2021/2022 - Skiing the Laurels - 7S, LM, HV & BK
208 posts
33 users
19k+ views
snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
6 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts

Start of the ski season is only a little over a month away. Some interesting news from the resorts:

Seven Springs - the replacement of the Avalanche lift with a new quad is nearly complete.

Laurel Mountain - new GM, Amanda Barnhart, recently named. Amanda is a former ski instructor and adventure sports enthusiast. Not sure what happened to the previous GM. No news of any improvements. Hopefully 7S management will pay for some new light bulbs for the slope lighting so night skiing can resume. Best wishes to Amanda. 

Hidden Valley - promoted from within, Brett Lesnick, former Snow Sports Director and Summer Adventure Manager has been appointed the new HV GM. The handle tow lift providing a connection between the North Summit slopes and front face is being replaced. HV residents have recently complained loudly about the lack of attention to maintenance of Resort facilities. Some facilities are in poor condition. Hope Brett can turn that around. Brett is a local Jarrettsville, MD boy so we hope we can get him to join us on DC SKI. Good luck Brett.

Blue Knob - no new news from the the Knob. Does anyone else have trouble with access their website?

Weather - recent NOAA forecasts indicated a La Nina winter is expected. Some meteorologist are suggesting a winter similar to last year. That would be great!

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
6 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

Maybe imp will chime in with some more details. Sarah Brown, former GM for Laurel, left to take a position with REI outfitters. Chris Plummer moved up in management, I don't know his title. Sarah and Chris were great from my perspective as one who organizes trail and glade restoration efforts. They also extended daily pass discounts for several annual Support Laurel Mountain weekends offered to readers of this site, SkiTalk.com, and for members of the Support Laurel Mountain State Park Ski Area Facebook Group https://www.facebook.com/groups/826787927369047/

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
6 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
I understand they mowed the trail under the lift. That should make it a little more skiable with a little less natural snow. I noticed last year that adjacent to Lower WC, there are a lot of trees growing. Who is responsible for trimming those trees back?
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
6 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

snowsmith wrote:

I understand they mowed the trail under the lift. That should make it a little more skiable with a little less natural snow. I noticed last year that adjacent to Lower WC, there are a lot of trees growing. Who is responsible for trimming those trees back?

Only the very top of Snow Bowl (under the lift) down to the first steep "step" has been mowed. There was a discussion of the issue in our Facebook Group. Seven Springs is responsible for all of the mountain's management so they are ultimately responsible for keeping the entire lift line cleared. 

DCSki Sponsor: Seven Springs Resort
Leo
6 months ago
Member since 11/15/2005 🔗
295 posts

I don't want to be negative but I spend a fair amount of time at both HV and LM in the summer and fall and there isn't a whole lot going on.  I bike regularly at LM and sometimes will ride by the slopes, but don't know much more than what I see.

At HV, specific anecdotal things I can comment on:

The conf center would have made a nice haunted house this fall as it seems abandoned for all intents and purposes.  Along with plenty other of the resort infrastructure.

A friend had their wedding cancelled somewhat last second by wedding standards because there are no longer decent facilities at the resort.  They gave her the option of moving it to 7S but she moved it elsewhere, which I don't blame her.  I doubt she was the only wedding booked for the summer or fall that ended up taking their money and guests elsewhere.

HV was overcrowded all of last winter.  Nothing was done with lifts, or the already existing trail expansion.  So expecting a different result this year would be wishful thinking.

The township (Jefferson) tried to blame homeowner's and deem them responsible for the pathetic construction and maintenance of the drainage along steep parts of the roads within the resort.

So I can see why homeowners would have been vocal and complaining.  They should be.

camp
6 months ago
Member since 01/30/2005 🔗
630 posts

snowsmith wrote:

Blue Knob - no new news from the the Knob. Does anyone else have trouble with access their website?

Well, I was about to pile on and begin my annual complaining about Blue Knob as I haven't seen the daily golf/wings/music specials that they Facebook every other day. So I checked their FB and sure enough, they posted yesterday. I guess since I haven't interacted with one of their posts in a while, I don't get all their new posts. 

Checked their website too and it works a little wonky and I see some new info on the Indy Pass there.

Patf1engineer
6 months ago
Member since 01/23/2018 🔗
23 posts


 We have been considering getting a condo at HV for a few years, but hearing some of this makes Davis WV should a lot more appealing.  That and other things quite frankly.

Leo wrote:

I don't want to be negative but I spend a fair amount of time at both HV and LM in the summer and fall and there isn't a whole lot going on.  I bike regularly at LM and sometimes will ride by the slopes, but don't know much more than what I see.

At HV, specific anecdotal things I can comment on:

The conf center would have made a nice haunted house this fall as it seems abandoned for all intents and purposes.  Along with plenty other of the resort infrastructure.

A friend had their wedding cancelled somewhat last second by wedding standards because there are no longer decent facilities at the resort.  They gave her the option of moving it to 7S but she moved it elsewhere, which I don't blame her.  I doubt she was the only wedding booked for the summer or fall that ended up taking their money and guests elsewhere.

HV was overcrowded all of last winter.  Nothing was done with lifts, or the already existing trail expansion.  So expecting a different result this year would be wishful thinking.

The township (Jefferson) tried to blame homeowner's and deem them responsible for the pathetic construction and maintenance of the drainage along steep parts of the roads within the resort.

So I can see why homeowners would have been vocal and complaining.  They should be.

Leo
6 months ago
Member since 11/15/2005 🔗
295 posts


 There are definitely nice things about HV.  But how it's run under Nutting is not one of them.  The improvements vs Kettler's ownership were all made under Buncher and Nutting pretty much runs it the same way he does the Pirates.  Maximize revenue while minimizing expenses.  Which from an ownership standpoint works in the short term, but that's about it.  

Patf1engineer wrote:


 We have been considering getting a condo at HV for a few years, but hearing some of this makes Davis WV should a lot more appealing.  That and other things quite frankly.

Leo wrote:

I don't want to be negative but I spend a fair amount of time at both HV and LM in the summer and fall and there isn't a whole lot going on.  I bike regularly at LM and sometimes will ride by the slopes, but don't know much more than what I see.

At HV, specific anecdotal things I can comment on:

The conf center would have made a nice haunted house this fall as it seems abandoned for all intents and purposes.  Along with plenty other of the resort infrastructure.

A friend had their wedding cancelled somewhat last second by wedding standards because there are no longer decent facilities at the resort.  They gave her the option of moving it to 7S but she moved it elsewhere, which I don't blame her.  I doubt she was the only wedding booked for the summer or fall that ended up taking their money and guests elsewhere.

HV was overcrowded all of last winter.  Nothing was done with lifts, or the already existing trail expansion.  So expecting a different result this year would be wishful thinking.

The township (Jefferson) tried to blame homeowner's and deem them responsible for the pathetic construction and maintenance of the drainage along steep parts of the roads within the resort.

So I can see why homeowners would have been vocal and complaining.  They should be.

Thefirewarde
6 months ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
77 posts

That's why I think asking 7S to adopt Blue Knob is dubious at best. Granted even minimal effort and/or budget would be nice, but I seriously doubt there would be a complete overhaul like Timberline WV got.

Speaking of Timberline, though, I sure wouldn't mind if the Perfects went and added a third mountain.

hockeydave
6 months ago
Member since 06/30/2004 🔗
776 posts
Played golf with a longtime 7S pass holder a couple of weeks ago. He told me that he and his wife "HAD" to buy a Highlands Pass and that purchasing a 7S only season pass was not an option. Can anyone confirm?
Blue Don 1982 - DCSki Supporter 
6 months ago
Member since 01/13/2008 🔗
1,516 posts

https://www.7springs.com/tickets-passes-rentals/season-passes/ 

That appears to be the case for 7S only.  Looks like one can still buy HV or LM as stand alone passes

hockeydave wrote:

Played golf with a longtime 7S pass holder a couple of weeks ago. He told me that he and his wife "HAD" to buy a Highlands Pass and that purchasing a 7S only season pass was not an option. Can anyone confirm?
Thefirewarde
6 months ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
77 posts

IIf Laurel Mountain is $500/pass and the Highland pass is $675, 7S doesn't seem to be gouging folks all that hard. More likely they're trying to spreadtthe crowd across their three properties. $175 sure ain't nothing, but it's not nearly as steep as, say, Boyne passes.

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
6 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts

Check out the pass price comparison that Scott and I prepared:

DCSki 2021/2022 Unlimited Season Pass Comparison

imp - DCSki Supporter 
6 months ago
Member since 01/11/2007 🔗
261 posts

season passes are very under priced everywhere! 

day tickets are very overpriced.

everyone is giving away to those who would pay higher prices for their addiction, and driving away any new casual skiers.

marzNC - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,797 posts

Price summary for the Laurels from the local TV news.

You’ll pay more to hit the slopes this year skiing, snowboarding

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts
RodneyBD - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago
Member since 12/21/2004 🔗
223 posts

So for an article for skiers about ski resort improvements, the marketing director at Blue Knob made sure to convey that... the restaurant parking lot got re-paved.

Brilliant.

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
Actually, Blue Knob has installed about 3/4 mile of new snow making pipelines. I think the ownership group has limited capital. The improvements will come in small doses. They are unique and I hope they stay that way. You can go to Vail and spend $175 on a weekend lift ticket if you want another type of ski product. 
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

A little birdie told me that snowmaking will begin at Seven Springs and Hidden Valley tomorrow night and Tuesday night. It looks like there will be some low overnight snowmaking temperatures in the coming weeks. 

At Laurel, we had a trail and glade clearing party yesterday. The ground was frozen in the morning but softened in the 50-degree temperatures by afternoon. I don't expect snowmaking at Laurel until December, just in time to open for the Christmas holiday week. 

Thefirewarde
5 months ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
77 posts
Unfortunately they can't use their new pipe or the bigass new pump if they don't have guns. A dozen new low E guns would go a long way towards getting the core trails open sooner.
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago (edited 5 months ago)
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

The Seven Springs family of resorts will have their White Friday deals available this coming Friday and Cyber Monday deals available the following Monday. These are available only on those days.

https://www.7springs.com/tickets-passes-rentals/special-offers/

https://www.laurelmountainski.com/ski-ride/special-offers/?fbclid=IwAR0LiK1cIo4NvilRYK4x-a8ay8KveAV1r8Ekfj8x49S81hA7EyHpyqXDUcQ

http://www.hiddenvalleyresort.com/winter/ski-and-ride/winter-specials/



Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

The guns are firing at Seven Springs. Video on their Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/SevenSpringsMountainResort

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
yes, also at HV. Looks like they can get a day or two then again after turkey day.
Cole53
5 months ago
Member since 02/2/2021 🔗
17 posts

1637689023_tylmccsxjovd.jpg

DCSki Sponsor: Seven Springs Resort
Cole53
5 months ago
Member since 02/2/2021 🔗
17 posts
Blue knob off to a start interesting to see if their snowmaking capabilities will be better this year with the upgraded pipes
Thefirewarde
5 months ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
77 posts
I hear it's just fans on the beginner chair and the tube park, unfortunately.
liketoskidad
5 months ago
Member since 10/19/2007 🔗
24 posts

Seven Springs is blowing snow

1637702978_xfzgodyfsxka.jpg

superguy
5 months ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
353 posts

HV is surprisingly aggressive with snowmaking this season. They're blowing on the back side as well - at least Comet and possibly Barracuda. Imperial's also getting early love too. That's a first. They usually focused on the right side of the valley slipped slopes with the dual triples.

Their TechnoAlpin system seems to be putting it down better than 7S.

Patf1engineer
5 months ago
Member since 01/23/2018 🔗
23 posts
We picked up skis at the shop today and honestly I was a little disappointed with what I saw.  There is not much on Imperial and I only saw a couple of guns operating.  Nothing on Thunderbird either, and did not see anything on Cobra either.  They are making snow on the North Summit although we did not drive over there  
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago (edited 5 months ago)
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

Seven Springs announced opening day this Saturday, Dec. 4.

superguy
5 months ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
353 posts

 A condo owner at BK I know was telling me there was another group that wanted to buy BK when it was sold.  It was supposed to include the Fiore family out of Altoona (the car dealership owners).  They had the money to do it (even had a better offer) but couldn't get the approvals done with the state so the current owners got it.  The current owners are supposed to be a group of doctors, dentists and lawyers out of Pittsburgh. Nice folks but don't know much about running a ski resort, and the management they picked doesn't know much about running it either.  Nice people said, but they're definitely not the best people for the job.  Between the management and owners, they're not running the place well to make enough money to do all the improvements that need done.

He also thought having Scott Bender come in to consult was a complete waste, focusing more on beginners and snowtubing rather than getting skiers and boarders up there that would be more profitable.

I haven't talked to him this year for his thoughts on updates. Take it with a grain of salt as it's one opinion, but he at least has some skin in the game up there.

