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Saddleback Mountain Cooperative - Information Thread & Survey

Tin

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Totally disagree. My definition of a feeder hill is a cheap place where kids can hang out after school with pretty minimal minimal vertical (under 500'), pretty minimal lifts, pretty minimal price and pretty limited amenities.

This is Crotched. Kids outnumber adults, it has just the basics, low vertical, and when comparing price others it is quite minimal. I believe it has found its niche with being a "feeder hill", it is a spot loaded with kids, some families, and new skiers. If you go to many places you define as a feeder hill (Blue, Yawgoo, Sundown, etc.) you will see a mirror image of customers. As far as cost, $64 is not minimal for a lift ticket but even places like Yawgoo (with all 230' of vert) and Blue Hill charge $45-$48 for a weekend day, it is just the going rate these days. The Rocket and snowmaking system is not exactly minimal but I believe they had to do something to start getting some of the metro-Boston business and put a dent into Pat's/Ragged business (and mentioning skiing until 3am was not going to cut it in their radio ads). And these days, a high speed lift and great snowmaking are not exactly considered "polish". Ski Sundown was burying all its trails in a 6-7' base and being 100% open before January well before Crotched got its system. I would say the only real places in southern New England that are not "feeder hills" are Jiminy, WaWa, and Berkie seems to be moving off that list.



Quietman, what is Crotched/Peaks doing to piss off locals? I would be irritated enough with the traffic but the smokey's, or smokey lol, up there seem to be all over it and be handing out tickets.
 

Jully

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Additionally snowmaking is essential for any area in the northeast south of Burlington VT to survive today.
 

joshua segal

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This is Crotched. Kids outnumber adults, it has just the basics, low vertical, and when comparing price others it is quite minimal. I believe it has found its niche with being a "feeder hill", it is a spot loaded with kids, some families, and new skiers. If you go to many places you define as a feeder hill (Blue, Yawgoo, Sundown, etc.) you will see a mirror image of customers. As far as cost, $64 is not minimal for a lift ticket but even places like Yawgoo (with all 230' of vert) and Blue Hill charge $45-$48 for a weekend day, given what Crotched has, it is just the going rate these days. The Rocket and snowmaking system is not exactly minimal but I believe they had to do something to start getting some of the metro-Boston business and put a dent into Pat's/Ragged business (and mentioning skiing until 3am was not going to cut it in their radio ads).


Quietman, what is Crotched/Peaks doing to piss off locals? I would be irritated enough with the traffic but the smokey's, or smokey lol, up there seem to be all over it and be handing out tickets.
Except for the immediate after-school programs, I disagree that kids outnumber adults. Come there on any week day AM, it's mostly retired people!

And Midnight Madness may be primarily the 16 to 35 year-old crowd, it is definitely not a kids program!

And answering for quietman, there is no longer a Crotched-Mtn-only season pass. There are a variety of season pass options available that included a variety of Peak resort packages, but for those who want to ski only CM, it was a $100 bump in price.
 

Tin

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Except for the immediate after-school programs, I disagree that kids outnumber adults. Come there on any week day AM, it's mostly retired people!

And Midnight Madness may be primarily the 16 to 35 year-old crowd, it is definitely not a kids program!

And answering for quietman, there is no longer a Crotched-Mtn-only season pass. There are a variety of season pass options available that included a variety of Peak resort packages, but for those who want to ski only CM, it was a $100 bump in price.


Of course it will be during weekdays. If there were kids, you would have a serious truancy problem up there. Glad to know there are doing lots of after school programs, get more kids into skiing.

I had a season pass there for 2012-2013 and 2013-2014, I would say during the day on Sat-Sun and weeknights, kids definitely outnumbered everyone else, mostly in that 8-14 year old range. Since they mostly ski during the day, they are not going to be there at night. Midnight madness is not designed/marketed to be a kids program. In their advertising they clearly try to appeal to more high school/college/people in their 20s (its all about music, a barnfire, and beer in the radio ads I've heard down here).

That sucks about not having a Crotched only pass. I would be upset as a local as well. The idea that you cannot have a pass for it does make it less of a feeder hill. I definitely think Crotched has found its niche though and is stuck in it due to the area...(unless they expand to the old side, some great terrain over there, and start doing Jiminy-like stuff).

