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The South’s “Cult Classic” Ski Book Southern Snow is All New for 2019 from the University of NC Press

Even The Weather Channel’s Jim Cantore made Southern Snow’s climate chapter after his local appearance last December measuring the big snow with his “Boone stick.” Photo courtesy TWC

Who knew people were skiing in the South when the sport was new in Vermont? Randy Johnson’s classic regional ski guide reveals all that and more about the surprisingly snowy, increasingly sophisticated winter offerings found atop Eastern America’s highest mountains.

The all-in-one guide to winter recreation in the six-state southern snowbelt is being touted by Amazon.com as the “#1 New Book Release” under skiing travel guides, skiing, and snowboarding.

The newly updated, expanded second edition of Southern Snow comes a remarkable 33 years after the 1986 original, and just in time for big Southern ski anniversaries. This winter is the 60th birthday for skiing at Virginia’s Homestead, the first resort designed to operate exclusively on machine made snow, the first of many to follow. It’s also the 50th birthday of Sugar Mountain and French-Swiss Ski College.

It includes all the South’s ski and snowboard resorts and cross country ski centers, as well as the snowiest high elevation trails for cross country skiing, winter hiking, and mountaineering.

Johnson offers a longtime local’s insider advice on when and how to plan a southern ski trip, why and where to take professional lessons.

Introductory chapters explain the surprising “Climate of the Southern Snowbelt,” the inspiring people behind “The History of Southern Skiing,” and more, including how to drive in the snow and what kinds of cars to do it with.

Spectacular photos showcase the South’s snowiest sites. Locals Kristian Jackson, Drew Stanley, and Todd Bush are among the photographers whose images appear in the book. User-friendly maps depict backcountry ski and hiking spots.

Over four decades, Johnson has explored the snowy South and ski areas all over the United States, Canada, and Europe. His ski articles and photos have appeared in top ski and outdoor magazines, including SKI, Skiing, Snow Country, Cross Country Skier, and newspapers, including USA Today. For nearly 20 years he was editor-in-chief of United Airlines magazine Hemispheres (“world’s best inflight magazine,” 2007).

Appalachian State professor of geography Dr. Baker Perry, a member of the 2019 National Geographic Everest Extreme weather station team, was an early reviewer of the book. Perry called Southern Snow, “A fantastic book about winter recreation in a region not commonly associated with snow. Johnson does an excellent job blending extensive knowledge with weather records to explain the snowy Southern Appalachians.”

You can read more about Southern Snow in the latest issue of High Country Magazine by clicking here: DECEMBER MAGAZINE