NH Ski Area Insiders' Secrets
Part of the fun of skiing and riding is figuring out how to maximize your time at the mountain. It used to be the only way to learn new tricks was many, many visits to a resort or chatting up the locals on the chairlift. We're going to help you out here with one tip for each of our member ski areas!
Black has long been known as a family-friendly mountain; their Family Passport reinforces that reputation. On weekends/holidays two adults and two kids ski all day for $129.
Many ski areas in New England have a reputation for cold and windy weather. Even though it's located next to Mt. Washington (which has had record breaking winds), Bretton Woods somehow escapes the winds that affect many ski areas. Over the past 30 years (approximately 4,684 ski days) wind has affected lift operations only 9 times at the resort! So on the next gusty day, don't hesitate to hit Bretton Woods.
Many folks love to get an early start to enjoy the fresh snow. If you are one of them, be sure to hop off I-93 at the tram exit to ski or ride at Cannon Mountain. On weekends and holidays Cannon opens their tram at 8:15am, 15 minutes before other lifts!
Most visitors to Cranmore focus on the front slopes and the Skimobile Express Quad. The East Slope is a nice change of scenery, with a variety of terrain and plenty of sunshine. If it's a busy day be sure to go hop on the East Bowl double chair and enjoy runs that many people miss out on.
If you get to Dartmouth Skiway early enough you can enjoy the luxury of parking slopeside. The parking lot is situated right next to the lift so you can back your car right up to the snow. It provides a great place to take a lunch break, maybe even breaking out the grill on a spring day. At the end of the day you can ski right up to your car.
If you enjoy catching some air, Granite Gorge has a historic jump for you to launch off of. Granite Gorge reopened in 2003 after being closed for 25 years. A 20-meter earthen ski jump was still in place that had been a popular competition jump in the 1960's. It was redesigned in the same location on Juniper Trail, offering a great place to catch serious air.
With skiing and riding until 10pm on weekends and holidays, you have plenty of time for skiing and riding as well as other activities. Take a break and explore the fun of the Lakes region including Funspot, movie theaters, outlet shopping, restaurants and more and you'll still be able to get back on the slopes that day!
Everyone loves a deal, especially parents. Visit King Pine on Saturdays and holidays; from 4-9pm two adults and two juniors can ski or ride for only $54.
Several years ago Loon added South Peak to the ski area. Most skier and riders head to the main base area on busy days. Start your day by parking at South Peak and enjoy quiet slopes and no lift lines along with a nice variety of terrain. When you're ready to explore the rest of the mountain simply hop on the quad chairlift at the summit that connects you to the rest of the ski area.
If you're looking to improve your skills and feel intimidated by others at the mountain, try a midweek lesson at McIntyre. During the daytime hours McIntyre is practically your own personal learning center. In the afternoon school kids descend on the Manchester ski area but before that is your opportunity to work with one of their 150 PSIA certified instructors in a relaxed environment.
Powder days make everyone a bit crazy trying to hurry to the good snow! At Sunapee, often times North Peak is the forgotten gem on a powder day. Many people avoid the slower fixed-grip triple chairlift, but it actually gets you to three incredible trails including the steepest on the mountain, with plenty of fresh snow in front of you!
Most of us have day jobs and can't enjoy regular midweek skiing and riding. Also most of us have never tried ski racing. Pats Peak can solve both of those dilemmas with their midweek adult race leagues! From Monday-Thursday, Pats holds adult races starting at 7pm, allowing you to put in a full day of work and still hit the slopes. Be sure to register in advance.
Everyday of the season the ski patrol at Ragged hides Sweeps, the official flamingo of Ragged. The first person to find Sweeps is rewarded with a spot on the Elmwood Lodge picture board as well as a lift ticket to enjoy another day of skiing or riding at Ragged. So be sure to get out there early and keep your eyes open for Sweeps!
Waterville Valley has had many famous residents through the years; among them were H.A. and Margret Rey, the creators of the famous cartoon monkey Curious George. There is now a winter cottage located in the Town Square that is filled with Curious George memorabilia and stories are read to kids every Saturday from 4-7pm.