Weather conditions stall opening times for York-area snow tubing
Tubers of all ages come from near and far on opening day at AvalancheXpress Snow Tubing at Heritage Hills.
York County has not seen any snow since early November, which means a waiting game for area ski resorts.
Even without natural snow, the weather needs to be cold enough to make it artificially, said Shane Stell, operations manager for Heritage Hills and AvalancheXpress — a tubing hill at the golf resort, at 2700 Mount Rose Ave., in Springettsbury Township.
And predictions are changing all the time, he said.
On Monday, Jan. 7, Stell said Avalanche is expected to open at noon Saturday, Jan. 12 — possibly Friday, depending on how much snow can be made.
Later in the week, the forecast is showing low temperatures in the mid- to lower 20s, Stell said, but if they rise to 28 degrees or higher, the staff will be lucky if they can make any snow.
"Day by day, we're adjusting what we have to do," he said.
An AccuWeather news release confirmed colder temperatures in the Northeast are anticipated late this week.
On Thursday, Jan 10, "blustery winds" will make temperatures feel like they are in the 20s from Boston to New York City to Baltimore and Washington, D.C., the release states.
Roundtop open: Roundtop Mountain Resort, in Warrington Township, has been open for skiing since Dec. 23, according to a spokeswoman, but tubing on the mountain is still closed.
Maureen Lee said on Monday, Jan. 7, that tubing is expected to open at noon Friday, Jan. 11, if weather cooperates, and the staff has been making snow in preparation.
According to the website, they added 3 inches of fresh snow to the slopes overnight, and Lee said they've been making it all day.
Currently, only nine trails out of Roundtop's 20 — including its terrain park — are open for skiing.
Opening times were later than usual this year, Lee said, adding that sometimes the resort has opened as early as Black Friday. Roundtop began making snow back in November, but rain and warm weather left little remaining.
Stell said Avalanche hopes to open two to three lanes for tubing Saturday, and its outdoor ice rink will definitely be open 4-7 p.m. Friday, but it will likely not stay open later if tubing is not ready.
Lee did not have an estimate of when more ski lanes might open at Roundtop but echoed Stell in saying it was dependent on the weather.
An AccuWeather news release predicted more cold weather would make its way to the north central states during the third week of the month, and long-lasting downturns in temperatures could persist in late January and early February.
Editor's note: This story has been updated with a new opening date for tubing at Roundtop.