MEDIA RELEASE: WHAT’S NEW ON THE PENNSYLVANIA SLOPES 2016/2017
Autumn color has morphed to the crisp feel of winter in the mountains of Pennsylvania. Ski trails and terrain parks are echoing to the final touch-ups for the launch of a new snow-sports season. Skiers, riders and tubers will see dynamic changes on and off the slopes. Across Pennsylvania, from the Poconos to the Alleghenies, expanded terrain will welcome "First-Timers". New terrain park features, lift overhauls and enhanced snowmaking will accent the slopes. More restaurants and lodging are in the mix, a laser light show will dazzle a major tubing park and look for an explosion of budget friendly packages. What's where and what's new? Here's what.
IN THE EAST
The growing 4-season complex at BEAR CREEK MOUNTAIN RESORT is catapulting into winter with a dynamic facelift in the restaurants and lodge to provide a colorful frame for eye-catching views of the mountain while dining or lounging at the pool or spa. This season will see more dollar-stretching options for cruising on Bear Creek's 21 trails, terrain parks and the tubing runs . On Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday (non-holiday) Loyal Ski Club members enjoy all day skiing for just $22 with a club membership.
College students will cash in on the same deal. Also look for more creative "Ski and Stay" packages that combine lodging in the 116 room "Ski-in - Ski-out" hotel with lift tickets, dining and Spa. On the mountain, snowmaking keeps up with modern technology to produce more snow, faster than ever before.
A blizzard of new features have exploded on the terrain parks of BLUE MOUNTAIN. What makes them unique is their origin. The mountain has bought a lumber yard that recycles fallen slopeside trees into park features. Now, that's thinking boxes - and rails. New skiers and riders have a lot more room to ramble this season. You'll find expanded territory to enhance terrain based learning techniques on the upper third of Frontier Alley. Adult learners at Blue Mountain will also see expanded features on Valley School West. To ease back between runs, look for a new look and landscape on the Summit Terrace. And if you gaze all the way up to the left of the mountain, you get a sneak peak at a 40th Blue Mountain trail, set to open next winter.
CAMELBACK MOUNTAIN which has come off a robust summer season of water park action, has added a dramatic laser light show to the dynamics at the largest Snowtubing park in the country. The 42 lightning fast lanes of Galactic Snow Tubing launches an "out-of-this-world" light extravaganza to the excitement of tubing. Camelback Lodge, a 163 million dollar "Ski-In-Ski-Out" hotel that has been crafted around the largest indoor waterpark in the Northeast begins its second winter season at the base of Camelback Mountain. Visitors will find 453 suites for destination accommodations, 7 pools and 13 water slides in the naturally lit "Aquatopia".
It's all about the snow at SHAWNEE MOUNTAIN. As part of a multi-year, multi-million dollar snow-making upgrade project, for the 2016-17 ski season, over 3,000 feet of new snowmaking pipe has been installed on the Tecumseh and Lookout trails and new portable, high tech, big throw energy efficient electric fan guns have been added for the Tomahawk lift base area. This winter, Shawnee is making it easier than ever to arrive at the mountain, hands free, unburdened by an armful of gear. The rental shop is now able to outfit over 4,000 skiers and riders with the latest state-of-the-art equipment. New additions this season include 100 new sets of Elan skis, 150 pair of new Dalbello ski boots, 50 new Flow snowboards and
100 new Flow snowboard boots. And racers get an extra jump out of the NASTAR gate. The Shawnee Mountain Ski and Snowboard School has purchased new ALGE wireless electronic timing equipment for its popular recreational ski racing program and for its youth development racing school.
Season ticket holders at twin resorts JACK FROST and BIG BOULDER get a big lift this season. Their tags are now good for skiing and riding at high energy Hunter Mountain in New York. Frost/Boulder operators PEAK RESORTS has ponied up nearly 37 million dollars for the Empire State slopes and added them to the Pennsylvania season ticket that already covered sister areas Mount Snow in Vermont, Attitash, Crotched Mountain and Wildcat in New Hampshire. Meanwhile, back in the Poconos, there'll be dynamic skiing in
the "Glades" of Jack Frost this season with extensive tree trimming and configuration. Getting around the mountain will be easier with new signage, and look for blizzards of early season snow with another upgrade of the snow making system. On the lodge side, the Frosty Toboggan eatery gets a dazzling new entertainment schedule and a tuned up apres ski menu. Over at Big Boulder, plans to get an early start to the riding season are backed up with revamped snow system pumps and guns, along with spruced up lifts and lodge.
MONTAGE MOUNTAIN at Scranton is launching the new season with an offer that wannabe skiers and riders can't refuse. For the month of December, up to the 23rd, first time sliders will cash in on "First-Timer Free Fridays". Just show up at Montage on Fridays when lift tickets and rentals will be free. You will have to take a "First-Timer" lesson. But don't break out the coin. That's free too. And beginning January 11th, Montage will be teaming up with the Ski Corner Ski and Snowboard Shop to host a prize and fun fueled Rail Jam series that launches every other Wednesday. At the impressively stocked Montage rental shop there are more choices this winter with the addition of 150 sets of new Elan skis.
