Season pass sales at many of the region's larger resorts are at record levels, and early season business has been brisk, to say the least.

Wachusett's Century Pass sales were running 27 percent ahead of last season; Okemo pass sales were 17 percent up overall, and 168 percent up in college passes; Cannon Mountain pass sales were 100 percent ahead of last year.

Chris Ellms, Mount Washington Resort's director of SkiOps, said Bretton Woods is up 22 percent over last year in Thanksgiving weekend business.

"We're thrilled, of course, but not completely surprised. We've got snow. We did last year as well, but so did more of the other ski areas. The skiing has been just terrific, and we're looking forward to the approaching holidays with optimism."

Matt Massei, Mount Washington Resort's General Manager, said, "We had families with children who took advantage of the whole package: great snow and skiing at Bretton Woods, a lot of family activities across the Resort all weekend, including our annual Thanksgiving buffet feast at The Hotel and Homecoming Weekend at Bretton Woods."

Early snow and a late-in-the-month Thanksgiving holiday played significant roles in the strong business numbers.

But many in the region's ski industry are also seeing more widespread skier/rider interest that is translating into stronger-than-expected, or feared, visits to the slopes.