Colder temperatures provide successful ski season

STRASBURG – After a tumultuous up and down winter, Morgan Breeden, associate marketing communications manager of Bryce Resort in Bayse,  the 2017-2018-ski season was one for the record books, despite a lack of cooperation from Mother Nature.

“Cold air and low temperatures allowed us to put more snow on the mountains,” Breeden said. “When the temperatures are in the teens or lower, we’re able to make more efficient snow for our guests to ski and snowboard on.”

The winter season started at Bryce Mountain during the second week of December and lasted until Easter weekend, something Breeden said she hasn’t seen in a few years.

With average evening temperatures dipping into single digits during the month of January, most evenings in the Northern Shenandoah Valley felt like the Arctic, not Virginia.

“Our snow average was far less than years past,” Breeden said. “We had less than 12 inches here, resulting in our snow operation teams having to create upwards of 60 inches of snow to fulfill our base depth.”

Skiers flocked to Bryce Resort by the hundreds.

“Even though the weather was very sporadic, our mountain operations worked really hard to make sure the slopes were covered and in top-notch conditions,” Breeden said.

“We typically make a majority of the snow we have here,” Breeden said. “Because we haven’t seen a record heavy snowfall in quite some time.”

The last major snowfall the Northern Shenandoah Valley witnessed was in 2010 when double-digit records accounted for more than 70 inches of snow that winter.

Snow is not the only thing that keeps visitors returning. Over the years, Bryce Resort has introduced activities throughout all four seasons allowing guests to indulge in skiing during winter months and sunning during summer months.

“Our snow sports school is well known and is very popular for all ages who are looking to learn to ski,” Breeden said. “Bryce Park is a fairly new hang-out we’ve introduced that keeps the younger generations coming.”

The resort also offers golf, zip lining, tubing, lift rides and Lake Laura, a grassy beach area that lets guest cool off during those brutal summer days.

“People will come and hang out on the beach, canoe, paddleboard and play a round of golf,” Breeden said. “And then go enjoy a burger and some beer at the Copper Kettle.”

The biggest challenge Breeden said the resort has faced in the past is letting the community know that just because they’re member owned, doesn’t mean the public can’t come and enjoy the facilities.

“It’s quite the opposite,” Breeden said. “We want the community to come and enjoy everything we have to offer.”

Breeden added that the resort is continuously coming up with new events and activities for guests to enjoy.

“This past winter we hosted Dinner on the Mountain, which turned out to be a lot of fun,” Breeden said. “We may be member owned, but we welcome anyone who wants to come and enjoy our four-season resort. We’re sure there’s something for everyone.”