This past summer ELK MOUNTAIN continued with its tree planting program and concentrated efforts on the Tioga Spur Trail by planting an additional +/- 700 Norway and White Spruce trees. The summer months also allowed Elk to mow the slopes and trails with a newly purchased AEBI tractor. The lifts were also given special attention as lift C had a major overhaul with the gearbox rebuilt, and lifts E and F were repainted. Work has been completed on a new storage building just off the West Slope to provide off-season storage for snowmaking, lift and vehicles. Elk has also purchased 13 Demaclenko Snow Guns.
SKI BIG BEAR at Lackawaxen is pumping up the weekend hours to put more sliding and riding in your life. Look for earlier first runs on Thursdays and Saturdays and later last runs on Sundays. Upwardly mobile snow buffs will have more learning terrain to traverse this winter and another conveyor lift to get you to the top of beginner territory in easy style. And here's one for the book. Ski Big Bear will try to bust the Guinness Book of World Records for the planet's largest ski lesson. The gang will gather on the lesson trails, Friday, January 6th at 1pm. If you want to be part of history, be there.
The big news this season at WHITETAIL MOUNTAIN, a popular weekend playground for Baltimore/Washington skiers and riders is a major expansion of the base lodge. The highlight is a brand new, 300 seat full service restaurant, "Solstice". A wide ranging menu and a dramatic view of the slopes sets up lunch and dinnertime buzz. A brick oven pizzeria and Italian favorites eatery will cater to the grab-and-go crowd. Custom built pizzas will satisfy the cravings before the next flight down the slopes. A brand new coffee lounge to seat 150 sliders will provide the warm-up lattes, cappuccinos and espressos between runs. Also look for the addition of seasonal equipment lockers for Whitetail regulars. Leave the gear at the mountain and travel light. Equipment renters will be able to lock into a new fleet of state-of-the-art boards and skis.
LIBERTY MOUNTAIN near historic Gettysburg has transformed its arrival circle into a hub of winter wonderland activity with a gleaming new Alpine ice skating rink at the center of a bustling pedestrian courtyard. It's bordered by McKee's Tavern outdoor seating. Take a break from the slopes, rent your skates and glide on ice. Or just unwind with a drink and watch the skaters. New restaurants add to the ambience. The Eagle and Owl provides a pub grub Mecca with as many as 20 craft beers on hand. At Ike's Chop House the scale moves up with hand-cut steaks and chops in a warm, comfy room with a definite mountain vibe. On the mountain, renters will find a new fleet of rental skis, boots & bindings! Liberty will now be exclusively offering Volkl skis with Marker bindings and Dalbello boots. The current inventory of High Performance Ski Rental Equipment from Rossignol, Elan, Atomic & K2, gear will still be available and will be joined by Burton High Performance Snowboard Rentals.
At ROUNDTOP MOUNTAIN near the state capitol, skiers and riders who soar in the steep will have a new grooming friend this season. A gleaming new Prinoth Winch Groomer will be keeping the mountain's steepest terrain in prime condition. Whether you revel in bumps or ballroom touchups, the new addition paves the way. And this winter, Season Pass Holders get a first-tracks crack at the Roundtop powder half-hour before the public lift opening on Thursdays through Sundays. And the youngest upwardly mobile skiers and riders will have expanded learning terrain to hone those new skills. Off the mountain, look for a new Guest Services Office and a the debut of a new coffee shop.
If you plan a visit to State College this winter, take your gear and visit TUSSEY MOUNTAIN, a student favorite. If you don't ski and ride you can still have a thrill in the chill with a dynamically expanded Snow Tubing Park that holds more lanes and spectator seating. For tubers, getting up the hill will be a snap with a new artificial tow path for the tube lift. On the slopes and trails, look for more snow, earlier than ever as Tussey's arsenal of snow guns has been expanded. If you want to travel light, new skis, snowboards, boots and hel-
mets have been beefing up the rental inventory.
Snow grooming is the key at SEVEN SPRINGS and HIDDEN VALLEY this winter. Two brand new state-of-the-art Pisten Bully snowcats have been added to the high-tech fleet of groomers for ballroom conditions to greet the dawn on slopes and trails. A powerful new winch snowcat will be used in building and maintaining the only Olympic-size Superpipe on the East Coast and improved headwall grooming on Seven Springs’ black diamond slopes. Combine grooming with a battery of 30 brand new HKD Viper ground guns added to the arsenals at Seven Springs and sister resort Hidden Valley to create dramatically enhanced snowmaking capability at both mountains. Off the mountain, Seven Springs launches the "Seven Ten Bistro", a hip little alcove serving eclectic food pinned with a bowling inspired menu that includes out-of-the-ordinary shared plates and cool twists on salads and sandwiches. You'll find the Bistro next to the
Bowling Alley. The Matterhorn Lounge has also undergone a major renovation. It now features several VIP areas, a new dance floor and tableside service. And for a new experience in luxury getaways, The Tyrol Chalets, four upscale chalets, located near the hotel and within walking distance of slopes will debut this winter. The chalets feature convenient parking, ski lockers, private decks overlooking the slopes and premium entertainment centers.
For additional information contact:
Linda Irvin – PSAA Executive Director