BK mentioned that they replaced about a half mile of leaky pipe in the snowmaking system, and should provide for better snowmaking on Lower High Hopes.  Pipe really needs to be replaced on Extrovert.  Patrol told me last season that Extrovert has so many leaks that snowmaking is only about 33% efficient.  I would have put that as a higher priority over LHH as Extrovert gets butts to the mountain, and thus more money.

If I ever won the lottery, I'd buy BK and turn it into something special.  That place has so much untapped potential that's just being wasted by a lack of resources and bad management.

Otherwise, BK would need to be bought by someone else that has the money to put into it.  I think Boyne would be a great choice for that. I think they could really do something with BK.  Just looking at what they're doing with Sunday River 2030 and Sugarloaf, they could transform it into a mid-Atlantic power house.  The resort owns 1200 acres of land total, which would give them a lot of room to expand.  The state doesn't own much of it at all - only a good chunk of the summit and the clubhouse area.

Maybe Boyne needs to have the idea pitched to them. :D

Thefirewarde wrote:

That's why I think asking 7S to adopt Blue Knob is dubious at best. Granted even minimal effort and/or budget would be nice, but I seriously doubt there would be a complete overhaul like Timberline WV got.

Speaking of Timberline, though, I sure wouldn't mind if the Perfects went and added a third mountain.

superguy
5 months ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
353 posts

Cobra and Imperial appeared to be getting love last night. Those have kinda been off and on since they started.

It's starting to pile up on the webcams.

Thefirewarde
5 months ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
77 posts

Leaks on Extrovert don't take away percentage points of efficiency, either you can start the trail or you can't. If you're losing 66% of a 3000 GPM system you aren't making snow, you're washing out something. Probably Runout. Not that the pipe on Extrovert is in good shape, or that they could groom the piles out to be a decent base even if it was healthy.

I agree pipe is important, especially High Hopes since it's not stupid wide and can be a second TTB run early. The biggest problem is there's just no way to get water on the hill where the new fan guns can't run - There's decent pumps, a new air compressor, and what I'd call good snowmaking everywhere there are outlets, but the majority of the hill is fighting to open with 1970s technology (tripods/air water towers) or 1990s technology that won't run above 20 degrees.

superguy
5 months ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
353 posts

It's probably a combination of the pipe and really old guns on Extrovert. I believe the 33% efficiency figure though. Ver probably hasn't had much love in years.

I understand that the steeper the run is, the more snow it takes to get it skiable. So if there are efficiency issues, I can see why it's dead last for snowmaking and relies heavily on natural snow. But let's also be real here: other resorts can get some of their signature runs open early and make them a higher priority because it gets butts to the mountain, and thus $$$. Wildcat at LM is always one of the first to get it, and I don't doubt White Lightning at Montage is high on the list.

The best BK can offer is Stembogan, which is a great run in its own right, but it won't have people ditching work to ski it like Extrovert does. But even then, it wasn't open until midseason and it took at least a week, it not more to get it groomed. It ended up being a nasty, curvy mogul run until then, and it wasn't any fun (jacked my back on it).

Just looking at what BK is doing, they're putting money into the wrong things. It's the thinks that don't make money. Aside from making needed repairs that affect safety or operation (say a leaky roof in the lodge), they need to focus nearly all their money into snowmaking and new lift. 66 was pretty much the only lift running last year, and it didn't look like it's been run in ages. The doubles are 60 years old and made by manufacturers that aren't even around anymore. I don't think they're long for this world. Maintenance and repair's gotta be expensive. Even replacing those with a decent used triple would probably make a huge difference. Maybe they should have made an offer on the old Avalanche triple from 7S.

Sadly, I think BK's going to continue to limp along until someone with some actual money comes along.

HVdad
5 months ago (edited 5 months ago)
Member since 01/9/2018 🔗
65 posts

Blue Knob... not sure it will ever become the destination intended. Apologies for posting this link again... showed up on this site several years back. Still hilarious! You'll need to cut and paste the link below.

https://www.yurasko.net/wfy/2019/02/encore-wednesday-peter-graves-pitching-blue-knob-ski-are-condos-in-1982.html

RodneyBD - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago (edited 5 months ago)
Member since 12/21/2004 🔗
223 posts
What's crazy about the BK situation is the bar is so low... Seven Springs gets what, 400,000 annual skier visits?  If BK could peel off just 25k they would be ecstatic.  They just need to improve the skiing product to "respectable"... and they can't formulate a plan to get there... 
Patf1engineer
5 months ago
Member since 01/23/2018 🔗
23 posts


You might want to check the webcams now.  I don't see them opening any time soon unless they have massive piles of snow on top of the hill that they are pushing down.

superguy wrote:

Cobra and Imperial appeared to be getting love last night. Those have kinda been off and on since they started.

It's starting to pile up on the webcams.

wgo
5 months ago
Member since 02/10/2004 🔗
1,451 posts
Denis - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago
Member since 07/12/2004 🔗
2,281 posts
Too good indeed.  That voice.  That confidence.  That style.   Thanks for posting.
HVdad
5 months ago
Member since 01/9/2018 🔗
65 posts

"The fortunate few that get in on the ground floor..."   lol, lol, lol

marzNC - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,797 posts

wgo wrote:

Reposting the above BK promo link because it is too good to not reshare!

https://www.yurasko.net/wfy/2019/02/encore-wednesday-peter-graves-pitching-blue-knob-ski-are-condos-in-1982.html

 Noticed you also had a link to the similar promo for the Pinnacle Inn at Beech Mountain.  That was built.  Perhaps not quite as big as the original plan but has several multi-story buildings around the central building that has a small indoor pool.  I stayed there with my daughter and her tween friend a dozen years ago.  It's right across from the Beech Mountain (town not ski area) sledding hill.

wfyurasko - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago (edited 5 months ago)
Member since 07/27/2014 🔗
281 posts

marzNC wrote:

wgo wrote:

Reposting the above BK promo link because it is too good to not reshare!

https://www.yurasko.net/wfy/2019/02/encore-wednesday-peter-graves-pitching-blue-knob-ski-are-condos-in-1982.html

 Noticed you also had a link to the similar promo for the Pinnacle Inn at Beech Mountain.  That was built.  Perhaps not quite as big as the original plan but has several multi-story buildings around the central building that has a small indoor pool.  I stayed there with my daughter and her tween friend a dozen years ago.  It's right across from the Beech Mountain (town not ski area) sledding hill.

 I did not know that -- I've never skied in the Carolinas before. Peter Graves appeals were not in vain!

I hope Blue Knob gets the Timberline treatment. Given that I went to Blue Knob and T-line in back to back years with basically the same conditions, I liked Blue Knob more. I really enjoyed my day there and really want to return. Perhaps getting my own equipment will increase that likelihood.

marzNC - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,797 posts

wfyurasko wrote:


I hope Blue Knob gets the Timberline treatment. Given that I went to Blue Knob and T-line in back to back years with basically the same conditions, I liked Blue Knob more. I really enjoyed my day there and really want to return. Perhaps getting my own equipment will increase that likelihood.

 Having your own gear definitely makes it easier to decide to get a day or two on the slopes when snow conditions aren't optimal.  Just as having a season pass makes it more likely that extra effort to get to the slopes after a rare snowstorm will be worth it.  Or the Indy Pass.

Thefirewarde
5 months ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
77 posts

Do I buy that the pipe on Extrovert is shot? Could be! We don't know if those old HKD towers are in working order, either. The only way I can parse that 33% comment that makes sense is that the HKDs won't run either from damage or low pressure, so you have to use air-water guns instead. It just doesn't make sense otherwise and is wildly inaccurate if it is talking about Larchmont versus HKD.

Blue Knob and Magic have done basically the opposite of each other for upgrades. Magic has secured two summit lifts, two air compressors, transfer pumps, and a lot (70+ including portables) of new low E snowguns.

Blue Knob has bought a big brand new (Magic got two smaller used) compressor, a big new pump, and some shiny new fan guns. Both have done about the same amount of pipe replacement as of this year. Magic can max out their much smaller GPM system any day of the week, while Blue Knob can move all the water in the world the couple of times a year it gets cold but gets almost nothing done while it's warm.

If I was calling the shots, I'd have more portable low E guns on a truck headed my way ASAP, with a goal to replace one in three guns on Mambo, Deer Run, and Stembogan with new manual low E guns as soon as possible. I would not be even trying to fix Extrovert until I had my core green, blue, and black trails semi updated - if I can't get to Extrovert until after president's day anyway there's no point spending money on it. Conversely, upgrading the guns on Mambo means opening faster with better conditions, and speeding up progress on every subsequent trail. Portables improve every trail that's not too steep to use them on, but going much over 15-20 of them is too much work for a normal size crew on a bad night and they aren't as good as fixed towers in marginal weather.

Lifts, I know they at least repainted all the towers on all three lifts for last season and were limited by staffing - whether that's in addition to or instead of mechanical problems, I don't know. I agree that replacing High Hopes or 66, especially with a larger lift, would be a worthwhile upgrade. I don't know how much extra engineering is involved because of the intersections, potentially grandfathered clearance, and potentially grandfathered midstations. Replacing one of the doubles should yield a spare parts bounty for the other drive because they were both rebuilt at about the same time by CTEC.

What I wouldn't be doing is replacing any pipe that wasn't critical to Mambo, Stembogan, Deer Run, or Runout.

superguy
5 months ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
353 posts

Expressway's pipe had problems last year or the year before (can't remember which: that had to be repaired and contributed to the late opening. I remember videos showing only every third tower making snow, so it was pretty slow going.

A lot of it is kinda kludged. They replaced damaged sections bit still connected it to the old stuff. I think the whole line should have been done right from the start as they're going to have to go in and replace the rest of it.

I'm thinking Extrovert has a combo of leaky pipes and either damaged or unreliable stick guns. I'm thinking Deer Run has issues too as they never really got it covered that well - had limitations or thin cover most of the season.

I think BK focuses too much on the crap runs at the top. Mambo top to bottom used to be the first one open then the beginner area upper twins, Expressway, Jackrabbit/Bunny Hop and Deer Run. Stembogan was the first black to get love. I'd get the piddlie greens at the top last or if there's some spare capacity some night that can afford to have some guns running.

If I were in charge, I'd put a quad (preferably a detachable) on HH and replace the 66 double with a triple to midstation for the black runs.

I'd get Stembogan open first, but I think neglecting Extrovert is a mistake. That's like LM keeping Lower Wildcat closed for most of season. Kinda takes most of the point of skiing it away.

Do you know what BK's pump GPM is? I was under the impression it was only 1000 gpm when they put the new pump in, but I could be mistaken. Not sure on air capacity.

Thefirewarde
5 months ago (edited 5 months ago)
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
77 posts

They have 3000+ GPM, ~5000 CFM. Depends heavily on what they're running as to what they can actually use. I wouldn't expect to see 700 GPM when it's above 25 wetbulb, and less than 500 just running summit fan guns. (20 GPM average startup flow x 25 fans - less is plausable.) 20:1 air water ratio for a generic air water gun, 5000 CFM, 250 GPM more when they spin the compressor and only run tripods/Larchmont towers because they bought pipe instead of new low E guns for Mambo.

I agree there's no good reason to use air on anything between the terrain park and upper Mambo until Stembogan is open. There are some outlets for fans in that area.

If 1 in 3 sticks are running and the spacing is consistent, that to me says they don't have enough air to start the rest - probably because there's one or two Larchmonts running somewhere that they really shouldn't be. If the pipe was bad, they couldn't start any towers on that line.

And seriously, the mountain does have isolation valves for water. If one trail is dead, fine. Fix it in the spring. Losing one trail should only change what order you make snow in, unless it's one of the handfuls of mains that connect everything. There's no point to having good pipe if you're running 750 GPM or 1000 GPM until it's 15 degrees out. Get good guns on the critical trails. Then worry about coming through doing hugely expensive total trail rehabs.

Deer Run really needs to have a 600A line run down it and get some Fan towers, but that's way more $$$ than is reasonable to discuss when we have to pick between 30 new guns or replacing shot pipe.

This is leading to some off topic but interesting points - how many paragraphs does this need to get to to deserve a new topic?

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

Yes, very interesting thread drift. I am tempted to comment and ask more questions. There are many issues that can be explored here, technical and economic. Perhaps Scott will cull the posts to begin a new thread. 

What I really want to post is my experience of opening weekend at Seven Springs. My wife and I went Sunday, being less opening day enthusiasts and more closing day skiers because of our wish to avoid crowds. By accounts, Sunday was less crowded than opening day Saturday. We actually found the space to turn where we wanted instead of turning in reaction to a moving slalom of crowed slopes.

