Pa. ski resorts adapt to the mild conditions – The Inky
Another season of poor snowfall isn’t holding back the ski areas in Eastern Pennsylvania like as much as last year. Cold nights have allowed for
snow-making even though the days have been a bit warm. Just a new normal it seems.
Seven Springs and other Western Pennsylvania ski areas seem to be fairing okay — they have had actual snow out there.
Southern Pennsylvania resorts are reporting “loose, granular” which I think means the slopes are covered in gravel.
I was supposed to go skiing today, but the temperatures in the 50s everywhere made me change my plans. Perhaps next weekend will work out better.
Over the last several years I have been to several ski areas, all in Pennsylvania and I have blogged about those trips: Big Boulder | Blue Knob | Camelback | Jack Frost | Whitetail. I’m hoping to get up to Hunter this year to ski in New York State for the first time. West Virginia will also be under consideration.
As always, I’m getting ready with daily exercises, specifically wall-sits. I can’t emphasize enough how helpful just a few minutes every day improves both the experience and my ability. This year, I started off by watching the Franz Klammer Gold Medal run at Innsbruck for inspiration.
Another thing, if you don’t own your own equipment, rent locally. There are two big advantages of renting your skis near where you live:
1.) Renting in advance allows more time on the day you go skiing. Doing the paperwork on a weeknight in an empty, warm ski shop is better than doing it packed, chilly ski area. It is probably cheaper too.
2.) Your boots are warm when you put them on, as opposed to putting on the ski area rentals that have been sitting in a room that is 45°.
Also, wear a helmet. it keeps your head safer and is nice and warm.
THE ONLY COACHING YOU NEED
DCSki is a great resource for Mid-Atlantic skiers. I did a Q&A with it last winter.
The latest snowstorm to hit BeltwayLand happened (for the most part) while I was in the Poconos skiing with my wife. We were at Camelback and it is pretty much the same as it always is except that my favorite slope, the Nile Mile has been changed to a blue square from a double green circle. That makes a lot of sense to me, the slope is not too hard, but is not easy either. I love attacking that hill, it take me about five minutes to get down when I really push myself.
On the way back, we hit snow at about the Mid-County interchange of the Northeast Extension (I-476) and yet saw no snow removal equipment. As we got onto I-95 the conditions were quite slushy, until we hit Maryland. Let me praise the Maryland Transportation Authority for the superior job they did on the John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway section of I-95 — the conditions were exceptional given the weather. We could comfortably go over 50 m.p.h. DelDot and PennDot, you blew it. The former I expected, despite numerous boasts about Pennsylvania’s snow-readiness by expatriates when compared to BeltwayLand, to do much better. For shame PennDot, for shame. Delaware, most I-95 is a toll road in your state, so you don’t have any excuses either.
Back in Northern Virginia, I did not get a chance to measure the snow. Sorry internet, I know how much you like photos of rulers in snow. I did take my son sledding at my folks house in Vienna though. That was pretty sweet. Grandee got to pull her grandson around the block in a little red sled too.
TANNERSVILLE, Pa. — For an early birthday present, my brother and his family gave me a day of skiing. For the first time in forever, we skied together. It was also his first time skiing on the east coast in a long time. The conditions at Camelback would be described as “packed powder.” Christopher, who only skis in Colorado, described them as ice. It was also about 25° and sunny — perfect skiing weather.
I had a good day, no falls and lots of good runs. Doing “wall-sit” exercises daily made a big difference in my leg strength – I have not skied this well in a few years. As always, The Nile Mile was my favorite run, mostly because it is the longest run in the Poconos. It does not disappoint. I’ll have to give a nod to The Pharoh as well. Once past the first part of the run, King Tut is a pretty good hill too. We also had some good runs in the middle of the mountain, though I cannot recall the specifics as they were not especially memorable.
I was king of the mountain on this day too, a title I am eager to defend. Being in the Poconos I had a big home-slope advantage over Christopher. I’m eager to win it on the “road” sometime when we all get out to Colorado. We’ll see if his “home” advantage is as big as mine.
All in all, a good day. On the way back we thought about stopping at Yocco’s hot dogs in Allentown, but were not very hungry yet, so we went to Jim’s Steaks in Springfield (Baltimore Pike, off of I-476). One of these years I’ll check Yocco’s out, but Jim’s is always enjoyable.
That probably does it for me this winter, but if I get on the slopes again, I won’t be disappointed. Thanks for the early birthday gift, Christopher & family!