Western transplant new to the scene
9 posts
6 users
2k+ views
samsef
November 15, 2008
Member since 11/15/2008 🔗
14 posts
hi there,
I moved to VA about three years ago and it has been about that long since I have been up on a mountain. I lived in Texas so most of the snowboarding/skiing I did was in Colorado. Winter Park, Crested Butte, Sunlight, Purgatory among others. Living in Texas and skiing in Colorado means I only went a few times a year for a week at a time, so I'm not pro but I'm good once I'm used to being back on the board. Few black diamonds in my liftime, I enjoy runs through the woods, fast short runs-challenging blues. Anyways....like I said, it has been three years since I have been near a mountain and I have no idea how my legs are going to react to all the riding I plan to do this winter. So I am looking for some advice as to where is a nice mountain with some of the terrain I mentioned above. A place where I can get my legs back under me comfortably my first time out and have challenging runs waiting for later in the day. Thanks!
JimK - DCSki Columnist
November 15, 2008
Member since 01/14/2004 🔗
2,720 posts
Welcome.
We specialize in fast short runs around here!
Depending on what part of VA, you might like to try Whitetail, PA or Massanutten, VA. Check out resort profiles on DCSki.
JohnL
November 15, 2008
Member since 01/6/2000 🔗
3,516 posts
The areas around here are a lot better than those in Texas, but a biiiiiiiit worse than those in Colorado. (More than a bit. mad )

Vertical drops range from ~500 to ~1000 feet. One area in West Virginia, Snowshoe, has two runs with are ~1500 vertical feet. That is the exception, rather than the rule.

Closest areas to DC (1.5 - 2.5 hours): are Whitetail, Liberty, Roundtop. You can work by day and ski a night or two during the week (beware the DC area traffic.) Night skiing around here can often be pretty icy since the snow thaws during the day and freezes at night.

Best natural snow is West Virginia (Snowshoe, Timberline, Canaan Valley) and Western PA (Seven Springs, Hidden Valley and Blue Knob.) All areas in this area depend heavily on man-made snow. But the West Virginia slopes get > 180 inches per year (which is about the same as Sun Valley, ID, if you can believe that.)

Some on this forum will talk up some mythical geological formation named Mount Porte Crayon, but don't pay much attention to them. grin

Browse the area profiles on the homepage. Search the discussion forum archives. Not the best skiing/boarding in the US, but it actually doesn't suck too badly. And sure is more interesting than hitting the gym or playing Wii.
fishnski
November 15, 2008
Member since 03/27/2005 🔗
3,530 posts
We are in the process of recruting new DCSki members into the "Support the Mount Porte Crayon ski area foundation"...this would be the Ski mountain that would deflect any negativity about the state of skiing in the Mid Atlantic area.

You will notice as a new member that we have amongst us some local ski area hating folks that instead of supporting better skiing here would rather take flight to the land of nose bleeds..

MPC...Top elevation 4770'..Base elevation..2400'.. 200 Inch annual snowfall...2300' vert potential located 10 min from the two Canaan Valley ski areas & major x-country at Whitegrass

This Mountain will recieve 4 inches of snow tonite thru tomorrow..Another foot mon/tue & still more for thur/Fri (More snow than anywhere in the country)....Thank you for your support
The Colonel - DCSki Supporter
November 15, 2008
Member since 03/5/2004 🔗
3,107 posts
Welcome samsef to DCSki. Glad to have you aboard. You will find lots of very valuable advice here about not only mid-Atlantic skiing and boarding, but the rest of the world also.
Please tell us a bit more about yourself to facilitate answering the questions you posed.
Where do you live in VA? Married (with kids) or single? Age?
Want to stay over a couple of nights or a weekend, or strictly a day skier at this time? The mid-Atlantic ski areas can accommodate all types and levels of skiers. Some are more crowded than others, especially during the holidays. As John mentioned, the most consistent snow is to be found in the high country of WV (Snowshoe is just a few hundred feet below a mile in elevation) and further north in PA, all along the Alleghany front, the eastern continental divide. Lots of Great Lakes effect snow here. Wintergreen in VA is near 4000 ft. altitude and has a truly wonderful view from the top. Wintergreen, Snowshoe and Blue Knob are upside down areas with the village being at the top of the mountain. One thing you might not be aware of is that the highest mountain east of the Missippi is Mt. Mitchel in NC, over 6000 ft (but not a resort mountain). Much higher than most of the the New England mountains, but not nearly as cold, hence the NE mountains claim to fame...lots of cold air to keep and make snow.
So give us a bit more to work with and you will receive tons of advice.
The Colonel smile
samsef
November 15, 2008
Member since 11/15/2008 🔗
14 posts
awesome words guys!
I have actually been browsing a bit more through the resort profiles and the actual websites too, but sometimes you just need the harsh/honest advice of people in a tight local forum to get a better idea of what is out there. Fortunately from my bit of investigating and most of your comments, I can see that my best bet for 3-4 day trips would be WV.
Bit more about me....I'm a student, aged 22 living in Alexandria, spend most of the free time camping, on bicycles, in kayaks, or being outside in some form or fashion, since it's getting cold I figured if I'm gonna be outside I might as well start riding too. At this point I'm more oriented towards taking a few Fridays off each month and making a weekend out of it rather than ski at night. Day trips during the winter break (any other students on holiday out there?) are a sure thing this Dec/Jan. But my idea of riding is to spend at least 2 days up on the mountain and take it all in rather than day tripping or even night skiing (which I guess I should not knock till I try).
Great advice so far, thanks!
-Samsef
The Colonel - DCSki Supporter
November 15, 2008
Member since 03/5/2004 🔗
3,107 posts
samsef,
Not sure about the policy at the school you attend, but many local school systems enjoy a four day weekend on Jan 17-20. It is the Martin Luther King weekend and for some the 20th a holiday due to the Presidential Inauguration. Rooms will fill fast so pick your place as soon as possible and ask your fellow DCSkiers for advice on places to stay.
The Colonel smile
David
November 15, 2008
Member since 06/28/2004 🔗
2,444 posts
Originally Posted By: samsef
(any other students on holiday out there?)


Right here. My winter break starts on December 20th and lasts until the last of the snow melts. Other than some work in the lab, I should be free a good bit. Get ahold of me when you are going to be out somewhere here in WV. I love to meet up with new people and ski!!!!
samsef
November 15, 2008
Member since 11/15/2008 🔗
14 posts
very nice, I'll be sure to keep you in mind once the cold rolls in.
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