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Snowshoe skiers

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hey snowshoe riders,
What is the story with Sawmill glades and lower Shay's? With the weather coming through, do you think that they will be able to get them open by the weekend? A few friends and I are coming up Friday night and staying through Sunday afternoon.

I appreciate any info...
post #2 of 8
Sawmill glades is natural snow only. It has been skiable when not officially opened (like when I was there in early Jan). I would say you need a minimum of 8-10" of natural to ski it reasonably well. As far as I know, it has only been officially open for 3-4 days this whole season, after a snowfall in late Jan.

I don't expect lower Shays to open at all this season. They have not done any snowmaking over there. In lieu of snowmaking, that trail would need 2+ feet of natural snow to open.

So I would say, don't count on those two trails, but that's a minor issue. Everything else is open and should be in great shape by the weekend.
post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the info. Kind of what I was afraid of. I've skied a lot of snowshoe and am SUPER stoked to even be going. I've always wanted to ski lower Shay's though and have never had a shot at it.
post #4 of 8
I've skied lower Shays many times, and can only think of 2-3 times where it was any good (like after a big natural snowfall). Most of the time it is extremely icy and not that great to ski. I have no problem with big-ass moguls, it's when they are made of glacier-ice that I start losing interest. Sometimes the top is sucky but the lower half can still be good. Anyhow, you're not missing a whole lot!
post #5 of 8
I ski Snowshoe every year and am very disappointed that no effort is being made to open up lower Shays. It is one of the few challenging trails on a primarily intemediate terrain mountain. I think that since so few skiers at Snowhoe ski it, it is being ignored. I loved coming down that long flat cattrail to the nice pitch. Snowshoe is seriously lacking challenge, and the Western territory is very underutilized. They claim 1500 vertical feet but now that is even more misleading than ever.
post #6 of 8
Well, so far this has been a tough winter for snowmaking and we've had minimal natural snow. They are up to 88", but it's been 1" here and 2" there. No major snowfalls more than 4-6" in a day. I doubt they will reach the typical 180-200" average this season, but I would love to see a 100" March (not impossible). Anyhow, I am not surprised something had to give, and I can see how Shays was ripe for plucking -- that long traverse has got to require a crap-ton of snowmaking. And it's tough to keep the steep section in good shape. If there was a single trail with low return on investment, Shays is probably it. Still, I am also disappointed they did not give it a shot. Even making snow on just half the trail would have been better than nothing.

They definitely need more trails over there to better utilize the lift and take advantage of the 1500ft vertical. You can read about a couple lost trails in the Western Territory here:


I wouldn't mind seeing these trails re-cut and opened.
post #7 of 8
Skier 219 I agree it hasn't been an optimal year , yet something else must be at play here. I ski at Whitetail Pa. which faces south, gets almost no natural , and has much higher average temps and no elevation. They do an amazing job of opening up terrain quickly. The level of skiers you see there is quite high. Frankly it skis much bigger than it's 930 vertical while Snowshoe without all of the Western territory open is rather disappointing. I totally agree with you about the cutting of new trails over there, but they seem to be concentrating on the front, maybe just to sell condos. I hope I'm wrong because I love Snowshoe (as does my daughter) and think it has a lot of potential. I'll be there in a couple of weeks regardless.
post #8 of 8
Originally Posted by skiCubad View Post
but they seem to be concentrating on the front, maybe just to sell condos. I hope I'm wrong because I love Snowshoe (as does my daughter) and think it has a lot of potential. I'll be there in a couple of weeks regardless.

unfortunately, this seems to be the case. the area, since being bought by intrawest, appears to be focused more on the resort than the slopes. hopefully the money they generate from the village will be spent on upgrading the snowmaking equipment and cutting new trails, but until the effort is made to ensure consistent conditions on the western territory, i will save my 2 hour drive and $60+ in lue of something closer that has as much to offer as the front side of snowshoe. (i.e. wisp/7 springs)
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