Sandy Spurs Openings, Enthusiasm
Banner Elk, N.C., Oct. 30, 2012—Trick or treat, Superstorm Sandy has brought more than a foot and a half of snow to resorts in the Southeast and mid-Atlantic states, prompting a few to open for the season. Sugar Mountain and Cataloochee, N.C., will open on Halloween, Oct. 31. This marks the earliest-ever opening for Sugar, and Cataloochee’s second October opening.Sugar expected up to eight inches of snow from Sandy, and fired up its guns on Sunday evening, before the storm arrived. It plans to open the Upper and Lower Flying Mile runs.
Cataloochee has been making snow around the clock since 6:00 a.m. Monday, and received four inches of natural snowfall from Sandy. At press time base depth ranged from 8 to 12 inches, but that total will rise by Wednesday morning’s opening. The area plans to have three trails ready for guests. As an added Halloween “treat,” guests purchasing a lift ticket on opening day can enter a drawing for a 2012-13 season pass (otherwise, it costs $625.) Cataloochee will continue to operate on a daily basis as long as conditions allow.
Other areas have been reporting heavy snowfall from Sandy. Snowshoe, W.Va., has received more than 18 inches, with the storm total expected to top three feet by Wednesday. The resort is pondering whether and when to open after the storm subsides. Wisp, Maryland, picked up 17 inches of snow and is considering opening early as well.
Hidden Valley Resort, Pa., received an early Halloween treat with up to 12 inches of snowfall arriving in the early morning hours Tuesday, but it does not plan to open until snow conditions are sustainable.
Photo: Snowshoe, W.Va.