Vail Resorts - PA Resorts - How are they doing?
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snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago (edited 3 months ago)
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,445 posts

Well, it is now June 1, 5 months are Vail Resorts (VR) took ownership of 7S, HV and LM. What have they accomplished to integrate these resorts into the Vail family?. I would like to present some kind of positive news and reserve judgement. But after 5 months, you would think they could get their IT guy off his keister to change the websites! After 5 months they're still using Nutting's websites and advertising Nutting's golf course and real estate company. You can still get the HV video conditions report from last winter! On top of that, the Hidden Valley community, a community of 1,100 home owners, wrote Vail a welcome letter and an invitation to communicate with the community. The response.....nothing. This what you could call corporate neglect. The same stupidity that got them into hot water last year with several of their resorts.

Come on VR, get your act together and make us Laurels skiers proud.

wfyurasko - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 07/27/2014 🔗
287 posts

snowsmith wrote:

Well, it is now June 1, 5 months are Vail Resorts (VR) took ownership of 7S, HV and LM. What have they accomplished to integrate these resorts into the Vail family?. I would like to present some kind of positive news and reserve judgement. But after 5 months, you would think they could get their IT guy off his keister to change the websites! After 5 months they're still using Nutting's websites and advertising Nutting's golf course and real estate company. You can still get the HV video conditions report from last winter! On top of that, the Hidden Valley community, a community of 1,100 home owners, wrote Vail a welcome letter and an invitation to communicate with the community. The response.....nothing. This what you could call corporate neglect. The same stupidity that got them into hot water last year with several of their resorts.

Come on VR, get your act together and make us Laurels skiers proud.

 5 months isn't unreasonable for a web migration IMO, particularly if they have to do 3 at once. Now, if it's September, that would be another story.

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,943 posts
I want to know if the lease for Laurel transferred yet.
snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,445 posts


 Can you check with your State Park buddies?

Laurel Hill Crazie wrote:

I want to know if the lease for Laurel transferred yet.
DCSki Sponsor: Canaan Valley Resort
Leo
3 months ago
Member since 11/15/2005 🔗
304 posts

This is as trivial as my LM complaint which turned out to be the DNRC and not Vail.  But I went to HV to take my sons fishing today -- something we've done for years there as homeowners, and all of the parking near Lake George is now either blocked off or has signage indicating it's a "Fire Lane/Tow Away Zone."

None of the areas in question would ever be used by a firetruck, not that there's any activity to speak of at any of the buildings.  If the Kettlers and Nutting could go 40 years without someone from Somerset County (LOL) breathing down their necks about fire lanes, I'm pretty sure Vail can too. 

Again, trivial complaint?  Yes.  Comes across as cold, unwelcoming, corporate bureaucracy?  Yes.  Very much so.   

ZARDOG
3 months ago
Member since 10/25/2020 🔗
119 posts

It tool vail a while to migrate web changeover.  

Most companies have plans but are still in shock mode because of labor prices, and material prices.  

IT people move around for $$$. 

Does anybody see any activity building lifts at  JFBB? the large capital projects are the most important.

HVdad
3 months ago (edited 3 months ago)
Member since 01/9/2018 🔗
68 posts
Early indicators are not good at all. 7S hotel, convention and hospitality (part of Vail Resorts, Inc., not Nutting Enterprises), completely botched the ACBA Bench and Bar Convention this weekend., i.e., reservation system down for over a month, couldn't make bookings, employees very unhappy with the relative chaos at 7S. There has been zero communication between Vail Resorts, Inc and the 1100+ property owners at Hidden Valley, with similar radio silence with the homeowners at 7S. No communications regarding the upcoming season; no communiucation regarding changes or investments in the future; no communications regarding strategies re. how Vail will work in partnership with local communities and businesses. As my young son would say, "it looks like the start of a full-blown s#@t show. Apart from that, the Vail staff in Denver seem to be right on top of things. :-)
dclivejazz
3 months ago
Member since 03/5/2017 🔗
39 posts

HVdad wrote:

Early indicators are not good at all. 7S hotel, convention and hospitality (part of Vail Resorts, Inc., not Nutting Enterprises), completely botched the ACBA Bench and Bar Convention this weekend., i.e., reservation system down for over a month, couldn't make bookings, employees very unhappy with the relative chaos at 7S. There has been zero communication between Vail Resorts, Inc and the 1100+ property owners at Hidden Valley, with similar radio silence with the homeowners at 7S. No communications regarding the upcoming season; no communiucation regarding changes or investments in the future; no communications regarding strategies re. how Vail will work in partnership with local communities and businesses. As my young son would say, "it looks like the start of a full-blown s#@t show. Apart from that, the Vail staff in Denver seem to be right on top of things. :-)

 This why “little things” like the complete disarray of the men’s room at Liberty towards the end of last season matter. They reflect a corporate breakdown on more important issues. I hope Epic will get it together in these regards. I’m renewing my Epic Local pass one more year, mostly because I like to go to the local places and considered access to 7S and Hidden Valley a plus. But I won’t keep renewing if they operate them incorrectly. 

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,445 posts
In response to my enquiry, an employee told me that the websites are down at all 3 resorts. They indicated that they have been working on the websites but have had some technical issues to overcome. I suggested that more PR and communication would help get their local customers more comfortable with the new ownership.
Laurel Highlands
3 months ago (edited 3 months ago)
Member since 10/29/2013 🔗
42 posts

It amazes me that a company could spend $118M+ and go through all the related steps of an acquisition like this, and then do so little afterwards.  The strategy sees simply to buy up whatever they can with the assumption that everything has been running well and throw an Epic pass on it and hope for the best.  Meanwhile. there is lots of work and investment that needs to be done to bring these resorts up to thier potential, but no sign thus far that they are up for that.   