7S had the usual suspects open, Wagner, Fawn, and Philips. The two front face upper mountain terrain parks had coverage, but I don't know if there were any features yet. The front face Cortina Trail was almost ready, but the lowest section at the Wagner intersection where the alpine slide crosses were too thin and narrow to open. What was new, at least new for me on opening, was Lost Boy and The Alley open with terrain park features on Lost Boy from near the top lift unload. That meant that 750 vertical was available serviced by the North Face lift. The front face 6-pack was running along with the fixed-grip Cortina quad, bot serving Wagner, Philip's, and Fawn. Also operational was the beginner's area magic carpet. The Cortina Quad was ski on the entire time we were there (about 3 hours in the morning). We sent the time making laps off that lift. The six had full corrals but moved along nicely the one time we used it. I used the North Face fixed quad only for my first lift ride. The North parking lot was open, so we opted to boot up there and navigate the busy Alley for our first run mindful of terrain park features and allowing for a safe distance between us through traffic skiers and park devotees. 

The surface conditions were about what you would expect from early-season machine made. There was a very firm icy base with a lose sugary covering of varying depth giving rise to small proto bumps on Wagner. We spent more time on Fawn and Philips then I would have expected but it was useful for focusing on getting good technique established with the added bonus of relatively low traffic. All in all it was a nice start to the season but as always, the limited terrain is but a tease for the season ahead of us.

superguy
5 months ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
353 posts

Great report LHC!

How much damage was done with the warm up?

I noticed on the webcams that they were making snow on Lost Boy and thought that was different this year. They also didn't even make snow on Stowe which was surprising.

I also favor Cortina when it's open. Yeah, it's slower but looks you said, it's usually ski on or the wait is less than a minute. Slower lifts also give old farts (and middle aged farts like me lol) a bit more of a break.

I'd rather be sitting in a slow chair than waiting in line for a fast lift, but that's just me.

It's looking like we're going to get a slow start this year. A few days of good snowmaking then warmer days and cold nights until Christmas.

Hopefully we'll have a better January.

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts

Snow making has started on Laurel Mountain

1638898598_whtqgqtvzxmh.jpg

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
5 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts
Nice!! I can't wait to hit Lower Widcat.
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

Still waiting on Lower Wildcat. Seven Springs today 12/18/21:

1639855703_gkhstcbvnibv.jpg 

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
I see snow making happening at LM, but it does not look like they are making snow on Wildcat.
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts


 How can you tell? My guess is that they will open with Broadway. Wildcat will be next.

snowsmith wrote:

I see snow making happening at LM, but it does not look like they are making snow on Wildcat.
imp - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 01/11/2007 🔗
261 posts
deer path is almost done, middle of broadway just started,  upper wildcat is on, lower is next
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts


 Judging from the webcam,  I'd say that Laurel will open with "Ski Top" from the top of the lift down to Tame Cat to Broadway to Deer Path to the chair. The rest of Ski Top will see snowmaking after Wildcat?

imp wrote:

deer path is almost done, middle of broadway just started,  upper wildcat is on, lower is next
Grumpy dad
4 months ago
Member since 11/7/2021 🔗
23 posts

Sigh. Would you look at 7s.   They had opportunity to make snow prior to the warm up. The. Again starting Sunday. Not a single flake dropping on avalanche and it looks like they just started snow making on the slope next to Wagner.  Can't tell if north face area is getting anything by looking at the camera but they are on track to be the most expensive place to ski per acre. 

I expected them to run lean as they are out, and taking as many profits as they can but this is a new level of crap.  I've seen them operate snow guns all over the mountain when they want to.  They just don't.  

The pictures of a wide open mountain covered in snow when they advertise hotel ski specials should be false advertising.  

superguy
4 months ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
353 posts

Yeah, their snowmaking has been disappointing this year. Seems they focused on Lost Boy instead of Stowe, which was a mistake IMO.  They need some more blues open, especially with the holiday week just around the corner.

Tyrol usually doesn't get love until late as they favor Avalanche - allows a couple more greens and Goose Bumps is they're feeling generous.

My concern going forward is that Vail's going to go a lot more conservative than in the past, with picking a few favorites to be more aggressive with it and then more conservative with the others.

I'm heading to New England today and I see it up there too. Okemo has been making the most of the 3 (will have 50+ runs openfor the holidays),with Mind Mount Snow and even Stowe lagging behind. It's really surprising since Stowe's had the best snowmaking temps.  Even Mt Sunapee is barely open. Their temps have been a little warmer but they only have 8 trails and 1 chair open.

7S may end up being ok as it has the most going on, but I see HV and LM suffering as a result.

Bonzski
4 months ago
Member since 10/21/2015 🔗
568 posts
I wish 7S would get their act together.  Too many times I talk to 7S skiers on the chair at Snowshoe.  Stop crowding the 'shoe!
Grumpy dad
4 months ago
Member since 11/7/2021 🔗
23 posts

Many years ago when I was a kid we visited snowshoe.  I remember riding I believe the ballhooter lift looking at a rock face that had a tree in its mouth with a painted red tip that look like a big rock guy smoking a cigar.  

We skied through the woods , got off the track a bit a few times, went over toward Widowmaker but didn't ski it.  My brother did.   

Those we really good memories.  We didn't have a ton of money but what we had my parents spoiled us.  7s was a treat as well as our norms were Boyce park and hidden valley.  But 7s never compared to snowshoe , overall the layout is better and it felt so much bigger. Now I realize it really wasn't that much so.  

Now today I compare snowshoe area to 7s area and laugh.  Snowshoe area blows away 7s area and comparing individual resorts like snowshoe vs 7s , again it's not even close.  

Anytime anyone ever debates me on this I simply mention snowboarding in the spring during the week on cupp run.  There isn't much better to be had within my driving distance.  

So, sorry to clog your slopes. It's been awhile since we have been there due to pandemic but I'm coming back soon! :)

 

Bonzski wrote:

I wish 7S would get their act together.  Too many times I talk to 7S skiers on the chair at Snowshoe.  Stop crowding the 'shoe!
Thefirewarde
4 months ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
77 posts
For posterity's sake, Blue Knob is running the beginner triple only, with the tube area coming soon and Upper 66 and Upper Mambo in progress.
snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts


 Grumpy, yes. Snowshoe is at least 1,000 feet higher in elevation than 7S. This gives that hill billy ski area the weather advantage. 7S and HV make snow when ever the weather allows for it. If we could somehow raise the southwestern PA mountains to 4,800 feet, they would blow away Hill Billy Mountain. And I don't have to drive 5.5 hours thru East Jesus to get there. 

Grumpy dad wrote:

Many years ago when I was a kid we visited snowshoe.  I remember riding I believe the ballhooter lift looking at a rock face that had a tree in its mouth with a painted red tip that look like a big rock guy smoking a cigar.  

We skied through the woods , got off the track a bit a few times, went over toward Widowmaker but didn't ski it.  My brother did.   

Those we really good memories.  We didn't have a ton of money but what we had my parents spoiled us.  7s was a treat as well as our norms were Boyce park and hidden valley.  But 7s never compared to snowshoe , overall the layout is better and it felt so much bigger. Now I realize it really wasn't that much so.  

Now today I compare snowshoe area to 7s area and laugh.  Snowshoe area blows away 7s area and comparing individual resorts like snowshoe vs 7s , again it's not even close.  

Anytime anyone ever debates me on this I simply mention snowboarding in the spring during the week on cupp run.  There isn't much better to be had within my driving distance.  

So, sorry to clog your slopes. It's been awhile since we have been there due to pandemic but I'm coming back soon! :)

 

Bonzski wrote:

I wish 7S would get their act together.  Too many times I talk to 7S skiers on the chair at Snowshoe.  Stop crowding the 'shoe!
Thefirewarde
4 months ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
77 posts

Seven Springs has impressive snowmaking, but Snowshoe has both more elevation and more compressed air (60k+ versus 30k CFM - Snowshoe is the only place south of Blue Mountain with more air than Blue Mountain. Plus they have over a hundred fan guns that don't need compressed air.)

In peak cold conditions Seven Springs can move more water than God, thanks to  gravity feed from the summit pond with 50m+ gallons of storage, but that's only when it's very cold. In normal operations, with equal weather, Snowshoe is going to come out on top.

Laurel Highlands
4 months ago
Member since 10/29/2013 🔗
38 posts

Alterra did a $4M snowmaking upgrade at Snowshoe in 2018 with lots of new fan guns that really helped with early season opening. 

Will be interesting to see what Vail Resorts has planned for 7S; Saw no mention of $ set aside for upgrades as part of the press release for the 7S purchase, but hopefully that is coming if they really want to position 7S as the Epic regional destination alternative to SS.  Some stats to compare: 

SS:  270 Acres, Lift Capacity 23,400 hr 14 Lifts, Including 3 high-speed quads, 2 handle tows, 2 Magic Carpets)  180 In/yr

7S:  s  285 Acres, Lift Capacity 24,900/hr 11 lifts (2 high-speed "six packs", 3 quads, 5 triples, 3 conveyors, 1 rope tow; 2 conveyors in tubing park)  135In

So at least from a acreage and lift capacity perspective, 7s and SS are comparable.   SS has the higher 1500' vertical, but that only applies to the 2 western territory trails; Otherwise the vertical is generally comparable. 

Keep in mind that  SS stats include Silver Creek, which is a separate area where they run a shuttle bus.  If Vail were to to similarly run a bus to neighboring Hidden Valley  the combined  7S/HV would have a clear advantage over SS/SC. Also if they were to finish the trails planned down to the base at RT31, the vertical would be much improved

HV  26 Trails, 110 Acres,Lift Capacity 12,000/hr   8 Lifts (2 quads, 1 triple, 2 surface, 2 handle tows)


Grumpy dad
4 months ago (edited 4 months ago)
Member since 11/7/2021 🔗
23 posts


 SS top elevation is the same for the front vs western ter.  Pretty much. It's literally across the street. However at 7S it could be 28 degrees and at SS it could be 48.  SS is much further south especially ...lately weather wise.  

Now for the comparable acres...and capacity.  Let me tell you something. 7s is all stats.  I literally live ten minutes from 7s, and 9 times out of ten it's dogwater compared to SS for skiable area.  7s brags about stuff they rarely have open.  Like the "Olympic size half pipe" they build fora month then shut down all lift access to, lol.  Cupp run just  shoves 7s into it's locker and traps it there with a dead skunk, as it should.  The only people that go to 7S that think it's better than SS went there when the weather was absolute crap at SS,  and 7s actually made snow AND they got natural snow when SS got rain.  And that's pretty rare but it happens.  Otherwise, IMO  7s just needs to shut down and offer a fast mag train straight to SS and just give up.

Also btw there is a road between 7s and HV that could be improved called fire tower road/sheetz road.  It would get people from 7s to hv much quicker. But why?  HV is a dump now. Riding wise, It's for new skiers/riders. And it's crowded now.  Their bar is a joke, no restaurants. It's a joke of a resort. I would sell my property when Buncher owned it, and if I didnt then,  now..I would hold on and hope jesus adds another 1k vert and creates a nightclub / casino there that catches on and sell before it turns crime ridden. There's no hope for this place, at all. It will be closed in 20 years.

Laurel Highlands wrote:

Alterra did a $4M snowmaking upgrade at Snowshoe in 2018 with lots of new fan guns that really helped with early season opening. 

Will be interesting to see what Vail Resorts has planned for 7S; Saw no mention of $ set aside for upgrades as part of the press release for the 7S purchase, but hopefully that is coming if they really want to position 7S as the Epic regional destination alternative to SS.  Some stats to compare: 

SS:  270 Acres, Lift Capacity 23,400 hr 14 Lifts, Including 3 high-speed quads, 2 handle tows, 2 Magic Carpets)  180 In/yr

7S:  s  285 Acres, Lift Capacity 24,900/hr 11 lifts (2 high-speed "six packs", 3 quads, 5 triples, 3 conveyors, 1 rope tow; 2 conveyors in tubing park)  135In

So at least from a acreage and lift capacity perspective, 7s and SS are comparable.   SS has the higher 1500' vertical, but that only applies to the 2 western territory trails; Otherwise the vertical is generally comparable. 

