Ski the earliest opening ski resort in the Southeast
With the highest mountains in eastern United States, North Carolina’s ski season starts early, and no one in the Southeast has started earlier than Cataloochee Ski Area in the Maggie Valley area of the Great Smoky Mountains. Boasting one of the most advanced snow-making systems in the Southeast, Cataloochee Ski Area set a record by opening on Oct. 28 in 2008 and consistently opens in early November. Despite the high elevations in North Carolina, snowmaking is essential for optimizing conditions, and all of the state’s ski and tubing areas have advanced snowmaking equipment. From its summit at 5,400 feet, Cataloochee offers a 740-foot vertical drop on 17 slopes with three chairlifts and two conveyor lifts. The area has 100 percent snowmaking, a lighted terrain park and separate tubing area including a Wee Bowl Snowplay area for small children.
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