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  1. For those heading to New Hampshire to ski, the 2018-19 lift ticket rates have been released on the New England Ski Industry's website. The average weekend lift ticket has increased by 10% for weekends and holidays. This year NH lost its second least expensive ski area, Granite Gorge who have suspended ski operations this year. One lost area, Tenney Mountain should be in full operation for this season after a soft opening last season. The most expensive area is Bretton Woods at $99 USD up $6, and the least expensive is Campton Mountain at $20 USD. There are 5 areas in the $90 USD range this season. Below is a link to the rate chart for the season for reference. https://www.newenglandskiindustry.com/viewstory.php?storyid=735&fbclid=IwAR1YRCCdyrZvFtRf-kFXhG0Igi4WErjWjaRrDB5Q0f0Zh4O1GCs2rw6xzj4
  2. Looking at the map, for ones who have not skied there, like me, how would one get from Vanier over to Chaval Blanc? Can you ski past the Chalet du Trappeur or have to hoof it? Looks like you could ski it over. I noticed the transfer trails from Cheval back to Vanier.
  3. Mont Orford was the destination choice today to start off the 2018-19 season. There were other options that were thought of that involved a bit of travel, however I decided to stick to something nearby. This would be Orford's second weekend of operation. With the dump of snow this past week Orford was a good choice. All of Giroux North was open counting for about a dozen trails with the Giroux North Quad giving access. I arrived at the mountain at 8:45 under cloudy skies and the temperature hovering around 0 to -1 Celsius. I met up with an old friend of mine from my Owl's Head days so this venture was not a solo one. There was a decent crowd, but the wait in line was no more than a minute or so if that. I wouldn't even consider this a wait. Everything was flowing smoothly in line. Today you were skiing on a mix of groomed man made and packed natural snow that was a bit damp from the mild temperatures that followed the storm. Nothing slushy or springlike, just good snowball making snow. Base was nice and forgiving. Majority of the trails open on Giroux North were on natural snow, with the exception of maybe one or two trails. Sure there were some spots that you had to be careful with and had to pay attention to, but the overall coverage was pretty decent for natural snow alone. It's what you would expect at the beginning of the season. The first run was down the Familale with the next down the Alternative into the l'Initiation, some other nice easy trails that led back to the quad. The Magog and the Jean-Davignon, the intermediate trails I skied today were a good test for early season legs and mine seemed to be happy with these choices of trails. The Familale: The Jean-Davignon: After a few more runs, the last being down the Magog into the Pente Douce, I was done by noon. The legs weren't screaming, but I did start to feel it and decided not to push them any longer. 7 runs were enough for the first day of the new season. The Magnum was open as well but I took a pass on this one. We will get to it later in the season. It was a good first day out of hopefully many more of the season. Here are a few more scenes of the day: The Magnum: The Magnum and the Jean-Davignon: The Pente Douce:
  4. Paul

    Camp Fortune - November 24, 2018

    Great to see you got out Shane and Gordo Great pics!. Whoohooo I am the last one! I haven't been out yet this season but that should be coming soon. Looks like you had a great day of skiing. I don't recall such great conditions and the amount of snow we've had so early in the season. Speaking of keeners Ocean, I had the plan of skiing 3 different areas in 3 different states in one day! One in Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine. The catch....do 2 hrs at each area. It would be doable but it would have to be the perfect day. The areas? 1) Burke, VT - 2) either Bretton Woods, Attitash, Black Mountain, or Cranmore, NH - 3) Shawnee Peak, ME. Shawnee Peak offers night skiing so that would make it all doable but the weather and road conditions are the key in this crazy adventure!
  5. Paul

    Owl's Head - New Ownership and Future Plans

    Thank for the update Shane. I had recently seen a post on their FB page of a recent photo of all the snowfall recently, and the photo was of the intersection of the Baby Quad and Panorama Chair, and the Panorama Chair is still standing. So it looks like both doubles are still there but chances are the Panorama may be the one not running this year, and slated for dismantling in the spring. Maybe that is why they list only one double for this season.
  6. Paul

    Camp Fortune opens this Friday Nov. 23rd

    Well........looks like I am going to be the last one to start their season this year! Ocean won this year for earliest start. I am eyeing some dates for an outing before December but not sure if it's going to work. Keeping a look out for Bretton Woods to start the season. From what I have seen it is off to a great start for what they have open.
  7. Paul

