Downhill Skiing Season Arrives in Northern New England

November 18, 2014

As I write this, it’s 23.8 degrees atop 6,288-foot Mount Washington—a balmy morning compared to Saturday, when the summit clocked in with a high of 6 degrees and a low of minus-2. Month to date, the Mount Washington Observatory has received just over 20 inches of snowfall, with more coming down today. As of last night, six inches of snow and ice blanketed the ground.

There’s no doubt that winter is here for the season, its arrival boosted by the continuing effects of last week’s “Bering Sea Bomb,” a super-storm that drove frigid polar into the central and eastern U.S. The chill is forecast to deepen further over the coming days, with the mercury forecast to plunge into the single digits across the higher summits of New Hampshire.

Ski on! Hitting the slopes at Bretton Woods on Monday, November 17. Photo courtesy of Bretton Woods.

Downhill Ski Areas Open
The upside of this wintry blast? Skiers in need of an early-season fix can rejoice. At least seven New England ski areas are now currently open for (limited) business. They are:

Follow the Arrival of Winter
To keep tabs on the progression of winter—and opportunities for cold-weather fun—I recommend the following resources:

  • The NERFC Snow Depth Map for New England and New York, which is updated daily by NOAA and the National Weather Service.
  • The great collection of White Mountain web cams, most of which are operated by the Mount Washington Observatory (which also recently launched a redesigned—and excellent—new web site).
  • AMC’s Backcountry Weather and Trail Conditions, which provide the latest info for the areas around its lodges and backcountry huts.
  • The daily Avalanche Advisory for Tuckerman and Huntington Ravines, which will soon be updated daily by The Mount Washington Avalanche Center. A must-read for backcountry skiers, climbers, and hikers tackling Mount Washington in winter.

Let the winter fun commence.

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Matt Heid

Equipped blogger Matt Heid is AMC's gear guru: He loves gear and he loves using it in the field. While researching several guidebooks, including AMC's Best Backpacking in New England, he has hiked thousands of miles across New England, California, and Alaska, among other wilderness destinations. He also cycles, climbs, and surfs.