Mid-Atlantic skiers and snowboarders can be forgiven if they can’t quite figure out what season it is. This winter has been a bumpy ride, with temperatures oscillating wildly up and down the mercury scale. That’s kept resorts and snowmaking personnel on edge as they’ve tried to expand open terrain.
“To make snow, the right ingredients are needed,” said Dick Barron, Director of Ski Patrol at Pennsylvania’s Seven Springs Resort. “First, cold water, preferably in the mid-30 degree range. Next, the outside air at 28 degrees or lower and last, humidity of 85% or lower.”
Good news arrived in recent days as the temperature dropped back down to seasonal levels, comfortably settling below freezing and allowing local resorts to fire up the snowguns 24/7.
Some resorts have also received a helping hand from Mother Nature, in the form of natural snow. For example, Seven Springs just received four inches of fresh snow. Seven Springs is currently making snow, and is working towards a January 19, 2012 grand opening date for its new “The Streets” urban terrain park.
Looking forward, temperatures should remain low into Martin Luther King Day, providing some great early-season skiing across mid-Atlantic resorts over the holiday weekend. Although temperatures may rise slightly mid-week, resorts should still find plenty of snowmaking opportunities over the next 7-10 days.
M. Scott Smith is the founder and Editor of DCSki. Scott loves outdoor activities such as camping, hiking, kayaking, skiing, and mountain biking. He is an avid photographer and writer.
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