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With Snow Piled Up On Slopes, Local Ski Resorts Ready For Warm Spell

Appalachian Ski Mtn. Thursday afternoon

With a warm and wet weather forecast coming up for the weekend, area ski slopes report they are in great shape to weather the less than ideal forecast. The cold winter weather so far this year has allowed ski resorts to lay down massive amounts of snow on their slopes with snow depths of over 80 inches in many places.

Talia Freeman of Beech Mountain Resort reports, “We have a base depth of 34-82 inches.  Our snow has held up well through the rain and I feel confident we will have good conditions moving into the weekend.”

Over at Sugar Mountain Resort Kim Jochl says, “We really have just mounds and mounds of snow in many locations.” For the ski resorts, in addition to keeping slopes cover with snow with their snow making equipment, the resorts also blow huge piles of snow that they use to push and haul around to slope locations that may be getting a little thin. Jochl says, “We make plans for this – the amount of snow we have is just not going to melt away from the slopes. The upcoming forecast is not what you want to see but we’ll be in good shape because when the cold weather is here you just can’t let up – you just have to keep making snow. We make snow as hard and as long as we possible so we can weather any warm spells that come our way.”

Appalachian, Sugar and Beech all have their slopes close to 100% open. Jochl says, “We’ve been so fortunate up to now with the cold and the snow and the beautiful days. This Thursday and Friday were absolutely gorgeous!”

And the rain doesn’t really change slope conditions that much. “Ski conditions are always variable,” says Jochl. “You go from a powder day, to a lose granular day to a packed powder day to a groom surface. Conditions are always variable.”

The resorts are always using their snow grooming equipment to fine tune conditions – and they will be doing that this weekend to provide the best skiing experience possible. Jochl says, “Forecasters can be wrong, but in any case everything will be fine, we’ll just move the snow around and keep in it good shape – and cold weather will be back next week and looks like maybe even some more snow in the forecast.”

Sugar Mountain Friday afternoon