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Mountain Update

The inside scoop from Mountain Operations Director, Steve Crowley.

Stay tuned for a weekly message about the snow, the base, snowmaking and upcoming events, straight from the source, Holiday Valley Mountain Ops.

Inside Scoop from Mountain Ops April 11, 2013

Steve Crowley - Thursday, April 11, 2013

       “Well I told you once and I told you twice, That someone will have to pay the price, But here’s a chance to change your mind, Cuz we’ll be gone a long long time, Well this could be the last time, This could be the last time, Maybe the last time, I don’t know, oh no…” (RS ’65)

The snow cover is holding well after the deluge yesterday (April 10) and we have plenty of grooming work to do. The plan is to move snow Friday during the day time, then groom Friday night. We will open Chute and Yodeler lifts Saturday morning at 8:30 am to 4:30 pm with 12 trails and operate the same on Sunday. This may be the last time, so get on out there! For just 25 bucks it will be the most fun you'll have in all of April.

The Inside Scoop from Mountain Ops March 28

Steve Crowley - Thursday, March 28, 2013

“Grandmas sit in chairs and reminisce, Boys keep chasing girls to get a kiss, The cars keep going faster all the time, Bums still cry Hey buddy can you spare a dime, And the beat goes on, Drums keep pounding a rhythm ti the brain, La de da de de  La de da de da……..(S&C ’67) 

The skiing and riding are great, and the beat goes on. We’ll be adding Tannenbaum lift and trails Friday, Eagle and Chute are on tap for Saturday. The snow depth is above average and surface is still very much a packed power. We saw a little hardening of the surface on Wednesday mostly from moisture collecting through evaporation and freezing in overnight. Thursday morning saw a couple inches of fresh dry snow and the groomed underneath has softened some because of warmer temps overnight.

We’ll keep Cindy’s and Sunrise spinning until 9 PM Friday and Saturday nights for one last ski and ride under the lights! Terrain parks are looking good and the park crews are working hard every day to keep them in good shape. Check for the spring session to be held on Foxfire on April 13...Looking ahead to next week we will have 5 lifts operating and we plan to extend the season to April 14th. The beat goes on… get your shades and sunscreen on I’ll see you on the slopes!

Mountain Ops Update March 26

Jane Eshbaugh - Tuesday, March 26, 2013

You asked for it, you got it! We're operating 6 lifts this week, March 25-28, including Sunrise, Cindy's, Creekside, Mardi Gras, Yodeler and Morning Star with 39 slopes. The coverage is amazing with wall to wall snow and mid-winter packed powder conditions. And the good news is there's more!

More Lifts this Weekend...Tannenbaum will operate Friday through Sunday, March 29-31. We're adding Eagle and SnowPine or Chute for Saturday and Sunday.

Twilight Hours are Back...Cindy's and Sunrise will operate until 9PM on Friday and Saturday, March 29-30.

5 Lifts April 1 through 7... Cindy's, Sunrise, Mardi Gras, Yodeler and Morning Star.

Season is Extended!!! April 8-12 with Yodeler quad and up to 12 slopes, most likely additional lifts for the final weekend of April 13-14.

But remember, all of these plans are weather dependent so check the snow report for daily operations. Happy skiing and riding!

Inside Scoop March 22

Steve Crowley - Friday, March 22, 2013

“In a white room with black curtains near the station, Black roof country, no gold pavements, tired starlings, Silver horses ran down Moonbeams in your dark eyes, Dawn light smiles on you leaving, my contentment… (C ’68)

We continue to be in a white room. The Eagle area skied well Saturday morning and we’ll get all but Falcon groomed in tonight. This will be the first groom in that area since all the new fresh power so it will be exquisite Sunday morning, no over processing of the snow there!.Our Coaster and Tubing park are closed for the season, but the Coaster will reopen with Sky High  for summer operations in May. The slopes are in excellent condition. Come on out to ski and ride as we finish up March in mid-winter conditions. See you at the pond skim!!

Wow, oh Wow, you won't believe the incredible conditions this week. Since the beginning of the week it's just been snowing and snowing and SNOWING! Over 20 inches since Sunday night has given us the most wonderful skiing and snowboarding, so soft that your turns are silent. We have not had this much snow in March for years... It's like the old days! This weekend we'll be running 11 lifts including Eagle, with 52 slopes. The glades are covered and cross country trails are primo! 

