Whaleback 2/7/15

I bought a weekend place not far from Whaleback at the end of last season. So while Whaleback is not my home mountain I am hoping that things workout for the UVSSF. I decided to pay the mountain a visit and make my contribution through ticket revenue.

I have skied Whaleback a few times in the past but I have not been there in at least two seasons. For a small mountain it has a lot to offer. Glades, some steep stuff, greens and blues, and they don't groom everything. Conditions were packed powder with about 3/4 inch of fluffy stuff right on top early in the morning. Overall conditions were good with some scratchy patches coming through on ungroomed trails. There was some drainage issues on Ivory, normally a green it is now marked as advanced only.

As others have said Whaleback is worth a visit when they are nearly or all open. I would describe the mountain as playful. Some challenging stuff but mostly the kind of terrain that just makes you smile. The mountain definitely has a threadbare kind of feel to it. There have been improvements though since the last time I was there and I know they are doing all they can as funds allow.

When I was in the lodge it felt like a daycare center. That is a good thing since young kids are the core audience for the mountain. The skiing industry needs more Whaleback like places that are affordable for young families. There were no lines unless you hit the one summit lift when the core team kids happen to be lining up. Finally, I had to smile at the liftie at the top of the summit chair. All morning long he said hello to each person getting off, reminding some of the little kids to lift their bars up etc. Definitely a true community place.

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