The forecast was calling for a significant winter storm - anywhere from 4 inches to 10 inches (that's significant for us in the southeast) of snow depending on the elevation. When I got out of work early on Tuesday it was already snowing, a light flurry. We brought the dogs out to Carrier Park to let them play in the snow. Not a lot of snow had accumulated on the ground, but that didn't stop the dogs from having fun.
Tybee may be a up there in age, but she doesn't let that stop her from going after snowballs.
By the time we left Carrier Park we were worried that our plans to go snowboarding the next day weren't going to happen because the snowflakes turned into light raindrops. We rarely go snowboarding here because the ski resort mountains are tiny, the snow is usually crappy, and you spend more time waiting in the lift line than coming down the mountain. I know, we're Scrooges when it comes to snowboarding in WNC.
A few hours later the snow starting dumping. Dumping. And accumulating fast! Jerud and I decided to walk to Oysterhouse, our neighborhood pub, to grab a beer (I just wanted to walk in snow, the beer was the cherry on top).
Oysterhouse was packed! Sleds were parked outside and inside the pub. People where in their snow pants and boots. It felt like a real winter evening. We watched people build snowmen outside, walk down the middle of the road carrying their 6-packs of beer, and someone sledding down the streets.
The dogs waited at home. Wanting to play in real snow this time.
They played and played and played. Tybee and Tyki burrowed their faces deep into snow, ate endless amounts of snow, and got covered in this magical thing we rarely see this much of.
I texted Jay, worried that we wouldn't be able to go snowboarding tomorrow because there so much snow on the roads. Would the roads our houses are on be plowed...in time?
6:30 AM the next morning I got a text from Jay that he made it out his driveway and up his street. We were good to go! Him and Ashley showed up about 30 minutes later, we load up the car and headed to Cataloochee Ski Resort.
We got to Cat just as the lifts opened. We headed straight to the Meadows - it's this mythical place that only exists when an incredible about of snow falls. Which meant the last time it was opened was probably back in 2010 when we had our last big snowstorm. While the rest of Cataloochee gets man-made snow, the Meadows depends solely on real snow.
The conditions at Cat were pretty amazing. We rode the Meadows until it got it got tracked out and then we went looking for tree runs and other trails. One thing we had to keep in mind was that the mountain doesn't have much of a snow base. One of the trails we went on seemed pretty solid, but once the recent snowfall was scraped away it was just tree roots and rocks underneath.
Around early afternoon the rest of WNC showed up and we headed out. We got the best of the powder and left happy.
We had our fun in the snow and now it was the dogs' turn. Our plan was to head up to the Blue Ridge Parkway and maybe do some snowshoeing with the dogs. But Tybee still wasn't doing better when we got home. She had too much fun in the snow the night before and it was just too much for her arthritic back hips and legs. She could barely walk. Jerud and I talked about ways we could bring her up on the parkway with us. The deep snow was going to be too much for her to walk in. If only we had skis, then we could strap the dog trailer on top of that and have a doggy sled. At the end we decided that Tybee would have to stay at home for this one.
We decided to leave the snowshoes in the car once we got up to the Blue Ridge Parkway. As much as I wanted to use my new snowshoes, there just wasn't enough snow for them.
We got on the Mountains-to-Sea Trail.
I wish winter was always like this.