year-round skiing in New England?

becca_mbecca_m advanced
in NELSAP Forum Posts: 111
I know this has probably been discussed before - anybody skied on this stuff before???

Do you think this will happen this summer?  If so, I might take a drive there.   

Comments

  • Bill29Bill29 advanced
    Posts: 225
    From the look of Powder Ridge for much of last winter - minimal cover on many slopes and trails - they might as well leave the new artificial stuff there all season. A news report on radio this morning said it would be in place in August. I think other ski areas have put down artificial surfaces in the past, but this stuff is supposed to be new and improved. Should be interesting.
  • joshua_segaljoshua_segal expert
    Posts: 1,663
    The report this AM indicated that long pants will be required as well as helmet and elbow pads.  I think that means that even if it skis like real snow, the falls won't feel like real snow!
  • rickbolgerrickbolger expert
    Posts: 1,015

    The report this AM indicated that long pants will be required as well as helmet and elbow pads.  I think that means that even if it skis like real snow, the falls won't feel like real snow!

    that's exactly what I was thinking.  I don't fall often, but sure wouldn't want to find out just how different it is!   :-O :-O
  • tededetedede advanced
    Posts: 118
    Let's hope they put more care into the product than their website and marketing.  Not a single video of anyone skiing doesn't bode well.  
  • joshua_segaljoshua_segal expert
    Posts: 1,663
    When Tenney tried it, poor marketing was part of their failure. I think they should advertise "learn in the warmth of the autumn and we'll have you and/or your family on the chairlift by Christmas."
  • CannonballCannonball advanced
    Posts: 121

    When Tenney tried it, poor marketing was part of their failure. I think they should advertise "learn in the warmth of the autumn and we'll have you and/or your family on the chairlift by Christmas."

    Wasn't Tenney's effort completely different? I thought they did an actual snowmaking system in summer (basically an icemaker) as opposed to synthetic fibers.
  • lotsoskiinglotsoskiing expert
    Posts: 624
    nah...
  • tededetedede advanced
    edited July 6 Posts: 118

    Wasn't Tenney's effort completely different? I thought they did an actual snowmaking system in summer (basically an icemaker) as opposed to synthetic fibers.

    Yes, you are correct.  The last folks I remember offering summer skiing on mats was Boston Hills in Andover, MA.


  • DrJeffDrJeff advanced
    edited July 6 Posts: 267

    The report this AM indicated that long pants will be required as well as helmet and elbow pads.  I think that means that even if it skis like real snow, the falls won't feel like real snow!

    Just a little rug burn is the likely result!! Probably not that much different than if someone falls on some coarse spring corn snow ;)
  • joshua_segaljoshua_segal expert
    Posts: 1,663
    I suspect there is something magical about winter scenery - which perhaps accounts for the fact that no matter how close they make turf skiing or artificial surface skiing in the summer feel like snow skiing, it has never caught on.

    That's why I think the "learn in the warmth of the autumn and we'll have you and/or your family on the chairlift by Christmas" is a potentially winning approach to marketing this product. 
  • becca_mbecca_m advanced
    Posts: 111
    is this done in Europe commonly?     How would you find where just for examples?
  • lotsoskiinglotsoskiing expert
    Posts: 624
    Scotland- plastic turf-like surface
  • newmannewman advanced
    Posts: 179
    I love the idea. However it just doesn't get the hype it needs. Ski Ward does it on the carpet area. A terrain park. I guess it makes in
  • newmannewman advanced
    Posts: 179
    income for them. Boarders hang out and do the rails while two short tubing lanes serve mostly groups of younger kids. The mats at PR are only 500 feet this year. When they go top to bottom I think it would be something I would do alot, if I didn't live that far away.
  • skipro77skipro77 intermediate
    Posts: 44
    Liberty SnowFlex Park on the campus of Liberty University in VA.
  • CannonballCannonball advanced
    Posts: 121
    FWIW I think that year-round skiing in New England is a terrible idea. What makes New England my favorite place to live is that there are soooo many things to do in each season. By the time ski season ends I'm excited to be moving on to the next thing.  
  • mapnutmapnut expert
    Posts: 768
    Well, maybe Middletown, CT could use more things to do. The reason Powder Ridge is looking into it is because they are co-owned, if I'm not mistaken, with the Brownstone Exploration and Discovery Park, 7 miles away in Portland, CT. They advertise "Adventure center for rock climbing, swimming, zip lining, hiking, cliff jumping & more." So they can promote each other. The Brownstone Park is located in a flooded quarry; they have water and cliffs but apparently lack a hill.
  • mtsnow123mtsnow123 advanced
    Posts: 285

    FWIW I think that year-round skiing in New England is a terrible idea. What makes New England my favorite place to live is that there are soooo many things to do in each season. By the time ski season ends I'm excited to be moving on to the next thing.  

    Couldn't agree more. I am a die hard snowboarder, but living in Burlington, VT, I would rather bike on the many paths/rail trails in the area or go in/on Lake Champlain. I just don't see all that many continuing to visit. There is always the market for the freestyle or racing students that need to train, so that could make something like this feasible.
  • Bill29Bill29 advanced
    Posts: 225
    mapnut, you're not mistaken. And I don't know how well that operation in the Portland quarries is doing.I've been by there a few times and I haven't seen very many people there. Those were working quarries from the early 1800s until the March, 1936, Connecticut River flood ended operations. Maybe Powder Ridge can get the Wesleyan ski team - if they still have one - to train on plastic in the fall. Or maybe some of the junior ski teams might be interested. Otherwise, I don't think it'll  get a lot of use.
  • TomWhiteTomWhite advanced
    Posts: 401

    The report this AM indicated that long pants will be required as well as helmet and elbow pads.  I think that means that even if it skis like real snow, the falls won't feel like real snow!