Saturday brings the annual Pond Skimming and Box Race competitions and SUNSHINE! See you at Yodeler, with registration at 11, Box Race at 12:30 and Pond Skimming at 1:00. There will also be great music from DJ John Barry and a cookout and margarita bar! Sunday is the Spring Open slalom race on Edelweiss and you just might catch a few future stars out there, starting at 9:30AM.

We bid farewell to Twilight hours on Saturday and we will be closing at 4:30PM starting Sunday. Starting Monday, March 25 we will operate 6 lifts (Sunrise, Cindy's, Creekside, Mardi Gras, Yodeler and Morning Star) from 9AM to 4:30PM with over 30 slopes. Our target closing date is April 7 and by the look of the slopes right now and the weather forecast, we'll be skiing and riding on mighty fine conditions right up to the last day. This is a reminder that night passes are good during the day now that night skiing is over for the season. I’ll see you out there.

The Inside Scoop from Mountain Ops, March 15

Steve Crowley - Friday, March 15, 2013

     “Bet you didn’t think I knew how to rock n’ roll , Oh I got the boogie – woogie right down to my very soul, There ain’t no need for me to be a wallflower, ‘cause now I’m living on blues power, I knew all the time but now I’m gonna let you know, I’m gonna keep on rocking, no matter if it’s fast or slow, ain’t gonna stop until the twenty fifth hour, cause now we’re living on blues power… “(EC ’70).

Update for of Tuesday, March 19 we've received another 6 or so inches of snow, with more in the forecast and MIDWINTER conditions! It's like the old days! Right now we're running 10 lifts during the week, about 45 slopes. Keep your fingers crossed and we could open Eagle again for the weekend! Saturday brings the annual Pond Skimming and Box Race competitions and SUNSHINE! See you at Yodeler, with registration at 11, Box Race at 12:30 and Pond Skimming at 1:00. Great music from DJ John Barry and a cookout and margarita bar!

Everyone, including Jane, are boogying down the moguls now. Morning Star, Chute and Falcon have some mighty fine bumps. We have received 8++ inches of new snow this week on top of superbly groomed slopes creating some great packed power conditions.

The snowmakers are racing on Edelweiss Saturday morning to raise money for Mercy Flight. Crews from several different areas will be competing in a tandem hose slalom. It's a a great way for these hardworking fellows to to swap stories and tall tales, and close out the year. The Northwind Super-G will be held on Sunday as we wind down the racing season for the year. Quarter pipe action is on for Saturday at the base of Yodeler. Jim and the park crew are shaping it up now out of the snow bar pile from last week. It’s a great event to watch so be sure to stop by. 

The Tubing Park is open this weekend and the sliding is fine. Our Mountain Coaster is operating up above the Tannenbaum Lodge. Both Tubing and the Mountain Coaster will wrap up their seasons on Sunday.

This weekend we’ll be skiing and riding 52 slopes, well set up terrain parks, and 12 lifts are operating. We bid farewell to our night skiing/riding on Saturday night and Twilight hours start Sunday. Here’s how Twilight  works: we operate all open lifts to 4:30 pm then continue to operate Cindy’s and Sunrise until 7PM all next week. This gives access to the terrain parks and good late day skiing/riding on the slopes off these two lifts. Special Twilight rates are available and we close the trails just as the sun is setting. It is good fun so give it a try! We'll be experiencing good temperature ranges for snow, grooming, and maple syrup production this next week that will provide great late season conditions. Get your sunscreen and shades I’ll see you on the slopes.

The Inside Scoop from Mountain Ops, March 1, 2013

Steve Crowley - Friday, March 01, 2013

“And you can sing in the sunshine, You’ll laugh every day, You’ll sing in the sunshine, Then be on your way, And when the year  has ended, And we’ve gone away, You’ll often speak about, And this is what you’ll say: We sang in the sunshine you know we laughed everyday, we sang in the sunshine, And then went on the way” (GG’64) 

Sunshine has been in short supply this week with a low pressure cell to our east and circulating north east winds and clouds over us. This causes flat light on the slopes and makes it tricky to see undulations on the snow surface and can even cause vertigo in certain people. A good pair of goggles will help but for me, it’s best to slow down some especially on the first run of any given trail.

