Friday, January 14, 2011

Regional Roundup: A Much-Needed Shot in the Arm

With two significant snowstorms in the past 7 days, downhill and cross-country ski conditions have improved markedly across the region and generally are in great shape for the holiday weekend. The most recent storm took a more beneficial track than originally anticipated and deposited roughly a foot of snow region-wide. Importantly, this snowfall was of higher moisture content than the previous snowfall, which helps base-building on the trails and in the woods.
Photo credit:  Whiteface Mountain.

Gore checked in with 10 inches from Wednesday’s storm. Snowmaking efforts have allowed Rumor, Gore’s signature double black diamond run, to open and crews are working to get Burnt Ridge open for the weekend. There will be a torchlight parade and fireworks at dusk on Sunday. Whiteface recorded 17 inches of new snow on Wednesday and should be skiing mostly packed powder surfaces for the holiday weekend.

Locally, Willard hit the jackpot with 15 to 18 inches of new snow. Their upcoming Rock The Mountain event on January 29 will feature fireworks. About 9 inches of new snow fell at Hickory, enough to allow them to open their lower mountain trails this weekend. West Mountain also got about 9 inches of new snow on Wednesday. Southern Vermont areas picked up anywhere from 12 to 20 inches.

Cross country skiing conditions are now excellent region-wide, with Lapland Lake, Garnet Hill and Mount VanHoevenberg all 100% open on powder and packed powder trail surfaces. I may check in with another nordic report from Mount VanHoevenberg on Sunday. Backcountry options have also begun to open up with the recent snowfall.

Light snow is expected on Saturday as a clipper system impacts our region. Seasonably cold temperatures will be in place all weekend, followed by a slight moderation and the possibility of another storm impacting our region around the middle of next week.

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