Winter Storm Pax

First Trax

If you have been keeping up with the weather forecast for the past couple of days you already know that Winter Storm Pax is expected to hit the Southeast in a big way starting tonight. 

Winter Storm Pax
A better pic of the front weather image.

A few of our member resorts are already seeing some impact from the storm in the form of natural snow.  The big winner today is Wisp in Maryland who scored 2” of natural snow in the past 24 hours and 10” of snow in the past 48 hours.  In West Virginia, Timberline is the only one reporting natural snow this morning with 1”.  Down here in North Carolina, Cataloochee is our big winner with 3” of snow.

The North Carolina High Country resorts got a bit yesterday with Appalachian reporting just shy of an inch and Beech Mountain reporting 1” of natural snow. 

Appalachian Ski Mountain Conditions
Appalachian Ski Mountain

Sugar Mountain is reporting 3” of natural snow on THEIR site, but I’m having a hard time with that.  I marked it as 1” on OUR snow report this morning.  Even at the top I just don’t see 3” of natural snow.  There’s no doubt that Sugar did receive some precipitation, but the town at the base of Sugar Mountain, Banner Elk, is dry this morning.  Although, today is a snow day for Avery County Schools (yeah!).

Sugar Mountain Current Conditions
I know it is hard to make out, but I don't see 3" of snow at the top of Sugar

In addition to the natural snowfall we’ve seen, many of the resorts have fired off the guns to add a bit of manmade to the mixture.  We had a February thaw, as our Skiing Weatherman Herb Stevens put it, and the resorts are eager to get back to where they were.  Appalachian Ski Mountain has a base of 40-94 inches this morning, up 6+” from yesterday.  With about 1” of natural, they laid down at least 5” themselves thanks to their amazing snow making capacity.

The same goes for Beech Mountain, who received 1” of natural and got down an additional inch of manmade to bring their base up to 44-86”.

Virginia has not yet received much of anything from the storm, but that did not stop Massanutten from laying down about 4” of manmade snow, which brings their base up to 48”.  Over in Tennessee, Ober Gatlinburg had their guns going last night as well as being the benefactors of 1” of natural snow with a base of 58-60”.

Like I said, most of the resorts are down from their highs so far this season, but the next few days should turn out to be good ones for the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic ski resorts – and lay the groundwork for a great President's Day Weekend.

Sochi Olympic Watch

[Spoiler Alert]  So far “today” we have crowned the winners of the Ladies’ Ski Slopestyle competition.  I say spoiler alert because NBC will be showing the event in prime time tonight.  Canadian Dara Howell took home the gold, with US Devin Logan getting silver, and another Canadian Kim Lamaree taking bronze.

Perhaps the most anticipated event for the day is the Men’s Halfpipe.  The qualifiers have already begun, and there's no surprise that Shawn White is the top qualifier.  There has been quite a bit of drama around the half pipe as the athletes have expressed concern over the condition of the run.  We’ll get to see for ourselves as the Men’s half pipe will be on NBC’s Olympic coverage tonight.

The medal count as we stand now…

  1. CAN with 9 metals: 4 gold, 3 silver, and 2 bronze
  2. NOR with 9 metals: 3 gold, 2 silver, and 4 bronze
  3. NED with 7 metals: 3 gold, 2 silver, and 2 bronze
  4. USA with 6 metals: 2 gold, 1 silver, and 3 bronze
  5. GER with 2 metals: 2 gold

Just to loop back and talk weather again before I close.  All of the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic resorts are under a Winter Storm Watch straight through Thursday.  We have predictions of 4-8 inches in North Carolina, 3-8 inches in West Virginia, 5+ inches in Virginia, 6-9 inches for Ober, and 6+ inches for Wisp.

We’ll keep you updated as best we can.

Take Care!

Tim Bahlke
Drop me an email at [email protected] to let me know what you think or with suggestions on what we could be doing better.


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