You Want to Ski Here
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GRK
January 17, 2010
Member since 12/19/2007 🔗
404 posts
Oh yes you do...



I managed to sneak in a Ski Day at the tail end of a business Trip to Randolph, NY. Randolph is close to Ellicottville, which is home the to the Holiday Valley ski resort.

Things started out well when, on the flight into Buffalo, I struck up a conversation with the attractive woman sitting next to me. Weird, because attractive or not, I do not talk to people on planes. Turns out she was an instructor at Liberty and besides a great conversation I got some free advice. Gonna cost me though because she convinced me to upgrade my skis.

Back to the resort...everything at this place was well run and polished. Its an old resort but you would not know it from the facilities. Most of their 13 lifts serving 55 trails were quads and all were well maintained. Mardi Gras goes straight down to the main base area and is the longest lift line in the place. It has a nice long blue groomer...great to warm up on.



There was a good variety of terrain. The expert trails were not overly challenging (with one exception) the blues were blues and they had some very nice greens. Good place to learn and develop without having to stop and board a lift every 5 seconds. Here is one of the single blacks called Champagne:




The trail names were great...I would be skiing along, exploring and suddenly come across something called Firecracker, Ballet or Bobsled. They made you want to go check them out. Who could resist this:




The aptly named Tannenbaum lift drops you off in a forest:


There was one double black section of a trail at the place and from the looks of it it was rated correctly. I did not try it because it was only about 200 yards or so long, had never been groomed since the earth was formed and had tons of ice. All of the people I saw on it should not have tried it either. Highly entertaining though.

I found 3 day lodges (think that was all of them) and they were all very nicely built and maintained. The base lodge was older but remodeling looked to have kept up with things. The other two were of more recent vintage. There were real locker rooms with showers and boot dryers here and there...nice touches. Did not get to see the main rental shop because I rented some nice Atomics out of the High Performance shop which in itself was a nice affair. Here is the Yodeler lodge. Note the woodwork on the stair rails. This is typical of the attention to detail I saw all over the place:



Finally, there is a real village. Ellicottville is a real town with an Apres Ski scene...not some Disney type planned creation. Lots of Mom and Pop eateries, bars and ski shops.

If it were not for the distance I would go back tomorrow.

Sorry about the large picture size. If you do not like it you can go up yourself and take some tiny ones. It would be worth the trip!

Eug
January 17, 2010
Member since 03/3/2005 🔗
142 posts
I want to ski there!

Hum... never knew about this place. I went to SUNY Buffalo and we went mostly to Holiday Valley and occasionally to Kissing Bridge.
b2otto2
January 17, 2010
Member since 02/1/2003 🔗
65 posts
Originally Posted By: Eug
I want to ski there!

Hum... never knew about this place. I went to SUNY Buffalo and we went mostly to Holiday Valley and occasionally to Kissing Bridge.


Huh? the article is about Holiday Valley!

I remember the Tantambaum lift line before it was a High Speed Quad and they took out a bunch of trees, you basically went up under the pine tree canopy, very strange the first time you rode it. I wish 7 Springs had the lodges that Holiday Valley have. They are very nice and strategically located at the bottom of the popular lifts. It spreads the crowds over the entire resort, instead of one location..
Eug
January 17, 2010
Member since 03/3/2005 🔗
142 posts
Wow... Oops... that's embarrassing. Somehow I thought it was a ski resort called 'Randolph'... Where is my Centrum Silver?
Fleetwood
January 20, 2010
Member since 12/6/2008 🔗
69 posts
A guy I work with grew up skiing there, and he still goes back to the area to visit family. I know he got out this past holiday for a few runs. It's nice to put some pictures with the stories he's told (he never bothered to share pictures). Nice report. Thanks.

GGNagy
January 21, 2010
Member since 01/5/2006 🔗
452 posts
a friend of mine is from that way and has family that works there. He and his family go back often for a winter vacation.
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