New Hampshire ski mountains are already off to a better start this season than last year due to December's snowfall and cold temperatures.
NHPR’s Paige Sutherland stopped by McIntyre Ski Area in Manchester Monday, which at this time last year, wasn’t even open.
By 10 a.m. more than a hundred lift tickets had been sold and the slopes were packed with skiers testing out their new gear from the holidays.
Including 2-year-old Liam Dann – skiing Monday for the very first time.
“He got his boots for Christmas and his skis are hand-me-downs from his 4-year-old brother,” Liam's father Ian said laughing. “And how did he do today?,” NHPR's Paige Sutherland asked. “He did really well – he likes it. At the bottom, every time he says, 'more, more,' so he’s excited," Ian said.
Like his son, Ian learned how to ski on these very slopes.
The mountain’s general manager Ross Boisvert says with the mountain fully open he expects crowds throughout the week.
“Last year we weren’t even open because it was 60 degrees on Christmas and we haven’t been able to make snow," Boisvert said. "But this year we’ve been able to make a ton of snow and the conditions are phenomenal and we will be making snow every chance we get and looks like a little natural coming at the end of the week.”
Most mountains throughout the Granite State are expecting heavy traffic this week.
According to Jessyca Keeler of Ski NH, an average of 75 percent of trails are open at most of the state’s major mountains including Loon Mountain in Lincoln, Cranmore Mountain in North Conway and Waterville Valley Resort.
“There’s a lot of pent-up demand this season. Last season you know, wasn’t the best," Keeler said laughing. "And people have been really looking forward to skiing this year and with the early snowfall we’ve seen and the cold temperatures we’ve seen – people are really excited to ski.”