Honestly don't know how this is going to work in the end without some bold vision;  These are 4 season resorts, where the driving revenue factors have been, skiing, real estate, and other summer/off season activities which would all cross benefit each other and marketed together.  Vail seems only interested in skiing and Epic pass sales specifically, with other activities still under separate ownership with dffering agenda.  

 

snowsmith wrote:

In response to my enquiry, an employee told me that the websites are down at all 3 resorts. They indicated that they have been working on the websites but have had some technical issues to overcome. I suggested that more PR and communication would help get their local customers more comfortable with the new ownership. 
marzNC - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,822 posts

snowsmith wrote:

In response to my enquiry, an employee told me that the websites are down at all 3 resorts. They indicated that they have been working on the websites but have had some technical issues to overcome. I suggested that more PR and communication would help get their local customers more comfortable with the new ownership.

 All three website homepages looked fine when I looked today.  What struck me is that they actually look different.  Meaning 7Springs, HV, Laurel homepages are actually somewhat unique.  They don't look like the template that was used for Whitetail, Liberty, Roundtop.

Leo
3 months ago
Member since 11/15/2005 🔗
304 posts


 I might be misunderstanding the question and your response...but the HV website looks the same as it always has.  In other words:  Vail hasn't done anything to it.

marzNC wrote:

snowsmith wrote:

In response to my enquiry, an employee told me that the websites are down at all 3 resorts. They indicated that they have been working on the websites but have had some technical issues to overcome. I suggested that more PR and communication would help get their local customers more comfortable with the new ownership.

 All three website homepages looked fine when I looked today.  What struck me is that they actually look different.  Meaning 7Springs, HV, Laurel homepages are actually somewhat unique.  They don't look like the template that was used for Whitetail, Liberty, Roundtop.

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
3 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,445 posts

The reason the website look different is because they are the old Nutting websites. Notice the webcam images have not changed in weeks. Wouldn't Vail Resorts have a template to use for these websites since all of their resorts follow a similar template? It seems like it should not be that difficult to make the 7S/HV/LM websites look like Vail websites. Of course, maybe they're dealing with the lack of investment from the Beancounter Mauch era in hardware and the old Commodore 64 file server can't handle the new websites. I want to be positive, but I have yet seem anything positive to cheer about. From a resort standpoint, the could change the name of Hidden Valley to Death Valley given how little is happening there. Thank the great spirit for the HV community which has all kind of social events scheduled.

 

Leo wrote:


 I might be misunderstanding the question and your response...but the HV website looks the same as it always has.  In other words:  Vail hasn't done anything to it.

marzNC wrote:

snowsmith wrote:

In response to my enquiry, an employee told me that the websites are down at all 3 resorts. They indicated that they have been working on the websites but have had some technical issues to overcome. I suggested that more PR and communication would help get their local customers more comfortable with the new ownership.

 All three website homepages looked fine when I looked today.  What struck me is that they actually look different.  Meaning 7Springs, HV, Laurel homepages are actually somewhat unique.  They don't look like the template that was used for Whitetail, Liberty, Roundtop.

Scott - DCSki Editor
3 months ago
Member since 10/10/1999 🔗
1,188 posts
I don't have any inside info on the web sites, but I suspect corporate is working on an updated web infrastructure for all of their resorts, and when they roll that out (later this summer?), any newly purchased properties will be included.  You'll notice that all of their older ski areas (Vail, Beaver Creek, Whitetail, etc.) have nearly identical web sites.  They're clearly all running on the same platform with minor variations, and economy of scale means they don't have separate web developers working at each ski area coming up with different designs and backends.  I think we'll see all of the resort web sites update at the same time, and that's when HVR/SS/LM will be refreshed.  Again, no inside info here, but as a web developer I would bet that's what's going on -- resources are being applied towards a future rollout instead of trying to jerry rig older web sites.
dclivejazz
3 months ago
Member since 03/5/2017 🔗
39 posts

Scott wrote:

I don't have any inside info on the web sites, but I suspect corporate is working on an updated web infrastructure for all of their resorts, and when they roll that out (later this summer?), any newly purchased properties will be included.  You'll notice that all of their older ski areas (Vail, Beaver Creek, Whitetail, etc.) have nearly identical web sites.  They're clearly all running on the same platform with minor variations, and economy of scale means they don't have separate web developers working at each ski area coming up with different designs and backends.  I think we'll see all of the resort web sites update at the same time, and that's when HVR/SS/LM will be refreshed.  Again, no inside info here, but as a web developer I would bet that's what's going on -- resources are being applied towards a future rollout instead of trying to jerry rig older web sites.

That makes sense but also broaches the issue of how poorly generic their sites are now. Not to mention unreliable when it comes to conditions and trail updates. Maybe they will address this. We’ll see.

Thefirewarde
2 months ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
84 posts
If 7S loses their award winning local snow reporting, that'll be a good canary in the coal mine.
superguy
2 months ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
372 posts

And Jan Dupre was on FB singing the praises of the Vail acquisition. :rolleyes:

 

HVdad wrote:

Early indicators are not good at all. 7S hotel, convention and hospitality (part of Vail Resorts, Inc., not Nutting Enterprises), completely botched the ACBA Bench and Bar Convention this weekend., i.e., reservation system down for over a month, couldn't make bookings, employees very unhappy with the relative chaos at 7S. There has been zero communication between Vail Resorts, Inc and the 1100+ property owners at Hidden Valley, with similar radio silence with the homeowners at 7S. No communications regarding the upcoming season; no communiucation regarding changes or investments in the future; no communications regarding strategies re. how Vail will work in partnership with local communities and businesses. As my young son would say, "it looks like the start of a full-blown s#@t show. Apart from that, the Vail staff in Denver seem to be right on top of things. :-)
superguy
2 months ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
372 posts

I miss the good old days of calling the 800 number (which still worked as of last season) and hearing Lars give updates a few times a day.

