…and it continues with the resorts that are open featuring side-to-side coverage with base depths in the two to five foot range and lots of slopes open.
The photo of the day is from Appalachian Ski Mountain this morning
That said, it doesn’t FEEL like the first day of Spring this morning as temperatures are in the low to mid 20s. While we have seen quite a stretch of mild days and even as much as an inch of rain since March 16th at some mountain locations, we are STILL seeing truly GREAT Spring Conditions at the resorts this morning and for this weekend. There will be PLENTY of sunshine everywhere and plenty of snow to ski or ride on.
As I mentioned, areas like Beech Mountain saw over an inch of rain over just the last couple of days and yet this morning it is 22° and the slopes look awesome.
We mention the word “perception” a lot here at SkiSoutheast.com and that is primarily because our target audience (you guys who are reading this) are most often viewing this FirsTrax news from your “flat-land” locations where the temperatures and weather have made you break out the tennis rackets, golf clubs and kayaks – ready for some warm-weather fun. Okay, I will admit, the weather even up here in the mountains have prompted me to break out my rackets, clubs and the kayaks are already on the back of the boat and ready. However, there is a mistaken impression that the resorts simply CAN’T still be open and if they are, they have to be suffering with very little snow on the slopes.
That is simply NOT the case as you will see by the tour of the area’s open mountains.
Here’s a rundown alphabetically…
25° at Appalachian Ski Mountain – 54-67″ base and 100% open (day and night sessions) with all 12 trails, terrain parks and ice skating.
As far as we could tell, Appalachian Ski Mountain was the only resort to MAKE SNOW last night with the temperatures dipping into the 20s. Brad Moretz has always maintained (and shared with me repeatedly) that they will always do their utmost to provide the best conditions. They posted, “What could make the weekend better? We made snow! Not because we had to. Because we wanted to. We aim to keep the conditions as good as possible till the very end.”
22° at Beech Mountain Resort – 44-80″ base and 14 trails open for day sessions.
Speaking of Beech Mountain Resort – we’ve been reporting all season long about how ALL of the ski resorts are looking for souls that want to work. Beech is currently hiring for their summer crew to work the bike park trails and more. For more information, See: https://www.beechmountainresort.com/2021/03/18/were-hiring-summer-staff-bike-park-trail-crew/
27° at Bryce Resort – Bryce’s last day skiing is Sunday, March 21st but they will play today and tomorrow on 7 trails and a base of 20″
Bryce posted this cool video and message:
CLOSING DAY SUNDAY, MARCH 21.
It’s been a phenomenal season here but it’s time for us to get ready for summer activities. Thanks 🙏 to all who came out and shared this mountain with us this winter! We appreciate everyone’s patience with new procedures and we enjoyed seeing the mountain full of smiling faces. We can’t wait to get @brycebikepark open May 1st (weather dependent) as well as Lake Laura. Come work on your golf swing in the meantime!
I have to mention this tidbit of intel as we come to Canaan Valley Resort. They didn’t get the heavy rains, seeing perhaps .61″ of rain in the last two days, however, as I have chronicled over the last couple of weeks, Canaan Valley and the Davis area STILL has residual, natural snow still left around in shaded areas of the forests. Here’s the oddity: Per David Lesher of Canaan Valley Weather –
“As of today there still hasn’t been any measurable snow so far this month, unprecedented for any March since snowfall records commenced here in 2001.”
Remember that TYPICALLY March is a pretty snowy month. Not one inch of snow has fallen up there this month.
28° at Cataloochee Ski Area – 43-73″ base and 15 of 18 trails open for day sessions. Chris Bates is calling the surface conditions “granular” but I witnessed him out laying down some corduroy this morning. So it will be “groomed” early and turn into “granular” later in the day. (There’s a joke in their somewhere.)
Wanna Be On the Cat Patrol?
If you are still Interested in becoming a weekday paid patroller and have intermediate or above skiing/snowboarding skills join them Monday, March 22nd from 9:30 AM to 4:30 PM. For more information go to catskipatrol.org.