Crotched does not have the traditional boring feeder hill terrain though given the wood/ledges and side areas.
 

Edd

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Any weekday I go to Crotched, it's a complete ghost town in the morning, even by ski area standards. Come afternoon, the kids roar in, which is not the vibe I like, but it's what Crotched needs.
 

salsgang

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A message from Peter Stein, the lead organizer for the Saddleback Ski Area Co-op initiative. "All – Please keep those surveys coming!!! The response has been tremendous so far and it is driving us forward. It is very important that everyone effected by Saddleback's closure fills in a survey. We are now absorbing all the information and will release a revised plan as soon as possible."


Survey link here - https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/6M5NXGN
 

Jcb890

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Totally disagree. My definition of a feeder hill is a cheap place where kids can hang out after school with pretty minimal minimal vertical (under 500'), pretty minimal lifts, pretty minimal price and pretty limited amenities. There are still a dozen or so in New England, but in the greater Boston region, even Nashoba Valley and the Blue Hills have too many amenities and chairlifts to be a feeder hill the way the 50 or so feeder hills(listed in http:/nelsap.org/ma/ma.html) in Eastern MA used to be.

Nowhere has minimal prices any more. Ward Hill in Shrewsbury is tiny, doesn't have much, but it is still pricey for what it is. Wachusett is much bigger and more aligned with a normal ski resort/mountain, but still pricey for what it is.

Pretty much everywhere in New England needs snowmaking to be viable.
 

salsgang

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Any update on the results?

Spoke to Peter Stein on the phone today. Peter indicated there is a narrow but viable path to open the ski area this year. Lot of moving parts of course but there is definitely momentum to make this a reality. I think the 'fundraising call' will come soon.


Peter indicated the survey is very impactful in showing community support for the mountain. If you have not filled one out yet it is not too late. Here is the link.


https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/6M5NXGN


I will post more info as I receive it.
 

Jully

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Nowhere has minimal prices any more. Ward Hill in Shrewsbury is tiny, doesn't have much, but it is still pricey for what it is. Wachusett is much bigger and more aligned with a normal ski resort/mountain, but still pricey for what it is.

Pretty much everywhere in New England needs snowmaking to be viable.

There are a few places further up north that are truly 'cheap' meaning Quoggy Jo, Living Memorial Park, Storrs Hill, etc. However, those are just not really possible in MA and especially not in CT anymore.
 

Jully

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Spoke to Peter Stein on the phone today. Peter indicated there is a narrow but viable path to open the ski area this year. Lot of moving parts of course but there is definitely momentum to make this a reality. I think the 'fundraising call' will come soon.


Peter indicated the survey is very impactful in showing community support for the mountain. If you have not filled one out yet it is not too late. Here is the link.


https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/6M5NXGN


I will post more info as I receive it.

Any word on the Co-op action making a traditional buyer step up and move forward?
 

salsgang

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A message from Peter Stein - lead organizer for the Saddleback co-op initiative.

"We have made considerable progress in our efforts to turn Saddleback into a community owned resort, and begin what would be a model conservation and economic development project. Last week we submitted to the Berry Family a plan that allows us to immediately begin preparations of the ski area for the 2016-2017 season, while fundraising in an achievable fashion to operate the ski area and purchase it and the available land over the following year. Our understanding is the Berrys are evaluating this plan along with other offers. All of us are aware time is running out to begin preparing the ski area for an x-mas holiday opening. At this point our team is waiting for them to make what we are sure are difficult decisions. We will update you as soon as more information becomes available. "
 

bdfreetuna

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They should just sell the old lift for some cash, use 1/4 of that cash to install a T-bar in the same spot, and call it a day. Voila, no more wind holds.
 

Jully

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They should just sell the old lift for some cash, use 1/4 of that cash to install a T-bar in the same spot, and call it a day. Voila, no more wind holds.

Lol. I'm not even certain that they can install a T-bar with 1/4 the cash. Not sure how much you could get for that double. The Berrys were trying to sell the base terminal for $300,000 two summers ago. Not sure how much more you could get if you included everything...
 
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