Thefirewarde wrote:

If 7S loses their award winning local snow reporting, that'll be a good canary in the coal mine.
rbrtlav
2 months ago
Member since 12/2/2008 🔗
544 posts

From Facebook…. Looks like they are cutting some summer events. Kinda surprising seeing that snowshoe seems to be getting a nice ROI for their summer efforts.

Here at Seven Springs, it is our goal to provide you with the best festivals and events that you have come to know and love. 

Unfortunately, our adventure race series Mud on the Mountain, Kids Mud on the Mountain, and Mutts on the Mountain won’t be possible this year.  Just like you, we are super bummed about it, but are hopeful for the future.

We are still excited for our fan favorites Rib and Wing, Wine Fest and Autumnfest to return this year!

Be sure to check out the details for our upcoming events using the link below!

https://www.7springs.com/resort/events-entertainment/

🐷 Rib and Wing Festival: July 29-31

🍷  Wine Festival: August 26-28

🍁 Autumnfest: October 8-9, October 15-16, October 22 - 23

ZARDOG
2 months ago
Member since 10/25/2020 🔗
119 posts

I love events and really missed them the last few seasons. 

I had a  whole calendar of events each winter and every weekend had something going on. Gave it a nice vibe.

...then came Covid.

Covid adds complexity and additional red tape. Many sponsors did not want to risk lawsuits. (USA that is).

 

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,445 posts

Well, then you wouldn't like Death Valley, which is what Hidden Valley has turned into. We still have Beancounter Mauch running the golf course and I am told it's in good condition. Luckily the HV community is very active. It is a great resort community. Web sites are frozen it time. Same webcam image since April. No rumors, no hint of anything going on. Maybe they're holding back some big news? They must be really well prepared after silence and no activity for months. It should be exciting :<)). 

 

ZARDOG wrote:

I love events and really missed them the last few seasons. 

I had a  whole calendar of events each winter and every weekend had something going on. Gave it a nice vibe.

...then came Covid.

Covid adds complexity and additional red tape. Many sponsors did not want to risk lawsuits. (USA that is).

 

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
2 months ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,943 posts


 

snowsmith wrote:

 No rumors, no hint of anything going on. Maybe they're holding back some big news? They must be really well prepared after silence and no activity for months. It should be exciting :<)). 

 


I think that we will see only maintenance spending this year, perhaps some minor "improvements." Vail announced their capital budget earlier this year, and nothing is listed for our Laurel Highlands resort. https://www.skimag.com/news/vail-resorts-lift-upgrades-2023-24/  

Leo
2 months ago
Member since 11/15/2005 🔗
304 posts

I can promise you there are no capital expenditures happening at Hidden Valley.  LOL.  

Other than the $47 they spent on No Parking/Tow Away Zone signs.

ZARDOG
one month ago
Member since 10/25/2020 🔗
119 posts

I hear ya all,  Vail should do a better job communicating. 

maybe the stats show no one cares in the summer only us die-hards. 

I read the  QTR Financials and that is a good bit of info but it would be nice to have 5 min vid cut down to regions with what is going on and how planning is going.   

The QTR last report showed:

NSAA- last season set all time attendance record for USA. and 2020/21 was 5th. 

60% on pass products / 40% window/online rate. 

Planned to upgrade lifts: The ones aged out, broken, and additional capacity.

Planned to build staff housing.

Raised base pay.

-----------------

ISSUES/RISKS: 

Covid (?) 

Weather  (right now La Nina like last winter)

Staffing      --- go to this link and you will see the decline in population available for labor. 

    https://www.census.gov/library/stories/2021/12/us-population-grew-in-2021-slowest-rate-since-founding-of-the-nation.html

Zardog  

DCSki Sponsor: Canaan Valley Resort
Laurel Highlands
one month ago
Member since 10/29/2013 🔗
42 posts

From looking at the press releases of the various Vail acquisitions, most of them also note some $ planned for improvements as part of the acquisition plan and roll out, but in the case of the 7S/HV/LM acquisition, there was no such mention. There have in fact been comments in thier communication that the resorts were recently renovated and in good condition.   Sounds like the Nutting team did a good job of selling Vail on all thier supposed improvements and that it is a well maintained turnkey operation.    Meanwhile, lines at HV this past year were the longest I have ever experienced with the dated fixed grip triple chairs, out-of-service rope tow, and nothing other than bad/ overpriced cafateria food.

Beyond the basics of maintaining what it there, if they really want these resorts to be a regional draw to go up against their competitor Alterra at SnowShoe, they need to be thinking beyond the limited vision of the past, with things like shuttle buses between resorts, a good restaurant at Hidden Valley, better marketing, etc etc.  