26° at Massanutten Resort – 36″ average base and 15 trails, 5 lifts and even 4 lanes of snow tubing open for day sessions. I own my man, Kenny Hess a visit to the popular, Virginia resort. We’ve had Kenny Griffin and others play there this season and the past couple, but the timing didn’t work out for me to play there this season. I regret that too because Massanutten is SUCH a cool resort to be at. I love the Shenandoah Valley and there is so much to do there. Will make that one of my first trips for the coming 2021-2022 ski season.
Speaking of Massanutten Resort – The Ski Slopes are open daily through Sunday, March 21 and will be closed March 22 through 26. They plan to reopen on Saturdays and Sundays as the snow conditions allow.
32° at Ober Gatlinburg – The ski slopes are closed for the season. However, Joe Steven used to ride me a little when, early in my reporting career, I would mention that resorts were closed for the season. Most resorts in our region are 3-4 season resorts and many don’t close…just the slopes do. That is definitely the case with Ober Gatlinburg in the Great Smokies as they still have their tubing hill open. (They can make snow at 70°.) They also have the amusement park open, the mountain slide and coaster, ice skating and the wildlife exhibit and more.
Ober got in 100 days of skiing and snowboarding this season. That made it a special season for certain.
30° at Snowshoe Mountain Resort – 40″ average base and 59 of 61 trails open and terrain parks are still available across the mountain…as is night skiing right now. I loved their comments this morning, “It’s shaping up to be another classic spring skiing day with abundant sunshine and temperatures topping out around 50-ish. The skiing is going to be fantastic as we’re working with a surface that is second only to powder in the eyes of many. Yes, we’re talking about that delicious, granular, spring time “corn”. Come on up and help yourself to a generous serving of the stuff.”
Silver Creek is back in play for the weekend! Come on up for one last round of night skiing, tubing, and all the other things we love about “The Creek”.
24° at Sugar Mountain Resort – 25″-76″ base and 17 trails open with 6 lanes of tubing open as well. Sugar is open for day and night sessions. I had a few people ask me whether Sugar was going to make snow with these overnight temps in the 20s. It appears that they did not do so overnight or this morning. They’ve got really nice conditions and great, side-to-side coverage with 2′ to 6′ of base snow, so maybe they have plenty to last.
26° at Timberline Resort – although they have not updated their report comments since suspending ops on Thursday, they ARE open for day sessions on a base of 16-60″ on 18 of 22 trails. (I have to tell you guys how much I enjoyed playing there a couple of weekends ago. The “Perfect Family” is the perfect people to have acquired the resort. The snow quality and those sweet trails that dot that mountain are really, really sweet. If you’ve never been to Timberline or haven’t in a long time…good grief, you’re missing out.
27° at Wintergreen Resort – 25″ average base on 24 trails for day sessions today. Wintergreen has really had a great season and they even picked up about an inch of natural snow night before last. Conditions will be pretty sweet there today and tomorrow.
26° at Wisp Resort – 26″ base on 21 slopes and trails, tubing and mountain coastering for day and night sessions.
So there you have it. There are still TEN resorts to go play, ski and ride on this weekend. Typically by now we start talking about the narrowing of the trails, but thus far that is not the case at any of the resorts that are open this weekend. If you have the chance, get out and enjoy some Vitamin D with your snowy pleasure.
Thanks for hanging with here at SkiSoutheast. We have had an amazing season here on our family/network of pro-winter-tourism websites of www.SkiSoutheast.com, www.ResortCams.com and www.HighCountryWeather.com and www.HighCountryVacations.com. We’ll share more about our record-breaking traffic as the last resorts close in a week or so. However, I have to share that perception caught me off-guard a little yesterday. I presumed that our own traffic had to be dropping way off with all of the rain and mild temps over the last week or so. As I readied myself to write and post this FirsTrax update this morning I couldn’t believe that more than 40K of you have visited us in the last seven days on our Facebook content alone. We’ll share our season traffic with you as we wrap up the season. As I have previously shared, it has been a record breaker for certain.
Pretty sweet and thanks for that.
Until tomorrow…feel free to email me: [email protected]