    New ownership at Vallée Bleue

    Just saw this a few moments ago. You beat me to it Shane! Lol. Another long time family owned ski area in Quebec changing hands recently. First the Kormans now the Lingats. I didn't know the Lingats, but I do wish them all the best. All the best to the new owners for the future. May have to get up that way and ski Vallée Bleue!
  8. For those of us who may head down to the state of Maine this winter, the New England Ski Industry's website has posted the lift ticket prices for the 2018-19 season. Ticket prices have gone up by 2% this year. The highest being Sunday River holding at $105 USD for a day ticket. Sugarloaf has raised theirs to $99 USD. They are the areas with the most expensive ticket. Hermon Mountain and Big Squaw being the least expensive at $32 and $30 USD respectively. One surprise was Mount Abram where they dropped their rate fro $59 USD to $49 USD. Here is the link for the others in the State of Maine for this upcoming season. These are the Adult non holiday weekend rates you will see on the site. https://www.newenglandskiindustry.com/viewstory.php?storyid=728
  9. Not your traditional report per say, but more of a preview of what is happening in the mountains of the Townships. I was at Mont Sutton today visiting a long time friend of mine who runs the ski shop there for step one of my preparation for the upcoming ski season. It was a nice day for a change, and decided that a small road trip was in order to get the skis tuned up. There had been some snow on the weekend. In the lower elevations it was brown, but up in the mountains there is some snow, and looks like winter. It was chilly this morning when I left for Sutton, and upon arrival at the mountain it was a bit windy which made it feel colder than it really was. After I was done at the shop I decided to take a ride over to the Chair 5 sector of the mountain for a quick peek, and there was snow to be had over there. I ran into quite a few hikers, and cars parked in the lot and on the roadside. There is a decent amount of snow here for this time of year. The bottom of Chair 5: Looking up the lift line: This visit at Sutton today definitely cheered me up, and got myself motivated to get my act together to prepare for what's to come for the 2018-19 season. Until next time.
  10. You are 3 up on us already this season! I had actually thought of heading up Sunday morning to catch some early runs but I didn't work out. The forecast for this week is again terrible for the Townships. I don't want to shovel up a pile of leaves in the driveway on the first snowfall, so it had to be done. Great shots at sunset! Thanks for the report.
  11. Paul

    Sommet Saint-Sauveur opening - October 26, 2018

    From the look of the forecast for this weekend I will be sitting this one out. With Sunday being decent, but rain for Friday and Saturday, is there going to be anything left for Sunday?
  12. Paul

    Gray Rocks To Reopen?

    Here are a few shots of Gray Rocks from the fall of 2015. This is from the hotel side where the Quad was: The back side where the old Riblet double chair was:
  13. Paul

    Gray Rocks To Reopen?

    When I first heard about this I thought it was a rumour so I was hesitant at first to post it yesterday, but now this is the third story I have read now about the the possibility of Gray Rocks reopening. This story is from the Montreal Times found tonight on the subject. http://mtltimes.ca/Montreal/social-life/gray-rocks-hotel-will-rise-from-the-ashes-thanks-to-entrepreneur-cedric-grenon/ If this comes to be, this is going to take a ton of cash to do it. I never got to ski it but had visited the site in the fall of 2015 after the fire at the hotel. The building was flattened and the grounds landscaped and all of the lifts removed with the exception of the odd lift part here and there.
  14. Paul

    Gray Rocks To Reopen?

    I just found this story on the tva nouvelles web page about a possible rededevlopment plan to reopen Gray Rocks in the future. The developer has successfully purchased some of the properties at the former site of the Auberge Gray Rocks in hoping to revive the site, and to keep the memory of the once popular Laurentian ski area alive. Closed back in 2009, Gray Rocks had been in operation since its founding in 1905. In 2014 the hotel burned in a spectacular fire. Here is the link to the story of this project. https://www.tvanouvelles.ca/2018/10/26/la-station-de-ski-gray-rocks-pourrait-renaître
  15. An update found on the New England Ski Industry web site on the situation at the Hermatige and it doesn't look promising for the upcoming season. In summary, a judge has denied their request for the increase in mountain's off season maintenance including scheduled lift inspections putting their opening for the season in jeopardy. The receiver of the area is only funded at the moment to preserve the equipment from deterioration. Also it looks like they are still trying to secure the loan from the real estate firm to pull them out of receivership. Here's the link to the site for the full story. https://www.newenglandskiindustry.com/viewstory.php?storyid=725