Winter storm blankets region - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Winter storm blankets region

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STOWE, Vt. -

The storm may be tricky for travelers, but it's pure joy for the winter sport industry in Vermont. Locals and visitors alike have been out enjoying this "snow day."

The white gold shut down nearly 300 schools, but it opened up plenty of trails. The snow day brought out everyone who has been just waiting for a day like this and Vermont businesses are hoping this is a sign of what's to come.

With every inch came joy for businesses and visitors.

"It's really nice and powdery," said Will Vichi, a sixth-grader at Lincoln Community School.

For Will and Wyatt, piles of snow mean it's time to hit the slopes.

"We're happy to have good snow and skip school," said Wyatt Thompson, a sixth-grader at Lincoln Community School.

Snowmobilers are also revving up.

"I think this is the best condition I've had for years, nice and smooth. And I just hope it's gonna get smoother," said Robert Dingle, a visitor from the United Kingdom.

A lot of people were out taking advantage of the snow. And local businesses who have taken a hit so far this year hope this is just the beginning of a great winter.

"When it's not snowing, there's no snow on the ground, nobody's thinking about snowmobiling. Then we get a big snowfall and people are a lot more interested in it," said Cole Tempesta, a tour guide for Snowmobile Vermont.

With turnouts that have been below average, Snowmobile Vermont saw business pick up Wednesday, but they're hoping the trend continues.

"Today, hopefully, is a great turning point where we can have the ground completely covered in snow for the rest of the season. That's what we're hoping for," Tempesta said.

Mad River Glen experienced half the business this January that it did last year; they also have high hopes for the rest of the season.

"I think a lot of people have been just sitting back and waiting for conditions to improve a little bit and they are, so hopefully that number will turn around for February," said Ry Young of Mad River Glen.

With 4 inches Wednesday morning, Young is hoping they'll get more in the coming days-- and more skiers.

"We certainly hope to see more midweek skiers, especially given the quality of snow that we have. But it's hard to pull people up from the valleys when they still see cornstalks and grass," Young said.

But Wednesday there was no sign of anything green, and for some, that's worth extending a visit to the Green Mountain State.

"I'm hoping that flight gets canceled so I might be able to stay up here," Dingle said.

I also saw some cross-country skiing out there today, one business I spoke with said it's picking up but they're also hoping for a few more inches. A little more snow would also be good news for the snowshoers.

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