Why all the hate for the Springs
30 posts
18 users
3k+ views
SpringsRegular
October 26, 2005
Member since 10/14/2004
153 posts
With all the recent talk about Laurel I have noticed a definite bias against the Springs. As my handle indicates I spend quite a bit of time there and cannot see why folks dislike the place so much.

Is it crowded? On weekends? Yes it can be, but guess what, that keeps the lifts turning year after year.

Is it expensive? Not if you know what you are doing.

Did they do Laurel wrong? No, they got it open last year on about a month's notice and LOST a ton of money. If there had been any type of "crowds" I am sure they would have given it a go again. But on a Saturday in mid February when you sell 250 tickets it does not really end up being a viable business venture.

Is it a "big" corporate resort? No it is and always has been a family run resort.

I challenge anyone to spend some time with me there and not have a good time both on and off the slopes.

- Springs
BushwackerinPA
October 26, 2005
Member since 12/9/2004
649 posts
I enjoy springs, great service, decent vert for around here,lots of horitzontal, and awesome cheap(for a ski area) food in the lodge.

If i had no friends from Hidden Valley, i would probably be sking over there, but as it stands i ski like 20-30 days a year at other resort besides HV and really feel no need to leave.

I should be up there alot of thursday nights this year so if you ever want to meet up PM me.
hockeydave
October 26, 2005
Member since 06/30/2004
769 posts
No hate from me, intended or implied. Most complaints about 7S come from me and others in response to 1 particular member's rants against LM & HV, typically wishing & hoping for their demise, which for the life of me, I can not not understand, since he's never been to either one.

I am weekday season pass holder and venture to 7S once or twice a year on the weekends. On the weekends, there are too many people on the slopes which leads to long lift lines (unless you're there early and leave before 11:00). But as you point out, that keeps the cash flowing & leads to upgrades. Also, too much of a frat party off of the slopes and too many F-Bombs being dropped by the adolescents & pre-pubescents on the slopes and on the chairlifts. Again, these are "my" complaints, others may like that type of atmosphere and that's fine... it's just not for me. Call me old & crotchtety.

On the plus side for me, the slopes are always well groomed, snowmaking is great, and all facilities are well maintained. It is a top notch run resort and w/o question, the best in Western PA.

LM is more to my liking on weekends, but obviously with less crowds means less cash flow which means loss of money. However, last year's late December/early January thaw was the main reason LM lost money... probably would have broke even otherwise. I think if LM had better marketing (entice families with discounts for kids under 16), a few more snow guns, and a small quaint lodge within a mile of the resort, the possibilites are unbounded.
tromano
October 26, 2005
Member since 12/19/2002
998 posts
Agree 100%. That is why Madeline and I are now Springs Season pass holders. Some people on this board just don't know what a great resort looks like. Why are people trying to hate? I have no idea. The most important thing that 7S has going for it is great snow making, the consitancy of conditions, and an accessible location. That is why I have spent more weekends there over the last 3 years than any other destination resort in the region. And it is also a well run, place with good accomodations, food and so forth. I have no complaints.

Does anyone really want to ski TL over 7S in early janauary when TL has like 4 trials open and 7S has 30+? Does anyone go to BK for the MRG-South skiers experience if Extrovery isn't even open? Compared to BK, TL, and Laurel, 7Springs is just a better palce to ski for vast majority (Early dec - early february) of the ski season. Natural snow is very unreliable and the freeze thaw cycle is too vicious to get by with inadequate snow making and grooming. These so called skiers mountains only surpass 7S right after a big late season snow event when all their natural snow trails are open and the glades and other off piste stuff starts to open up. --Tim
DCSki Sponsor: Massanutten Resort
Taylormatt
October 26, 2005
Member since 12/3/2004
339 posts
I've been wondering the same thing. I have my theory, but I'll keep it to myself
Heather
October 26, 2005
Member since 02/24/2005
170 posts
I grew up in Western Pa and learned to ski at 7 Springs. I would agree with Hockeydave in so far as our responses of "Hate" (really a strong word). Having skied at 7S every year for at least 15 years was great when I was into the busy fast paced atmosphere. Now that I am a "responsible adult"with a child, I feel that the atmosphere at 7S is not appropiate or conducive to teaching a kid to SKI. Too many distractions at 7S. If they had an area that had fewer distractions (small lodge area a must) but still had some steepness to it, I would probably be more inclined to ski 7S more often.
RobertW
October 26, 2005
Member since 10/14/2004
199 posts
As stated above, the bias you hear is just a response to certain "posts" that a ski monopoly in the Laurel Highlands would be best for us all.