SwissMountain
one month ago
Member since 05/18/2007 🔗
68 posts
Unfortunately Vail doesn’t care. I know it’s a strong statement but in NH, Vail is similar to Walmart - no one wants to work for them. Local loyal skiers go because they feel it will get better or out of staters have the epic pass. Western PA has not many options for winter enthusiasts and I am sure they know that. So keep investment/expanse low and income high. I am sure they will ride it out for the next 4-5 years before you will see any significant investment. 
snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
one month ago (edited one month ago)
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,445 posts

While the conditions of the 7S facilities may be OK, the conditions of HV facilities are not so good. Beancounter Mauch chose not to invest operating profits at HV. He left parts of HV facilities in poor condition. While this is not Vail's fault, it's going to be their responsibility to fix these conditions  some of which pose danger to the public. The photos below document the poor condition of the ski lodge including failing support beams that support the ski lodge deck, rotting wood and peeling paint (sorry for the rotation) . Nutting should be ashamed of these photos. This is what he sold to Vail:1659392556_umoxeknikllc.jpg

1659392608_hloxsdpjdglr.jpg

1659392640_vtfsgfdxeagv.jpg The following photo is of the snow tubing "Outback" lodge on Route 31. Yes, there are holes in the walls of the building and the deck attached to the building is near collapse. Only a cheap sign is there to prevent someone from getting hurt. This is Mauch's legacy.

1659392831_gdqkuxbkbzrp.jpg

1659392855_tkelqryyelyx.jpg 

superguy
one month ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
372 posts

SwissMountain wrote:

Unfortunately Vail doesn’t care. I know it’s a strong statement but in NH, Vail is similar to Walmart - no one wants to work for them. Local loyal skiers go because they feel it will get better or out of staters have the epic pass. Western PA has not many options for winter enthusiasts and I am sure they know that. So keep investment/expanse low and income high. I am sure they will ride it out for the next 4-5 years before you will see any significant investment. 

Vail has nearly all the decent ones in western PA. The only indy (or at least not Vail affiliated) are Wisp, Blue Knob, and Tussey. I don't know that Tussey is work the trip to most people. BK is heavily dependent on natural snow. Wisp is the only one that really has a solid operation.

I don't see those folks regularly going down to the WV resorts consistently. Maybe for a weekend and not without at least the option of night skiing.

Vail has a virtual monopoly in that region. They at least have to compete in the Poconos. But for our crowd, but that many viable options, especially if you're looking to head up after work and get some runs in.

superguy
one month ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
372 posts

SwissMountain wrote:

Unfortunately Vail doesn’t care. I know it’s a strong statement but in NH, Vail is similar to Walmart - no one wants to work for them. Local loyal skiers go because they feel it will get better or out of staters have the epic pass. Western PA has not many options for winter enthusiasts and I am sure they know that. So keep investment/expanse low and income high. I am sure they will ride it out for the next 4-5 years before you will see any significant investment. 

I agree with what you're saying. They cornered the market.

That said, with the pics that snowsmith posted, I can't believe they won't at least bandaid some of those things. Those are a huge liability and if someone gets hurt, that's going to millions in lawsuits.Those will be much more expensive, even if they're settled, than the repairs. Or at least stabilizing those structures.

I don't think a simple do not enter sign is going to be an adequate defense. This isn't like getting hurt by a natural hazard out of the mountain. This is pure neglect.

Being dated in one thing. Being dangerous is unacceptable.

superguy
one month ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
372 posts

Laurel Highlands wrote:

Meanwhile, lines at HV this past year were the longest I have ever experienced with the dated fixed grip triple chairs, out-of-service rope tow, and nothing other than bad/ overpriced cafateria food.

Beyond the basics of maintaining what it there, if they really want these resorts to be a regional draw to go up against their competitor Alterra at SnowShoe, they need to be thinking beyond the limited vision of the past, with things like shuttle buses between resorts, a good restaurant at Hidden Valley, better marketing, etc etc.  

When are going that the lifts are so long at HV? I've usually gone on Saturdays after lunch and do twilight sessions and never had to wait 5 minutes at the most. Even with the triples. I can see the back side getting busy as there's only the one quad.

Which rope are your talking about? Tracker? I thought that was just replaced for this season. I saw it down once this past season. Patrol told me the big change there was the ability to adjust the height. They can raise the rope level if they get a lot of snow.

The triples are a bit long in the tooth, but they still seem to work relatively well. Compare those to the lifts at BK and you'll know what I mean. 7S is still running 3 triples that are as old as or older than HV's. Tyrol and Blitzen are both from the 70s and are still regularly used. Giant Steps went in in 83 though.

Not really sure what they could do though. Maybe replace them with 2 FG quads. Detachables make absolutely no sense anywhere on that mountain, so that rules a 6 pack out.

I think they need to cut a couple trails to make travel between Valley and NS easier. If Tracker tow goes down, you have to hike back, and that sucks. Orbs not steep but is relatively long. Either that or run a shuttle between the two base areas. A shuttle would be nice for parking at NS but not forcing you to leave early when they shut it down.

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
one month ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,445 posts
The sad part is Nutting/Mauch shoved $125 million in their pockets and sold these facilities to Vail in this unsafe, deplorable condition. My concern is summer construction season is coming to an end and these facilities are still sitting there with no repairs happening. The delaminating steel beams supporting the deck could fail. The cost of the lawyers would far exceed the repair cost. I am not holding Vail accountable for this currently. However, it is now August,  7 months after closing and we still have Nutting's website with the April webcam image and the March snow report. I am running out a patience. It's time to light a fire under someone's butt. 
Leo
one month ago
Member since 11/15/2005 🔗
304 posts


 No doubt Nutting sucks at being a long term business owner.  If it's a competitive industry he is a good short term business owner insomuch as he lines his own pockets.  In the case of the Pirates he can hack it long term because he exploits revenue sharing in a way that's absolutely advantageous to him personally, at the expense of the brand and region.

That said, plenty of blame is on Vail too for not doing their due diligence.  IDK if they really wanted 7S and HV was just the mistreated stepchild that came along with it.  But I find it hard to believe they didn't know exactly what they were getting.

