After one week of actual normal temperatures for July, which is totally abnormal and record shattering for March, its back to close to normal seasonal temperatures for this week. But nothing is normal, as last week’s weather was a huge blow on what had been a subpar ski season until that point.
The pathetic Eastern 2012 Ski Season continues on life support this weekend, major players for April skiing on both side of the border have shutdown in what is the shortest season in this blogger’s lifetime. This week weather is a reprieve for ski areas and some of them started making snow in order to try to make it to Easter weekend (or this weekend in Owl’s Head case). From a late start with a no snow in November to last week’s Eastern ski season killer record heatwave, not much is left. Skiing limited to a small percentage of ski areas in 2 provinces and 3 states.
Places like Mont Sutton shutdown after only 100 days open, its worst season and earliest last day since it opened in the Winter 1960-61. Worst season by a margin of 19 days on the year of the great ice storm where half of Quebec was without electrical power for days if not weeks back in 1998. The also the only March closing other than the terrible 1980-81 ski when the mountain shutdown on March 31.
People in various regions of Quebec don’t recall the last time Camp Fortune, Massif du Sud, Mont Sutton or Val d’Irène in the Gaspe Peninsula wasn’t able to offer skiing in April. That feeling is all over ski enthusiasts across the East.
The East Ski World lost about half of the ski areas opened last weekend. A few big players are better equipped to survived further towards Easter weekend, however a number of smaller areas, especially in Quebec will probably stop spinning their lifts this weekend.
With March weather back, some areas became making snow(*) and Le Massif decided to reopen for this coming weekend and try to open for the following Easter weekend. I don’t recall seeing some many areas making snow in the last week of March; trying to make it to the Easter weekend.
Here is the detail list (I’ve divided Quebec into two major regions).
* – indicates snowmaking this week
It all comes down to 29 or less ski areas open all over the East, a low number that you wouldn’t generally see until mid-April. At least 7 ski areas will not make it passed April 1 unless they changed their mind like Le Massif did this week and decide to extend its season even after it announced that their season was over.
Western Quebec (North and Townships) :
Blanc : April 1 (reopens Friday and weekend)(edit: closing date added)
Bromont : April 1
La Réserve : April 1 (weekend only)
Montcalm : April 1 (weekend only)
Owl’s Head* : March 31 (Saturday only)
St-Sauveur : (weekend only – operating Avila midweek)
Tremblant* : April 9 (edit: closing date move from April 16 to 9)
Eastern Quebec (Mauricie to Gaspe) :
Gallix : April 8 (weekend only)(edit: date added)
Le Massif* : April 9 (maybe)(weekend and maybe Easter) – changed their decision
Massif du Sud : March 31 (edit: changed their decision / to open this weekend)
Mont Edouard : April 8 (edit: to open this weekend)
Sainte-Anne : April 29
Stoneham : April 8 (edit: date added)
Val Neigette : April 1 (Fri-Sun only) – no clear confirmation
Vallée du Parc : March 31 (Saturday only) – $5
Newfoundland & Labrador: 1
Marble : April 8
Stowe : April 1
Sugarbush* : April 1??? – $30
New Hamsphire: 4
Bretton Woods : April 1 (weekend only) – $25
Loon* : April 8
Waterville : April 1 – free skiing until closing
Wildcat* : reopening 29 for the weekend – $35
Maine : 3
Saddleback* – $39 ($29 if your bring your pass from another mountain)
Here is a blog from Guy “The Ski” Thibaudeau which also talks about the late season struggle for the ski season on Cyberpresse:
Ski – fin de saison à l’arrachée
Last week list : Eastern Ski Disaster and Winter Hating Heatwave