by Amy Patenaude
Many of us had less than a 24-hour notice that Bretton Woods lifts would be spinning on Sunday, November 13th. I first heard the news from reading a friend’s Facebook post proclaiming that she was going skiing!
Later in the day I received an email notification from Bretton Woods inviting me to “Say goodnight to Hunger and Ski Free”.
Wouldn’t you know I wasn’t prepared? Charlie and I had made plans to go hiking.
That bag I packed last spring with my ski boots and clothing all set to grab and go was not with me. I had left it home. I thought I was being clever. I was counting on Bretton Woods making their surprise announcement on a weekday and I’d be ready to scoot straight from work.
Determined not to miss opening day, I dug out my Telemark boots and skis and decided I’d go right after our hike. I wouldn’t make first run, but I knew my legs wouldn’t last too long tele-skiing after a hike so a few hours in the afternoon would be just fine.
I added my box of granola bars and a can of tuna fish to the large pile stacked next to the guest services desk. I was greeted with a smile as I was handed my lift ticket and given a wish to have fun. What a fine start and a good deal for all—a truck load of food would be donated to the local food pantry at the end of the day.
On my way to the lift I ran into my friend Karl. It was well past one o’clock, but he had just arrived too and we shared our first chair lift ride of the season together. We chatted about our hopes for a snowy year ahead and our plans for lots of good ski days.
Looking over the Mount Washington Hotel to Mountain Washington it was capped white but much of the valley was still bare wearing the many dark shades of late fall. The golf course was still green.
What a perfect spring skiing type day! Sunshine and lots of soft snow covered the trail. I made six laps up and down the mountain before my legs told me it was time to go home. I didn’t make it until the lifts closed but afternoon sure revved me up for winter!
A lot of ski resorts will be open for the season as of Thanksgiving Day so get out there and have fun.
Sorry to remind you that you probably missed the best deals offered by the resorts, but don’t worry there are still good deals to be found. Check out your favorite resort’s website ASAP! If you’re still undecided there are plenty of 2 for 1 deals, learn to ski packages and fun events offered throughout the season. Season passes are the best because they make me want to ski a lot.
50 years old! Yes, both Loon Mountain Resort and Waterville Valley Resort will be celebrating their golden anniversaries this ski season. Stay tuned for fireworks and much celebrating. Check out these mountains histories at NewEnglandSkiHistory.com.
MORE GOOD STUFF
While we were enjoying the golf course and beach this summer the Nordic centers and ski areas were hard at work to make our experiences even better this winter. The big news is the snow making improvements nearly everywhere. Cannon Mountain invested 6 million dollars in snowmaking upgrades. Cannon will be hosting the UNH Winter Carnival and are slated to host the NCAA’s Championships this season. Ragged, Pats Peak, Granite Gorge put up more snow-guns.
Waterville Valley is hard at work at their Sunnyside expansion—Green Peak will open with a new lift and trails.
Jackson Ski Touring invested half a million dollars in trail expansion, almost 4 new miles and two new bridges. Jackson will be hosting the UNH Winter Carnival’s Nordic events this January.