any real white stuff here in the North Carolina mountains and I must say it’s been kind of nice to see it again. And lord knows the ski areas could really use some sustained cold temperatures and a little help from the lady in charge – Mother Nature. All this talk about blizzards over the last few days really has me in the mood for some major winter weather!! How does a foot or so sound? It’s not in the picture now but the winter is still young.

This snow event is just the first of the week. More snow is in the forecast for Wednesday and into Thursday. This cold blast is welcome following several days of milder temperatures and a very mild weekend. All of the ski areas in the southeast and mid-Atlantic will be taking advantage of the colder temperatures!

Just in late last night we have a new video forecast from our resident weather-dude Brad Panovich. The next storm we’re looking at for the region comes in late Wednesday and into Thursday and it looks like the North Carolina ski areas may benefit most from this system with 2-4 inches of snow. The highest elevations in West Virginia may get some additional snow as well. It’s shaping up to be a good news-bad news kind of week. Great snow early this week and later in the week and into the weekend it’s looking like the beginning of a pretty significant warming trend. Brad does indicate that he thinks there will be one more blast of cold and snow before the season is over – and it could be right around the beginning of March. What did I tell you about March? Maybe we’ll end up with another major March snow event!

As we’re looking at the possibility of the first extended thaw of the season I am certain we’ll end up with tons of questions like, "is there any snow left?" or "can we still ski even though it’s 50 degrees out?" or "we’re coming in early March, will the slopes still be open?" People – this is when we flash back to all the conversations about base depth. The answer is yes to all of those!!!

Also, I’d like to tell all the skiers and snowboarders to continually complain about daytime snowmaking to get over it. The reason we are able to ski until late March and early April is that ski areas DO take advantage of the cold temperatures when they can. All season long people have been talking about the great thaw that’s coming or the mild winter, well, we may indeed have a thaw period this month, so it’s crucial that ski areas make snow when they are able. THEY DO IT FOR US!!

Let’s have a glance around…


Appalachian Ski Mountain – Open today on 100% of the mountain with selective snowmaking on AppalJack and Candied Appal – more snowmaking on other terrain will start after the slopes close. App got .3 inches of fresh snow last night, just enough to coat the slopes!

Beech Mountain – Open on 100% of the mountain with snowmaking in progress!! Beech got 1.8 inches of new snow so surface conditions should be excellent. Beech will likely be making snow all week as temperatures will allow in preparation for this weekend’s College Fest!

Cataloochee – Cataloochee is 100% open today after overnight snowmaking. Conditions out there should be awesome!! Here’s what Cataloochee has to say about their terrain parks… "in the CCTP Progression Park…24′ Down Box, 24′ Up/Flat Box, 12′ OG Rail, 24′ Down Rail w/ Snow Staircase, 16′ Battleship Rail, 10′ Kid-Friendly Flat Rail, 16′ Kid-Friendly Flat Box, 8′ Jam Rail, and 18′ x 3′ Culvert. AND… in the Upper CCTP Park…AN ALL NEW SETUP! along with the 30′ Step Down Gap Jump w/ 25′ to the knuckle and 5′ to the sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet spot! PLUS…new kid’s (read that…adults, too!) Fun Jump! Thanks to our rockin’ CCTP crew for shakin’ up the house and making it happen!!" That’s awesome – it’s great to see that the folks at Cataloochee are super-stoked about their terrain park staff!

Sugar Mountain – 100% open today and snowmaking is in progress. Sugar got 1.2 inches of fresh snow so slope and trail conditions today should be great!

Wolf Ridge Resort – Open today on 13 of 23 slopes. More terrain will open up this weekend! They got about 2 inches of new snow so conditions should be great at the Wolf today as well!!


Bryce and Massanutten are 100% Open.

