Columnist Photo

M. Scott Smith

Scott is Editor and founder of DCSki. He writes the articles, takes the photographs, designs the pages, programs the site, pays the bills, and occasionally catches a wink of sleep. In addition to DCSki, Scott works full time as a researcher and computer scientist.

Scott loves outdoor activities such as camping, hiking, travel, skiing, kayaking, and mountain biking. He is an avid photographer and writer, and also plays keyboards and drums. Scott grew up in Colorado and currently resides in Maryland. (That's right - he went from Colorado to Maryland - what was he thinking?!) Scott maintains a personal weblog at

Scott has written 907 stories for DCSki since 1997.

Tips for your First Runs of the Season

Skiing is a seasonal sport. Unless you have a private jet and can easily toggle between hemispheres, you probably only hop on your skis or snowboard for a few brief months out of the year, followed by an unpleasantly long stretch away from the snow. So, as we approach the 2023-2024 winter season, your skiing skills might be a bit rusty. We've put together a set of tips to help you prepare for your first runs of the season.

By M. Scott Smith | December 6, 2023 Feature Story

To Snow or Not to Snow: Predicting Winter Weather in the Mid-Atlantic

To snow, or not to snow. That is the question. That is the question that haunts Mid-Atlantic skiers and snowboarders as each winter season approaches. Will we have a snowy season? Or at least a cold season, so local ski resorts can dial their snowguns up to 10? DCSki takes a look at some of the ways one might try to predict what kind of winter we have in store.

By M. Scott Smith | December 4, 2023 Feature Story

What's New for 2023: The Omni Homestead Resort

Located in the Allegheny Mountains of Virginia, the historic Omni Homestead Resort recently completed a $150+ million dollar property-wide renovation project.

By M. Scott Smith | December 1, 2023 What's New

A Wave of Mid-Atlantic Ski Resorts to Open in Coming Days

The recent stretch of cold temperatures has enabled robust snowmaking across the Mid-Atlantic region, and as a result, a handful of ski resorts across Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia plan to open in the coming days. In North Carolina, two ski areas have already opened for the season. In this story, we provide a look at official opening day plans shared by resorts as of November 29, 2023.

By M. Scott Smith | November 29, 2023 1 News

Cue the Snowguns

The sound of snowguns began ringing out across the Mid-Atlantic region in recent days, as post-Thanksgiving temperatures dipped below freezing. With the nighttime mercury dropping into the 20s in the coming days, the symphony of snowguns should continue as local resorts prepare for their season openings. DCSki provides a gallery of snowmaking photos from across the region and explains how the technology works. Above, snowguns begin to blanket the slopes of Seven Springs Mountain Resort on November 25, 2023.

By M. Scott Smith | November 26, 2023 News

What's New for 2023: Vail Resorts' Pennsylvania Properties

DCSki profiles the latest enhancements at Vail Resorts' eight Pennsylvania ski areas, including Laurel Mountain, Hidden Valley, Seven Springs, Liberty Mountain, Roundtop Mountain, Whitetail, and Jack Frost/Big Boulder Resorts.

By M. Scott Smith | November 24, 2023 2 What's New

What's New for 2023: Camelback Resort

Pennsylvania's Camelback Resort becomes the first ski resort in the nation to incorporate Amazon's Just Walk Out technology in a resort shop.

By M. Scott Smith | November 22, 2023 What's New

What's New for 2023: Blue Mountain Resort

Significant snowmaking enhancements highlight improvements at Pennsylvania's Blue Mountain Ski Resort this winter.

By M. Scott Smith | November 17, 2023 What's New

Epic, Ikon Pass Prices Set to Increase

Epic and Ikon Passes are both set to rise in price October 11 and 12, 2023, respectively.

By M. Scott Smith | October 8, 2023 1 News

Going Further Afield: The Swiss Transport Museum in Lucerne, Switzerland

Graced by the majestic Alps, Switzerland is anything but flat. Steep mountains rise up to the sky across the landlocked European country, creating breathtaking vistas. And climbing all of those hills and mountains can also be breathtaking. To ease that burden, a variety of cable-based transport mechanisms have been installed across Switzerland: cable cars, gondolas, and chairlifts. Located in Lucerne, the Swiss Transport Museum has a detailed exhibit that provides a fascinating look at aerial, cable-based transportation.

By M. Scott Smith | September 9, 2023 2 Feature Story

Interview Series: Matt Knott, Owner of Snow Riders

In DCSki's Interview Series, we take a look at interesting people who have a connection to the mountains. In early February, 2022, a new snow tubing park opened in scenic Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, providing day and evening tubing sessions throughout the week. We chatted with Matt Knott, President and Owner of River/Snow Riders, to learn more about this exciting new addition to the Mid-Atlantic winter sports scene.

By M. Scott Smith | February 9, 2023 Interview Series

The January Blues

Temperatures have been on a wild roller coaster so far this winter, frustrating Mid-Atlantic skiers. But after a warm spell in early January, nighttime temperatures are finally about to dip back into snowmaking range.

By M. Scott Smith | January 5, 2023 3 News

Mid-Atlantic Ski Season Begins

Below average temperatures in November have enabled a variety of ski areas across the entire Mid-Atlantic region to open for the season, giving skiers one extra thing to be thankful for this Thanksgiving.

