Snow Tuesday and Today Improving Snow Pack for Winter Recreation
January 9, 2019 — The Maine Office of Tourism, in collaboration with Ski Maine Association and the Maine Snowmobile Association (MSA), reports that today’s snowfall and yesterday’s storm have left Maine’s ski centers and snowmobile trails in great condition for the coming weekend.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) snow depth map shows that more than half of Maine has at least one foot of snow, with some areas in Aroostook County reaching two feet or more. Maine has received snowfall four of the nine days of the new year.
|Current conditions at Sunday River.|
With the new snow, snow pack continues to deepen throughout Maine enabling the majority of ski slopes and trails to open. As a testament to the great start for the year, for the second day in a row, Lewiston and Auburn’s local ski area, Lost Valley, opened early at noon as a result of local school cancellations. Sugarloaf’s snowfall has topped 115 inches this season with today's storm. On Sunday, Mt. Abram will host the Vertical Challenge.
The Nordic ski season is also underway, including high school competitions. Though snow is still needed along the immediate coastline, cross-country centers have reported 100% of trails are open. For those looking for well-maintained cross-country skiing with a hot meal served at the end of the journey, Maine offers two premier hut-to-hut skiing experiences at Maine Huts & Trails in Carrabassett Valley and AMC Wilderness Lodge in Greenville. Both experiences provide day skiing or overnight accommodations with meals served in the main lodges.
“This fresh foot of snow is really important for Maine skiing. The number of photos being shared and stories being told about the conditions will push people off their couches and onto the slopes,” according to Greg Sweetser, executive director of Ski Maine. “The beauty of the mountains in winter is majestic.”
Snowmobile clubs are out grooming, brushing and hanging signs around the clock. If you see a groomer, please pull over and allow them to pass, be mindful of other riders and exercise safety always.
Snowmobile trail conditions are updated daily. This week, areas of interest include Aroostook with thousands of miles of trails; the Katahdin region where groomers have been out double-teaming the Staceyville Road; Madawaska where recent snowfall totals one foot; and Shin Pond in Mount Chase with a popular pitstop for lunch at Shin Pond Village.
MSA Executive Director Bob Meyers said, “We’re reaching that magical time of the year where in many popular snowmobiling destinations in Maine, you can expect to see some new snow every day.”
Snowmobile-related events are starting to take place regularly. Looking ahead to next week, Black Mountain of Maine in Rumford will host the Snowmobile Hill Climb on January 18 with gates opening at 4 p.m.; races kick off at 6 p.m.
For those looking for more relaxed outdoor winter activities, it is the beginning of the ice fishing derby season and snow tubing is fun for the whole family. Check out Eaton Mountain in Skowhegan or GO Tubing in South China.
The snow reports, released each Wednesday throughout the season, will be posted on VisitMaine.com, where visitors can also find information about other winter activities and events. People enjoying the Maine winter are encouraged to share their photos on social media using #MaineWinter.
Editor’s Note: Click on the image above or the link below to access a Dropbox folder of Maine winter images.