Before you go any further, put away all that summer clothing you thought you may have to use for the duration of the winter. Winter is here, and it was apparent at Camelback Ski Area on January 3, 2007. My friends and I arrived at Camelback at 4:15, and the fun didn’t stop until 7:30. The guns were roaring, the lifts running, and the snow falling. It was sure to be an epic day.
This was the third day this season that I was able to spend at Camelback. It is easy to justify such a short trip with a season pass. Also, with two high speed detachable quads servicing all available terrain, numerous runs can be made in a short amount of time. The progress that Camelback has made in 2 weeks is stunning. My first trip was fun, but not ideal. Only 13 trails were open, there were bare spots, and crowds provided plenty of ice. On my second trip, a week later, there was still only one quad open, 18 trails, plenty of people, and a little bit of ice. However, today was stellar. It was about as good as East Coast snow gets.
The mountain has been running the guns around the clock to open up new terrain, and open terrain they did. We were skiing and snowboarding on 25 trails with both high speed quads running. The addition of the east side, the newest trails Camelback has, helped to spread the crowds well across the entire mountain. Both Pharaoh and the Nile Mile were open for your cruising pleasure. In fact, since those trails had not been open the last trip we made, we began our trip there, taking a leisurely run down the wide and long Nile Mile. That run was followed by a run down Pharaoh, and then we proceeded to the opposite side of the mountain. The conditions were fantastic. We were skiing and riding on a packed powder and manmade powder surface. The snow was plentiful and fast.
Based on its conditions, Nile Mile has to be my run of the day. Additionally, the snow was falling at a steady pace at the mountain, and an inch of snow had fallen since we had arrived. Another inch or two was expected to fall overnight. Lastly, the guns at Camelback were running on closed terrain across the mountain. Snow was being made on the Laurel Glade Terrain Park, the Dromedary, the Hump, and the Asp. The Hump and the Asp are all favorites of the regulars, and according to Camelback’s website, were scheduled to come on-line this this weekend. Cliffhanger, Camelback’s only double black, along with Big Pocono, both had ample snow whales and were also projected to be open this weekend, bringing Camelback’s open terrain to 100%.
At 7:30 p.m. the temperatures had dropped, we had completed near 30 runs, and we decided to call it a day. As we left, the snow continued to fall. With seasonal temperatures finally here to stay, the conditions will only get better. To remind me to come back on Thursday, I decided to get my board waxed and sharpened at the repair shop. I’ll pick it up when I return. As for the rest of you, it is time to get on the slopes. The resorts have made a fantastic turnaround, the snow quality across the region is getting better everyday, and it is time for you to make sure the rest of the winter makes up for the beginning. There is no substitute for a day on the snow.
Brenton Archut lives in the tourist town of Bethany Beach, Delaware. He spends his summers working at Fisher's Popcorn. He enjoys bodyboarding and snowboarding and snowboards mostly in the Poconos, but loves to explore new places. Brenton is currently attending school at Lehigh University, where he is pursuing a business degree.
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