Speaking of first runs I just got back on my skis today after a knee injury on December 26th. I’ve been out on foot but the perspective of being on skis is completely different, and WOW what a difference in slope conditions! Snowmakers have done their work and groomers have the snow pushed out and tilled “wall to wall” on every trail today.

We are experiencing difficulties in getting repair parts here for the SnowPine chair lift. Today the Wall headwall and Bear Cub are closed as the lift is not operational. The parts are in route and the lift technicians will get the lift up and running some time on Saturday. We have a very talented and dedicated group in Lift Maintenance and they will work hard and whatever hours it takes to get the lift running for Saturday. Be sure to check the morning slope report for up to date information.

This weekend we welcome the Kandahar Festival to Holiday Valley and the young racers will be competing on Edelweiss slope both Saturday and Sunday. Yodeler is flat “wall to wall” this week as the moguls on the east side have been cut and tilled. We have moguls on Chute, Morning Star, and Falcon for those lookin' to bump. Donna in Customer Service will put on the Passholders' cookout on Sunday. The lunch has been moved from the Edelweiss lean-to  to the Champagne Sun Deck adjacent to the Yodeler Lodge.

The Tubing Park is still going strong with 12 lanes open and the Mountain Coaster at Tannenbaum is open through the weekend for a ride through the snow covered trees. As always shuttles and busses are here to get you there just ask a lot or lodge attendant for assistance. I’m going skiing, see you on the slopes!!  

The Inside Scoop from Mt Ops Feb 22, 2013

Steve Crowley - Friday, February 22, 2013

“Charlie Jones was the engineer, he had twenty years on the line, He kissed his wife at the station gate, This morning at six thirty five, Now everything went fine ‘till half past nine, Then Charlie looked up and he saw, There were men on horses, men with guns, and no sign of the law ……” (NRPS ’71).

Poor old Charlie he should have come to Holiday Valley! We have all our trails groomed and open today. The Wall was winched and groomed out this morning (Friday) as well. Glades are open and Cross Country trails are packed. Snowmaking ran during nighttime hours through the week and the crew is off for the next three days. Grooming is operating each night and Jim has been working on Moonshadow prepping a boarder cross course for a USASA Saturday event. Moonshadow will open after that event. The park crew is also prepping the Snoozer terrain park for a USASA Slopestyle event on Sunday. Our children’s Ranger group will be competing on the moguls at Morning Star, Sunday at 10 AM. We have moguls on Chute and Yodeler East as well, are we're allowing the east side of Falcon to bump up as well. We have some great conditions! Our shuttle service is operating around the resort and we'll give you a ride to the Tubing Park on the hour. The Mountain Coaster at Tannenbaum is open afternoons and evenings through the weekend. Check the web site or daily slope report for more information on all of these great activities. And don’t forget Saturday is the Penguin Paddle at the base of Yodeler to support our adaptive skiing program.  I’ll see you on the slopes!! 

News from Mountain Ops Feb. 15, 2013

Steve Crowley - Friday, February 15, 2013

“ Now if I let you see this place, Where stories all ring true, Will you let me past your face, To see what’s really you, It’s not for me to ask this question, As though I were a king, For you have to love, believe, and feel, Before the burst of tambourines take you there…” (JB&O‘75)

Oh the place is in great shape! We’ve seen a little natural snow and have the upper cross country trails packed, and we'll be down at the lower cross country today to pack and try to set track there. More natural snow is in the forecast over the weekend. Snowmaking will run after operating hours going into the weekend to build up cover in selected areas.

There are moguls on the east side of Yodeler and Chute slopes and seeded bumps have been set on Morning Star south side (skiers right). Seeding a mogul field is accomplished with a grooming machine pushing up small piles of snow in a set pattern. The snow is allowed to set up then it is groomed over again with very light tiller down pressure. This establishes the pattern and provides some soft snow in the troughs for skiers to work it up onto a mogul field. Establishing a mogul field takes time, the right weather conditions, and a lot of skier participation to get a good result.

