Southeast Spring Snowboarding

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App Ski

Who knew you could snowboard in North Carolina on March 23? I wouldn’t have guessed it and can hardly believe it is even possible. Last year, on a sunny day in late March with high temperatures in the 60’s, App Ski and Terrain Park were almost 100% open. Of course with that much warmth, conditions were quite slushy, but it was so pleasant. I rode in a lightweight hoodie and a t-shirt.

While App is not the biggest resort in the area, it is very well run and they have a great Ski/Snowboard school. I have snowboarded here and there for about 7 years now, but it wasn’t until this spring session that I actually got a lesson. After my experience, I would definitely recommend it. The teacher I had was awesome and because it was so warm, any falls I took were into soft melty snow instead of ice (a definite plus for someone like me who is still learning).

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David catching some air at App Ski

Apparently, Appalachian Ski Mountain consistently stays open well into March. They are super efficient at making snow and since it is a smaller area they are able to keep it well covered deep into our southern spring.

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Wolf Ridge, night session

Another spot that’s been particularly great for night sessions (6pm-10pm) is Wolf Ridge Ski Resort in Mars Hill, NC.  We love this spot because it’s right above Asheville making it easy to hit an incredible restaurant on the way to or from the slopes. Most recently, we went to a new favorite, OWL bakery and cafe, to load up on some great coffee, delicious tartines (open faced sandwiches), and a savory pastry before cranking out a few hours of riding. With our ridiculously mild February weather, conditions have been slushy but so comfortable with temperatures in the high 50s.

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OWL bakery tartine to-go

If you’re considering a skiing or snowboarding trip, there is still time this season! With snow expected this weekend, March is a completely viable time for this pseudo-winter adventure. Appalachian, Wolf Ridge, and Cataloochee (another favorite for night sessions) are all predicting open slopes for this weekend and beyond.

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Sierra at Tahoe, spring snowboarding 

While these North Carolina slopes may not have the epic elevation and deep powder of western ski resorts (like the one pictured above), they certainly provide plenty of fun at a very reasonable price (particularly on weekdays- as little as $12 for a night session at Wolf Ridge on “2 for Tuesday”!).  These mountains are subject to exceptionally comfortable conditions and the relative convenience is remarkable. Two out of these three  ski areas are just over 1.5 hours from Greenville!  That means you can slip out of work at 4:30 in sunny South Carolina and be on the slopes in time for a full session of snow sport. How cool is that?

IMG_6614Keep looking for adventure far and nigh! (and get out for a spring session!)

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