By M. Scott Smith | November 27, 2022 4 News

What's New for 2022: Blue Mountain Resort

Pennsylvania's Blue Mountain Resort has made significant investments this past summer to enhance skiing this winter. A new lift, a re-imagined snow tubing experience, and enhanced snowmaking highlight some of the capital improvements visitors will notice.

By M. Scott Smith | November 16, 2022 News

What's New for 2022: Camelback Resort

Guests to Pennsylvania's Camelback Resort will notice a wide range of improvements this winter. Chief among them: the Black Bear 6, a brand new 6-person high-speed lift

By M. Scott Smith | November 15, 2022 News

An Annual Conundrum: When to Begin Snowmaking

This time of year is a tricky one for ski area managers in the Mid-Atlantic region. To make snow, or not to make snow? A large number of variables factor into each resort's decision.

By M. Scott Smith | November 14, 2022 3 Feature Story

Snow Sports Museum of West Virginia Charts Out Summer Events

Dedicated to capturing and preserving the history of snowsports in WV, the Museum recently announced upcoming events.

By M. Scott Smith | May 6, 2022 3 News

An Ikonic, Epic Battle: For 2022, Season Pass Options Abound

It is once again Spring, which means it's time to consider purchasing a season pass for the 2022-2023 winter season before prices begin to inch up. DCSki breaks down the choices and factors Mid-Atlantic skiers should consider as they explore available pass options.

By M. Scott Smith | April 25, 2022 9 Feature Story

Massanutten Announces Solar Initiatives

The resort aims to produce over 2 million kwh of electricity annually.

By M. Scott Smith | March 22, 2022 News

User Highlight: Eric Mosel

Known as "Crush" on the DCSki Forums, Eric has been posting to DCSki for over 20 years -- even as he's changed locations from D.C. to Park City to North Lake Tahoe. Learn more about Eric in this interview.

By M. Scott Smith | March 6, 2022 9 Interview Series

Interview Series: Chip Chase, White Grass Ski Touring Center

In DCSki’s Interview Series, we take a look at interesting people who have a connection to the mountains. And there are few folks in the ski industry more interesting than Chip Chase, Founder of the White Grass Ski Touring Center in Canaan Valley, West Virginia. For over 40 years, White Grass has attracted cross country skiers with its beauty, snow, and soup.

By M. Scott Smith | February 16, 2022 6 Interview Series

Firsthand Report: Remembering How to Ski at Whitetail Resort

It had been a minute since DCSki's Editor last skied. Over a million minutes, in fact. He corrected that error on February 2, 2022 with a midweek trip to Pennsylvania's Whitetail Resort. He provides this Firsthand Report.

By M. Scott Smith | February 2, 2022 3 Firsthand Report

Interview Series: Massanutten's Kenny Hess

Kenny Hess began his career at Massanutten Resort as a lift operator in 1980. Today, he oversees many activities at the resort. In this in-depth interview, Kenny reflects on Massanutten's history, describes some of the key changes that have occurred in the industry, and previews exciting enhancements coming to Massanutten as the Virginia ski area celebrates its 50th year.

By M. Scott Smith | January 14, 2022 1 Interview Series

From a Drizzly December to a Snowy New Year

The second half of December wasn't ideal for Mid-Atlantic ski areas: cold temperatures from early in the season yielded to unseasonably (and, to skiers, unreasonably) mild days. As the calendar advanced from December to January, that's all changed. DCSki provides a roundup of the latest conditions at local ski resorts.

By M. Scott Smith | January 7, 2022 1 News

Vail Resorts to Purchase Seven Springs, Hidden Valley, Laurel Mountain

In news that is likely to reshape Mid-Atlantic snowsports for years to come, Vail Resorts announced on December 8, 2021 that it has entered into an agreement to purchase Seven Springs Mountain Resort, Hidden Valley Resort, and the operations of Laurel Mountain Ski Area.

By M. Scott Smith | December 8, 2021 2 News

More Mid-Atlantic Ski Resorts on Tap to Open December 4

The Mid-Atlantic ski season is already underway, and additional ski areas are scheduled to come on-line the weekend of December 4-5. DCSki presents a complete roundup of open -- and soon-to-open -- ski areas in this December 1, 2021 update. Above, Pennsylvania's Seven Springs Resort has been laying down snow in preparation for a December 4 opening.

By M. Scott Smith | December 1, 2021 1 News

Vail Resorts Announces Operational Enhancements

Leveraging data science, the company aims to reduce crowding and lift line wait times.

By M. Scott Smith | November 28, 2021 2 News

What's New for 2021: Beech Mountain

The base village has transformed into a park-like plaza.

By M. Scott Smith | November 26, 2021 News

What's New for 2021: Massanutten Resort

Massanutten celebrates 50 years this winter, with snowmaking improvements, enhanced beginner terrain, and a switch to RFID passes.

By M. Scott Smith | November 24, 2021 News

What's New for 2021: Canaan Valley Resort

Improvements include an expanded tube park, introduction of RFID passes, and upgraded rental facility.

By M. Scott Smith | November 24, 2021 News

0.02 seconds