One of the best ways to take in the sights and festivities of Fall Festival is from atop Holiday Valley.
The Mardi Gras high speed quad will start running at 12PM to take people to the top. The ride itself generally takes less than 10 minutes from the time you load your chair to the time you unload at the top. Up to four people can be on a chair (dogs, backpacks/coolers are not permitted on the chairlift).
On the summit you can hike around the tops of some of your favorite winter runs, take in the fall colors, capture those mandatory fall foliage selfies and enjoy the food and drinks while you enjoy the tunes of live music that will be playing all weekend from noon to 4PM.
When the time comes to make your way back down to the base, there are two great options. You can take the lift down, which, at times, could result in having to wait in line at the top to get on the lift. The Mardi Gras quad downloading only allows for a 50% load capacity. That means four people can be loaded on every other chair or two people can be loaded on every chair. Either way, getting back to the bottom is a more time consuming process than getting to the top. This lift was designed to get skiers and riders to the top but not to take people on a round trip. There has to be less overall weight on the download than the upload.
The other option to get back down is to hike, which might actually get you back down faster than the chairlift (and for those of you who might’ve had one drink too many or eaten an extra hot dog even though you knew you didn’t need it, the mile-long trek down Mardi Gras will help get you prepared for the activities that you have planned later on that evening).
Whether you ride the lift or hike, please be considerate and throw out any trash you have in the provided trash receptacles. Help keep our slopes litter free! We’re looking forward to another fantastic Fall Festival here in Ellicottville and hope to see you at the top of Mardi Gras and at the Cabana Bar from 4 – 7PM as we enjoy the fall season.