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Helena cross country skiers, businesses excited for snowy season

Posted at 3:31 PM, Dec 06, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-06 17:31:00-05

After a Thanksgiving weekend snow storm, the Last Chance Nordic Ski Club is getting trails in the area ready for cross country skiers.

But they're not the only ones excited for winter sports: the snow is also good news for some businesses in Helena.

This week was the first week back on the job for groomers at MacDonald Pass.

“We just got that big snow this past weekend, and it dumped a lot of snow,” said Taylor Curry, who’s a first-time groomer this year. He’s grateful for that snow storm, allowing them to prep the trails.

"This was awesome, this last storm,” said Larry Dolan, the grooming coordinator for the club. “I mean, we wouldn't have been able to groom without it."

Groomers will spend a couple of hours, two to three days each week, on their snowmobiles.

"We're glad that storm hit, and we were able to get out here and open up these trails for people," said Curry.

Helena Cycle Center is in the business of snowmobiles and other recreational vehicles.

“That blast of weather, last week, has really helped us,” said Mitch Noack, the store’s general manager. He said people have started to come in, needing items like plows and batteries.

It’s been a record-setting year for snow, and fall storms helped start the winter sports season strong. But some people say they’re ready for more.

"We need 60 degrees and sun, or 15 degrees and snow," said Noack. "Last week when we got that snow and cold weather, it stimulated the business."

So, the snow has businesses seeing green. But on the trails, groomers are eager to see just how white this winter will turn out to be.

"We definitely got enough to ski on, and we're looking forward to hopefully getting some more here, maybe next week,” said Dolan.