First Storm Of Season Triggers Hope For Skiers

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SACRAMENTO-

The first significant storm of the season is getting some skiers excited about the upcoming season, even though the dusting of snow in the mountains could be short-lived.

Carver Sears was in the Helm of Sun Valley ski shop getting his skis repaired and looking for a new pair as well.

“We’ve been watching it carefully. We’re looking for a lot of snow, a lot of rain,” said Sears.

His anticipation is understandable because last year skiing was dismal until late January when the snow levels finally began to favor winter sports.

Sears maybe be the exception this early in the season.  Ski shop owner Brad Helm says skiers usually take a few days to build up their expectations.

“It’s usually about two or three days after is about when it happens,” said Helm.

Helm, whose shop has been in business for over 30 years, says skiers rely on visual cues, like seeing the snow covered Sierra in the distance.

The season usually takes off in late November, but there are advantages in getting a head start.  Sales on last year’s equipment are in full swing.  And the weak economy means retail inventories on new gear are smaller.  It you want the latest technology in boots and skis, there may be shortages unless you buy a little earlier.

While hard core skiers know  the first big storm of the season may be a false alarm, a sustained storm will put them on alert that it may be a good ski year.

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