Lewisberry residents Jake Worley and Tyler Dolbin have spent their winters at Roundtop Mountain Resort since they were kids.
Now able to tackle double black diamond courses, Worley, 23, said this year's cold, snowy season was a perfect one for skiing.
"We were up here for all the powder days," he said, referring to the fresh, powder-like coating of natural snow.
And for Dolbin, 25, the slopes of Ski Roundtop are the perfect place to make the best of the winter blues.
"If I didn't snowboard or ski with my friends, I would probably hate the wintertime," he said.
Although this winter was particularly brutal, Roundtop was open for 115 days in a row in its 50th season, said general manager Ron Hawkes. The Lewisberry-based, family-run resort opened Friday, Nov. 29, and closed Sunday.
"That is the longest season in the history of Roundtop," he said.
Season of snow: During all the winter storms, the resort sometimes closed early, but never for the whole day, said Tim Whorl, assistant mountain manager.
"To have this be such a cold, snowy season, it worked out perfectly for our business," he said.
During the last two seasons, there wasn't much cold weather to make snow, said Whorl, who's been snowmaking at the resort for 27 years.
This winter was a different story, with its frigid temperatures and numerous snowstorms — but the natural snow that fell was more of a mood-setter than a slope-coater, he said.
"It's helpful, but not as much as you might think," he said, as natural snow melts quicker than manmade snow and is only good for about a day.
Whorl attributes the extended season to the cold temps — the colder it gets, the more snow crews can make — and the fact that the resort keeps updating its snowmaking equipment.
National award: The veteran snowmaker is a finalist for the inaugural I AM a Snowmaker Award, a national industry award hosted by Ski Area Management Magazine and HKD Snowmakers.
Whorl is one of six snowmakers throughout the country nominated for the award.
"I feel pretty humble about it," he said.
Whorl, who lives in Glen Rock, is responsible for recruiting and assembling a passionate crew of snowmakers. He works at the resort year-round, performing maintenance.
"Tim does a great job, puts a lot of snow on the mountain," Hawkes said.
Although Whorl is quick to point out that he knows more-deserving snowmakers, he said he's grateful for the honor.
"I definitely have a big support group here, and they know I put my heart into it," he said.
To vote for Whorl, visit www.saminfo.com. Voting runs through the first week of April. The winner will be recognized at the National Ski Areas Association year-end show the first week of May in Savannah, Ga.
— Reach Mollie Durkin at firstname.lastname@example.org.