Connecticut residents grabbed their snowboards and skis and headed to Mt. Southington on Saturday.
The bitter temperatures were perfect for making snow, and those snow machines have been working overtime.
Shane Riley, who is the snow-making manager at Mt. Southington, said it’s been a long, cold few days, and hard work getting ready for opening weekend, which is right on schedule this year.
“This is really good December weather. We’re down probably about 10 degrees now, so we can really push a lot of water through the snow guns,” Mt. Southington General Manager Jay Dougherty said.
The snowmaking system is new and more efficient.
“We’ve increased our capacity by 25 percent. And it’s helping us operate by reducing the time it takes for us to cover most of our trails,” Dougherty said.
The snow guns have been going since Tuesday and they expect to have at least six trails open on Saturday. Plus, with a solid base piling up, they said two more trails could open during the weekend.
“Prime conditions. Weather like this brings perfect skiing conditions. Nice powdery snow,” Riley said.
The mountain opened for its 54th season on Saturday at 9 a.m.
”We got lucky," Michael O’Looney, whose sons are on a race team, said. "They’ve done a great job with making snow, and we got some natural snow, so this is early in the season to be out on the snow already.”
”It’s so beautiful and so amazing to be here today," Beth Daro-Kaftan, of Old Lyme, said. "It’s probably the nicest conditions I’ve seen this early in December.”
The staff said the season runs through mid or late March depending on mother nature.
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