    I lived in England ’76 – 78. Both winters I skied the Alps.
    I also skied on an artificial slope both falls. The first year was definitely a
    “long pants (trousers for them) day”. The slope was covered with 6 – 8” circles
    of 3-4 rows of “afro comb” type bristles. Around the hill were 55 gal. drums of
    floor wax. Staff would soak the door mat beside the drum. Skiers would ski over
    the mat for an instant wax job. Even wearing blue jeans, I had a couple of
    bruises on my hips from falls. The second fall, the disks/circles were made of
    long tooth brush type bristles. Much better. There were two poma lifts.

  • TomWhiteTomWhite advanced
    Posts: 401
    I watched the video. The mat looks like what I skied on the first time (see above) in England. Wear blue jeans or two layers of shorts to protect your hips when you fall.
  • NELSBEERNELSBEER advanced
    edited July 15 Posts: 205
    No mention yet of the grand daddy of summer skiing. Mount Snow's Fountain Mountain from the 1960's & 70's. Two 600 hp. pumps shot water up in the air from Snow Lake all winter and when everything else had melted a hill big enough to ski & race on remained.  Lots of tales about icing up cars in the parking lots, Route 100 and everything else in sight.

    In the photo the spire that looks like a frozen pine tree is the pipe going up and the hill in the foreground is  where most of the water landed.

    This was obviously crazy expensive to run and tied up lots of water but it got a lot of attention and allowed real skiing into July. Pictures include races down the hill and lots of regular skiers enjoying the oddity.

    Really not that different from Kmart these days in the spring, make a pile of snow and stay open.

    It looks like real snow may be the difference when you want to attract real skiers.  Makes you wonder if there isn't a place for a hill with lots of snow on it, a roof (removable/tent/sprung) and a glacier in the back yard to provide cooling.

    Put the kids on the hill & build an ICE BAR for the adults to watch them...   






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  • joshua_segaljoshua_segal expert
    Posts: 1,663
    I went in May ca. 1970, but the Fountain Mtn. was completed surrounded by snow fences with no trespassing signs.  What year did they actually have skiing in June, much less July.
  • NELSBEERNELSBEER advanced
    edited July 16 Posts: 205
    Largely oral history, check Kelly's Blogs on the Mount Snow web site for some pictures and stories.

    ..or check this web history site  which includes a photo of a race in progress with little if any snow in the background.
    I have heard tales of rope tows as well. 
     
    This selection from Kelly's Blog describes ski camps in June.... maybe they had it blocked off for safety reasons until camp started...

  • Bill29Bill29 advanced
    Posts: 225
    I believe the Fountain Mountain ended after someone died of injuries suffered in a fall on it. I don't remember when that happened. When Walt first put the fountain in what he called Snow Lake, when they turned it on one cold, windy winter day, spray coated the tree limbs in front of Snow Lake Lodge and broke some of the windows. It was quite a curiosity for a while, as I remember. (It was a while ago so I may be a little shaky on details, but we have plenty of sleuths on this network, so I'm sure someone will look it it and give us some details.)
  • ski_itski_it expert
    Posts: 1,588
    ISNE-I Skied New England | NESAP-the New England Ski Area Project | SOSA-Saving Our Ski Areas - Location SW of Boston MA
  • Bill29Bill29 advanced
    Posts: 225
    Suzy did more at Mt. Snow  than be a flight attendant. She taught groups of kids some moves on skis during th early days of freestyle competition. The girls' freestyle team from Ward Hill - believe it or not, the ski school at Ward was a leader in freestyle for kids in those days - traveled to Mt. Snow a couple  of times to ski with Suzy. Those early freestyle days at Ward Hill are a story in themselves.
    When Mohammad Ali skied at Mt. Snow, I called the ski school director for information for a ski column. He said Ali was there just for a day and was an impatient student. He said Ali wanted to go to the top of the mountain right away. He said Ali was a terrific athlete (no kidding) and could have become a good skier if he wanted to work at it.
    Another athlete of some fame '60s and early '70s was Roosevelt Brown, N.Y. Football Giants offensive tackle. He is not to be confused with the more famous defensive tackle, Roosevelt Greer, who also played for the Rams, I believe.
    I talked by phone with Brown about his ski experience at Mt. Snow. He said he enjoyed it, but thought it was really a challenge. He said he thought he might try it after he retired, but I believe he was hurt in a bad car accident and I never heard whether he did anything about skiing.
    One other celebrity ski story. President Gerald Ford skied, and was pretty good at it, according to the ski school head at Vail. I talked to him by phone for a column after Ford made a much photographed and televised fall at the bottom of a trail at Vail.
    The ski school director  said that was Ford's only fall of the day, and it was pretty much a sit-down-and-slide rather than a crash and burn. He said Ford had flown in from Washington the night before and was on the slopes the next morning. Ford was in his late 50s or early 80s (I'm guessing  the latter) and had flown in from sea-level Washington D.C. and less than 24 hours later was beginning his runs at Vail at more than 11,000 feet. He said Ford skied much of the day and did very wall. I'm not sure, but the Ford group may have been skiing with Suzy that day

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