Snowmaking Back On, As Temperatures Drop Across The Region

Appalachian Ski MountainFeaturedFirst Trax

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Yesterday was a midweek, daytime, bluebird session at App Ski for me, and it was great.

I managed to get in 26 runs yesterday in about 4 hours of riding. The highlight for me was a sidehit off to the right side of Orchard Run, just right before it runs into Appal Jam. It humbled me more than once, but was poppy enough to get some serious air. Some skiers and riders far better than me were throwing spins and backflips off of it.

For the speed demons out there, Upper Big Appal was wide open for the entirety of my day. It’s just shady enough to preserve some of the manmade powder, and wide enough to do some serious carving from side-to-side without interrupting the line of anyone behind you. That will almost certainly change by the weekend, but if you’re looking to get creative without sending it over any big jumps or rails, that is the run for you. App Ski Trail Sign

Another pleasant surprise was just how much speed you can get on the bottom portion of Orchard Run. Anyone who has been to App knows how difficult it can be to keep up enough speed to get all the way to the lift again without unstrapping from your bindings or pushing yourself with your poles. But even with snow the consistency of mashed potatoes, speed was not a problem.

And of course, the rails set-up in Appal Jam are awesome.

Find My Headphones

A little bit of a heads up for anyone who likes to ride with headphones. If you – hypothetically of course – were to have an Apple AirPod pop out of your ears and land in the snow, you might consider yourself out of $100. But the FindMy feature on your iPhone can actually play a noise through the headphone that’s loud enough to be heard from about 30 feet away.

How do I know this? Well, I fell one of the rails at Appl Jam, lost an AirPod, and had to do all of this. But it worked.

I met some great people of all ages at App yesterday, and they let me take some video of them. I’ll have that published later this week, so stay tuned.

There’s a chance of snow this week. Meteorologist Brad Panovich has more on that with his forecast.

Here’s what else is going on in the southeast today:


Spend the next three minutes of your day on the slopes with the Kendog – SkiSoutheast’s Kenny Griffin – on a top to bottom run at Sugar from last week. The snow looks pristine.

While there are more grass patches on the hill to start this week, Sugar is making snow this morning, and the ResortCam from Easy Street is already showing some of that grass getting covered up. Sugar will have three lifts and seven trails open again today.

For those trying to decide where to head this weekend, here’s some news that might help you make your decision: two-time Olympian Krista Schmidinger will be at Sugar, participating in the mountain’s preseason clinic.

The cost is $180 for three days for a season passholder, or $255 for a non-season passholder. The clinic includes a three-day lift ticket, coaching, video analysis and a dinner on Saturday night. Daily participation is welcome as well for those who cannot make the entire weekend.

Krista Schmidinger grew up in Lee, Massachusetts. She skied for six years on the World Cup circuit, and was on the 1992 Olympic team with her twin sister Kim. She also competed in the 1994 Olympics in Lillehammer, and now lives in Banner Elk.


Our Discord user JohnBooswald is at Snowshoe this morning, and said that he was pleasantly surprised by the conditions during his first visit. Here’s what he had to say:

“I’m at Snowshoe, this is my first time here. I was expecting ice patches due to warm temps recently but the snow is lovely and powdery and not icy at all.”

If you’re headed that way, you could be in for a treat. The National Weather Service is predicting up to six inches worth of snow showers could hit the West Virginia mountain. There will be 11 trails, one terrain park, and three chairlifts open today from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.


There wasn’t any snow made last night up at Beech, but with the forecast calling for some natural flakes on Wednesday, a great snowmaking window is upon us.

If you missed it yesterday, here’s what Beech looked like on Sunday.

Just a reminder that Beech has teamed up with the Lees-McRae Ski & Snowboard team to host the Southern Rails Ski and Snowboard Rail Jam on Saturday. Winners can take home a portion of a $3,000 cash purse. And after the contest, enjoy the premiere of Teton Gravity Research’s latest film “Flying High Again” immediately after the award ceremony.


Continuing its preview weekend, Timberline will be open today from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The mid-mountain chair is closed today. Temperatures are great for snowmaking, with a low of 25 and a high of 35. Snowmaking is scheduled to resume this evening, and all open terrain has been machine-groomed.

Just a reminder that all Timberline Mountain credits are doubled during this extended preview weekend. Skiers and riders can earn up to $80 in credits for riding on a full priced lift ticket.

Warren Miller

Reader Steven Cooley went to the Clarksville, Georgia showing of Warren Miller Entertainment’s “ALL TIME” on Saturday, and shared some photos. Thanks for sending these in, Steven.

Two chairlifts at a winery in Clarkesville, Georgia

The slopes at App Ski were filled with Appalachian State University students who were getting some turns in to celebrate the last day of classes, likely before they retreated to campus for a long library session ahead of final exams. Good luck to everyone wrapping up the fall semester of classes at colleges all across the area. As a former college professor, I have just two pieces of advice:

  1. Sleep is your best friend
  2. Go easy on the coffee.

Be sure to check out the chatter about resort openings happening over on our new SkiSoutheast Discord channel.

Think snow!

Think cold!

Also 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.

Keep skiing the southeast.

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