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!