Optimism reigns on region’s ski slopes

Singer Lynn Anderson might have assured us “there’s got to be a little rain sometime,” but her views

Singer Lynn Anderson might have assured us “there’s got to be a little rain sometime,” but her views were never embraced by the skiing and snowboarding community.

Rain and unseasonably warm temperatures on Presidents Day, the first day of a traditional winter school vacation week, cut down crowds but not expectations at area ski centers.

Skiing and boarding were good Monday at Royal Mountain in Caroga Lake, said lodge manager Cindy Gee.

“We’ve got two feet of base and not a rock showing,” she said, predicting that with improving weather (read “colder”), Royal is still expecting a big week. She said the mountain’s popular five-day Presidents Week pass — $100 for adults and $75 for juniors — is valid through Sunday.

At Oak Mountain in Speculator, a spokeswoman said the ski center had a huge weekend, and management is not discouraged by Monday’s rain.

“We’ve got a good base and we’ll be open all week,” she said. Oak, which is being operated this season by the village and a group of volunteers, was open Monday and was planning to keep its tubing park operating until 8 p.m.

“We had a fantastic weekend,”

she said of the first two days of Oak’s Presidents Week.

In Washington County, Willard Mountain owner Chic Wilson said Monday’s rain probably reduced his expected crowd by half.

But, with more seasonal weather and some snow forecast for the remainder of the week, he is optimistic about what’s left of the vacation week.

“Conditions are very good,” he said, noting that ski centers in the region are “deep with snow.”

He said the manmade snow that constitutes most of the base is much denser than natural snow and can easily endure a little rain. Modern grooming equipment, he said, will produce a good surface.

Wilson said skiers and boarders have grown accustomed to skiing in warmer weather. He said they much prefer it to those days when the high temperature is 10 degrees.

In Queensbury, West Mountain’s planned to open at 3 p.m. Monday, according to its Web site.

Categories: Schenectady County

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