It's a shame too because the HV community is as vibrant as ever.

snowsmith wrote:

The sad part is Nutting/Mauch shoved $125 million in their pockets and sold these facilities to Vail in this unsafe, deplorable condition. My concern is summer construction season is coming to an end and these facilities are still sitting there with no repairs happening. The delaminating steel beams supporting the deck could fail. The cost of the lawyers would far exceed the repair cost. I am not holding Vail accountable for this currently. However, it is now August,  7 months after closing and we still have Nutting's website with the April webcam image and the March snow report. I am running out a patience. It's time to light a fire under someone's butt. 
superguy
one month ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
372 posts

Leo wrote:


 No doubt Nutting sucks at being a long term business owner.  If it's a competitive industry he is a good short term business owner insomuch as he lines his own pockets.  In the case of the Pirates he can hack it long term because he exploits revenue sharing in a way that's absolutely advantageous to him personally, at the expense of the brand and region.

That said, plenty of blame is on Vail too for not doing their due diligence.  IDK if they really wanted 7S and HV was just the mistreated stepchild that came along with it.  But I find it hard to believe they didn't know exactly what they were getting.

It's a shame too because the HV community is as vibrant as ever.

snowsmith wrote:

The sad part is Nutting/Mauch shoved $125 million in their pockets and sold these facilities to Vail in this unsafe, deplorable condition. My concern is summer construction season is coming to an end and these facilities are still sitting there with no repairs happening. The delaminating steel beams supporting the deck could fail. The cost of the lawyers would far exceed the repair cost. I am not holding Vail accountable for this currently. However, it is now August,  7 months after closing and we still have Nutting's website with the April webcam image and the March snow report. I am running out a patience. It's time to light a fire under someone's butt. 

Agreed. I think that the due diligence thing is what will put Vail in a lot of hot water. They may not have had an idea of everything that was going in, but I'd at least think they would have had engineers come out and inspect the buildings at some point during the process. Especially as they should be easy for an engineer to find if a layman can find them with no trouble.

Snowsmith, I'd take some pics and send them into Vail, if you haven't already. If you do that, there's no way that they can claim they didn't know. I think that would help bolster a claim of negligence if people get hurt because then, they'll have known about it and chose to do nothing.

Be sure to cc: yourself and use delivered and read receipts if possible. And if you can do a digital signature, even better.

Vail may have their big $370 million outlay for lifts and improvements, but I have a hard time believing they don't have a budget for emergency repairs. There's no reason in my mind that these can't at least be repaired enough to be made safe until they can renovate or build something new.

ZARDOG
one month ago
Member since 10/25/2020 🔗
119 posts

My 2 Cents - I sent a  few photos to a  buddy (commercial and residential inspector).

#1 Insurance will have made it inspected.

#2 It is a normal end of life. Shore up Remove beam replace new beam add new anchors to the deck.  Or Replace deck also.  Not a long-term project. 

Many resorts sold out because they did not have the capital to replace lifts and items 50 years old. 

There is plenty of time before Mid November.  

The company building the 5 lifts at JFBB- Ad for construction and will provide training.  

Including housing, per diem, and work 7 days a week 6 am to 6pm with OT after 40 hours. Starting to pay $20 hour and willing to negotiate with lifts or construction background/ experience. Training provided on the job. Willing to reimburse mileage or pay for airfare to job site. Immediate openings.  

zardog

ZARDOG
one month ago
Member since 10/25/2020 🔗
119 posts

Relax Yall,

Scheduled to be replaced in Fall before season start. It is the End of life. Vail mgmt knows and it is on the schedule and planned.  I can assure many,  insurance companies require inspections. 

I asked a buddy who is a commercial inspector first. He said EOL, replace.

I then asked my Vail mgmt contact and the answer is above. On plan on schedule.

I bet getting paperwork, permits, and inspections take longer than the actual demo and replacement. 

Zardog 

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
one month ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,445 posts
I'll believe it, when I see it. Sorry if I'm a skeptic. 
rbrtlav
one month ago
Member since 12/2/2008 🔗
544 posts

snowsmith wrote:

I'll believe it, when I see it. Sorry if I'm a skeptic. 

 I agree... there is still radio silence on the triple that Liberty announced before the Vail purchase. (I assume it has been resold or used elsewhere at this point) The hiring for the SkyTrac openings looks quite desperate, almost sounds like they are expecting people to work 70 hour weeks to get the project done. Hopefully they can, but I get a feeling either Vail or SkyTrac bit off more than they could chew.

It also looks like the Keystone and Park City projects will not be completed on schedule, which IMO were 2 of the higher profile projects on the Epic Update program. 

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
one month ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,943 posts


 

snowsmith wrote:

But after 5 months, you would think they could get their IT guy off his keister to change the websites! 

I will be a little sad when they finally drop their new website. When you navigate off the front page, the picture at the top of all the other pages features a boarder and a skier starting down Lower Wildcat. That skier is me. 

1659991719_ljkeynnfyysi.jpg

Snowsmith, It appears the Laurel lease did transfer to Vail. The new state park manager references the concession agreement with Vail in this article from WJAC TV:

https://wjactv.com/news/local/what-you-need-to-know-laurel-mountain-state-park-restrictions?fbclid=IwAR2NrbXqwduK90P6VqFL1eP9h2VYFPb3iuctyyEN1Fnk7pR-YQbS2BNgPZ0

I guess WJAC can't afford an editor.

ZARDOG
one month ago
Member since 10/25/2020 🔗
119 posts

Triple added at liberty is DOA from what I was told last year. 

As for a 70 hr work week kids today nope. 

18 years ago I worked 70 hours a week and still got out to ski 3 days a week. go figure.

My bet is all will be fine and we all will live another day, hopefully.