I love the Springs, have been a passholder there since '85 and have skiied there way before the North Face even existed and except for weekend crowds (I rarely if ever ski then) find it to be everything you state. I make trips to Wisp (another first class operation), Laurel (I had the joint pass last year) and HV and BK when I can. I enjoy the experience if I am on a 100 foot ropetow hill or a 4000' megaresort. (except for one place that I think is overrated....but I'll keep that opinion to myself! )

Having an opinion is fine...however, when someone continually bangs you with a sledgehammer, you tend to get a little defensive...
Heather
October 26, 2005
Member since 02/24/2005
170 posts
Well put RobertW!
kennedy
October 26, 2005
Member since 12/8/2001
792 posts
Love the Springs. The few times I've been there on weekends I've never had crowd problems and I usually don't get there til about 10 am or later at best. Maybe it's because I always stick to the North Face. I think the fact that the trails are rated black diamond (even though they obviously are not) helps keep intermediates and beginners out of the way. Actually thinking of the springs on a powder day has me salivating a little right now.
jb714
October 26, 2005
Member since 03/4/2003
294 posts
Springs:

This year I purchased 4 season passes at the Springs, and my wife and I purchased property less than 10 minutes away from the main gate. When we ski at any other mid-Atlantic resort, 7 Springs is the barometer by which we measure those other places - snowmaking, lifts, apres, etc.

What bugs me is when another (immature/insecure) poster twists 7 Springs strengths into a position whereby he advocates the demise of 2 other mountains. As I pointed out in my post directly to that poster, I don't understand how anyone who calls themselves a skier or boarder can advocate fewer local hills - I just don't get that.
JohnL
October 26, 2005
Member since 01/6/2000
3,509 posts
Echo what the other posters have said about a couple of posters taking pot shots at BK, LM, and HV. People in glass houses ...

As for me, no hate for Seven Springs, but no great love either. I prefer to spend my time and dollars elsewhere. If the local conditions are good, I prefer the terrain of Blue Knob, Laurel Mountain and Timberline. If the local conditions are poor, day trips to Whitetail are good enough for me to keep my timing intact and legs in shape, plus I get to do other things besides skiing on the weekend (like the annual house cleaning and socializing with non-skiing friends.) As to Blue Knob, Extrovert opening this late in the season has been a recent trend. Hopefully the improved snowmaking capability at the Knob will change that this year.

And if the local conditions are horrific, there is always Utah and Vermont. Even when the local conditions are stellar.
Ullr
October 26, 2005
Member since 11/27/2004
531 posts
Shoot, the wife and love the Springs! We always go during the week to avoid the crowds. Our kids learned to ski there through Tiny Tots, which is a great program. Does it have a huge vert? No, but it is a fun mountain anyway. Great food (Helen's), great bar (The Goggle), great Instructor's, what's not to love?

kennedy
October 26, 2005
Member since 12/8/2001
792 posts
I do love me some Foggy Goggle. Whitetail is great for a quick 4 hours of riding and home again. 7 Springs is great for a day of thrashing and then reliving it for several hours later in the goggle.
johnfmh - DCSki Columnist
October 26, 2005
Member since 07/18/2001
1,914 posts
With the exception of Timberline, I've probably skied 7 Springs more than any other local mountain. I love it but I do try to avoid holiday weekends and saturdays. The big strength of 7 springs, as Tromano stated, is the snowmaking. It has one of the best systems in the region, if not the world. When conditions are marginal elsewhere, 7 Springs generally has some pretty decent offerings and quality, man-made snow due to its snowmaking and location west of the Allegheny Front. 7 Springs is usually the first resort I visit each year, and I'm always surprised when I get there to find 75% of the terrain open when many other places are reporting just one or two trails.

The slopes don't offer much challenge but they keep me in practice. Furthermore, I see the same lift attendants year after year and have even become friends with one or two of them. Knowing people at a resort just makes the experience that much better. Also, the North Face has some nice cruising slopes (Gunnar), and a good one for carving--North Face Slope.

As for prices, the lift tickets tend to be cheaper than many local resorts and the lodge food, much cheaper and better. And best of all, you can have a beer and some peel and eat shrimp after a long day on the slopes at the Foggy Goggle.
gatkinso
October 26, 2005
Member since 01/25/2002
316 posts
The springs is aight. No hate from me.
JCHobbes
October 26, 2005
Member since 09/12/2005
94 posts
I don't hate Seven Springs. It is a well-run mountain with lots of ammentities. It is by far better than any of the other local resorts.

There is however, one reason that I don't like it, and this quote from a DCSki member illustrates my point:
Quote:

That is why I have spent more weekends there over the last 3 years than any other destination resort in the region.