Wintergreen is taking advantage of these cold temperatures and overnight snowmaking means conditions there should be AWESOME today!! Wintergreen is open on 25 of 26 slopes and 4 lifts. The Advanced Park is closed today for a rebuild. Here’s Wintergreen’s own TERRAIN PARK UPDATE: The Progression Park is open with: small propane tank, 10 ft progression box, small battleship rail, small fun box, small flat down rail, 2 small jumps, 2 medium jumps, 2 progression tables. The Advanced Park is CLOSED FOR SNOWMAKING AND WILL REOPEN THURSDAY with: 2 medium tables, 1 large table, 20ft flat box, small propane tank, 20ft up box, big battleship rail , 30ft down rail, 20ft flat rail, large propane tank, spine propane tank bonk and smart style tank spine rail.


Canaan – Open on 38 of 39 slopes and trails with some terrain features open as well. They got an 2.2 more inches of snow through the overnight, bringing their season total to 154.6 inches! It’s Tubing Tuesday at Canaan – for only $25 you can tube all three sessions!

Snowshoe Mountain – Open today with 2 inches of fresh snow sent from Mother Nature herself!! The Western Express lift will have a delayed opening this morning due to high winds. Cupp Run and Shay’s Revenge will open as soon as conditions allow! Here’s what the Snowshoe Crew has to say….

"New snow fell overnight and Snowshoe is boasting some great packed powder conditions this morning. Some of last night’s snowfall was groomed into our surface, but much of it has fallen during the early morning hours, after grooming was completed. With some blowing snow, there could be some great pockets of powder out there this morning. The steadiest wind seems to be north to south, so heading towards Widowmaker, Camp 99 and Sawmill on the Soaring Eagle lift system may be a powder hound’s best option this morning for those deep pockets. But everywhere will have a great soft surface for your carving pleasure this morning.

The snow is expected to continue to fall throughout the day today, and we could see another several inches of accumulation. Snowshoe has now seen over 10 FEET of natural snowfall, and we’re well on our way to our annual average of 180" for the season. Following today’s snowfall, it looks like we have sunny days ahead, perfect for enjoying the fresh snow! That sunshine is going to stick around right on through the weekend, and we’ll see temperatures in the mid-30s. While that will provide some terrific daytime skiing and riding conditions, overnight lows will allow us to make snow where it’s necessary. Don’t forget, there are still 7 weeks left in the season to enjoy Snowshoe’s phenomenal snow conditions. These brief mild spells may have you thinking spring, but Snowshoe is definitely a winter wonderland and will remain that way right on through the end of March.

Spruce Glades Terrain Park is closed today for a rebuild. The large park will reopen tomorrow. Our remaining 4 parks are open today. If you’re joining us on the mountain this weekend, don’t forget about our new "Ride Thru with the Park Crew" series. This free, informational session will introduce you to Snowshoe’s freestyle terrain offerings and the proper ways to approach terrain park riding. Sessions are offered at 11am on Friday and Saturday at both the Snowshoe and Silver Creek areas. Our expert park crew will show you around in a fun and friendly environment, teaching proper terrain park etiquette and the Smart Style approach to freestyle terrain. Everyone is welcome!"

Winterplace is open on 100% of the Mountain with a TRACE of new snow! Great conditions there!

At WISP RESORT they got the most snow of all the ski areas from this current snow blast with 3 inches! They are open today on almost 100% of the mountain with 38 of 39 slopes and trails open! It’s Student’s Day at Wisp today also, so bring your valid student ID for some great discounts!!

OBER GATLINBURG in Tennessee is open on 100% of the mountain and they are currently making snow!! So, just bear with the snow guns folks, it’s all worth it!!

Send me your stuff…I’d love to hear from you… [email protected] and remember to…THINK COLD!! THINK SNOW!! The more snow vibes we put out there into the world the better the chances!

If you have a few minutes be sure to check out our other websites… www.HighCountryWeather.com and www.HighCountryWebcams.com. The webcams are a great resource for getting up to the minute images of what’s going on across the area.

<< This is a captured shot from this morning taken using one of our webcams down at Cataloochee!

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