CHARLEMONT, Mass. (WWLP) – The recent cold weather has allowed for ski areas across New England to begin making snow.
Temperatures dipped into the 20s overnight over the weekend and Berkshire East in Charlemont went right to work. To open before a significant snowfall ski areas need to make that fake powder of course, but the conditions need to be just right.
Jon Schaefer, the owner of Berkshire East Ski Resort stated, “It needs to be in the upper 20s but the real important factor is the combination with humidity so below 27 degrees on the wet bulb chart so the combination of humidity and temperature.”
Ski resorts produce fake snow by forcing water and pressurized air through a “snow gun” covering its slopes and supplementing the natural snow not only for more fun. Extending the ski season from late fall into early spring can be a financial necessity for many resorts especially because the average ski season continues to shorten.
As soon as cold snaps hit ski areas like Berkshire East act quickly so they can open as early in the season as possible. As the weather became adequate to cover the mountain with the artificial flakes this past weekend, the medium-sized ski area was able to get a headstart meaning the slopes should open soon.
“Friday night got cold for the season started making snow Saturday and went through Sunday and shut down this morning so almost 40 hours of snowmaking there,” said Schaefer.
Winter tourism in western Massachusetts relies heavily on skiing and therefore, snow-making is an unsung hero. Berkshire East told 22News that they intend to open up in Early December. The weather is supposed to warm up over the next week or so, but Schaefer says that he expects this season to be a great one.