Keep in mind that  SS stats include Silver Creek, which is a separate area where they run a shuttle bus.  If Vail were to to similarly run a bus to neighboring Hidden Valley  the combined  7S/HV would have a clear advantage over SS/SC. Also if they were to finish the trails planned down to the base at RT31, the vertical would be much improved

HV  26 Trails, 110 Acres,Lift Capacity 12,000/hr   8 Lifts (2 quads, 1 triple, 2 surface, 2 handle tows)


snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
Grump - I understand your preference for Hill Billy Mountain. Yes, it does have 2 runs with 1500? feet of vertical. Yes, it's mountain top is 1,800 feet higher in elevation. Yes, it gets more snow. After you ski Cupp and Shays 10 or 20 times, it's then time to go over to the other side of the mountain that is crowded with what I call "the hat people", folks with southern accents that wear hats, not helmets. And there are alot of them. You're also, a prisoner of the only outpost of civilization within 100 miles. Thus you eat Snowshoe, you shop Snowshoe, and of course you ski Snowshoe, because there is no other place to ski nearby. Meanwhile, in the Laurels, yes, you don't have 4,800 foot Hill Billy Mountain, but you do have 7S, HV, LM, Wisp and Blue Knob to ski within a short distance. So you can get some variety. And from my place at HV, I can be in Pittsburgh attending broadway shows, the Symphony and a plethora of restaurants in 1 hour. Nearby is also Ligoner, Greensburg and Bedford. And it takes me 3:10 to drive from Baltimore rather than the 5:30 it takes to drive thru and past East Jesus to get to Hill Billy Mountain where you are marooned on the "island in the sky" until such time that you drive at least 2 hours to get to something that resembles civilization. If I lived in Atlanta, Snowshoe would be my mountain. From where I live, I'd rather drive north, 6 hours to Vermont to ski than drive south 5.5 hours south to where I can't even get cell phone reception to ski. Don't get me wrong, Snowshoe is a nice place to visit and ski, but I wouldn't want to own there. The drive is too exhausting. Winner:The Laurels.
Laurel Highlands
4 months ago
Member since 10/29/2013 🔗
38 posts

Wow Grumpy tell us how you really feel about it!  I have skied SS several times, and every time swore to not go back because the amount of time it took to get there I could just as well have driven to New England. 7S/HV definitely has the access advantage, and at least for me I would rather spend more hours skiing than driving on bad road behind a lumber truck. Maybe if I had 4-5 days to spend, but more typically I have 2-3 and SS is just not worth the trip for me.   No doubt the elevation gives SS an advantage, but that is also offset by the more northern location at 7S. Depends on the weather pattern, but as a general rule seems like SS opens earlier, will give you that. 

Firetower Road, with some improvement could be a shuttle link between 7S and HV;  Believe there was some talk about that after 7S acquired HV, but went nowhere which I thought was indicative of the lack of vision to build the business.   Also agree re the restaurants; It was a shame that 7S  disbanded the restaurant/bar at HV on RT 31 right around the time that it was getting traction.   Buncher did lots of good things at HV;  Can't say I am a fan of the Nutting era, but in their defense may have been better than some of the other potential outcomes, and now here we are looking to move forward.  I only hope that the Vail doesn't just keep following the same milk-the-cow mentality from the prior administration with an Epic pass slapped on it, and instead looks more strategically as to how they can build a better business going forward to compete with their rival Alterra/SS.


 

Grumpy dad wrote:


 SS top elevation is the same for the front vs western ter.  Pretty much. It's literally across the street. However at 7S it could be 28 degrees and at SS it could be 48.  SS is much further south especially ...lately weather wise.  

Now for the comparable acres...and capacity.  Let me tell you something. 7s is all stats.  I literally live ten minutes from 7s, and 9 times out of ten it's dogwater compared to SS for skiable area.  7s brags about stuff they rarely have open.  Like the "Olympic size half pipe" they build fora month then shut down all lift access to, lol.  Cupp run just  shoves 7s into it's locker and traps it there with a dead skunk, as it should.  The only people that go to 7S that think it's better than SS went there when the weather was absolute crap at SS,  and 7s actually made snow AND they got natural snow when SS got rain.  And that's pretty rare but it happens.  Otherwise, IMO  7s just needs to shut down and offer a fast mag train straight to SS and just give up.

Also btw there is a road between 7s and HV that could be improved called fire tower road/sheetz road.  It would get people from 7s to hv much quicker. But why?  HV is a dump now. Riding wise, It's for new skiers/riders. And it's crowded now.  Their bar is a joke, no restaurants. It's a joke of a resort. I would sell my property when Buncher owned it, and if I didnt then,  now..I would hold on and hope jesus adds another 1k vert and creates a nightclub / casino there that catches on and sell before it turns crime ridden. There's no hope for this place, at all. It will be closed in 20 years.


wgo
4 months ago
Member since 02/10/2004 🔗
1,451 posts

I ski the WV resorts because I live in central Virginia but if I lived in a place where I could get to NE in roughly the same time it takes to get to SS? No contest, I would never go to SS then. So how far north would that be? Checking...ok from Baltimore to Mt Snow VT (just to pick a southern Vermont resort) looks like 6hrs 45 min per google maps, while snowshoe is 5 hrs away. Probably worth driving the extra 2 hours or so. FWIW Timberline is less then 4 hours away from Baltimore.

nickhaas212
4 months ago
Member since 11/13/2019 🔗
49 posts

While I am not a fan of SS in the likes of TM and CV, SS does own 11,000 acres of land..... That speaks to future development!

liketoskidad
4 months ago (edited 4 months ago)
Member since 10/19/2007 🔗
24 posts

Several years ago 7 Springs cut down the side of the mountain off the Great Western Trail. I recall they had a sign up for a while saying there was a new slope coming that I seem to remember them referring to as the Northwest Territory.

Then Hidden Valley back in their 2007 trail map show "Ski Terrain Expansion in 2009 - 2010" where again I believe they cleared the mountain side but never built out the lift.

Does anyone know if these would have added more vertical to each resort. 

Was also thinking that this was about the time when Bob Nutting bought the resorts in 2006 and 2013 and stopped making any real investments in them.  Will be interesting if Vail moves forward to finish the work and open these addition al areas.



Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts


First off, remember what happened in 2008. I know most people have a short memory, but that was the last time the economy was in a giant slide caused by an overheated real estate/mortgage. That killed Buncher's golf resort plans near Bakersfield. Hidden Valley was to be a part of that whole development. What killed Seven Springs Northwest Territory development was that the bottom of the lift is in a "dry" township meaning alcohol sales are prohibited. Seven Springs lost the ballot referendum then the real estate recession happened. The NW Territory expansion could have added up to 200 feet of vertical. I don't think the HV trail expansion would add any significant vertical. 

liketoskidad wrote:

Several years ago 7 Springs cut down the side of the mountain off the Great Western Trail. I recall they had a sign up for a while saying there was a new slope coming that I seem to remember them referring to as the Northwest Territory.

Then Hidden Valley back in their 2007 trail map show "Ski Terrain Expansion in 2009 - 2010" where again I believe they cleared the mountain side but never built out the lift.

Does anyone know if these would have added more vertical to each resort. 

Was also thinking that this was about the time when Bob Nutting bought the resorts in 2006 and 2013 and stopped making any real investments in them.  Will be interesting if Vail moves forward to finish the work and open these addition al areas.



Denis - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago (edited 4 months ago)
Member since 07/12/2004 🔗
2,281 posts
I too spent many years fantasizing about a mid Atlantic ski area that would rival New England.  Where could it be and when would it open?   It isn’t going to happen.  After a while I’d just drive to VT after work on Friday, get there in the wee hours, get what sleep I could, then hit lift opening on Saturday.  On Sunday I’d ski til lift closing and drive back.  It was tough but in my world at the time worth it.  Sometimes I’d fly to Manchester NH, rent a car and drive.  Every time I swore I’d drive the next time and every time I drove I swore to fly the next time.  
wfyurasko - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 07/27/2014 🔗
281 posts

What killed Seven Springs Northwest Territory development was that the bottom of the lift is in a "dry" township meaning alcohol sales are prohibited. Seven Springs lost the ballot referendum then the real estate recession happened. 

I didn't realize Pennsylvania had so many dry townships and that there is a ski area in all of them...

camp
4 months ago
Member since 01/30/2005 🔗
630 posts

wfyurasko wrote:

I didn't realize Pennsylvania had so many dry townships and that there is a ski area in all of them...

 That's funny as hell. I live in the county that contains the township that denied Whitetail twice. Whitetail was the only ski area in the state that couldn't sell alcohol. 

Was 7Springs planning to have a base lodge w/ alcohol in that township? Or just the lift base?

abeski
4 months ago (edited 4 months ago)
Member since 12/8/2021 🔗
20 posts

Denis wrote:

I too spent many years fantasizing about a mid Atlantic ski area that would rival New England.  Where could it be and when would it open?   It isn’t going to happen.  After a while I’d just drive to VT after work on Friday, get there in the wee hours, get what sleep I could, then hit lift opening on Saturday.  On Sunday I’d ski til lift closing and drive back.  It was tough but in my world at the time worth it.  Sometimes I’d fly to Manchester NH, rent a car and drive.  Every time I swore I’d drive the next time and every time I drove I swore to fly the next time.  

 Elk - their slogan is "skiing in Vermont without the drive."  Just past the border, Greek Peak & Catskills are good.  Blue Knob could be radical if they ever got a bunch of capital.  Snowpeak  &  Miller Mountain would be great if they had panned out.

I too find it unfortunate that out of all the big mountains, hills, and ridges in central PA, the best we get is Blue Knob

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts
Laurel will open with Broadway and Deer Path this Saturday 1/8 from 9 am until 7 pm.  
camp
4 months ago
Member since 01/30/2005 🔗
630 posts

Laurel Hill Crazie wrote:

Laurel will open with Broadway and Deer Path this Saturday 1/8 from 9 am until 7 pm.  

 $55 tix, probably my best dollar:drive:price:vertical ratio I'll find this weekend. probably least crowded too

RodneyBD - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 12/21/2004 🔗
223 posts

Thefirewarde wrote:

For posterity's sake, Blue Knob is running the beginner triple only, with the tube area coming soon and Upper 66 and Upper Mambo in progress.

 Even if they can get some snow down they may not have enough employees to run the place. Their snow report(!) is advertising ten different job categories, including “Lift Maintenance”. Yikes.

Looks like BK is the next slow motion Timberline-type debacle. 

Grumpy dad
4 months ago
Member since 11/7/2021 🔗
23 posts


 meanwhile, the biggest friggin alcoholics live there...I know

wfyurasko wrote:

What killed Seven Springs Northwest Territory development was that the bottom of the lift is in a "dry" township meaning alcohol sales are prohibited. Seven Springs lost the ballot referendum then the real estate recession happened. 

I didn't realize Pennsylvania had so many dry townships and that there is a ski area in all of them...

Grumpy dad
4 months ago
Member since 11/7/2021 🔗
23 posts


 For the love of god please , does someone have an idea of what was proposed or a map?  Where is was supposed to be exactly? ive heard mention that it would land toward the bottom of lake gosling / pritts road, but my mind cant comprehend.  Was it to be on the OTHER side of pritts up toward the area where they still have the herman dupre testing facility (ive been told that was what it is)

liketoskidad wrote:

Several years ago 7 Springs cut down the side of the mountain off the Great Western Trail. I recall they had a sign up for a while saying there was a new slope coming that I seem to remember them referring to as the Northwest Territory.

Then Hidden Valley back in their 2007 trail map show "Ski Terrain Expansion in 2009 - 2010" where again I believe they cleared the mountain side but never built out the lift.

Does anyone know if these would have added more vertical to each resort. 

Was also thinking that this was about the time when Bob Nutting bought the resorts in 2006 and 2013 and stopped making any real investments in them.  Will be interesting if Vail moves forward to finish the work and open these addition al areas.



oddballstocks
4 months ago
Member since 02/11/2017 🔗
89 posts

I believe it was the circled area.  You can tell the growth is a lot newer.

What I can't understand is why they just clear cut a giant cut.  It appears to be one giant slope.

For a while this was skiable and after a large storm you would see tracks going into the woods right there.  I haven't seen tracks for a few years, no idea if it's skiable anymore.

1641568353_rdhiacbbzuzi.jpg

oddballstocks
4 months ago
Member since 02/11/2017 🔗
89 posts

As for the dry township thing.  There is apparently a difference between owning empty/unused land and using it.  Once it was utilized with a lift then Seven Springs would be an operating establishment in the township, and their bar wouldn't be legal even though it was on a different part of the land.

I'd love to see new terrain at Seven Springs and I think it's worth trying the expansion again.

One of the biggest things they could do to fix the North Face would be a high speed lift to replace one of the North Face triples.  Right now Gunnar gets slammed because no one wants to wait 15-20min (with stops) to slowly crawl up North Face.  A second high speed lift in that area would relieve pressure from Gunnar and keep lift lines reasonable everywhere.

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

The aspect down to Neal's Run is southwestern, not ideal. The drop down to Trout Run is northern consistent with the rest of the North Face. I never saw a map of proposed trail development so I'm just speculating where trails might go.

I could not find a news clipping on the liquor license hearing. I'll post it if I find it.

GGNagy
4 months ago
Member since 01/5/2006 🔗
469 posts


 The drop down into trout run doesn't seem to be much more in elevation than the frontside slopes. There are houses skiers left of Lost Girl on Neals Run Rd, are there not? 

There was never much that seemed to make sense about the great western expansion though. 

