Whitetail's Snow Report
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bousquet19 - DCSki Supporter
November 21, 2008
Member since 02/23/2006 🔗
701 posts
This morning, Whitetail's website offers the following report on their snow conditions:
We are in the process of re-designing our snow report page to better serve you. Look for this all new page as the season approaches.

Hey Whitetail: the season has arrived! Glad to see those pics of testing the new snowmaking on the new trail Sidewinder. Even though you may not be opening for a while, how 'bout a list of trails where snowmaking will start, or just a list of trails, or something else that gets us thinking about where we'll make our first turns in PA?

(Even when the weather is lousy and there's not much happening, Wintergreen's opening snowsports webpage always finds a way to get its clients Thinking Snow.)

Thinking snow,
Woody
langleyskier
November 21, 2008
Member since 12/7/2004 🔗
824 posts
Cant agree more, it is beyond me how inept any of the snowtime resorts seem to be. We have had bitterly cold weather lately that would be below average for mid January and they seem to not notice at all. Not exaggerating, they easily could have had 72 hrs of snowmaking by this point in the week and would eb able to blow until early in the day on sunday. No reason at all why they should not be open for thanksgiving skiing. Massenutten has almost exactly the same weather and they are shooting for an opening next saturday. Even if they dont have the staff or whatever to open, blowing snow when you get a cold snap like this is a necessity in this area... realy dont get it
Chad
November 21, 2008
Member since 12/12/2000 🔗
270 posts
whitetail website says the guns start blazing today at 4pm.

checking now...

no manmade, but it is now snowing heavily thanks to ma nature.
chuckie
November 25, 2008
Member since 12/29/1999 🔗
77 posts
Originally Posted By: langleyskier
Cant agree more, it is beyond me how inept any of the snowtime resorts seem to be. We have had bitterly cold weather lately that would be below average for mid January and they seem to not notice at all. Not exaggerating, they easily could have had 72 hrs of snowmaking by this point in the week and would eb able to blow until early in the day on sunday. No reason at all why they should not be open for thanksgiving skiing. Massenutten has almost exactly the same weather and they are shooting for an opening next saturday. Even if they dont have the staff or whatever to open, blowing snow when you get a cold snap like this is a necessity in this area... realy dont get it


In a word, word. I think I was able to ride at LIBERTY one time on THANKSGIVING in the last 10 years (hey it was close and actually open). I swear they just don't seem to make an effort. frown

chuckie
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comprex
November 25, 2008
Member since 04/11/2003 🔗
1,326 posts
Originally Posted By: langleyskier
No reason at all why they should not be open for thanksgiving skiing.


Unless they don't have staff in place.
chuckie
November 25, 2008
Member since 12/29/1999 🔗
77 posts
Originally Posted By: comprex
Originally Posted By: langleyskier
No reason at all why they should not be open for thanksgiving skiing.


Unless they don't have staff in place.


Who's fault is that?
kennedy
November 25, 2008
Member since 12/8/2001 🔗
792 posts
I swung by WT on Sunday to have my photo taken for my Advantage Card. I was going past there anyway so no big deal. I asked them when they figured opening and they are shooting for the 6th.

I sometimes wonder what is going through their mind for snow making and it may a combination of factors. I know they like to let the ground get really cold before they make snow, usually a min. of 4 days of solid cold temps. It may have something to do with their location. They are not as much in the snow belt as 7S or Wisp and they are south facing. If they want to make snow and they want it to stick I guess they need to make sure that what they make is going to stick around. Maybe they figure there isn't much revenue to be had by trying to get open early. Don't ask me why that would be but it might be the case for them.
langleyskier
November 25, 2008
Member since 12/7/2004 🔗
824 posts
If the excuse is staff that is about as lame as it gets. Even if they were not going for an opening last weekend or next they needed to take advantage of the snowmaking conditions when they presented. It is not everyday, even in mid winter, in the Mid-A that you get 3 days in a row of around the clock snowmaking. Look even at Tussy Mnt in PA, very small place (near PSU) with extremely limited snowmaking and staffing. But the ARE opening this coming weekend!! Tussey opening before whitetail?? come on you gotta be kidding me, thats just lame on all levels.
The Colonel - DCSki Supporter
November 25, 2008
Member since 03/5/2004 🔗
3,107 posts
Perchance we bash the SnowTime resorts too much!
They have well served we mid-Atlantic skiers/boarders for a long time. They continue to improve their product year after year, even buying out failing ski mountains such as Whitetail.
They manage to do this by making a profit and not throwing their money and man-made snow away. They have little or no lodging to help foot the bill. I suspect their is little profit for the couple of days after Thanksgiving, especially when compared to start-up costs and the fact that there will be few customers during the early weeks of December. Enjoy what they offer when they offer it. I realize it is frustrating that those coming home for Thanksgiving break have to drive further to ski, but just wait. Snowtime will be there when it really counts.
The Colonel smile
[color:#FF0000]"Skis get old, skiers never do. Ponce de Leon was just looking in the wrong place."[/color]
Jim
November 25, 2008
Member since 11/22/1999 🔗
317 posts
Originally Posted By: chuckie
Originally Posted By: comprex
Originally Posted By: langleyskier
No reason at all why they should not be open for thanksgiving skiing.