 

Zardog 

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
one month ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,445 posts
It’s now mid -August. I’m still looking at the April webcam, the March ‘22 ski report and the previous owner’s website. The deck attached to the ski lodge has been roped off. So maybe they are reading these posts? The chairs have been re-installed on the ski lift cable(hooray…progress) as part of the yearly lift maintenance. I am told that a meeting has been schedule between the Hidden Valley Foundation Board and Vail management (more progress?). I question the competence of the Vail IT staff since they can’t seem to get a website up and running. 
When I see the deck repairs happening, and a new website, I’ll start to feel some optimism.
superguy
one month ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
372 posts

ZARDOG wrote:

Triple added at liberty is DOA from what I was told last year. 

As for a 70 hr work week kids today nope. 

18 years ago I worked 70 hours a week and still got out to ski 3 days a week. go figure.

My bet is all will be fine and we all will live another day, hopefully.

 

Zardog 

Sounds like the expansion at RT to skiers' left of Powderhorn is probably canned too.  They had gotten the permits to start cutting trails over there - Sam announced it before he left. 

It'd be nice if they developed that side.  They could get a quad all the near the top of Minuteman down that NW side - it could add another 100-200' of vertical and give a few nice, longer runs.

superguy
one month ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
372 posts

Laurel Hill Crazie wrote:

I guess WJAC can't afford an editor.

It IS Johnstown after all :D

*My hometown, I can make fun of it. :D

Thefirewarde
one month ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
84 posts

superguy wrote:

Sounds like the expansion at RT to skiers' left of Powderhorn is probably canned too.  They had gotten the permits to start cutting trails over there - Sam announced it before he left. 

It'd be nice if they developed that side.  They could get a quad all the near the top of Minuteman down that NW side - it could add another 100-200' of vertical and give a few nice, longer runs.

Roundtop is water limited. Vail needs to get permission to draw and pump more water or build some substantial off-stream storage before they can add more terrain and cover it. Getting more HKD Klik auto towers or some new fans couldn't hurt, but Roundtop's big constraint is pumping capacity. They already struggle to keep what they have covered.

Leo
one month ago
Member since 11/15/2005 🔗
304 posts


 Hey Dave, hope you are well! 

I hate to grouse, but I'd love to know who pays for the maintenance of the road.  Genuinely curious if it is us (the taxpayers) or the lessee (Vail). 

I bike up there a lot (I was there yesterday evening) and it does feel a bit dystopian when you are passing signs every three feet that say "stay on trail" while riding through a state forest.  I'm sure the Mellon's didn't get any tax break when they donated the land so taxpayers should just understand that it isn't their resource to use, LOL.

 

hockeydave wrote:

https://www.dailyamerican.com/story/news/local/2022/08/17/laurel-mountain-state-park-trails-still-open-to-public-dcnr-to-examine-other-options/65405829007/

Thefirewarde
one month ago
Member since 09/17/2015 🔗
84 posts
Copied from a JFBB Facebook post:

"Will there be any skiable terrain be added this winter? 

Yes! Our Epic Lift Upgrade project has helped us create four new trails at Big Boulder which will be open this winter. Two of the trails will be skiways to the left and right of the new lift, one will be a new groomed intermediate trail and then another that will run under the old Merry Widow lift line."

No word on what snowmaking will be present on those trails, but any terrain expansion is better than none.

msprings
one month ago
Member since 07/4/2014 🔗
139 posts

Saw on the 7 Springs instagram page:

New snowmaking on giant steps and new snow making pipes on Phillips and upper Wagner 

ZARDOG
one month ago
Member since 10/25/2020 🔗
119 posts

JFBB Gave an Update on FaceBook.   The only issue again this season is.....

Labor Shortage 

and

COVID

and

VISITATIONS - Another Record or Not.

La Nina 3rd the year in a row.

COST input GAS will be under 4$ a Gal.

The 4$ I mentioned is from the max price I have paid in 25 years of skiing local.

It did not deter visits.

 Zardog

superguy
one month ago (edited one month ago)
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
372 posts

Here's the 7S vid:

fb.watch

The GS lance guns don't look like the newer HKDs.

Wonder if they're old guns that are bought used.

liketoskidad
one month ago
Member since 10/19/2007 🔗
27 posts

Vail Resorts announces season openings

  • Nov. 11: Mt. Snow (VT)
  • Nov. 18: Afton Alps (MN), Hunter (NY), Stowe (VT), Wildcat (NH)
  • Nov19: Okemo (VT)
  • Nov. 23: Mt. Sunapee (NH)
  • Nov. 25: Seven Springs (PA)
  • Dec. 2: Attitash (NH), Crotched (NH), Jack Frost (PA)
  • Dec. 3: Mt. Brighton (MI), Wilmot (WI) 
  • Dec. 16: Big Boulder (PA), Liberty (PA), Roundtop (PA), Whitetail (PA)
  • Dec. 17: Alpine Valley (OH), Boston Mills and Brandywine (OH), Hidden Valley (MO), Mad River (OH), Paoli Peaks (IN), Snow Creek (MO)
  • Dec. 23: Hidden Valley (PA), Laurel Mountain (PA)
HVdad
one month ago
Member since 01/9/2018 🔗
68 posts
More sad news for HV. Opening a month later than 7S? Very clear telegraphing of Vail's ultimate interest/care and concern for HV or LM. My guess is both will be shuttered within the next 5 years.
rbrtlav
one month ago
Member since 12/2/2008 🔗
544 posts
I’m really hoping that Vail adds a few more hours to the ski days at the former snowTime resorts, seems like 7 springs actually has more open hours than last year.

