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Natural Snow Is A Bonanza For Eastern Nordic Skiers

Trapp Family XCCross country skiers, unlike their alpine brethren, generally experience little or no snowmaking equipment on their favorite trails. Things looked exceedingly dismal last year at this time, but that's all changed as we move from 2012 into 2013.


“We have 146 kilometers (over 80 miles) of trails open,” Executive Director Thom Perkins of the Jackson, N.H. Ski Touring Foundation told SnoCountry.com. “All of our trails are open. The skiing is powder and packed powder. We are able to offer premium grooming at this point. We have a lot of trails groomed with mid-winter snow conditions."


Nordic operators such as Perkins are thanking Mother Nature profusely for her abundance of holiday generosity. Cross country skiers in the Jackson area are striding on 15 inches of snow in the lower elevations, with three feet in the upper reaches.


Other Nordic resorts are in similar condition, which, for the skier, means more well-covered terrain much closer to home. Between lake effect snow and a Nor’easter, substantial snow has fallen in the Ohio Valley, Northeast and New England.


The iconic Trapp Family Lodge in Stowe, Vt. is boasting 100 kilometers (62 miles) for the enjoyment of their guests. “The skiing and conditions here over Christmas break have been so epic that they will imprint lasting memories for years to come,” commented Director of Sports Paul McNeil Monday morning to SnoCountry.com.


Garnet Hill in North River, N.Y. has a 20-inch base under a packed powder surface. The resort collected eight inches of new snow on Saturday (Dec. 29) and has 40 kilometers (25 miles) open. Cross country opportunities in Pennsylvania were looking dismal until the recent snowfall uplifted the spirits of Nordic skiers. Now the change has put many trail networks in good stead for January.


Crystal Lake Ski Center, in Tivoli, Pa. enjoys proximity to Great Lakes-effect snowfall and elevation. They recommend that visitors use chains or four-wheel drive vehicles to access its 30 kilometers (20 miles) of groomed track. The site’s web page is actually hoping the snow subsides to allow management to catch up on track preparation.


Mt. Van Hoevenberg XC

Finally no conversation of Nordic skiing in the east is complete without mentioning the 50 Olympic kilometers at Mt. Van Hoevenberg in Lake Placid, N.Y. The recent storms on the 1980 Olympic venue have deposited 30 inches on the 31 miles offered. This has given their new state-of-the-art grooming machine great material to work with. Snowmaking notwithstanding, it would appear that after canceling the Lake Placid Loppet Cross Country races last year, the 2013 edition, Jan. 26, is in no such danger. 


Top Photo: Trapp Family Lodge XC; Bottom Photo: Mount Van Hoevenberg at Lake Placid, N.Y. (Andy Teig)

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