Two words. Destination resort.

I am a "local" Laurel Highlander. I live close to pretty much all the resorts. I avoid 7S because it is a destination resort. If I want to go to a resort with lots of good snowmaking, a nice lodge, and tons of great ammentities, I'm going to Killington, or Snowshoe, or Stowe.

Otherwise, I'm quite happy to settle for Hidden Valley and Laurel Mountain. They offer exactly what I need, a mountain with some nice terrain, not crowded, and heated bathrooms.

I have to believe that 7S has some flaws that you out of towners are willing to put up with seeing as that you only visit it a few days a year.

But for locals, something like huge crowds or long lift lines is something that isn't as easy to put up with when you're spending multiple days a month.

I don't hate 7Springs, there are just multiple places that I would prefer to go to before I visit it.
kennedy
October 26, 2005
Member since 12/8/2001
792 posts
No offense but it seems odd to me that you rule out a hill because it is a destination resort. I can see your point on crowds but being local to a hill in my mind makes it more accessible. I find around here I know which weekends to avoid (MLK, Pres Day) and which weekends tend to be quieter. I also know how to avoid crowds at a mountain if I so wish (generally it's known as a black diamond sssshhhh)

It just seems to me that here in the Mid Atlantic we really can't afford to be too choosy. There are definitely hills I far prefer over an other but that doesn't mean I don't want to see the resorts I prefer least not do well. I like Snowshoe but it's a hell of a drive and if you hit Silvercreek on a powder sometimes it's all yours. Whitetail while not a super exciting hill does a decent job with their park and for the sake of an hour in the car I can shred hard for four hours in the morning before the crowds. At the Springs on the north face there is three chairs to choose from so the lift lines are rarely jammed. It's also hella fun to ride. If LM is open this year it's on the list as is t-line.

My point is (and I'm desperately trying to stay on topic here) is that. Love or hate any hill around here but we need all of them.
SCWVA
October 26, 2005
Member since 07/13/2004
1,049 posts
Quote:

They offer exactly what I need, ....and heated bathrooms.




You need heated bathrooms for a good day of skiing?

I personnally like the Port-a-Johns in the upper lot at 7 Springs. No lines. Just one of the many amenities at 7 Springs.
snowsmith - DCSki Supporter
October 26, 2005
Member since 03/15/2004
1,287 posts
Seven Springs is one of the better local mountains if not one of the best. It is fine on weekdays, however, on weekends the bus loads of rowdy Steeler fans arrive. Thus I never go on weekends. Snow making is some of the best. I generally ski Hidden Valley or the other local hills like Wisp, Blue Knob, Timberline, Canaan on weekends. Snow east of the Appallachians is what I call 'death cookies' so I no longer ski much at Roundtop or Liberty.
JCHobbes
October 26, 2005
Member since 09/12/2005
94 posts
Quote:

No offense but it seems odd to me that you rule out a hill because it is a destination resort. I can see your point on crowds but being local to a hill in my mind makes it more accessible. I find around here I know which weekends to avoid (MLK, Pres Day) and which weekends tend to be quieter. I also know how to avoid crowds at a mountain if I so wish (generally it's known as a black diamond sssshhhh)

It just seems to me that here in the Mid Atlantic we really can't afford to be too choosy. There are definitely hills I far prefer over an other but that doesn't mean I don't want to see the resorts I prefer least not do well. I like Snowshoe but it's a hell of a drive and if you hit Silvercreek on a powder sometimes it's all yours. Whitetail while not a super exciting hill does a decent job with their park and for the sake of an hour in the car I can shred hard for four hours in the morning before the crowds. At the Springs on the north face there is three chairs to choose from so the lift lines are rarely jammed. It's also hella fun to ride. If LM is open this year it's on the list as is t-line.

My point is (and I'm desperately trying to stay on topic here) is that. Love or hate any hill around here but we need all of them.




I fully agree with your last statement. Western PA can not afford to lose any of its resorts. And being a local I do know how to avoid the crowds, but there is the inevitable middle of nowhere parking, and you have to go on the main slopes at some point. Three times I went to Seven Springs last year, three times I got plowed over. Once by a person skiing out of control on a green, twice by someone skiing out of countrol on a black.

There are just entirely too many people on that mountain.

It is good a couple times a season to get a little variety, but I couldn't imagine ever buying a season pass.
wolverine
October 27, 2005
Member since 08/26/2005
113 posts
How can you put Snowshoe with Stowe and Killington? You must be out of your mind! I have been to all of above and SS is much more on par with 7S, not even semi-close to the conditions in upper NE. As much as I enjoy 7S for a day trip, if you could remove NY and MA from the map, i'd be in VT over WV any day!

