The post Thanksgiving blues can come on pretty quick in the Blue Ridge. After the holiday passes there is usually a lull in the season. The leaves have gone from explosion of natural beauty and wonder to yard work annoyance. The weather can be unpredictable, or predictably wet, dreary, and depressing. A lot of the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas is usually spent indoors, waiting for the snow to fall and for winter to take hold. I am all for cozy chairs, warm fires, and good books (or magazines like Blue Ridge Outdoors – wink), but we are active people and cabin fever strikes us early and often. Well, not this year people. This year, the snow god Ullr has smiled upon the Southeast in the form of snow and cold temperatures. Time to get out of the house, bust out the ski gear from the shed, and hit the slopes this weekend.
Beech Resort outside Boone, N.C. is planning to open Friday, so get the drop on everybody else and be there for first chair. The limited number of open slopes will actually work in your favor, preventing you from overdoing it on the first day. Nothing is worse than ruining a season by picking up a nagging – or heaven forbid, season ending – injury on day one. Use this time to get your ski legs back under you by easy-styling it and taking frequent breaks (a mid-day beer never hurt either). Day one is also a great time to evaluate your gear from last season to make sure everything is in working order, and to find out what needs to be put on your Christmas list this year. Winter is here folks. Time to shred.