Early this morning at my home in Rangeley, winds were calm and the snow was falling nicely to the ground. There was about 8 inches of level & heavy snow in the driveway. As I approached the ski area soon after, I began to notice the trees bending in the wind and on the final approach to the base lodge, I was immersed in a violent wind storm and a near total white out! It was a big difference in weather from the valley to the mountain. It was very obvious to me that there was no hope to run a chairlift today. Winds are still gusting between 50 and 70 MPH and the snow is coming down heavily but sideways! The photo here is the view from my office window this morning.

My sales & marketing assistant, Steve Prince put his skins on his skis and went for a tour. He headed up Hudson Highway to the top of the T-Bar area. He skied down Parmachenee Belle. Steve said “the snow is very deep, knee deep most of the way down. I took a fall and almost couldn’t get up. I tried using my poles to get up and they went all the way down!” commented Steve. Steve’s poles are 46”! Granted, he was in a drifted area, but that is deep snow! We estimate that we have received a good 18 inches so far. This storm will taper off tonight but an even bigger storm moves in tomorrow bringing another batch of significant snowfall.

Winds are expected to begin to drop off tonight. More importantly, winds will begin to shift in direction from the east to a more northerly direction. The east wind is what puts our lifts on a wind hold, so a wind shift is a good thing. We will do our best to run lifts Friday. We may have a later start than normal as we will need to do a thorough job inspecting lifts and trails before opening. When we do get open, the skiing will be epic! We still have condominiums available for this weekend. Also there are rooms in Rangeley that remain open. There will be powder conditions all weekend long, so do what ever it takes to get here for the powder!

If you would like to contact me, send your thoughts to cklefos@saddlebackmain.com