Ski Resort to Summer Attraction in a Matter of Weeks
BARTLETT, New Hampshire ??вЂќ The winter of 2004-2005 made its fair share of memories at Attitash as the resort celebrated its 40th year. There was the first ever Spread Eagle World Championship, the 40 Days and 40 Nights of Attitash and the snowiest February and March that most locals can recall. The transition from ski resort to summer attraction is a major undertaking, but one that very few guests are around to notice.
While Attitash will be closing for skiing and riding on April 3, the resort’s employees will simply be switching gears. By the latter half of May, Attitash will begin to unveil its summer operations, which include horseback riding, North America’s Longest Alpine Slides, mountain biking, water slides, driving range, skate park, and much more.
“It’s much more than waiting for the snow to melt,” said Russ Van Deursen, vice president of mountain operations for Attitash. “Every spot that the Slide crosses a trail we remove before the ski season. We’ll be re-assembling the Slide at the crossings plus in areas where this season’s deep snow has shifted the track. This is just one attraction to prepare amongst many.”
Attitash’s mountain bike trails also require maintenance in the spring to prepare them for the warmer months. The resort offers lift-serviced downhill mountain biking and the mellow cross-country biking of the Thorne Pond trail system. In total, Attitash offers 35 miles of mountain biking trails plus a full rental fleet for those traveling without their bike.
“Our trail system has more than doubled in the last few years,” said Nathan Waterhouse, mountain biking coordinator for Attitash. “Maintaining the trail system is pretty simple, but that’s not to say it’s easy. After a long winter the trails need a lot of work to come back to life. Trees are down, streams have created culverts and new obstacles arise, but it’s a nice time to be outside working with your hands.”
Another side of the resort that doesn’t skip a beat is the Attitash Grand Summit Hotel and Conference Center. Not only are they offering a Ski and Stay Package to entice guests who are venturing to Tuckerman Ravine during April and May, but are also busy preparing for their Grand Summer Vacations guests plus hosting a number of groups and conferences.
“The ropes course is a big asset in attracting corporate groups,” said John Lowell, general manager of the Attitash Grand Summit Resort Hotel and Conference Center. “Families enjoy the inclusiveness which comes with a Grand Summer Vacation and groups can make strides with the team building elements in the ropes course. Because many people reserve in advance, the typical off seasons are just as busy for us.”
The year-round nature of Attitash has played an integral role in the resort’s ability to hold onto its most valuable employees. Rather than heading elsewhere when the snow melts, many Attitash employees simply transition into their summer role at the resort. The amount of long-term employees who are passionate about the resort is one reason why Attitash is known for its guest service. An answer is never far away, no matter the season.
Detailed information regarding Attitash’s summer attractions and events including North America’s longest Alpine Slides is available at www.attitash.com along with recently released information and prices for the 2005-2006 All For One Pass, which is valid at Attitash and all eastern American Skiing Company Resorts. While Attitash is closing for the winter season on April 3, other eastern American Skiing Company Resorts such as Killington and Sunday River plan to stay open into May.