Saddleback Blog

Archive: February 1, 2010 - February 28, 2010

Presidents Week in Full Swing with Lots of Activities!

No day off this week, so I have time to throw in a quick Wednesday blog your way. Well, we missed another snow storm! I am beginning to take it personally. It would have been nice, but the ski conditions remain remarkably good here at Saddleback. We are now halfway through the President's vacation week and the snow is holding up very well. The nightly grooming efforts put the trails back into the same packed powder corduroy each morning. The base is not hard so the packed powder stays with us throughout the day. We do have mountain snow showers in the forecast into Saturday, we hope!

Business has been very strong this week and we are making lots of people happy. We have the… Read More >>

Seth Wescott, High School Championships & News From Casablanca!

First, a big shout out and congratulations to Seth Wescott for his second Olympic gold medal! If you don’t know, Seth grew up in Farmington Maine, just 50 minutes down the road from Saddleback. As a kid, Seth learned to ski here at Saddleback and later started snowboarding here before going to school at Carrabassett Valley Academy and riding Sugarloaf. Seth still enjoys days here at Saddleback when he can.

Today, we hosted the 2010 Maine Principal’s Association Class B GS Championships on the Grey Ghost. It was a gorgeous sunny & mild day, perfect weather to be outside and on the mountain. There were 12 high school teams consisting of about 112 racers. The… Read More >>

The Word Is Out - Saddleback Snow Surfaces Are Superior!

The past three days of operating our ski resort has proved to be a very rewarding experience! It is fun when you know that the skiing product is in great shape and that our guests are having a genuinely good time.  The accolades and thank yous have been amazing!

Obviously, the holiday weekend brings a lot of new skiers & riders to the mountain. It is also a time when other resort season pass holders with pass blackout dates will visit us for the discount that we offer. New skiers and these other resort pass holders can’t help but make comparisons. The commentary has been overwhelming that Saddleback snow surfaces are currently the best in Maine!

Even… Read More >>

PEAK Pass Exceeds 2000 Today!

Today we hit a new milestone by selling our 2000th PEAK Pass. PEAK is an acronym for Promoting Education & Activities for Kids. Simply stated, any Maine student up through 12th grade who makes the honor roll during either the first or second marking period is entitled to receive a Saddleback season pass for just $49! As of today, we have exceeded 2000 passes. At the beginning of the season, in my wildest of dreams, I would never have thought that we would exceed 2,000 passes. I thought that if we hit 1,000 that would be great!

Pictured here is the 2,000th PEAK Pass holder, 11 year old Sadie Farrand from Norridgewock Maine. She was surprised by me to learn… Read More >>

Our Terrain Park Is Very Popular Today!

Early this morning Taylor, Paul, Cooper, Ethan, Colby and Jared were putting the finishing touches on the last of the fourteen elements in our terrain park located on the Wheeler trail. What! Who are these guys and what do they do, you ask? These are the hand workers of the park or as they are affectionately referred to as "the diggers". They worked along side groomer Joe Haines until about midnight last night to freshen up the park for today. It was not long after the lifts started to turn this morning that the park became very popular. Skiers and riders had realized that the park elements had all been refreshed and the park is now in top shape.

Maintaining a park takes a lot of… Read More >>

Grooming Is The Name Of The Game!

When we go through long stretches without much natural snow, grooming becomes the name of the game! Last summer, we decided to flip our old grooming equipment for a new fleet of Pisten Bully groomers with new tillers. One machine is equipped with a winch. The winch allows the operator to lower the machine onto the steepest pitches and then pull the machine back up the steeps. Winching has a huge advantage over grooming downhill. When grooming downhill, the operator is constantly pushing the snow down off of the steeps. With a winch, the operator can pull snow back up the hill and always keep base depths on the steeps constant. Not too long ago we needed two machines and two operators to… Read More >>

Ten Day Weather Outlook For Saddleback

With the coming holiday week in mind,  I decided to check out the 10 day forecast specifically for Rangeley and Saddleback. First, there are no major storms within the 10 day forecast. There are two days which are predicted to be sunny, Wednesday the 17th & Friday the 19th. Every other day is forecast to be overcast or mostly cloudy with a 20% to 30% chance of snow showers each of those days. Winds for the 10 day outlook are to be light and variable ranging from 5 to 10 mph from the West, Northwest each day. Temperatures will range from a low of 17 to a high of near 30 degrees. Most days are in the mid to high 20's. All & all, a very good forecast for skiers.

The… Read More >>

Presidents Vacation Week Looks Good!

All indications are that the weather and skiing will be great for next weeks vacation period. The last of the snowmaking ended this morning on Royal Tiger in the South Branch area. Tonight that trail will get a thorough grooming and will be in super shape for ski & snowboard teaching. We have made a lot of during the past two weeks. All of our snowmaking trails are very well covered and surfaces are packed powder. We picked up 2 inches of snow last night which created a velvety surface for today’s skiers. We expect to get a bit more snow Wednesday night. Beginning Thursday, we are looking at a nice stretch of sunny weather and pleasant temperatures well into the holiday week… Read More >>

Snowmaking Moves To The South Branch Learning Area

One thing that we don’t talk much about is our South Branch beginner area. It is by far the nicest teaching area that I have seen anywhere in the East! Why? First of all, it is located below the base lodge area. Being set aside from the rest of the mountain means there are seldom any high speed skiers flying through which can be very intimidating. Second, the beginning skier or rider has the full length of South Branch’s Royal Tiger trail to get the feel of their skis or board, well before having to deal with loading onto a chairlift. The lift is a very nice modern Doppelmyer Quad which was installed in 2004. Finally, the size and variety of terrain makes it a fun area to… Read More >>

A Morning of Skiing With Survivor Bob

Survivor winner Bob Crowley spent the weekend here at Saddleback. He came Saturday as he is our spokesperson for the PEAK program. Yesterday was PEAK day and Bob had the pleasure to speak to the kids attending the program. Bob also pulled the winning name for the ski & snowboard raffle. The photo is of survivor Bob congratulating our raffle winner Walker Ellsworth.

Last night at the Swig’n Smelt Pub, I mentioned to Bob and his wife Peggy, that they should join us for the ski with management program at 7:30 AM. They had already turned their ski equipment in and the rental shop was closed. Now I think I know why Bob won survivor- he is very resourceful!  Bob went down… Read More >>

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