It is nice to see Abby is still working at 7 springs. Hopefully vail does a better job with the social media at liberty/whitetail/roundtop this year. 
liketoskidad
one month ago
Member since 10/19/2007 🔗
27 posts

Seven Springs, Hidden Valley announce changes ahead of the winter season

By Lawrence Walsh / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Additional on-snow time at Seven Springs; a delayed season start — but extended evening hours — at Hidden Valley; and limited lift ticket sales to encourage snowsports enthusiasts to buy multiday and all-season passes.

Those are some of the plans Vail Resorts announced Monday for Seven Springs and Hidden Valley, the Somerset County resorts it bought Dec. 31, and Laurel Mountain, the state-owned ski area in Westmoreland County it will operate as a concessionaire.

It plans to open Seven Springs on Nov. 25, the day after Thanksgiving — if the weather cooperates with enough natural snow by then or at least a week of below-freezing temperatures so it can make snow to cover at least some of its 33 slopes and trails.

Hidden Valley and Laurel Mountain will open Dec. 23. That date may not sit well with Hidden Valley winter sports fans who recall skiing and snowboarding there in late November or early December. Laurel Mountain has had a just-before-Christmas opening day in recent years.

Unfortunately, the weather has not cooperated in recent seasons with enough natural snow or snowmaking temperatures to provide quality conditions in the Laurel Highlands. The resorts have opened a few slopes and trails on weekends, closed during the week and continued that open-then-close schedule for several weeks. Seven Springs used to receive an average of 125 inches of natural snow between mid-November and mid-April. It has received less than 100 inches during that time in recent years.

Brett Cook, general manager of the three areas, said the Dec. 23 opening for Hidden Valley will give its snowmakers more time to create more snow — weather conditions permitting — and open more slopes and trails to get the season off to a good start.

“Once Hidden Valley opens for the season, we want it to stay open,” he said.

Mystic Mountain at Nemacolin Resort decided years ago to delay the opening of its seven slopes and trails until Christmas. Boyce Park, the Allegheny County-owned ski and snowboard area in Plum, also has delayed opening until the holidays in snow-short seasons.

needawax
one month ago
Member since 04/19/2019 🔗
16 posts


 

liketoskidad wrote:


Hidden Valley and Laurel Mountain will open Dec. 23. That date may not sit well with Hidden Valley winter sports fans who recall skiing and snowboarding there in late November or early December. Laurel Mountain has had a just-before-Christmas opening day in recent years.


Really?  What if temps go low and the snow starts to fly prior to that?  Isn't this really just an operational/staffing/organizational issue?  And if so, say it. 

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
one month ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,445 posts


 Looks like we're at the bottom of the list. Even the mole hills in Ohio have higher priority. They did report they purchased 7 new portable HKD snow guns for HV. So there is some positive news.  They think they can open banana belt Roundtop before HV? It is almost September and we still have the previous owner's website, the mountain cam image from April and the snow report from March. The deck on the ski lodge is starting to slump and collapse, the snow tubing lodge looks like a total dump and the deck on that lodge is near collapse, not to mention rotting wood and peeling paint on the main ski lodge and the snow tubing lodge. Vail did inherit these poor conditions from the Nutting/Mauch duo. But get a freaking crew out there and start executing repairs. The snow tubing lodge is located near the main entrance. They should be embarrassed to have that timber frame structure in such poor condition. As that redneck commedian once said, "Get er done."

1661465046_nzwlnnklmvuy.jpg

needawax wrote:


 

liketoskidad wrote:


Hidden Valley and Laurel Mountain will open Dec. 23. That date may not sit well with Hidden Valley winter sports fans who recall skiing and snowboarding there in late November or early December. Laurel Mountain has had a just-before-Christmas opening day in recent years.


Really?  What if temps go low and the snow starts to fly prior to that?  Isn't this really just an operational/staffing/organizational issue?  And if so, say it. 

wfyurasko - DCSki Supporter 
one month ago
Member since 07/27/2014 🔗
287 posts
IIRC, Big Boulder used to compete for first open in the Poconos if not all of Pennsylvania
rbrtlav
one month ago
Member since 12/2/2008 🔗
544 posts

wfyurasko wrote:

IIRC, Big Boulder used to compete for first open in the Poconos if not all of Pennsylvania

 I know under the Peak days I skied at Big Boulder in early November. Just like Bryce they are small and have good snowmaking, they would go all out for a night or two and get a trail and park open. It was a really short run, but being on snow in early November was always fun. 

Boulder would also try and save snow and open a park for a "May Day" event. 

HVdad
26 days ago (edited 26 days ago)
Member since 01/9/2018 🔗
68 posts

The real joke is Hidden Valley, MO opening before HV, PA! I really don't think they have an acutal winter season in Missouri, do they? Clearly there are some newly-minted, Harvard-bound, critical-thinkers who were delegated this "plan the opening" project. What's even more sad: (appropriate use of the colon) they had to actually create a special date, late in December, as an "oh shit, we have two other ski slopes we have to worry about" placeholder.

How very sad.

Does anyone have the name and email address of the new "manager" at Hidden Valley, PA?

Leo
26 days ago
Member since 11/15/2005 🔗
304 posts


 I mean, the whole thing comes off as a bit of theoretical exercise.  We could have a November where us poor HV pee-ons are crying that they're not open for Thanksgiving.  Or we could have a November/December where everyone is scrambling to have anything open for Christmas.  So "announcing" an opening schedule in August is interesting.  But I'm sure it justifies someone's title and salary.    

HVdad wrote:

 Clearly there are some newly-minted, Harvard-bound, critical-thinkers who were delegated this "plan the opening" project. 

