By Nathan Ham
This ski season was very user-friendly for the area ski slopes, especially at Sugar Mountain where they will officially wrap up the 2018-19 season on Sunday with live music and the traditional snow burning.
“Over in Europe they will burn the snow to welcome in the spring and get rid of winter,” said Kim Jochl, Vice President and Director of Marketing for Sugar Mountain Resort. “We save stuff for most of the season that needs to be burned and then on the last day we burn it.”
Broken tree limbs, wood and Christmas trees are some of the other items that get burnt with the snow.
Sunday will mark a historic day for Sugar Mountain as it will set a new record for consecutive days of being open for skiing at 141. The previous record was 140.
Jochl says there is still six to eight feet of snow in most places on the slopes.
“Our trails that are open are well-covered and there’s no sections of bare spots or thin areas. It’s amazing,” she said.
While not a whole lot of natural snow fell after the beginning of the year, the weather has still been a big boost to how long Sugar Mountain has been able to stay open and use their snowmaking capabilities.
“What has allowed the snow to stay around has been the dry March and the cold temperatures in March,” Jochl said. “Sometimes March is rainy and warn so our snow goes quickly. This year was a great weather pattern for us. This is outstanding spring skiing conditions.”
On Sunday, ski slopes and tubing trails will remain open until 4:30 p.m. for anyone that wants to get a few last rides in for the season. Tickets and rentals are all 25 percent off for this weekend.
In addition to the snow burning, there will be live music starting at 3:30 p.m. performed by the Typical Mountain Boys.
Sugar Mountain is already planning ahead for the 2019-20 season, which will mark their 50th anniversary after opening in 1969.
“We’re all looking forward to our 50th anniversary next year. Right now we’re planning for a fun celebration on SugarFest Weekend to celebrate not only SugarFest but also our 50th anniversary,” said Jochl.