Laurel Hill Crazie wrote:

The aspect down to Neal's Run is southwestern, not ideal. The drop down to Trout Run is northern consistent with the rest of the North Face. I never saw a map of proposed trail development so I'm just speculating where trails might go.

I could not find a news clipping on the liquor license hearing. I'll post it if I find it.

Laurel Highlands
4 months ago
Member since 10/29/2013 🔗
38 posts

When Vail purchased Peake Resorts in 2019, their press release made very clear reference to plans for investment.  Here is exactly what they said:   

"After closing of the transaction, Vail Resorts plans to invest approximately $15 million over the next two years in one-time capital spending to elevate the guest experience at these resorts"

I mention this because there is no similar statement in in the press release for the acquisition of 7S/HV/LM

liketoskidad
4 months ago
Member since 10/19/2007 🔗
24 posts
I seem to recall that clearing the trees for the Great Western  Expansion happened around the time they did a major expansion to the ski lodge.  I always assumed it was the logs they cleared for the Great Western  that were used to expand the lodge..  
Grumpy dad
4 months ago
Member since 11/7/2021 🔗
23 posts

Vail ONLY bought the current resort land as I understand,  there are hundreds if not thousands of acres around the mountain that are owned by either 7S, the state, or private owners in that order.

The land beside gunnar, the top is all private, below neals rd is all 7s. They really goofed not buying up that land when they could possibly.

I never knew of what was shared in the circle area off lost girl trail, I might need to take a walk down there someday. 

Curious who the Shamrock group is.  I see them buying up alot of property in that area in large blocks.  Above triple creek road and further inwards toward 7S, including that area where they have snowmaking equipment, a lake with an island on it, etc.  https://www.acrevalue.com/map/PA/?lat=40.002631&lng=-79.295417&zoom=15

abeski
4 months ago
Member since 12/8/2021 🔗
20 posts

I am sure Vail has zero intention of expanding size or scope of 7S and HV and probably wish they didn't have to deal with LM (or HV too for that matter)

Maybe some fancy high visibility things like new lifts but that's about all they do

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago (edited 4 months ago)
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

Laurel opened today with Upper Ski Top>Tame Cat>Broadway>Deer Path open, 760 vertical in all. The parking lot is more than half full at 10 AM, and absolutely no lines at the chair. Surface conditions varied on the mountain. Tame Cat was hockey-worthy with some snowmaking blow-in in the shallow dips to create some soft spots to turn on. Broadway to Midway Cabin was nice, but for some reason, from there down to Deer Path, there were thousands of Keebler ice cookies, annoying but not deadly. Deer Path was firm but edge-able all the way to the chair. Snowmaking continued through the day on Ski Top> Upper Wildcat>Lower Wildcat and Last Chance. There was a moderate crowd in the lodge, with most in the bar.  Bluebird skies abound, and a brisk wind blowing from the east greeted you at the summit. We skied about 4 hours before we beat it home. We'll be back on Tuesday. 

1641693553_byxtrtuldcgb.jpg

1641693590_iylsbrauylfe.jpg

1641693615_bflrksviqmzk.jpg

1641693633_osbbbzenucja.jpg

Grumpy dad
4 months ago
Member since 11/7/2021 🔗
23 posts

meanwhile at 7s, lift lines were more like lift conventions.  Family member said they waited for over 40 minutes to get onto polar bear express.  No line structure with people just pushing in from all directions and that made the wait worse as you had to fight fight fight your way in.

I see they are making snow along the slope next to the spot.  Ice storm is approaching though.  Figures, couldnt it just be snow!

Patf1engineer
4 months ago
Member since 01/23/2018 🔗
23 posts

Laurel Hill Crazie wrote:

Laurel opened today with Upper Ski Top>Tame Cat>Broadway>Deer Path open, 760 vertical in all. The parking lot is more than half full at 10 AM, and absolutely no lines at the chair. Surface conditions varied on the mountain. Tame Cat was hockey-worthy with some snowmaking blow-in in the shallow dips to create some soft spots to turn on. Broadway to Midway Cabin was nice, but for some reason, from there down to Deer Path, there were thousands of Keebler ice cookies, annoying but not deadly. Deer Path was firm but edge-able all the way to the chair. Snowmaking continued through the day on Ski Top> Upper Wildcat>Lower Wildcat and Last Chance. There was a moderate crowd in the lodge, with most in the bar.  Bluebird skies abound, and a brisk wind blowing from the east greeted you at the summit. We skied about 4 hours before we beat it home. We'll be back on Tuesday. 

1641693553_byxtrtuldcgb.jpg

1641693590_iylsbrauylfe.jpg

1641693615_bflrksviqmzk.jpg

1641693633_osbbbzenucja.jpg

 You stole my Keebler comment 

liketoskidad
4 months ago
Member since 10/19/2007 🔗
24 posts

Here's a WEB site that tacks all the incidents that happen on ski lifts with video and pictures as well as where new lists are and will be installed  liftblog.com

Laurel Highlands
4 months ago
Member since 10/29/2013 🔗
38 posts

Agreed.  Seems Vail has no interest developing real estate surrounding their resorts.  Even at their premier resorts, they have been selling key parcels to 3rd party developers.  No doubt they don't want to tie up their capital and credit in such projects, instead being focused on building our the Epic network.  

Not sure how this works at a smaller  "4 Seasons" resorts like 7S/HV.   In the past ski, golf, and real estate would all be marketed together.  Maintenance and management crews would be shared. With the  the golf course owned and operated separately,  as would  real estate development, seems like there will be lots of overlap and divergence of interests.       

Grumpy dad wrote:

Vail ONLY bought the current resort land as I understand,  there are hundreds if not thousands of acres around the mountain that are owned by either 7S, the state, or private owners in that order.

The land beside gunnar, the top is all private, below neals rd is all 7s. They really goofed not buying up that land when they could possibly.

marzNC - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,797 posts

Laurel Highlands wrote:

Agreed.  Seems Vail has no interest developing real estate surrounding their resorts.  Even at their premier resorts, they have been selling key parcels to 3rd party developers.  No doubt they don't want to tie up their capital and credit in such projects, instead being focused on building our the Epic network.  

Not sure how this works at a smaller  "4 Seasons" resorts like 7S/HV.   In the past ski, golf, and real estate would all be marketed together.  Maintenance and management crews would be shared. With the  the golf course owned and operated separately,  as would  real estate development, seems like there will be lots of overlap and divergence of interests.       

After Katz took over, VR continued to shift away from the real estate approach that the founders of Vail thought was the way to make money in the long run.  The previous CEO started that process in the ten years that he was in charge.  Now that man is CEO of AMC Entertainment.  Unlike Katz, he didn't ski.

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
We had 2 days of decent winter weather with lots of snowmaking and 8" of natural. Snow making crews worked around the clock to open terrain. Progress was made. Then back to crap. Sunday was absolutely miserable, rain and 30-40 mph winds. When can we get a break?! 
Patf1engineer
4 months ago
Member since 01/23/2018 🔗
23 posts
Hidden Valley only has 5 runs today and only running the sunrise lift.  Not sure what the story is with them.
Blue Don 1982 - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 01/13/2008 🔗
1,516 posts

I was hoping to take a few mid week days off here and there and visit LM.  Are they open or not?  Snow report is blank for today but says reopening on Tues.  It's 10 AM with no updates.

No social media posts since 1/8/22 - Strange ......

1641913329_fcrrgzwijolb.jpg

Patf1engineer
4 months ago
Member since 01/23/2018 🔗
23 posts


Yes they are open, not open on Mondays.  Only Broadway open for now.  I think Upper Wildcat to Lat Chance is making good progress, maybe by the weekend.  They have started to make some snow on Lower Wildcat but I think that still has a way to go.

Blue Don 1982 wrote:

I was hoping to take a few mid week days off here and there and visit LM.  Are they open or not?  Snow report is blank for today but says reopening on Tues.  It's 10 AM with no updates.

No social media posts since 1/8/22 - Strange ......

1641913329_fcrrgzwijolb.jpg

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
I think the trail openings at HV (or lack there of) and this recent issue of LM being closed on Monday (without providing any advanced notice), may be a staffing issue. If so, they need to notify us so that we can understand why we can only ski 5 trails at HV. If they provide us an honest explanation, we may not be happy, but at least we know that they care.
Patf1engineer
4 months ago
Member since 01/23/2018 🔗
23 posts
The Laurel schedule, including the Monday closure, has been posted on the website for some time.  I don't know if they had it on social media.  They are opening on Monday holidays including next Monday for MLK day.
oddballstocks
4 months ago
Member since 02/11/2017 🔗
89 posts
Anyone know if Seven Springs plans on opening any new terrain by this weekend?

Thinking of going up on Friday, but not excited with options.  A single run at LM or a few front side runs at Seven Springs.

If Seven Springs was able to get Avalanche open that'd be nice, or anything on the North Face.  Unfortunately there aren't any cams on that side.
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

Rumor has it that Stowe and Avalanche will be open soon. My guess is the reason there is not more terrain open at any of the local resorts has more to do with warm weather than staffing issues.

Timberline's base elevation is higher than Seven Springs summit elevation so they have had better snowmaking conditions plus T-line needs to rebuild their market base and also hope to steal customers from unhappy Vail resort customers.

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts

Well, I gave Vail a break so I can get a first hand look at how they would operate the resorts. And so far I am not impressed. There does not seem to be a customer focussed approach. Is Eric "The Beancounter" Mauch somehow still involved in managing ski operations?:

Hidden Valley - there are only 5 trails open during weekdays. They have been making snow on Imperial for more than a week and it is still not open. No snowmaking has occurred on one of the main trails, Cobra. The North Summit is closed during the week. 

Laurel - without notice, and actually on a Monday (the first Monday they were supposed to be open this year) they decided not to open on Mondays. Despite the fact that when we bought our passes they were open on Mondays. I think we should contact the PA Attorney General's office about this.

Seven Springs - the lift lines this past weekend were the longest lift lines I have ever seen, locally. 

I gave them a break because of the weather, but now it's time to perform. This smells of Eric Mauch.

msprings
4 months ago
Member since 07/4/2014 🔗
138 posts
I’d also give Vail a break for this entire season. Acquiring the trio during the season is hard enough. I’m giving them a year to get their feet under them and evaluate current operations. Next season will be a better barometer of their operations and intentions going forward. 
msprings
4 months ago
Member since 07/4/2014 🔗
138 posts
I’d also give Vail a break for this entire season. Acquiring the trio during the season is hard enough. I’m giving them a year to get their feet under them and evaluate current operations. Next season will be a better barometer of their operations and intentions going forward. 
oddballstocks
4 months ago
Member since 02/11/2017 🔗
89 posts

Looks like they fumbled the ball in Ohio with the resorts they recently purchased there.  They can't find anyone to work for $11.25/hr so places are just closed and hours reduced.

Family in Ohio pointed out to me that the local paper Cleveland.com ran a few pseudo-hit pieces about this.  How Cedar Point (an amusement park in western Ohio) had staffing issues so they raised wages to $20 and solved it.  But that Vail is blaming anything and everything except their low pay as a reason.  Vail specifically point out that $11.25 was an increase over past years as if people should be happy.

Wonder if the crux of the issue is they have sold a ton of passes and tried to squeeze down on operating costs to show high margins.  That works for a little while, but they were caught in an inflationary environment where a potential worker has to choose between $11.25 at a Vail resort which is probably a bit hard to get to, or $15-20/hr at the McDonalds down the street.

The problem for Vail is this can cause a vicious cycle.  If skiers lose confidence in their ability to run resorts they'll stop buying passes, and with reduced revenue they'll have to shrink operations etc.

I've kept my eyes on two websites this week, Seven Springs and Timberline.  Seven Springs has almost nothing open while Timberline is 90% open.  It has been freezing this week here and Seven Springs could have blanketed the mountain with snow.  Except each time I look at the cams there are just a few guns on and a lot of grass showing.  It's a shame.

Thefirewarde
4 months ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
77 posts
Seven Springs is theoretically capable of moving a huge volume of water in single digit temperatures. They have the capability, but a lot of their system was built out with the most labor intensive low energy towers ever made - if they're shorthanded it'll show up in slow progress. Laurel is actually more modern with a higher percentage of Impulses, Millenniums, and Spectrums (aka guns with two or more stages).
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

I don't think Vail is actively managing the Seven Springs resorts yet.

As for Laurel, Since 7 Springs began to manage the place they've opened the week before Christmas and I believe that they opened with Broadway and Wildcat top to bottom, most years. One year they had pump failure that cause a later opening for Wildcat. Then this year mother nature did not cooperate. Upper Wildcat to Last Chance will be open tomorrow and Lower Wildcat is about 15 hours of solid snowmaking temps from opening. There are huge whales at the top of Lower but there seem to be only dolphins at the bottom of the slope as if the lower water hydrants are water or air starved. Hopefully, there will be enough cold nights to get Lower open this weekend.

