In Maine, where well over $500 million of economic activity comes from skiing and snowmobiling, most ski areas have plenty of snow, said Greg Sweetser, executive director of Ski Maine. "The state of Maine has the longest ski season of any ski area east of the Rocky Mountains," he said, with some resorts opening as early as October and closing as late as May.
At Sugarloaf, which just celebrated its 60th anniversary, free lift tickets are available for children ages 6-18 with a minimum stay of three midweek nights from March 21-25.
One of the more unusual events of the season is March 26 at Maine's Shawnee Peak, the fourth annual America's Mattress Race. Teams of up to four people decorate and race downhill on their old, beat-up mattress. The prize for the fastest team? A new mattress.
Paul Clark of Nashua, N.H., 44, a fan of spring skiing, said people expect to battle the elements during winter skiing — layers and layers of clothing, hand and feet warmers to cut the biting chill.
"Make it through a winter's day of skiing and you feel like you've conquered the snow gods!" he said. "But when spring grants its gifts to the ski slopes, it is a gift that must be received ... and remember that gifts such as these are rare and few."
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