In recent months, parts of the country have experienced severe winter weather, during which much of the east coast has experienced measurable snow.
After one of the first starts of the ski season, the Sunapee Ski Resort in New Hampshire had to close all trails based on natural snow and recently upgraded its snowmaking machines to adapt to the cold winter.
“It’s definitely going to be a very short season without the machines,” Sunapee Resort General Manager Peter Dish said.
Major East Coast cities have also been mostly snow-free this winter: New York City is on one of its longest snow droughts ever — 317 days and counting — and Washington, D.C., and Philadelphia aren’t far behind at 314 days.
The lack of snow is causing financial losses from Maine to Michigan. Kalamazoo is having its hottest January on record. In nearby Vicksburg, a local shop stopped selling ice fishing equipment.
“I got everything stocked up, ready to be stocked and ready to go, and then we’ve had 2 days of snow so far,” said Chuck Hodges, manager of Double L Bait & Tackle.
Some climate scientists believe that such conditions are part of a long-term warming trend, and more mild winters should be expected. The trend can be attributed to the winter weather experienced in some parts of the country this season.
“It’s all connected,” said Mary Stampon, a New Hampshire state climatologist. “And an increase in the severity of extreme weather events is linked to an overall global warming of the atmosphere.”
Despite the lack of snow this year, some skiers like Patty Anderson and Jill Ash found a silver lining: a small competition.
“There is no ice for the ski, but there are not many people to fight.”
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