All lifts are open and the snow conditions are great on all trails. The glades will open just as soon as we get a few more inches of snow, which may be very soon! All the terrain parks are open and shaped up, the Boarding for Breast Cancer event is on the Rail Park at the base of Mardi Gras Saturday afternoon. NASTAR is operating on Cindy’s and is open to the public. To register just pull up to  the start shack at the bottom of the headwall. The Tubing Park is operating Noon to 9 Saturday, Sunday and Monday and will be open 4-9 pm every night next week. The Mountain coaster is operating this weekend from 1-8pm and all next week from 2-8pm. Get right up to Tannenbaum Lodge and take a ride in the woods! Mountain Coaster tickets are available upstairs in the Tannenbaum lodge.

As always we have complimentary shuttle and bus service around the resort servicing all parking areas, lodging guests, and lodges. Just ask a lot or lodge attendant for assistance in getting a ride. Saturday morning we will be operating Yodeler lift one hour early (7:30 am) for our season pass holders to get some first tracks, then all lifts will open at 8:30 am for day and multi day ticket holders. I’ll see you at Yodeler for first tracks, coffee, and Timbits Saturday morning. It’s high tide in the Skiing and Riding season so come on out and enjoy the winter sports !!

Mountain Updates Feb. 8, 2013

Steve Crowley - Friday, February 08, 2013

“Sweeping cobwebs from the edges of my mind, had to get away to see what we could find, Hope the days that lie ahead, bring us back to where they’ve led, listen not to what’s been said to you, Wouldn’t you know we’re riding on the Marrakesh express?” (GN ’68) 

Fresh crisp air, sunny slopes, and great snow will sweep the cobwebs, a solid bet. Our base has been building to mid winter conditions with some big nights of making snow this past week. Moguls are available on Chute and Yodeler and the terrain parks have had extensive rebuilds this week. Foxfire saw two good days of snowmaking and Jim has been out shaping and setting features there and will finish up Friday morning. Moon Shadow park consists of all snow features that were built for a Boardercross contest and have been modified and now are open daily for all riders and skiers. Check it out!

Grooming crews are busy each night moving snow, leveling snow mounds, and tilling up a fresh corduroy surface each morning. We are still light on natural snow so our glades remain closed, With the hype around the big storm this weekend we might get enough snow to get the glades...stay tuned. 

All lifts are operating on the regular schedule along with the Mountain Coaster and our Tubing Park open Thursdays through Sundays. The Tubing Park has the little tubers hill for guests too small to ride the tows. Little Tubers are free, we just ask that an adult be with the little ones out there. Birthday party bookings at the Tubing Park are available for $20 per person including tubing, pizza or a hot dog and use of the party room. Cleveland Metro will be racing with us on Saturday on Cindy’s slope and USASA and NFSC will be racing on Edelweiss Saturday and Sunday. It is a great time to hit the slopes, we’ll see you out there.  

Mountain Updates Feb. 1, 2013

Steve Crowley - Friday, February 01, 2013


  “ bye bye, you better keep in touch, I think your ears hear a whole lot of music, And like me you’ve heard a bit too much,  Too much of anything, is too much for me, Too much of everything gets too much for me, I think these hands have felt a lot, I don’t know what have I touched?  I think these eyes have seen a lot, I don’t know, maybe they’ve seen too much” (TW ’71) 

We’ve seen it all, is the saying this week with warm weather and thunder earlier in the week and now ohhh yea lake effect snow!! We have a good foot of new snow and good snowmaking temperatures going into the weekend. Some of the eastern edges of the slopes are thin now but will improve as we get more natural snow. Snowmaking will operate Friday into Saturday morning then stop during skiing/riding hours both Saturday and Sunday. All lifts will be open and the cross country trails are packed up top and the lower (golf course) trail. We’ll plan to winch the Wall headwall Saturday morning and hope to have it open for the weekend.  The Tubing Park and Mountain Coaster are open as well and conditions are improving daily. Moon Shadow is groomed up as a terrain park with several berms and rollers Snoozer park has features buillt and rails set for a competition there on Saturday morning. After the competition Snoozer will be open to the public. Foxfire park is open and has been rebuilt along with the Rail Park at the bottom of Mardi Gras. There's a competition mogul event on the Chute on Sunday but we also have moguls on Yodeler east side. Great weather ahead so come on out and enjoy.