If you were waiting for the holiday crowds to leave before contemplating a trip to the slopes ... well, you're going to have to wait a little longer before conditions will be worth the drive. Unless, perhaps, you're up for a long drive. A six-hour drive.
The scene Sunday atop Wintergreen.
Snowshoe Mountain appears to be the most worthy destination in the next couple days. Into Sunday, it was able to make snow for 132 straight hours. Temperatures are expected to top 40 today with what Joe Stevens, the voice of the West Virginia ski industry, refers to as "underdeveloped" snow. But cold returns tomorrow with a high of 33 forecast, and snow is predicted for Wednesday and Thursday. The resort reports 53 trails open today — which includes its Silver Creek area — with 12 lifts running.
Closer to the Triangle, though, skiers and riders will get hosed today and tomorrow with 1-3 inches of rain forecast by Ray's Weather for the Ski Beech/Sugar Mountain/Appalachian region. Wednesday, though, the tide begins to turn, with temperatures dropping into the snowmaking-friendly range late Wednesday and continued cold at least through Friday. If I were planning a trip to the North Carolina mountains, I'd shoot for Friday, when it will be sunny with highs around freezing.
At Virginia's Wintergreen Resort, the closest ski area to the Triangle, 3 lifts are serving 9 runs today. With an expected resumption of snowmaking Wednesday night, the resort reports "we will be concentrating our snowmaking efforts on opening The Highlands, Terrain Park, Tyro and Big Acorn this coming weekend."
Check back Thursday and we'll give you an update on the Southeast ski scene. For more information now, visit skisoutheast.com.