Sugar Mountain Ski Resort, an alpine ski and snowboard destination in the mountains of North Carolina, has been added as the southernmost venue on the east coast for Winter Trails, an international program that offers children and adults an opportunity to try snowshoeing and cross country skiing free. Winter Trails events will take place at more than 100 locations in the U.S. and Canada on January 6, 2007. Entering its 12th year, Winter Trails is one of the largest “introduction to snow sports” programs. It is organized by SnowSports Industries America (SIA), the Cross Country Ski Areas Association (CCSAA) and the American Hiking Society (AHS).

Sugar Mountain Ski Resort is located near Banner Elk, North Carolina in a part of the country that offers a number of recreation options. The Winter Trails event there will be snowshoe-only. Since Sugar primarily is an alpine resort, it does not have a cross country ski facility.

“The addition of Sugar Mountain Ski Resort is a great asset to the Winter Trails program,” said Mary Jo Tarallo, Director of Education for SIA. “Although the majority of Winter Trails events are held at Nordic Centers or on public lands, the inclusion of Sugar Mountain as an alpine resort allows us to expand the program in the southeast. Not that many people know that the highest mountains on the East Coast are located in North Carolina and the snow conditions are ideal. This will be a terrific event that will appeal to a whole new audience.”

“We are excited to be a part of Winter Trails in 2007,” said Kim Jochl, Director of Marketing for Sugar Mountain Ski Resort. “Sugar likes to offer our customers and newcomers to snow sports interesting and exciting programs weekly.”