Snow Vermont, Hunter Mountain Win Top Awards for Ski Conditions,
Both Mount Snow and Hunter Mountain have
made large investments in new, safe equipment.
Israel News Agency
York, NY --- March 3, 2012 .... When selecting a ski area in New
England or New York to spend both your hours and money at, by
what criteria do we go by?
off, as a ski professional for more than three decades, I look
at ski conditions. Ski conditions, snow making, grooming and honesty
in reporting ski trail conditions determine whether I will be
skiing on snow or mud. Whether I risk breaking my neck on ice
or enjoy an easy, fun ride down. Whether the learning experience
for beginner skiers will be a dream or a nightmare.
nature determines much of the above. And for the 2011-2012 it
has been very challenging for every ski area from New Jersey,
New York and Connecticut to Vermont, Massachusetts and Maine.
The ski areas ability to adapt makes all the difference to both
skiers and the thousands of people that they employ. It makes
a difference to those who feed themselves off being related to
the ski industry whether owning a restaurant, hotel, motel, bar,
ski clothes and rentals shop to the state whose education depends
on taxes taken in.
when judging the best of the best ski areas in New England and
the East Coast of the US, one must transcend pure physical size.
Though Killington and Pico embrace a few mountains, Stowe, White
Face and Jay Peak enjoy cold temperatures ensuring more snow,
and Smuggler's Notch, Okemo, Mad River Glen, Ski Sundown and Stratton
project a more cozy environment, one must also consider ski safety.
Killington Pico ski resorts in Vermont had to evacuate
over a hundred skiers from a chair lift which derailed. Killington
would not respond to the Israel News Agency on how such
safety breaches could have happened. Sugarloaf, in Maine, also
suffered a major chairlift accident last year sending 8 people
to hospital. The cable of Sugarloafs
Spillway East Lift derailed causing several chairs to fall
nearly 30 feet to the ground. The chairlift was built over 30
years ago in 1975.
the accident, Sugarloaf removed the East Spillway and another
lift that ran parallel to it and replaced them with a modern $3
million quad-chair lift.
lifts are relatively simple devices with established technology
and a high degree of safety. However, given the large number of
skiers annually using these lifts it is not surprising that after
significant and repetitive cycles, design defects may catch up
with the technology. Colorado, as with most ski states, has a
law that ski area operators are obliged to operate their lifts
in accord with the highest degree of care commensurate with the
safety of the passengers.
poster on Facebook in defending Killington stated: "things
break, lighten up" while others responded to that statement:
"could you imagine if the airlines, auto manufacturers and
NASA said that?"
than addressing skiers concerns for safety and stress tests on
equipment, Killington and Pico removed almost all Facebook posts
alluding to the safety of ski chairs at their resorts. Not good
lift accidents are rare and deadly accidents are even rarer. Industry
experts say skiers are more likely to be injured or killed while
driving to the slopes or skiing down the mountain than riding
if we were to place ski safety, ski conditions and a cordial,
welcoming environment of the ski area as the primary characteristics,
Hunter Mountain Ski Resort in New York would get my vote for a
one day ski trip and Mt. Snow in Vermont for a weekend. Both Hunter
and Mt. Snow are an easy ride from New York, Hartford and Boston
and in this tough economy boast discounts on lifts and lodging.
got periodic lift ticket and lodging specials," says Jessica
Pezak, PR Director of Hunter
Mountain. "The best place to view them is in the Hunterblog
(huntermtn.blogspot.com) or on HunterMtn.com; I cant really
spell them out because they change all the time. Weve got
one coming up on Monday!"
have our annual St. Patties Day special with $17 lift tickets
this year on Friday, March 16," says David Meeker of Mount
"Mt. Snow will have green eggs and kegs in the morning and
live Irish music starting at 1 pm. Other specials include $29
lift tickets on Leap Day, February 29; two for $49 lift tickets
on Valentines Day; midweek ski and stay packages start at just
$79 per person/per night; the new Vernal Eternal Spring Pass provides
unlimited skiing and riding starting February 26 through the end
of the ski season for just $299 and the purchase price can be
applied towards a NorEaster or Classic Pass for the 2012/2013
ski areas place safety first. And it shows in the grooming of
their trails, a heavy ski patrol presence, their honesty when
it comes to reporting snow fall accumulations, ski trail conditions
and their investment in new, safe equipment.
"We are in constant contact with meteorologists," says
Meeker. "We need to know and report snow and weather conditions
that will enable skiers to decide whether it's safe and fun or
wait another day."
addresses perhaps the biggest challenge that all ski areas in
the Greater New York and New England area face: psychology and
the perception of ski conditions.
got 8 inches of snow last week and we are enjoying a beautiful,
sunny weekend. So were doing all right," says Pezak
who has held the Hunter information position for 5 years. "Though
I heard its raining in New York City, which is unfortunate.
Its difficult to imagine that theres snow in the mountains
when its pouring outside in Manhattan!"
when addressing ski safety, both Hunter and Mount Snow have invested
heavily in new ski equipment.
got two new lifts in two years, and the only high-speed 6-person
detachable lift in New York State. This year we installed a quad
on the West Side the Zephyr Express in place of
Y Lift (it takes place of Y and Z). Gets you up to the top from
the bottom of Hunter West in 3 minutes! This is our second new
lift in two years," say Pezak.
up at Mount Snow the Bluebird Express was recently installed -
Americas only high speed detachable six passenger bubble
Mount Snow Marketing and Events Director Vinnie Lewis says: The
Bluebird Express is going to provide our guests protection from
the elements similar to a gondola cabin, but with the convenience
and comfort of being able to keep their skis and boards on their
The Bluebird Express is a high-speed detachable six passenger
bubble chair, manufactured by Leitner-Poma, and will be the only
one of its kind in America. It will follow the same path up the
mountain as the former Summit Local, a fixed grip triple chair
lift, but will cut the ride time in half to just seven minutes
while increasing Mount Snows uphill capacity by up to 800
people per hour.
acquiring Mount Snow in 2007, Peak Resorts has invested about
$20 million in capital improvements to the resort.
who says that Mount Snows primary markets are the Metro
New York area, Fairfield County in Connecticut, Boston and Westchester
County in NY, is proud of his general manager.
"Kelly Pawlak has been here for over 25 years and she truly
is the reason why Mount Snow is such a great place to work and
visit. Kelly is responsible for running the resort, but you will
see her all over the place picking up trash, cleaning tables in
the base lodge or scanning lift tickets."
Hunter Mountain, hands on family management continues.
ski resort is family owned and operated by the Slutzky family,
says Pezak. "Three generations now work here, with the granddaughter
of Orville, the living owner of the resort, serving in an operations
and guest relations function. The family owned atmosphere is evident
here, as staff and core customers are very close, everyone knows
everyone else. This is not a corporation. Its a warm, wonderful
place for both guests and employees."