Laurel Hill Crazie - DCSki Supporter 
25 days ago
Member since 08/16/2004 🔗
1,943 posts
I think the last management team got it right by not announcing opening dates because the weather is fickle. We all know that Seven Springs tries to open the Monday after Thanksgiving, but there was always the possibility that there would be enough sustained cold to open earlier, and they have in the past. Now, it will not surprise me at all if they just stick to those opening dates regardless of cold temperatures or even the amount of snowfall on the ground. Maybe Seven Springs will be the exception, but I could see Laurel and Hidden Valley languishing because there will be no staff in place and no plans to staff until the opening dates.
snowsmith - DCSki Supporter 
25 days ago
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,445 posts
I would think having an opening date would relate to operations and staffing. If you have a set date, you have a good idea when to get the staff on-board. You would also have a better idea for budgeting for staff. They then probably have an idea when they want to close also. And I am sure that LM and HV will get the short end that stick also. I think their philosiphy is....you have alot of other places to ski on your pass. So why complain that your home mountain is closed.
marzNC - DCSki Supporter 
25 days ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,822 posts

Leo wrote:


 I mean, the whole thing comes off as a bit of theoretical exercise.  We could have a November where us poor HV pee-ons are crying that they're not open for Thanksgiving.  Or we could have a November/December where everyone is scrambling to have anything open for Christmas.  So "announcing" an opening schedule in August is interesting.  But I'm sure it justifies someone's title and salary.    

 VR started announcing opening dates for all the destination resorts a while back.  There is always the caveat of "weather permitting". Sometimes it works and other times the actual opening date is delayed as needed for a specific resort.  Of course, if Mother Nature doesn't cooperate that means other resorts near Epic locations that don't open as planned aren't likely to open that week either.

ZARDOG
23 days ago
Member since 10/25/2020 🔗
119 posts

I have the earliest open and the latest close and in between.

Nov 24 is a good date and has worked for 7springs. Liberty Dec 16 is a safe bet.  Early as Dec1 as late as the end of the first week in Jan. 30-day variable. End dates MAr 1 - MAr 30 for Lib.  By Mar 30 most will not go skiing spring sports take over. 30-day variable at the end.  A great season is Nov 25 - Mar 30.


 

Grumpy dad
13 days ago (edited 12 days ago)
Member since 11/7/2021 🔗
25 posts

Pre nutting - New snow guns, improvements all over, restaurants good - festive experience at HV w/ families enjoying HV for what it offered...I left smiling everytime.  Snow was better, and they opened before 7s which I loved. (maybe just a day, maybe even a week or more)

Nutting - Sending their overflow of out of control fat drunks, no improvements, the parking lots some how got muddier.  Minimal snowmaking, grooming, parks poorly cared for or even existing. 

Vail buy out announcement: literally everyone: "it can't get worse than it is!"

Reality today: we are reducing your ski time from 4 months to 3.  You're welcome, oh and um yeaaa we are going to need you to go ahead and move into the basement, um yea ...and while you are at it here's a can of bug spray, if you could just take care of some of those bugs while you are down there that would be great, mkay?  Thanks!

If I were a home owner of HV, I would stop saying 'it cant get worse' because y'all are just jinxing yourselves.   OH I cant wait to see what the lift lines look like at 7S.  

And the BS that moron is spouting about 'the weather'.  Pfft.  First off the annual snowfall was never 120 inches.  Most of that is hype anyway, and likely embellished during the nutting period. Second, somehow they managed to open and stay open but ONE time that I can recall in 20 years.  That's when we had that warm December w/ alot of rain.  

Leo
12 days ago
Member since 11/15/2005 🔗
304 posts

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Grumpy dad
12 days ago
Member since 11/7/2021 🔗
25 posts

1663170927_iudbxghxkbgg.jpg

superguy
7 days ago
Member since 03/8/2018 🔗
372 posts

I'm hoping these dates aren't etched in stone, with openings being sooner if the conditions permit.

HV and 7S have similar weather, but HV has the better system. I can understand the focus being on 7S as it's the destination resort in the region, but I can't really see a reason to hold off snowmaking and opening if the weather permits.  Unless they plan on just dumping everyone at 7S and have bigger opening. If that's the case, the HV had better have the max amount of runs possible on that date.

LM was always the red-headed stepchild. The leased compressor didn't usually show up until Dec 1 or so anyway, so a Christmas opening isn't a shock there.  Still would like to see more open sooner though.

Moe Gull
4 days ago
Member since 09/5/2022 🔗
4 posts
I have not heard anything about lifts yet. Corporate website development is slow and they are probably rebuilding everything fit onto their standard template that they used for others resorts. Just planning, approving is a month's long process. Their websites are relatively simple and they will probably use the same underlying stuff that has already been built multiple times for others resorts, so coding and development is probably not even the part taking the longest for them. It's just the process that they need to go through that drags it out.
liketoskidad
23 hours ago
Member since 10/19/2007 🔗
27 posts

I find it very concerning that Vail has not done any updates to the 7Springs or HV WEB sites. I have been responsible for leading over 20 acquisitions over the past 20 years and after the actual closing documents the most important document is the Integration Plan.  This plan is always completed before the deal closes and addresses in detail what is to be done on the day the deal closes and usually 30, 100 and on year after closing.  

I have never been involved in an acquisition as the buyer or seller where the website did not have some updates on the day of closing or very shortly after.  This is to let both employees and most importantly customer know what's coming in the future.  More deals fail to provide value in the future due to bad integration plans than any other item which is why significant resources from the buyer and seller are involved in the plan.

So Vail's total inaction to provide any updates on the 7S a& HV sites is telling me that have NO plans for doing anything to better serve their customers or improve the skiing experience at these facilities.  Hopefully I'm wrong but sure seems management at Vail just doesn't care.

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