Laurel's newest trail, a redesigned Innsbruck, and the remade Deer Path both have the 2016 tech HKDs the rest of the mountain has late 90's tech HKDs. 

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
4 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts

The predicted storm, Sunday into Monday could be the biggest dump we've had in a long time:

1642048063_bqsbollivplm.jpg

SwissMountain
4 months ago
Member since 05/18/2007 🔗
67 posts

Not sure why everyone believes to be a snowmaking expert. Not do defend 7S but the snowmaking team is as good as it gets. In my opinion the wind was high, very low humidity and as you pointed out freezing condition will cause issue with snow not sticking to the slope. It creates a very dry snow and with wind and a solid slope the snow will end up everywhere else besides on the slopes. That’s a common practice not to waist your recourses (cost/benefit as many business do).

Again I have no insight why not it could have been many other factors such as no labor (system is mostly manual), broken pipes (freezing temps) etc. So it is not fair to speculate on something you have little insight knowledge. Of course it could be simple as just not care…:-) 

cheers

Thefirewarde
4 months ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
77 posts
I know how much water pumping capacity 7s has, and I know how much Camelback has. Seven Springs has a lot more capacity than Camelback, even ignoring the gravity feed. Somehow, Camelback has more open, despite having less capacity and warmer weater. Don't even try and compare Timberline (also less water than 7S, but better weather) or Blue Mountain (comparable water available, worse weather, 34 trails open).
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

Laurel has most of the terrain open. Only Dream Highway still closed. There is not quite enough snow to keep one from destroying your board's bases. Lower Wildcat was widened out so no steep drop off to a skree field. Condition are pretty good today. 

 

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago (edited 3 months ago)
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
I skied HV today. Conditions  were great. However, the North Summit was closed and the only real blue run on the front side that was open was Imperial. It is taking forever to get Cobra open. On top of that. Pittsburgh schools were closed, so the place was crowded. With only one side of the mountain open and only one main blue trail open, it got boring pretty quickly. I don’t understand why the North Summit side of the mountain was closed. Not sure who is making decisions but they don’t seem to be based on customer service. On top of that there seems to have been a pause in snow making. They need to do better.
Blue Don 1982 - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 01/13/2008 🔗
1,516 posts

That was hilarious. It was on the front page of the Tribune-Review this morning.

1642771268_iqiypuhseenf.jpg

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts
Maybe the snow sports school should give lessons on how to navigate slippery (slippy to all yinz yinzers) steps. 
yellowsnow
3 months ago
Member since 12/15/2005 🔗
282 posts
Yes, very slippy. 
imp - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 01/11/2007 🔗
261 posts

steepest thing they have. not groomed often, possibly need a winch snowblower

Patf1engineer
3 months ago
Member since 01/23/2018 🔗
23 posts
Well it made Jerry of the Day.....
tskski
3 months ago
Member since 03/13/2003 🔗
121 posts
Not funny for the person sliding down the steps but you can't help laughing.
marzNC - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,797 posts

Apparently for the next video report there the slippery section of the steps were all blocked off by yellow tape.

Some people thought it was a marketing stunt.

BackInDC
3 months ago
Member since 03/18/2021 🔗
10 posts
What's it going to take to get the second half of Blue Knob open? Does it usually get open at a certain point in the season or could we go all year with most of the black runs closed?
camp
3 months ago
Member since 01/30/2005 🔗
630 posts

marzNC wrote:

Some people thought it was a marketing stunt.

 It is. They've been having fun with their reports this season. Wonder if Vail will continue that

marzNC - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,797 posts

camp wrote:

marzNC wrote:

Some people thought it was a marketing stunt.

 It is. They've been having fun with their reports this season. Wonder if Vail will continue that

 It's interesting, some people thought it was funny.  Others thought it was in poor taste.  In any case, it certainly got attention.  Guess it fits the saying "there is no such thing as bad publicity."

camp
3 months ago
Member since 01/30/2005 🔗
630 posts

marzNC wrote:

camp wrote:

marzNC wrote:

Some people thought it was a marketing stunt.

 It is. They've been having fun with their reports this season. Wonder if Vail will continue that

 It's interesting, some people thought it was funny.  Others thought it was in poor taste.  In any case, it certainly got attention.  Guess it fits the saying "there is no such thing as bad publicity."

 Yea, the ones I've seen all poke fun of the "Jerrys", which is kinda in bad taste ski-wise these days anyway

Crush
3 months ago
Member since 03/21/2004 🔗
1,082 posts
Oh come now - hasn't that happened to all of us at some point? Ruh-roh maybe it was only me ...
marzNC - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,797 posts

Crush wrote:

Oh come now - hasn't that happened to all of us at some point? Ruh-roh maybe it was only me ...

 Oh yeah, happens to everyone.  

But would you want a video of you slipping and falling going viral if someone posted it online?  Lots of people seeing a marketing video for the first time probably wouldn't understand the humor in the situation.  It looked rather insensitive at first glance to ignore a person having so much trouble.

imp - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 01/11/2007 🔗
261 posts
Abby does that with either a tripod or selfie stick, so she would not have seen it actually happening, BUT she did or someone did edit the piece to add the snow scenes.  
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

I've not been following the 7S videos so I thought the slip and slide was real. I guess they've been having some fun with background antics all season.

liketoskidad
3 months ago
Member since 10/19/2007 🔗
24 posts

Headed up to Hidden Valley today.  Pretty good conditions. 80% of slopes open and not too bad of a crowd.  $18 for a hamburger, fries and a drink at the snack bar was certainty steeper than any slope and couldn't fine an open table.  Had a fun day all around though.1642975253_izotzcputkgd.jpg

camp
3 months ago (edited 3 months ago)
Member since 01/30/2005 🔗
630 posts

liketoskidad wrote:

Headed up to Hidden Valley today.  

This is a lot more closed for late January than I remember. Or is their report not updated?

1642976411_mdbjjamgvtcv.jpg


snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
The slopes are closed....beyond operating hours. When they're operating, most of those slopes are open.
Crush
3 months ago
Member since 03/21/2004 🔗
1,082 posts

marzNC wrote:

Crush wrote:

Oh come now - hasn't that happened to all of us at some point? Ruh-roh maybe it was only me ...

 Oh yeah, happens to everyone.  

But would you want a video of you slipping and falling going viral if someone posted it online?  Lots of people seeing a marketing video for the first time probably wouldn't understand the humor in the situation.  It looked rather insensitive at first glance to ignore a person having so much trouble.

 nah - i've had so many crashes, busted bones, bent skis and slams, race coaches saying "well that was sloppy", kids at Ski Liberty (was it Radley I can't remember), and I think Ed Fowler has a video of me at Roundtop slamming full speed off the blind  mid-course knowl ( I did have the fastest split time) where i almost pooped in my pants under lift lines where everyone was laughing and harsh-ing me i am way beyond it. No biggie !

Thefirewarde
3 months ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
77 posts

I'd say "enough natural" is what it'll take to open the fun parts of BK. They seem to be running everything as normal, so Stembogan and High Hopes could be open for President's Day. I figure Jackrabbit and Deer Run are next, then over to the black diamonds.

msprings
3 months ago
Member since 07/4/2014 🔗
138 posts

Any reason Lower Wildcat is not open today?

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts


I just found your question this morning. Lower was closed yesterday because snowmaking was in progress, leaving giant whales. The surface was variable, with breakable crust to hard and icy surfaces making for dangerous conditions. Also, the main groomer broke down, leaving only the winch cat to groom the mountain. Lower is open today, groomed, and two additional trail segments were opened.

msprings wrote: 

Any reason Lower Wildcat is not open today?

Thefirewarde
3 months ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
77 posts
Blue Knob allegedly has a second trail open to the true base on natural snow, with Jackrabbit and Deer Run in progress or open. Stembogan for President's Day, maybe?
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts


 I just found your comment. :ogbiggrin: If people are waiting to ski Laurel when the entire mountain is opened and you are looking for the thrill of skiing natural snow, then now is the time to hit Laurel. 

Patf1engineer wrote:

Laurel Hill Crazie wrote:

Laurel opened today with Upper Ski Top>Tame Cat>Broadway>Deer Path open, 760 vertical in all. The parking lot is more than half full at 10 AM, and absolutely no lines at the chair. Surface conditions varied on the mountain. Tame Cat was hockey-worthy with some snowmaking blow-in in the shallow dips to create some soft spots to turn on. Broadway to Midway Cabin was nice, but for some reason, from there down to Deer Path, there were thousands of Keebler ice cookies, annoying but not deadly. Deer Path was firm but edge-able all the way to the chair. Snowmaking continued through the day on Ski Top> Upper Wildcat>Lower Wildcat and Last Chance. There was a moderate crowd in the lodge, with most in the bar.  Bluebird skies abound, and a brisk wind blowing from the east greeted you at the summit. We skied about 4 hours before we beat it home. We'll be back on Tuesday. 

1641693553_byxtrtuldcgb.jpg

1641693590_iylsbrauylfe.jpg

1641693615_bflrksviqmzk.jpg

1641693633_osbbbzenucja.jpg

 You stole my Keebler comment 

hockeydave
3 months ago
Member since 06/30/2004 🔗
776 posts

Hey LHC.... Shhhh!!! Don't let out the secret, but I agree, now's the time before the projected mini-thaw next week.

It was great yesterday too!

No ice anywhere except maybe a little bit of Lower.

Natural soft powder or packed powder everywhere, including Dream Highway.

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

Here are a few shots from previous years. Sorry, I had too much fun the last two days to stop for snapping pictures, and these might even be from Jim Kenney.

Broadway

1643472539_cmewgwcjxtgp.jpg

Lower Wildcat

1643472687_xulmwcizbtty.jpg

imp - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 01/11/2007 🔗
261 posts

spectacular today, all open well covered.  Dream getting a little rocky by 4pm. glades great all day, sorry LHC

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

                      Lower Wildcat 2/1/22

1643769069_awaqornnvvun.jpg

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

                      Snow Bowl 1/29/22

1643894552_pdwrmzztpikg.jpg

Submitted to  Support Laurel Mountain facebook.com by N. Jones.

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
hockeydave
3 months ago (edited 3 months ago)
Member since 06/30/2004 🔗
776 posts
What a great story for Mr Cook. Lift operator to GM of 3 resorts in a little over a decade. Hope he did it through hard work and perseverance.
marzNC - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,797 posts

hockeydave wrote:

What a great story for Mr Cook. Lift operator to GM of 3 resorts in a little over a decade. Hope he did it through hard work and perseverance.

 From the SAM article:

"Cook is moving into his new role leading Seven Springs, Hidden Valley, and Laurel Mountain shorty, starting Feb. 14. He started at Roundtop in 2009 as a lift operator before moving to Liberty Mountain, Pa., where he served as director of operations. In 2017, Cook became assistant GM at Whitetail Resort, Pa., and then GM in 2019. After Vail Resorts acquired the three ski areas in its acquisition of Peak Resorts in 2019 (which acquired the three areas from Snow Time Inc., in 2018), he returned to Roundtop as GM."

Brett Cook's career in PA was under Snowtime and then Peak Resorts before VR took over Peak.  In this case, he's in his home state.  Where there have been problems for VR (and Peak) has often been when a GM was moved over from a completely different region that had a different ski culture.

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts

Howard: Vail is a welcoming place for all | VailDaily.com

Looks like Vail is trying to get that positive message out to drown out the negative noise.

I skied at Liberty last Thursday and my only complaint was the food. The 'bakery' served Otis Spunkmeyer pre-package muffins and the only venue open for lunch was the outdoor barbeque stand which had a long line to get food. I finally gave up and left to get some food off the mountain. Maybe this is due to Covid?  That said, the conditions were very good and they were 100% open.

Leo
3 months ago
Member since 11/15/2005 🔗
295 posts

The only Vail resort I skied this year (besides Hidden Valley, LOL) was Park City.  Crowding on Saturday was a problem, but the rest of the time I was there it was not.  Lack of grooming was very obvious, and normally I'm not one to worry about it but I could see how less experienced skiers would be negatively impacted by it.  And they weren't getting much snow so the ungroomed terrain was particularly challenging. 

I think there are things they can (and should) improve upon.  I also think it's easy to pick on Vail.  And lastly, it could very much be region/mountain dependent depending upon what Vail resort you are at.  

I skied at Snowshoe two weeks ago, had great conditions and had a blast but heard some pretty bad horror stories.  A guy I rode the lift with told me he waited in the lobby of his (Snowshoe owned and operated) building for 3 1/2 hours on a Sunday evening to check in.  My ski days were a non holiday Tues and Weds and it was surprisingly busy.  

So again, it's really not specific to Vail, they're just an easy target, IMO.