Unless they don't have staff in place.


Who's fault is that?


Gotta speak up here. I don't work at Whitetail, but I can understand the mentality if (and that's a big IF) staffing is the reason. Think of it this way - as management, do you really think you can "force" workers to come in at the last minute on Thanksgiving weekend? As a part-time or seasonal employee (or even as a VOLUNTEER!), would YOU show up for work if your SEASONAL employer asked you to show up with only two days notice - with one of those two days being Thanksgiving? Would you RIGHT NOW cancel all your Thanksgiving plans because you weren't sure up until now whether you would have to work? And what kind of staff that do show up would you have? - smiling, happy, ready to serve the public when they probably just cancelled major plans - potentially travel plans?

Okay, staff issues aside, snow making requires 28 degree weather and low humidity. We're heading into a warm stretch. Why waste money (yes waste!) by making snow that you KNOW is going to melt?? Why risk opening only to close again a few days later? Its early in the season. Be patient. We will already have one of the earliest Mid-Atlantic season openings in a long long time. Enjoy Thanksgiving. Skiing will be open next weekend!
jimmy
November 25, 2008
Member since 03/5/2004 🔗
2,650 posts
Oh Jim you are so right this is a glasshalffull situation I don't understand, so Whitetails not open, neither are some other places, Roundtop will be open, what about liberty? I know 7 Springs is open, Snowshoe, open AND IT"S ONLY NoVember you gonna wine or you gonna ski?? laugh
The Colonel - DCSki Supporter
November 25, 2008
Member since 03/5/2004 🔗
3,107 posts
Jimmy, Are you saying we should whine about wine?!
The Colonel smile
"Skis get old, skiers never do. Ponce de Leon was just looking in the wrong place."
bousquet19 - DCSki Supporter
November 27, 2008
Member since 02/23/2006 🔗
701 posts
Whitetail has announced its opening date, as per its website:

Opening Day!
Whitetail Resort plans to open for skiing and riding next Friday, December 5 at 8:30 am. There will be plenty of opening day celebrations for you to enjoy don't miss out on opening day!
Roundtop Opens Friday
Are you craving some skiing and riding after Turkey Day? Roundtop will be open this weekend to feed your need. Visit skiroundtop.com for details and hours.
Updated on Tuesday, Nov. 26 at 8:45 am


-- Woody
snowslider
November 30, 2008
Member since 06/21/2004 🔗
42 posts
Hey guys, when Whitetail has typically opened, do they stay open until 10Pm from the beginning?
I am hoping to visit this coming Friday, which will be the opening day, as far as planned.

Any thoughts on how that has been done in the past?
Scott - DCSki Editor
November 30, 2008
Member since 10/10/1999 🔗
1,143 posts
Originally Posted By: snowslider
Hey guys, when Whitetail has typically opened, do they stay open until 10Pm from the beginning?
I am hoping to visit this coming Friday, which will be the opening day, as far as planned.

Any thoughts on how that has been done in the past?


*Usually*, but there have been exceptions. If the # of visitors is low (or if it's rainy), Whitetail will sometimes shut down around 5 p.m. If they open Friday, I'm pretty confident they'll be open until 10 p.m. that night. Be sure to keep an eye on their snowmaking progress this week; I don't think they've made any in the past few days, and it was rainy today. A couple good nights does wonders, though.
langleyskier
November 30, 2008
Member since 12/7/2004 🔗
824 posts
Scott, agree, looks like a friday opening will be tough unless they blast when snowmaking is only magianal like it should be until wed or thurs night when it will finally get really cold. They should be able to open limited terrain by saturday but friday may be a stretch, this all comes back to them not making snow for the 3-4 days that they could have a week ago.. goes to show you that you need to take advantage of snowmaking whenever it is possible in the mid-A
langleyskier
December 2, 2008
Member since 12/7/2004 🔗
824 posts
blowing pretty heavily at whitetail right now
FreshPow
December 3, 2008
Member since 01/2/2008 🔗
174 posts
Originally Posted By: langleyskier
this all comes back to them not making snow for the 3-4 days that they could have a week ago.. goes to show you that you need to take advantage of snowmaking whenever it is possible in the mid-A


