Photo of the Day: is a sunrise shot showing three Snowshoe Mountain groomers laying some corduroy.
In case you missed it, Winter arrived last night, December 21st at 11:19 p.m. EST, marking the first day of Winter in the Northern Hemisphere. If you felt like you missed something, it was probably a couple of minutes that it stole from all of us as the first day of winter is also the day with the fewest hours of sunlight in the whole year.
My wife just made me aware that today is Joe Stevens’ birthday. Kind of appropriate that the first day of Winter is Joe’s birthday. He’s made a career out of promoting it. Happy Birthday, Joe.
It is also another good friend’s birthday – so Happy Birthday, Annette Moline. (She’ll be skiing with us at Snowshoe this week and follows SkiSoutheast closely.)
Sunday is always my “ramble day” to share lots of seemingly disconnected tidbits of information as they run across my desk in the form of electronic zeros and ones.
You guys can check the SNOW REPORT for ALL of the details. If you want it read to you, you can click on the video below. (However, a ton of people have beaten you to it by following us on Facebook.)
Man Saturday was a BUSY DAY on the Slopes.
I was doing a bit of “house cleaning” with links and content on the websites and I had the opportunity to check out the webcams a number of times and every time I looked the slopes seemed more like what I’d expect NEXT WEEKEND to look like. Most every resort seemed to be packed with skiers and snowboarders who were taking advantage of the BEST conditions of the season thus far.
It Was a Busy Day for SkiSoutheast as well…
We had over 248,133 sessions on ResortCams camera views on Saturday alone and 70,000+ views on SkiSoutheast.com, ResortCams (skicams), and our Facebook / Instagram views of all the videos we shared on Friday afternoon and Saturday.
I just checked our ResortCams media server and we had 1614 of you guys LIVE looking at cameras per minute. Crazy, built-up readiness to hit some slopes, I guess!
The video that we shared of Sugar Mountain’s 50th Anniversary has been viewed on-site 29,953 times in the last 36 hours or so. 58,194 had a look at it. A Worthy Watch…
ARE WE DONE WITH SNOWMAKING FOR 2019?
Contrary to Saturday morning as I watched all the LIVE cams, when all but two ski areas were blasting the slopes with snowmaking, this morning – not one of them were as temperatures hovered frustratingly about 5 degrees above where we needed to see them.
A few ski areas WERE able to make snow into late Saturday, but as of Sunday morning the snowmaking teams have shut things down everywhere and if the weather pattern and forecast holds – we might not see anymore snowmaking at any ski area in the region until perhaps (MAYBE) next Sunday night, December 29th.
So, if you have a look at the open slopes and trails that are currently available at YOUR favorite ski area, that COULD be what you’re going to get for the coming Christmas-to-New-Year week ahead.
That’s okay though, because the way it looks right now is most all of the resorts have plenty of base to push around each evening and morning – and plenty of slopes open to play on for the entire week ahead. I already alluded to how GREAT the conditions were yesterday (and are today) across the region – and those conditions are not going to go away anytime soon.
Sure, things will soften up some as the week ahead looks to be mild with highs in the upper 40s and low 50s, but overnight lows in the mid 30s or so should firm things up for each day. Snowmaking temperatures look to return around Sunday night for many ski areas and that should make for really nice Holiday ski and snowboarding conditions Monday-Wednesday (December 30th-Jan 1st).
The Sky is Falling…or Not…
I’ve already started seeing emails coming in asking whether or not we will “have snow” and a couple even asked if they should cancel their trip. I’ll answer the last question first and I’ll answer it in three different ways:
1. What the ski resorts want me to say: “NO! Keep those reservations and come on and play. The conditions will be great!”
2. The answer I WANT to give you: “YES! PLEASE CANCEL your reservations!!!”
3. The REASON I WANT to answer #2: If you cancel, there will be much more room for ME to go and enjoy the slopes.
Here’s the thing – conditions WILL BE JUST FINE and at some locations almost GREAT. There will be plenty of snow and plenty of slopes open to ski on. What you see open on the SNOW REPORT today will be close to – if not exactly what will be open Wednesday-New Years. In fact, we could even see another slope or two open here and there.
So, as much as I and others would LOVE for some of you to cancel those reservations and make more room on the slopes…don’t do it. (You can thank me later.)
IS SNOW IN THE FORECAST?
Holiday skiers and snowboarders COULD see some natural snowfall as we get closer to the 29th-31st and as we all wrap up our ski getaways, there could be some snow January 1st-4th. We can hope that weather pattern speeds up a bit, right?
Snowshoe added 6 more trails to 39 today. Western Territory is fully open! Lower Shay’s dropped rope yesterday. Silver Creek expanded as well, including Bear Claw, Buck Saw, Little Spruce, and Laurel Run. Their snow makers did awesome work this week opening more terrain. Need last minute stocking stuffers? Swing by Tool Shed at Top of the World for fantastic deals on gear!
Here are some sweet Snowshoe photo shares of grooming at Sunrise this morning.
Loved this photo from Wintergreen…
Justin Harris Continues to Impress…
Every resort needs a Justin Harris. We’ve got some good peeps at all the mountains, but nobody is pushing the message of his or her resort better than Harris. Here is his latest…just for today mind you…
What a Saturday on the mountain! I took a time out from the day to post up on The Chute yesterday with my camera and capture some action shots, and I am glad I did. Our mountain had a great vibe, and conditions were outstanding. I heard it over and over while talking to our guests……”the mountain looks great! It’s skiing so well today.” And these quotes spoke the truth. The temps held in the mid 30’s, and the conditions were soft yet fast, and smooth and workable. Huge props goes out to our Mountain Ops team for a job well done.
I see no reason today will be any different! The boys were out last night making snow, and the temperatures dropped into the lower 20’s, so another day of smooth, workable snow should be on tap.
We will operate with 12 slopes and trails available today. The Chute was giving up lots of speed yesterday, and Timber Trail was as beautiful as ever, with a solid base from top to bottom.
Our beginner area has once again been groomed to perfection for a fun and safe ride, and make sure to notice the base on B Slope, because it’s the result of our upgrades in our snowmaking system.
All in all, I expect another day full of action and smiles on our slopes! I will be posted up somewhere to catch the smiles, turns, and smooth lines, so if you see me come say hi. SYOTS!
Enjoy your Sunday,
Here are some additional photos from yesterday at Canaan Valley:
HUH? SOLD OUT…ALREADY!
Ober Gatlinburg posted this message this morning:
Sorry, but Snow Tubing sessions are SOLD OUT through January 2nd. The Scenic Chairlift, Ski Mountain Coaster, Ice Skating, Wildlife Encounter, Carousel, The Shops at Ober, The Seasons of Ober Restaurant and the Loft Lounge are also available to guests of Ober Gatlinburg.
I have a lot going on today…so that’s it for now. Check back later as I’ll try to share some additional news and photos from the day.
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That will do it for today.
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