Bonzski
3 months ago
Member since 10/21/2015 🔗
568 posts

Leo wrote:

I skied at Snowshoe two weeks ago, had great conditions and had a blast but heard some pretty bad horror stories.  A guy I rode the lift with told me he waited in the lobby of his (Snowshoe owned and operated) building for 3 1/2 hours on a Sunday evening to check in.  My ski days were a non holiday Tues and Weds and it was surprisingly busy.  

So again, it's really not specific to Vail, they're just an easy target, IMO.

Obviously we don't know the details but I know several people who manage condos at Snowshoe and they often talk about guests who show up well before the stated check-in time and complain they can't get in.  It takes time to clean/turn-over units, especially at peak times like Friday afternoon and the short-staffing issues have made it worse.

I'm not sure it's just Vail is an easy target.  I feel it's rooted in Vail's business model to centralize a lot of mountain ops & decision-making at the HQ in Colorado to reduce costs, then add increased pass sales beyond even their expectations.  This has led to reduced staffing and a loss of local market understanding thus eroding customer service at a time when volume is way up across the industry. I expect they'll learn from it all and make adjustments, some of which are already happening (ie new GM at Stevens Pass, increasing pay, etc). Will be interesting to see what the Epic pass pricing will be next season.

camp
2 months ago
Member since 01/30/2005 🔗
630 posts

Hidden Valley question:

Has the Avalanche Lodge on Northside been staffed and open for lift ticket sales?

oddballstocks
2 months ago
Member since 02/11/2017 🔗
89 posts
Camp, it has not.  I asked about it a few weeks ago if it was a one-off or a season thing and the employee made it sound like it was more of a permanent thing this year.  We were there on an extremely busy weekend, it would have been nice to have someone over there. 
Laurel Highlands
2 months ago
Member since 10/29/2013 🔗
38 posts

Seems to be lots of things closed at HV Perhaps staffing problems and hopefully not decisions by the new mgmt?   Noticed the Clock Tower Restaurant was not open for the season.  When I was there 2 weekends ago crowding was the worst I have ever seen it with no place to sit anywhere in the lodge. The room next to the cafeteria where they would let people hang out was also closed, so between that and clock tower was making the problem worse. 

Also the rope tow between Valley and North Summit was not staffed and running.  Not sure if that was just the day I was there or if has been ongoing this season.  Wasn't that a new or upgraded rope tow this season?  

camp
2 months ago
Member since 01/30/2005 🔗
630 posts

Laurel Highlands wrote:

 Wasn't that a new or upgraded rope tow this season?  

 Yes, it is new.

Geez. I'll be there all weekend and hate the thought of going into an even more crowded main lodge to get tix. I guess Glaciers is off the table too. Tailgate time, good weather for that at least

Leo
2 months ago
Member since 11/15/2005 🔗
295 posts

I ski a lot of days at HV.

The cross over rope tow has been hit and miss and there is no great rhyme or reason.  Sometimes it is closed for staffing reasons, I believe it has also broken down more than once this year.

Avalanche Lodge is open to use, but there is no staff, no concessions and no ticket sales.

I "think" the Clocktower decision predated Vail, though maybe they were having input on decisions prior to closing on the purchase of the resort.

My understanding is that the vast majority of the issues are employment related.

camp
2 months ago
Member since 01/30/2005 🔗
630 posts

Leo wrote:

The cross over rope tow has been hit and miss and there is no great rhyme or reason.  Sometimes it is closed for staffing reasons, I believe it has also broken down more than once this year.

Are we permitted to still ski/skate/walk to and from the Northside if it's down?

Leo
2 months ago
Member since 11/15/2005 🔗
295 posts


 Yes -- which isn't bad.  There have been a few breakdowns this year with the North Summit quad and the triple lifts, which those are a lot more frustrating than skating back across from the NS.  And my kids like to complain when the park rope tow isn't running.  LOL.  Given the labor market and challenges all resorts are facing, I'm not complaining.  It's just the reality of skiing today...and in my experience this year it doesn't matter where you are.

camp wrote:

Leo wrote:

The cross over rope tow has been hit and miss and there is no great rhyme or reason.  Sometimes it is closed for staffing reasons, I believe it has also broken down more than once this year.

Are we permitted to still ski/skate/walk to and from the Northside if it's down?

Thefirewarde
2 months ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
77 posts

BK advertising they got Stembogan open for President's Day... Guys. That's the bare minimum. That should be open on manmade on or about MLK weekend.

They bought to be able to get that done even without buying new guns during January.

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
The weather last week and this week has killed the bases at the local Laurels resorts. I was told that Eric "The Beancounter" Mauch is still running the resort operations for 7S/HV/LM. So I doubt that tight wad will make more snow. Our season pass money will go in his pocket.  So we might have an early end to the season. I am told the Vail takes over May 1. 
Cole53
2 months ago
Member since 02/2/2021 🔗
17 posts
Any bets on best conditions this weekend?
Leo
2 months ago
Member since 11/15/2005 🔗
295 posts


 Realistically not shaping up to be very good. I guess the wildcard being if somehow there is appreciable accumulation. 

Cole53 wrote:

Any bets on best conditions this weekend?
snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
I skied HV today and was amazed what the grooming crew produced from the wet granular and boiler plate that they were dealt with. Not sure what the forecasted freezing rain will have on conditions. 
Patf1engineer
2 months ago (edited 2 months ago)
Member since 01/23/2018 🔗
23 posts
Laurel Mountain closed today (Friday February 25) due to power outage
superguy
2 months ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
353 posts

I hit both 7S and HV this weekend.  7S Saturday, and HV Sunday.

I can't say I had a good day at 7S.  While the lift lines weren't terribly long (Polar Bear got a bit long at times, but not terrible), there were a lot of people, and sadly, many weren't too considerate.  I nearly broke my leg at the end of Stowe heading toward the Cortina lift.  A guy and 2 young kids cut right in front of me.  I was on rentals due to some boot issues, so between that and the snow being pretty icy, I had to make a hard stop. Unfortunately, it wasn't smooth and I went down hard.  I felt like my left leg or ankle was going to break in the process, but thank God the binding released.  Otherwise, I probably would have.  At least he apologized.

They were making snow over most of the front side.  Most greens weren't seeing snowmaking, I'm guessing to not bug the less experienced.  Wagner, Stowe and Avalanche were getting hit hard.  Tyrol got nothing.  Fawn Lane had some earlier as the snow was powdery.  North Face was getting love, as well as various spots on the top of the mountain.

It was pretty icy overall though. A lot of hardpack and frozen granular, sometimes the consitency of sugar.  Moguls were popping up like crazy where snow was getting made.  In the areas where the manmade snow was getting packed down, like lower Wagner, it was actually nice. Coverage was still good overall.

HV, on the other hand was great. I always seem to have really good experiences there.  It was a little warmer, so the snow was softer - especially where the sun hit it.  No trouble turning and skidding - carving was really easy and a treat. Lines were minimal - never more than 2 minutes.

There was some ice and thin spots, mostly on the edges of a few trails (Cobra, bottom of Angel's Elbows and Voyager).  I was able to cruise all day - didn't have to constantly stop - partly because I solved the boot issue I had the previous day, and partly because the snow was a lot better. Thunderbird and Firebird were icy, but Barracuda and Viper were nice.

It was windy mid-afternoon.  I had something happen that never happened to me in 30 years of skiing - I hit the safety gate at the top.  I was on the right side of the quad, with a mom and her kid (probably 8-10 years old) on the left.  As they got off, a big gust of wind came and swung the chair to the right. I suddenly had nothing under me just as I was starting to get off.  Fortunately, I didn't.  I ended up going around and tripping the gate.  Liftie removed my skis and helped me off the chair and down so I didn't slip on the ice.  Patrol had grabbed my skis and moved them off to the side so I could get back into them.  I always wondered what would happen if the gate was tripped.  Now I know. XD  Someone else tripped one as well, so at least I wasn't the only one.  :D

With driving to CA this weekend and the predicted weather next week, this may have been my last time out for the season.  I had a great day at HV - great snow, sunny, and had a lot of fun - so if it was, I'm ending on a high note.

Still hoping I can get out a time or two more if the weather changes.

Super

superguy
2 months ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
353 posts

I think Laurel's done for the year.  With the good temps over the last few days, I hadn't seen anything on the webcam, and grooming seemed to be done pretty early.  Maybe someone who's been there could elaborate.

7S was making snow since Friday nearly 24/7 in various sections, though mostly on the front side.  Guns were on the entire time I was there Saturday.  I saw hoses removed from hydrants on Tyrol, so I think that's done. Then again, that's been the red-headed stepchild of the front side for at least a few seasons now.

Interesting tidbit I was told by one of the local ski shops this weekend: 7S can't run their system at full capacity.  Supposedly when they tried a few years ago, it blew out a lot of transformers.  Take it with a grain of salt, but seemed interesting nonetheless.

HV seems to be making snow primarily at night.  Any run that relies on portable snow machines (and not the fans/sticks) have had the hoses removed.  Barracuda, Viper, Charger - those look to be done for the year.

snowsmith wrote:

The weather last week and this week has killed the bases at the local Laurels resorts. I was told that Eric "The Beancounter" Mauch is still running the resort operations for 7S/HV/LM. So I doubt that tight wad will make more snow. Our season pass money will go in his pocket.  So we might have an early end to the season. I am told the Vail takes over May 1. 
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

 

superguy wrote:

I think Laurel's done for the year.  With the good temps over the last few days, I hadn't seen anything on the webcam, and grooming seemed to be done pretty early.  Maybe someone who's been there could elaborate.

I heard that Laurel will close this Sunday.

camp
2 months ago
Member since 01/30/2005 🔗
630 posts

Laurel Hill Crazie wrote:

I heard that Laurel will close this Sunday.

Wow, and 100% open for only a few days? Is that similar to average?

Blue Knob has yet to get anywhere near normal.

White Grass closed earlier than any season in their history.


 

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
LM ski report today says this is the last week for mid-week skiing.
superguy
2 months ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
353 posts

snowsmith wrote:

LM ski report today says this is the last week for mid-week skiing.

 Yeah, looks like LHC was right.

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts
I'll miss Laurel's closing day unless they open the following weekend. Tomorrow I'll be skiing Bolton Valley on the Indy Pass. They report 2 feet of snow since last Wednesday and a few more inches tonight. Jay Peak later this week then we head over to New Hampshire for Cannon and Waterville Valley.
snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
Cannon is an impressive mountain. I had to cut my trip short and never made it to Waterville. Please provide a report.
imp - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 01/11/2007 🔗
261 posts
snow will be there, not sure of the will to open
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago (edited 2 months ago)
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts


 

snowsmith wrote:

Cannon is an impressive mountain. I had to cut my trip short and never made it to Waterville. Please provide a report.

We just got a small sample Of Waterville. We got about 3 hours in before the rain. In my youth, I would still be out there but now I opt for being dry. If you like long upper blue and black groomers then You'll like Waterville. That describes the middle section off of the White Peak quad. I'll give a better report later weather permitting.

imp wrote:

snow will be there, not sure of the will to open

I'm planning on being there this Saturday if open and Sunday too if that's the last day. Who is up for Timberline next week? 

wgo
2 months ago
Member since 02/10/2004 🔗
1,451 posts
I am likely for Timberline on March 13. I will know for sure later in the week.
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts


I just heard that the 13th is Laurel's last day. I'll be there to close the place and do last runs on Wildcat. 

wgo wrote:

I am likely for Timberline on March 13. I will know for sure later in the week.
snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
Same for Hidden Valley. I skied today in the wet snow. The cement-like snow covered the ice very well. 
RodneyBD - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 12/21/2004 🔗
223 posts
What is the cover like right now at Laurel, and if they get the 8-10” forecasted, will any of the unofficial runs be skiable?
imp - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 01/11/2007 🔗
261 posts

no clear answer, wildcat,broadway,Innsbruck should easily be open. The rest is completly bare now. over 8 inches all wil open but not last.

RodneyBD - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 12/21/2004 🔗
223 posts
Thanks I'm wondering if storm really delivers  - say 10" - would it be worth drive up for opening bell Sunday and get a few turns in Snow Bowl or Kitty Cats etc 
imp - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 01/11/2007 🔗
261 posts
Sunday it will be skied out unless a lot of snow comes sat afternoon, not that I would be the one skiing it, LHC has that task
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts
One indication that Vail intends to operate Laurel is the public posting on the lodge of a transfer of the PA liquor license over to VRSS Holdings LLC from The Springs at Laurel Mountain. VRSS? Vail Resorts Snow Sports??? We should know by the time the Epic Pass goes on sale, in mid-April.
Scott - DCSki Editor
2 months ago
Member since 10/10/1999 🔗
1,185 posts

Vail Resorts Seven Springs would be my guess. VRSS Holdings, LLC was formed in December 2021 and is the company that purchased Seven Springs, Hidden Valley, and Laurel Mountain (and is obviously really owned by Vail Resorts.) Also see here for a reference to VRSS Holdings. 

