However, HEAVY SNOW is Falling in Virginia this morning!
I am DELIGHTED to share that our Photo(s) of the Day are featuring Omni Homestead and Massanutten Resort snowfall.
We’ll talk more SNOW in a moment!…but first…
If you are a longtime reader/follower of this website, you will probably remember how I used to “beat a dead horse” more than occasionally when talking about the reported base depths at ski resorts. This year’s “dead horse” is the record visitation numbers we are seeing this winter. I have already chronicled some comments from town managers across the region – reporting in that we saw record tourism visitation this past summer AND I have shared that those very same town managers are being quoted as saying we are surpassing those visitation numbers this winter.
While that phenomenon may not be the case at every ski mountain in the region – most of our ski resorts are having one of, if not their best years ever.
The reason I am “whipping the horse” again this morning is due to what I witnessed Saturday evening. One of my daughters was celebrating her birthday this weekend, and she wanted to go to Bodegas in Banner Elk for dinner. We knew in advance that the traffic was going to be intense – because it has been since late Spring, early Summer.
…and it was. As we arrived at Bodegas at around 6pm, a steady snow was falling, which put a nice touch on the birthday ambience. About an inch of snow fell while we were inside. On the drive home we hit bumper to bumper traffic – not because of the treacherous road conditions – but in part because even a dusting on the roads cause most of the flatlanders to ground to a halt. The other reason was that the roads were packed from the entrance to Sugar Mountain and really all the way to the corner of Highway 184 and Highway 105. It took us about 45 minutes to get from Banner Elk Cafe to the intersection.
As I have repeatedly stated this season – I have simply never seen anything LIKE the traffic we’re seeing this season.
“Everyone” is talking about it around here. Many reasons have been offered up such as:
“People know they can get outside and escape the worries of covid back home.”
“Many want to go skiing & snowboarding but they are afraid of flying, so they head to the closest ski mountains from ‘all points south'”.
“After being in covid lockdown for months, people just had so much pent up demand to get outside and this is where everyone is heading.”
“We’re having such a great ‘weather winter’ that news stations back home are sharing the message and people are coming in record number.”
Darren Prasinos from D.C. (Soon to be a state), shared another observation:
“Hi Mike, I’m an avid snowboarder living in DC and love your web site and videos. I thought you might be interested in a conversation I had on a Snowshoe ski lift recently with another skier as it relates the crowded conditions this year. She was from Pennsylvania (Scranton I believe), skiing at Snowshoe, and I asked why she didn’t drive the other way to (Pennsylvania) New York or VT (where mountains are bigger of course) and she said those states have tighter COVID restrictions than WV so she decided to head south. I thought that was interesting and I wondered how many others are heading south to ski.
Keep up the good work with SSE.
Whatever the reasons, brother they are coming like never (EVER) before. What is so crazy is that we are hearing from numerous resorts that many of the weekends have been as busy as MLK Weekend was – and IT was a GREAT skier-visit weekend.
Winter Weather (and not all of it being snow) Is Hitting Our Mountaintops
As I mentioned earlier, we’ve seen 4″ of very pretty snow that fell from around 6pm Saturday evening, overnight and through this morning here at my beautiful home/office in “downtown” Sleepy Hollow. For those unaware, Sleepy Hollow is just down from the entrance of Seven Devils and my back deck provides a glance of both Grandfather Mountain and Seven Devils. I’m at about 3300′ in elevation here, so I don’t quite get the same amount of snow as which falls just 1000-2000 feet above us (which is just a ten minutes drive).
As I was driving home last night, the temperature at the foot of Sugar Mountain was 32° and it was 27° when I pulled into my driveway. So some kind of temperature inversion was happening. That same thing is happening this morning as it appears that some wintry mix and “under-developed snow” is falling up at Beech Mountain’s higher elevation, whereas it is still snowing here. (Strange but true.)
The forecast is for this snow to transition into freezing rain (and rain) today and then back to snow this evening with highs in the 20s and lows in the low 30s and teens through Wednesday night. The great weather just keeps on keeping on.
Virginia Ski Mountain Get A Deserving DUMPING of SNOW! (White Gold!)
As I am sharing the snowfall thus far this morning, I HAVE to begin with the Virginia ski areas this morning. They’ve had the most challenging and limited conditions through the first half of the season with slightly milder temperatures with which to MAKE snow and they have also seen less natural snow.
It is SO AWESOME to be able to share that the Virginia mountains are seeing the heaviest snow in the region as of this morning and even as of 8am (posting this report) they are getting the HEAVIEST SNOW. Massanutten Resort shared, “5”+ new snow over night with 2″- 4″ more forecasted today. Looks like the best conditions of the year out there today.”
The snow is falling so hard at Wintergreen Resort as of 8:15am that the photo capture would be white-out conditions!
Reported Snowfall this morning:
6″ Omni Homestead Resort – POWDER DAY!
5″ Massanutten Resort ***
5″ Wintergreen Resort – Heavy Snow as of 8:15am
5″ Beech Mountain Resort (65″ on the season*)
5″ Sugar Mountain Resort
4″ Bryce Resort
4″ SkiSoutheast “headquarters haha”
4″ Snowshoe Mountain
4″ Winterplace Resort
3.9″ “No Snow Foscoe” – via CoCoRaHs
3.5″ Blowing Rock
2.9″ Canaan Valley & Timberline ** (65″ on the season)
2″ Cataloochee Ski Area
2″ Wisp Resort
2″ Wolf Ridge Resort
* That 65″ at Beech is already 80% of normal snowfall for a full season and we are only at the half-way mark!
** The 2.9″ of snow at Canaan Valley puts them at 65″ on the season
*** So delighted to see the snow at Massanutten. This 5″ of snow almost doubles what they had through Saturday
Snowshoe Mountain Shared:
Sunday Funday is here with 4″ of fresh pow! Read more…
The snow is still dumping and we’re expecting free refills all day long. Highs will hover in the twenties today, so make sure to layer up and take some cocoa breaks. With 100% of our terrain open, and this A+ winter, it’s a great time to be shredding 4848′. Bear Claw will open on delay following ski team practice. Enjoy the laps!
Ober Gatlinburg is missing out on this particular storm as temps are in the 40s with rain this morning. Ditto that for Sapphire Valley Resort this morning.
Check the SNOW REPORT as many ski areas are 100% open and most are close to it. If you do NOT have lift passes or equipment rentals in advance, you SHOULD CALL BEFORE YOU SHOW UP as many resorts are SOLD OUT
Snow in the Forecast through Wednesday!…and COLD TEMPS
As I have already shared, we are getting snow in some locations and freezing rain (and rain) in others. That is supposed to transition back to SNOW overnight and into Monday with more snow showers through Tuesday and into Wednesday in some locations.
Snow began Saturday evening and changed over to snow to mix to rain from southwest to northeast this morning and mostly ends by early afternoon. Light rain or drizzle returns this evening.
Part two of the system commences late Sunday night with snow showers (possibly beginning as light rain or freezing drizzle east). Snow showers persist Monday and through much of the daytime Tuesday and into Wednesday morning. Additional accumulations of 2″-5″ will be common. However, favored areas right along the NC/TN border will pick up an additional 6″-12″.
Omni Homestead and the Virginia resorts could see another 3-5″ of snow through 3pm today and show showers through Tuesday.
Enjoy your SNOWY Sunday and it looks like the snow showers and cloudy skies will be prevalent Tuesday for Groundhog Day. o we’re expecting Punxsutawney Phil to predict an early Spring. Don’t count on it. The calendar (and our own SkiSoutheast Si) will most likely share a snowier finish to the season. Why not? This is 2021!
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