Grab Those Ponchos, Because There’s More Wet Weather

FeaturedFirst TraxGeneral

Stay up to date by getting notified of new posts!

I see a lot of green on the ResortCams this morning.

The view from above Cataloochee Wednesday morning.

The rain has definitely washed away some of the snow on mountains all across the region. Even Timberline, which seemed a bit invincible at times, is looking green.

Here’s what is going on throughout the southeast:


Today’s ski runs-to-bar stops ratio might be heavily in favor of the bar stops. We’ve got a plethora of immature snow at Snowshoe.

Here’s what the snow reporting team has to say:

Despite the current underdeveloped snow, our mountain enthusiasm

remains undaunted! We’ve got one more day hitting these wintry waves before cooler temps settle in to stay awhile. Seeking a cozy spot to thaw out and savor a hearty meal? Swing by the Basin for lunch, conveniently nestled slope-side in the lower level of Mountain Lodge.”

These guys are prepared for the rain.

Today will feature plenty of rain. It might be a good idea to throw on a poncho.


Discord user Filardito at Sugar yesterday, and said that there is snow from top to bottom. The conditions were iffy and the rain was constant, but it sure beats working.

“Oma’s is wrecked, slalom between the huge swaths of dirt,” they said. “Easy Street is fine but has a few no-go spots.”

Photo courtesy of Discord user Jackalope1217.

Here’s ski patroller BIll Nabers with his incredibly honest report:

I sent photos of the last slope that opened this past weekend so you can see where we have the least snow. Most resorts only show the deepest places. But this view shows that even this slope has enough snow for skiing. While not a pretty day, the skiing is still fun. The rain held off (Tuesday) morning. The snow is holding up well. Cold air should return by the weekend and we can make more snow. Hope to see you on the slopes. Merry Christmas and a blessed feast of Stephen!”


There are eight trails and seven lifts open again today at Wisp. No snow was made, but night skiing is in effect. There is a 70% chance of rain for today.

Hatley Pointe

The social media team over at Hatley Pointe has been hard at work keep the public updated during the delay of its opening. The latest: an HGTV-style behind-the-scenes look at the construction process.

Ski Lessons

As I mentioned before, I am up in New England, visiting family for the holidays. The bad news with that, is that we’ve had roughly the same weather as the southeast, with all the rain and above freezing temperatures, with colder nights. The good news, is that I’m surrounded by my friends family, who will brave that all to get a few laps in with me.

Later this week, I’ll be teaching a few loved ones how to ski and snowboard. I am not a certified instructor, though I did think about that as a possible side career at one point in my life. I have certainly made plenty of mistakes while teaching people on the slopes in the past, so would that in mind, here are just a few pointers for teaching someone how to ski or ride.

Instill Confidence

You know how baseball players take batting practice?  Sometimes, that is to warm up physically. But most of the time, it’s just to remind the player that they can hit the ball a mile.

It’s kind of like that with skiing and snowboarding, especially if your friend has been skiing and snowboarding before, but there’s been some time in between their last session and today. In their mind, they are likely terrified. Eliminate some of that fear by starting someone off on the easiest trail possible.

Once they warm the legs up a little bit, they’re going to be giving you a hard time for starting them off on a trail so beneath them. Sometimes I’ll play this off like “oh I forgot that this trail was so simple.“ or “oh that trail was much harder the last time I was here, they must’ve groomed it. “

Stay With Them

I am just as guilty as anyone else is of being over-stoked when I first get on the mountain after a long hiatus and leaving my partner in the dust. But when you’re teaching someone else, this is no good.

Even if you have to frequently make stops to check in along the way, it will be better for everyone involved if you do your best not to get too far ahead of the next person.

Margarethe already knew how to ski, so she decided to learn how to snowboard. There were some ups and downs.
Make Things Easy

There are so many little quirks that make life easier when you’re on the hill. Sometimes that’s keeping an extra granola bar in your pocket. Other times, that’s having a stash of handwarmers. Whatever that might look like make sure to share that inside knowledge to the person you’re bringing along.

This is FirsTrax reporter Josh Sullivan’s friend Becca. He once brought her up to the top of a steep, icy run at Cannon Mountain with low visibility in a blizzard. In fairness, the trail was named Easy Street.
Flat Land Learning

Learn the basics before you step foot on a lift. This can seem so silly, but something like skating on a snowboard to get to the chairlift when unstrapped is so much harder than we regulars take for granted. When you first get to the mountain, teach the basics for 5 to 10 minutes before you even bother getting on the chairlift. It will make life entirely easier when you’re at the top of the peak. Also teach someone how to fall before they had the opportunity to do so it will eliminate any chaos of trying to climb back up the mountain if they do so while they’re behind you.

Good Gear

Sometimes it slips peoples mind. Not everyone knows that denim isn’t moisture wicking, and for some reason there is a notion that since someone might not be going very fast because they’re a beginner, they might not need a helmet. Obviously, that couldn’t be further from the truth.

Gear For Groms

Discord user ThePictureMan chimed in on our channel yesterday with a note about the charity Gear For Groms. The nonprofit is providing rentals at little or no cost to local kids to enjoy the slopes.

Here’s what he had to say:

We look to our local communities in the High Country for support in any form, whether it be from extra publicity, event partnerships, monetary donations, and especially gear donations. We can use any and all kinds of snow sports gear and equipment, whether kid or adult size.
If you would like, you can drop off donations at Edge of the World in Banner Elk or ReGear Outdoors in Boone. contact me at [email protected] our website is or Thanks for your support!”

Reminder: Don’t make any plans for February 9 through 11.

For the first time since 2020, we are hosting a SkiSoutheast Resort Summit. This one will be at Massanutten Resort. The weekend is an opportunity to meet up with like-minded snow sports lovers from all over the southeast.

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.

Previous Post
A Wet And Warm Kwanzaa Ski Day, But Cold Weather Awaits
Next Post
Snowmaking Temperatures On The Horizon After Rainy Stretch
Related Posts