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts

Here is an interesting tidbit regarding the sale of Seven Springs to Vail from the real estate transaction records. Not sure if HV and LM are omitted from this?

1647278797_mthgpvkolbox.jpg

oddballstocks
2 months ago
Member since 02/11/2017 🔗
89 posts

That IS interesting.  From the MTN press release stating expected operating income and their given payback preference I had back of the enveloped about $100m for the acquisition.

Leo
2 months ago
Member since 11/15/2005 🔗
295 posts


 I honestly have no idea about this kind of stuff but would a property transfer listing (probably coming from a tax record) have to be specific to each physical place?  Meaning HV and LM would not be included in that number?  And LM is it's own animal since I don't believe there would be an actual sale of property, just a lease.  Any title work lawyers on here?

oddballstocks wrote:

That IS interesting.  From the MTN press release stating expected operating income and their given payback preference I had back of the enveloped about $100m for the acquisition.

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts

Here is another transfer record for Jefferson Township. That would be Hidden Valley's location. So $67mil plus $13 mil = $80 mil:

1647294734_ogfhwcwlyvwu.jpg

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts

Here is another transfer record for Jefferson Township. That would be Hidden Valley's location. So $67mil plus $13 mil = $80 mil:

1647294734_ogfhwcwlyvwu.jpg

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

Seven Springs is in Middlecreek Township, Somerset County.

Hidden Valley is in Jefferson Township, Somerset County.

Laurel is in Ligonier Township, Westmoreland County.

Do buildings on leased land count as property for such listing? At Laurel, PA owns the land, chairlift, the newest HKD snowmaking equipment, and Midway Cabin.

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago (edited 2 months ago)
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts

What does 7S own at LM? Since 7S will no longer be in the ski business, you would think that any equipment, buildings, etc that are related to ski operation would transfer as part of the sale, even though no real estate changed hands. 

I was surprised that VR paid $13 mil for HV and that did not include any of the developable land that Nutting kept. Buncher supposedly paid $10 mil and they then sold the whole kbash to 7S for $7mil which include millions in improvements completed by Buncher. So Nutting, sold only the ski resort to VR for $6 mil more than they paid for the resort, golf course and all of the developable land. Makes VR look kind of stupid to me.

I visited the HV pass office this weekend and they told me that the official transfer to VR occurs on April 16. 

Sorry I could only ski 2 runs at LM on Sunday. The conditions were pretty dam good! My wife is now fully recovered, of course. 

oddballstocks
2 months ago
Member since 02/11/2017 🔗
89 posts


 There are a few ways to structure a deal, the first is an asset sale.  That means Vail would be purchasing the actual assets, property, lifts, etc, but not the operations.

In this case it appears they are purchasing the operations and the ownership of the underlying properties are transferring.  Best way to think of this is they created companies to hold this real estate.  Then there is likely a parent level company that owns and runs the operations.  So $80m for the real estate itself, then something else for the operations.

According to the press release Vail paid $125m for the three resorts, so that means they're paying $45m for the operations.  Vail expects it to generate $15m per year in EBITDA, which is essentially operating profit before taxes, equipment depreciation and interest expense.  They paid 8.3x EBITDA, so they will be "paid back" in eight years without any appreciation or any increase in earnings.

In one release they said they expect to spend an additional $3m per year in capital investments to support the purchase.  Maybe snow making upgrades? Hotel upgrades? Who knows.

The press release noted that $5m of Seven Spring's $15m in EBITDA comes from the hotel, meaning the ski operations alone are making $10m.

Leo wrote:


 I honestly have no idea about this kind of stuff but would a property transfer listing (probably coming from a tax record) have to be specific to each physical place?  Meaning HV and LM would not be included in that number?  And LM is it's own animal since I don't believe there would be an actual sale of property, just a lease.  Any title work lawyers on here?

oddballstocks wrote:

That IS interesting.  From the MTN press release stating expected operating income and their given payback preference I had back of the enveloped about $100m for the acquisition.

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts

From Vail's Krysten Lynch VR financial report:

"$3 million associated with real estate related projects...." What is that? $9.0 mil is needed to integrate Seven Springs resorts into the VR system. I assume that is stuff like web site development, RFID card equipment, legal bills, maybe some renovations? 

Here's the link....Vail Resorts Announces Q2 Financial Results: Revenue Increased 32% Over Previous Year - SnowBrains

1647394874_sipbzobrkllm.jpg

Laurel Highlands
2 months ago
Member since 10/29/2013 🔗
38 posts

Wouldn't VR have paid even more than $13M for HV, since that number is just property transfer and does not include the operations component? There is no doubt that Nutting got an incredible deal buying it from Buncher when he did at the price he paid,  and now selling while keeping all that land and the golf course.  Would think that he how would now be on a mission to monetize all that property somehow, either to sell it to a developer or bringing in a development partner to help take it to another level.  His land is also no doubt more desirable being at a Vale Resort than it was before, and very few of the other Vale resorts in the area have real estate with the accessibility of 7S and HV.   

 

snowsmith wrote:

What does 7S own at LM? Since 7S will no longer be in the ski business, you would think that any equipment, buildings, etc that are related to ski operation would transfer as part of the sale, even though no real estate changed hands. 

I was surprised that VR paid $13 mil for HV and that did not include any of the developable land that Nutting kept. Buncher supposedly paid $10 mil and they then sold the whole kbash to 7S for $7mil which include millions in improvements completed by Buncher. So Nutting, sold only the ski resort to VR for $6 mil more than they paid for the resort, golf course and all of the developable land. Makes VR look kind of stupid to me.

I visited the HV pass office this weekend and they told me that the official transfer to VR occurs on April 16. 

Sorry I could only ski 2 runs at LM on Sunday. The conditions were pretty dam good! My wife is now fully recovered, of course. 

oddballstocks
2 months ago
Member since 02/11/2017 🔗
89 posts


 Vail paid $125m for everything, $13m for the HV property itself, $67m for the Seven Springs property and the rest for the Laurel Mountain lease and operations.  So yes...

Laurel Highlands wrote:

Wouldn't VR have paid even more than $13M for HV, since that number is just property transfer and does not include the operations component? There is no doubt that Nutting got an incredible deal buying it from Buncher when he did at the price he paid,  and now selling while keeping all that land and the golf course.  Would think that he how would now be on a mission to monetize all that property somehow, either to sell it to a developer or bringing in a development partner to help take it to another level.  His land is also no doubt more desirable being at a Vale Resort than it was before, and very few of the other Vale resorts in the area have real estate with the accessibility of 7S and HV.   

 

snowsmith wrote:

What does 7S own at LM? Since 7S will no longer be in the ski business, you would think that any equipment, buildings, etc that are related to ski operation would transfer as part of the sale, even though no real estate changed hands. 

I was surprised that VR paid $13 mil for HV and that did not include any of the developable land that Nutting kept. Buncher supposedly paid $10 mil and they then sold the whole kbash to 7S for $7mil which include millions in improvements completed by Buncher. So Nutting, sold only the ski resort to VR for $6 mil more than they paid for the resort, golf course and all of the developable land. Makes VR look kind of stupid to me.

I visited the HV pass office this weekend and they told me that the official transfer to VR occurs on April 16. 

Sorry I could only ski 2 runs at LM on Sunday. The conditions were pretty dam good! My wife is now fully recovered, of course. 

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
one month ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

Here's a YouTube link to a short video about Laurel Mountain.

https://youtu.be/V570MeOOJQ0

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
one month ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
Wow! Very well done. We should send a link to VR leadership. 
wgo
one month ago
Member since 02/10/2004 🔗
1,451 posts


 That was great! Thanks for sharing.

Laurel Hill Crazie wrote:

Here's a YouTube link to a short video about Laurel Mountain.

https://youtu.be/V570MeOOJQ0

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
one month ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts


snowsmith wrote:

Wow! Very well done. We should send a link to VR leadership. 

The video is going to a high-placed east coast Vail rep via social media share. It's the classic; I know someone who shared the video with someone who will send it to someone who is someone. I hope it gets more than tens and tens of views. :~D

GGNagy
one month ago
Member since 01/5/2006 🔗
469 posts


 I was wondering who sent that text!  

It is great to see a video about an active and working throwback ski area. I really hope that LM survives and thrives under new ownership. I have really become fond of the ski area, now that the new 219 sections are making it an easier (and toll free) drive for me. 

Laurel Hill Crazie wrote:


snowsmith wrote:

Wow! Very well done. We should send a link to VR leadership. 

The video is going to a high-placed east coast Vail rep via social media share. It's the classic; I know someone who shared the video with someone who will send it to someone who is someone. I hope it gets more than tens and tens of views. :~D

JimK - DCSki Columnist
one month ago
Member since 01/14/2004 🔗
2,815 posts

wgo wrote:


 That was great! Thanks for sharing.

Laurel Hill Crazie wrote:

Here's a YouTube link to a short video about Laurel Mountain.

https://youtu.be/V570MeOOJQ0

 I LOVED THAT LAUREL MOUNTAIN VIDEO TOO!1647695437_lpewvkfxkogs.jpg

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
one month ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

Laurel will be on Vail's Epic Pass next season. This morning's Westmoreland edition of the Tribune-Review has an article about Vail's acquisition of the 3 Laurel Highland resorts. In the article, Quinn Kelsey, director of communications and resort marketing at Vail Resorts, dismissed concern about Laurel, saying that all three will be on the Epic Pass next season. https://triblive.com/local/regional/new-owners-of-seven-springs-hidden-valley-laurel-mountain-optimistic-about-future/

hockeydave
one month ago
Member since 06/30/2004 🔗
776 posts

Now with Vail Resorts fully on-board at the three Laurel ski areas, a couple of questions popped into my head.

1) How is the marketing of the Nutting owned real estate and the off mountain amenities (e.g. HV and 7S golf course) going to be linked to the on mountain marketing... wonder if there is some symbiotic marketing relationship set up between Vail and Nutting?

2) Will there be proof of vaccine required to dine indoors at any of the three resorts?

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
one month ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

Powder day to close out 7 Springs for the season. 3.27.22


1648416905_sbizkhtpcebh.jpg

1648416536_pqbgezjzxyoj.jpg

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
one month ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
I was told that Vail officially takes over 7S/HV/LM on April 16. I assume we’ll see a new website. The golf course at HV has changed names to The Highlands. A new entrance sign is being installed. The golf will now be run by Nutting’s company. 
imp - DCSki Supporter 
29 days ago
Member since 01/11/2007 🔗
261 posts
any word of a possible property dispute between Vail and Nutting
snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
29 days ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,430 posts
Regarding HV or 7S land?
imp - DCSki Supporter 
29 days ago
Member since 01/11/2007 🔗
261 posts

springs I believe, just heard a little bit from an employee of springs

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
28 days ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts
Imp, interesting rumors to share? 
superguy
27 days ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
353 posts

Thefirewarde wrote:

Seven Springs has impressive snowmaking, but Snowshoe has both more elevation and more compressed air (60k+ versus 30k CFM - Snowshoe is the only place south of Blue Mountain with more air than Blue Mountain. Plus they have over a hundred fan guns that don't need compressed air.)

In peak cold conditions Seven Springs can move more water than God, thanks to  gravity feed from the summit pond with 50m+ gallons of storage, but that's only when it's very cold. In normal operations, with equal weather, Snowshoe is going to come out on top.

A couple things I learned from an HV snowmaker I shared a lift with.

1. 7S can't run the system full blast. In theory, it can move more water per hour than Killington and Sunday River combined and then some. Not sure about the air situation, but the bigger issue is power. He said they tried to open up the whole system once and their power system couldn't handle it. Ended up blowing out some transformers and other power equipment. Seems plausible.

2. He said the distance between HV's and 7S's system is quality vs quantity. 7S can put snow out like crazy and do it quickly. While there have been some upgrades, many of the guns are still from the 90s and haven't been replaced yet. That affects the overall efficiency and quality. HV has a newer and more homogenous TechnoAlpin system. While they can't put out nearly as much, the snow is supposed to be a lot better.

It'll be interesting to see what improvements Vail makes there, if any.

I'd say Laurel needs the snowmaking upgrades and added trails first though - if the state will allow it.

superguy
27 days ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
353 posts
Has Vail said anything about intended improvements about the Highlands 3 or ST 3?
Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
26 days ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,934 posts

Vail's capital budget for the coming year is set at $300 million for lift upgrades across their empire. Nothing mentioned about 7S. Maybe they'll add something for 7S properties later.

https://www.epicpass.com/region/epic-lift-upgrades.aspx

DCSki Sponsor: Seven Springs Resort

Ski and Tell

Snowcat got your tongue?

Join the conversation by logging in.

Don't have an account? Create one here.

0.58 seconds