Firsthand Report: Blue Mountain, March 24 3
By Brenton Archut, Guest Columnist

As promised, I took what will most likely be my last runs of the season Friday night, March 24, 2006, at Blue Mountain. After some slight miscommunications, my friend and I headed out from school at about 4:30 p.m. and arrived at Blue by around 5. I purchased my lift ticket which ended up being only $17 with a college ID, and I received a half price voucher for the remaining two days of the season. I am actually considering heading up Sunday morning for a couple of hours for first tracks. That is still up to debate however. At 5:30, with barely any cars in the parking lot, and no lines at the lifts, my friend and I hit the slopes.

Blue Mountain made snow during the early part of the week, and it was obvious upon which trails they made snow. Many of the main slopes such as Main Street, Burma Road, Challenge, and Razors Edge had complete cover. Others such as Paradise had many bare spots with interspersed thin cover. However, there was plenty of snow on each and every trail to traverse the entire mountain. My friend and I did a majority of the trails and it was a complete blast. The snow was mostly very soft - typical spring snow. However, the snow at the top of Main Street was in mid-season form. There were definitely varying conditions.

For those of you into parks, the Sidewinder Terrain Park was phenomenal. There were many different rails on which to hone your skills and some monstrous jumps that with the slow snow proved impossible to clear. The air you could achieve during the middle of winter must be incredible. The toughest part of the whole night was pushing myself around the base area. The slow snow made it difficult to get to the lifts without unstrapping. No worries, it was all worth it.

Both of the lodges were still in operation, but neither of them had much business. After skiing and boarding until about 8:30, a good 3 hours on the slopes, my friend and I headed back to school. It definitely paled in comparison to my March 26, 2005 last runs at Camelback, but I was happy just being on the slopes. Blue is definitely pushing it a little by keeping the entire mountain open this weekend, but it was well worth it. There is plenty of snow to last for the weekend, but that’s about it. They are making the right move by closing this weekend. It has been a great year. Only 8 months left until next year.

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About the Author

Brenton Archut lives in the tourist town of Bethany Beach, Delaware. He spends his summers working at Fisher's Popcorn. He enjoys bodyboarding and snowboarding and snowboards mostly in the Poconos, but loves to explore new places. Brenton is currently attending school at Lehigh University, where he is pursuing a business degree.

DCSki Sponsor: Canaan Valley Resort

Reader Comments

bousquet19
March 27, 2006
Thanks for your two recent articles on late-season skiing and Blue Mountain, Brenton. Both were very readable and informative.

Your comments on Blue Mountain, esp. about their late-season snowmaking push, moved it from the "probably someday" category to "definitely next year" for me. I hope other areas will consider Blue Mtn's approach, but I also agree with you that ski areas will close if we skiers don't get onto the slopes in March to support them.

Looking forward to reading more of your articles on DCSki.

Woody Bousquet
John Thompson
March 28, 2006
Blue mountain is the best in the poconos. 1072'vertical on most of their trails. A high speed lift. Nice trail design and twice daily grooming. Blue is head and shoulders above the rest in the poconos. And no Elk is not better either. I skiied Elk a lot in the 80's and haven't been there in a decade but Blue is better then Elk also.
Brenton Archut
March 28, 2006
Yes, Blue is a great mountain. The only downfalls I find are that the trails are mostly stright up and straight down and that their southern location makes it difficult to keep amazing slope conditions. If Elk had a high speed lift, it would be the best place. It by far has the best conditions and snow quality. If you like to traverse a mountain and mix up runs, try Camelback. Their 33 trails intermingle greatly and allow for many ways down the mountain.

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