Favorable Conditions Nationwide Point to Great Early-season Skiing
Author thumbnail By M. Scott Smith, DCSki Editor

The quiet of autumn is gradually being replaced by the loud roar of snowguns, as resorts along the east coast fire up the snowguns. In October, the National Weather Service issued a report forecasting a chillier winter than the past three, and with chilly temperatures stretching across the nation, early-season skiing is looking promising from the west coast to east.

The Rocky Mountains have already received plenty of natural snow, allowing many Colorado resorts to open earlier than anticipated, with early-season conditions worth bragging about. Winter Park opened on November 11 and currently has 28 trails open, with a base depth ranging from 24-26 inches. Temperatures have been in the single digits.

Aspen/Snowmass is set to break its prior record for November snowfall, set in 1996/97. With nearly 70 inches of natural snowfall so far this month, it has already met that record, and the month is only halfway over. Snowstorms are expected to continue throughout the week.

Colorado’s Steamboat Springs also expects to snag its second-earliest opening day in the resort’s history. Steamboat plans to open Nov. 18 and is promising “mid-season” conditions. “The snow just keeps on falling,” said Chris Diamond, president of the Steamboat Ski & Resort Corporation.

Skiers and boarders in the Mid-Atlantic won’t have long to wait before they can start carving down the slopes, either. West Virginia’s Snowshoe Mountain Resort is currently producing over 2,500 tons of snow per hour and expects to have a couple of runs open from top to bottom for opening day, currently set for Thanksgiving. The resort also received two inches of natural snow Wednesday morning. With ideal around-the-clock snowmaking temperatures at the 4,800 foot high resort, Snowshoe is hinting that the ropes may even drop the day before Thursday.

In the Catskills of New York, Ski Windham checked in to report that snowmaking began Tuesday night. The resort is continuing to make snow and expects to open in the near future.

Stay tuned to DCSki for the latest Mid-Atlantic resort opening dates.

New York's Ski Windham began making snow at 9 p.m. on Tuesday.
Snowmaking at Ski Windham. New York’s Ski Windham began making snow at 9 p.m. on Tuesday. Photo provided by Ski Windham.
Snowshoe Mountain Resort is currently covered with a manmade blizzard.
Snowmaking continues at Snowshoe. Snowshoe Mountain Resort is currently covered with a manmade blizzard. Photo provided by Snowshoe Mountain Resort.
Colorado's Aspen Resort has received nearly 70 inches  of natural snow in November, and is on track to beat prior November  snowfall records.
The real stuff. Colorado’s Aspen Resort has received nearly 70 inches of natural snow in November, and is on track to beat prior November snowfall records. Photo provided by Aspen/Snowmass, Burnham Arndt.
About M. Scott Smith

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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