Again, as much as I enjoy 7S, I'd have to disagree with the other comment about North Face having 3 lifts and not a lot of wait time for the lifts. My oldest kid and I had a very annoying experience last winter waiting for forever to get up the mountain after a relaxing scenic run down Lost Girl.
Heather
October 27, 2005
Member since 02/24/2005
170 posts
As I read your last post my eyes caught on fire and fell out of my head. It is good to see that even you can give criticism when it is indeed necessary. For that this LMer will forever be grateful! You have made my day!
kennedy
October 27, 2005
Member since 12/8/2001
792 posts
All I can tell you is I've never had a problem with lift lines at 7 Springs. I've been to Whitetail on days where I've waited nealry 45 mins to get on a lift then have the damn thing crap out half a dozen times on the way to the top. I learned my lesson there and now I hit first chair in the morning and I'm done before the bus tours show up.

Like I said no lift problems here. You want to talk lift lines try the basin side of Snowshoe at about 11 am on a major holiday weekend.
SpringsRegular
October 27, 2005
Member since 10/14/2004
153 posts
Thanks all for your feedback, I guess "hate" was a bit strong. Now as far as the lift lines on North Face. There are a total of 4 lifts, North Pole, North Face, Giant Steps and Gunnar, of those North Face and Gunnar are by far the busiest. The same terrrain that can be accessed from NF and Gunnar can be accessed by the other two with significantly shorter liftlines. I often notice waits in excess of 15 minutes on the Gunnar chair and ski right onto the Giant Steps chair. It is often a lemming thing. On the front side the Blitzen chair and the Tyrol chair often have little or no line at all.

Again I offer to show anyone here who shows up at the Springs around.

- Springs

DISCLAIMER - Holiday's do not fall into the above statements.
wolverine
October 27, 2005
Member since 08/26/2005
113 posts
As a 7S fan (a true destination resort and just a fun place to ski) and as a skier not likely to take the long trek to Snowshoe (the better the snow the scarier the drive!) since "it aint all that" (Killington, Stowe or Tremblant I'll road trip to!) I still can vouch that NF is awsome to ski, but they need a high speed (I'm told they're working on it). Try North Face next snowy Dec. weekend and don't forget to bring a copy of War and Peace while waiting to get back up
Taylormatt
October 27, 2005
Member since 12/3/2004
339 posts
'scuse me while I jack this joint...

I wonder how bad the glades got trashed from this storm? Just as the debris gets cleared a new storm comes along to snap limbs and litter the glades <sigh>. I'll probably go riding there Saturday and pop over to check em out.
BushwackerinPA
October 27, 2005
Member since 12/9/2004
649 posts
Quote:

'scuse me while I jack this joint...

I wonder how bad the glades got trashed from this storm? Just as the debris gets cleared a new storm comes along to snap limbs and litter the glades <sigh>. I'll probably go riding there Saturday and pop over to check em out.




My glades came though not so trashed. I shouldnt have to do any reclearing.
JCHobbes
October 27, 2005
Member since 09/12/2005
94 posts
Quote:

How can you put Snowshoe with Stowe and Killington? You must be out of your mind!




Their sort of on the same level for me. They're all "destination resorts" that we might go to for a long weekend. Snowshoe is very much similar to Seven Springs, but Snowshoe seems to have a bit more variety. I skied at Snowshoe for two days, and didn't get anywhere near hitting every trail, nor was I bored. Maybe it's just because I live so close to Seven Springs that I take it for granted.

It is a good resort though, I just can't stand how crowded it is.
Ullr
October 30, 2005
Member since 11/27/2004
531 posts
Quote:

Quote:

I skied at Snowshoe for two days, and didn't get anywhere near hitting every trail, nor was I bored.




mrhazmat
November 2, 2005
Member since 12/7/2000
47 posts
Hi again everyone! I'm a person who hibenates during the summer just waiting for THE season. I like many have skied the Springs every year (several times) for more years than I can count. It is a wonderful mid-eastern resort, period!! Yes, I do ski mostly mid-week with my sons because of crowds however, 7 Springs spreads crowds out better than may others including snowshoe IMO. Case in point, check out the Ballhooter lift (High Speed) during peak times, easy 20-45 min wait. Anyway enough of my tirade and hello again to DC Ski. Hello also to my fellow EpicSki partners here on the forum. I'll be up 2-5 Jan 06 just because!
Later,
Doug
DCSki Sponsor: Massanutten Resort

Ski and Tell

Speak truth to powder.

Join the conversation by logging in.

Don't have an account? Create one here.

0.14 seconds