I volunteer patrol at WT. It would've been totally idiotic to blow snow ahead of forecasted rain and temps above freezing as we've seen the last several days. That's a costly operation when it's still late November. Avoiding poor decisions like that allows WT to actually make money and invest in improvements. All will be fine. ;-)
langleyskier
December 3, 2008
Member since 12/7/2004 🔗
824 posts
I volunteer patrol at WT. It would've been totally idiotic to blow snow ahead of forecasted rain and temps above freezing as we've seen the last several days. That's a costly operation when it's still late November. Avoiding poor decisions like that allows WT to actually make money and invest in improvements. All will be fine. ;-) [/quote]

Truthfully, I completely disagree, WT had no guarantee of any snowmaking weather this week when they decided not to make snow 2 weeks ago. In my opinion, they just got lucky. Also, if your statement is true then why did they decide to make snow for the final 24 hrs of that ridiculous cold snap the week before thanksgiving but not the 4 days prior to that (they did have 2-3 days of solid around the clock snowmaking opportunities and every night they had great weather to blow). Making a little snow makes much less sense than making a lot of snow. If they had gone all out with snowmaking they would have had plenty of snow even if it had stayed warm this week to open this weekend or last. Also, at that time there was no forecast for the rain this past week and averages this time of year are still well into the 40's there so above freezing temps are completely expected... sorry to seem so critical, i love whitetail and have spent an ungodly amount of money there but I really was disappointed in there decision not to blow while massenutten (comparable temps) went all out
Scott - DCSki Editor
December 3, 2008
Member since 10/10/1999 🔗
1,143 posts
I think the initial day of snowmaking (at the end of the last cold snap) was intended primarily to test out the complete system. I remember several years ago, Whitetail started up snowmaking and discovered a leak in one of the main lines. They had to bring in bulldozers and dig up a slope, and it put a halt to all snowmaking at a critical time. (Some of us were watching the webcams at the time, and knew there was a problem when a river of water started running down the slope. Umm.. That's not supposed to happen.)

I think Whitetail's philosophy is to be conservative so they know they can build up solid conditions on a range of slopes for opening day, rather than simply getting a couple bunny slopes open for a weekend and then having to shut down again (possibly losing money due to staffing costs and a low number of visitors). I think that has served them well.

Destination resorts also do better over Thanksgiving, because people choose to spend their Thanksgiving holiday at the resort. Whitetail is a day resort, and I'm not sure how much business there is (beyond us fanatics reading DCSki!) during that holiday period for day ski areas. Just as people in this region stop skiing in March, whether or not snow conditions remain excellent, I'm not sure people are prepared to ski in November. smile

We can whine and complain, but just remember that smart people run these ski areas, and they're trying to make money during very short seasons with lots of unpredictable variables. I'm pretty sure they don't sit around and say "hey! Let's delay opening so we can lose money and annoy local skiers!"
Scott - DCSki Editor
December 3, 2008
Member since 10/10/1999 🔗
1,143 posts
I knew I stashed away a picture of the water line break from three years ago:


This is why resorts like to test out their snowmaking systems. wink
fishnski
December 3, 2008
Member since 03/27/2005 🔗
3,530 posts
Smart people run GM,Ford..Aig..fannie/freddy...Govt....
FreshPow
December 3, 2008
Member since 01/2/2008 🔗
174 posts
Totally understand the hopes of some to get open by Thanksgiving at WT. As someone who was scheduled to work that weekend (if we did), we weren't positively told until last Tuesday. So there was sincere consideration, but the weather turned a bit. It rained over half an inch last Monday night for instance.

But I think the initial blow was to test, take advantage of the weather (perhaps less aggressively than some wished!), as well as at least get a blanket on the ground in key areas to hold future snow. But who am I to say - not my department.

Good comments by Scott about not being a destination. Plus Roundtop was opening, so all the folks who bought the season pass special (a lot did), there was somewhere to go.

Anyway. Should shape up to be a good opening relative to most years...but you might want to plan for Saturday, not Friday. ;-)
langleyskier
December 3, 2008
Member since 12/7/2004 🔗
824 posts
Originally Posted By: Scott
I knew I stashed away a picture of the water line break from three years ago:


This is why resorts like to test out their snowmaking systems. wink


That made me so sad when I saw that. Remember it very well... excited for opening the following weekend then that happened.
snowslider
December 4, 2008
Member since 06/21/2004 🔗
42 posts
website has changed opening day to Saturday.
I'll likely be heading to Roundtop.
Jimski
December 4, 2008
Member since 03/5/2008 🔗
44 posts
FYI, Whitetail will be open for skiing this weekend (Dec. 6).
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