Fresh snow expected to jumpstart winter recreation season

Published: Jan. 23, 2023 at 5:19 PM EST
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LYME, N.H. (WCAX) - The new snow is bringing smiles to the faces of skiers and riders, but also those who are directly connected to the region’s tourism economy.

The flakes fell throughout the day Monday at the Dartmouth Skiway. And with area schools canceled due to the weather, the locals were stoked. “The conditions are great. Lots of powder -- really really fun,” said William Ketterer of Lyme, N.H.

Like other mountains across the region, Mother Nature plays a key role at the Skiway in getting all the trails open. But maybe more importantly, getting skiers and riders in the mindset for making turns.

“The natural snow is key to having a good weekend. For instance, we were busier last weekend after fresh snowfall than we were Martin Luther King holiday,” said Dartmouth Skiway general manager Mark Adamczyk.

It’s not just the mountains welcoming the white stuff. “So far this year I would describe it as pretty dismal,” said Jeff Fay, president of the Vermont Association of Snow Travelers. VAST has roughly 4,700 miles of trails, but before the latest storm, barely any were open. That meant businesses across the region suffered. “It’s definitely a boon for restaurants and hotels.”

Local businesses are also welcoming the white stuff. “One of our marketing guys actually says pennies from heaven,” said Nick Matulonis with the Golf and Ski Warehouse in West Lebanon. “People see snow and they get excited about getting out and enjoying it, whether it being downhill skiing, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing,” Matulonis said.

Back at the Skiway, excitement is in the air. “The powder is really really thick, especially on Windsor, the glades,” Ketterer said.

Last year, New Hampshire saw roughly 2.2 million skier visits. And Vermont saw even more -- 3.5 million -- and the experts say the snow only helps bring out the crowds.