Author Archives: Jamesdeluxe
Spring has been taking its time catching up with the calendar and the Catskills are no exception. While driving through Hunter NY last Thursday, it was hard to miss how much snow still covered many people’s yards at the end of March.
As we pulled into the ski area, all of the visible trails had full coverage. Racer’s Edge — which by this time of the season is often specked with dirt — was a perfectly groomed carpet of white.
Pretty much all over the mountain, Hunter has stockpiled a lot of snow (north of ten feet in many spots), which obviously bodes well for the next two weeks. While none of this is a surprise given Hunter’s reputation as a snowmaking beast, it’s still impressive to see in person.
Among the many things skiers like to rhapsodize about from “back in the old days” is that winters were far colder and stuck around longer than they do today.
Growing up in Central New York in the early/mid-1970s, I still remember traipsing through shoulder-deep snow to deliver the Syracuse Post-Standard at 5 am every morning while walking backwards for most of my route to avoid getting blasted in the face by sub-zero wind gusts.
While 2013-14 hasn’t been a record breaker for snow, it’s been noticeably colder than recent seasons and has delayed the arrival of spring skiing.
Even though I’ve written three dozen resort features over the past decade, I still have a long way to go before I’ve visited all of North America’s major ski regions, particularly out west.
Just off the top of my head, I still haven’t made turns in California, British Columbia, Montana, western Washington and Oregon, central Idaho, Maine, or Quebec’s Gaspe Peninsula. Being based near NYC (at least for the near future), that should keep me busy for a while.
Thankfully, last March, I finally got around to a region that had evaded my grasp for a while: the Inland Northwest, located in eastern Washington and northern Idaho. Within a two-hour drive of the Spokane airport, there are five interesting and varied ski areas covering the gamut from full-service resorts to entertaining off-the-beaten-path day areas. What’s more, everything is surrounded by beautiful scenery: lakes, mountains, and gorgeous vistas, along with the cute towns of Sandpoint and Coeur d’Alene. Explore:
NY Ski Magazine
Inland Northwest: Destination, Not A Gateway