Just before 3pm on Tuesday July 12, intense “straight line” storms came through the Catskills. In Delaware County the weather was extreme for several minutes. At Plattekill, the storm passed and after that, at the end of the workday, employees went home. At 5:45 pm an alert neighbor saw smoke rising from the base of the ski area and called it in.
Based on the timing and nature of the storm, those on the ground believed that lightning struck the control shack, at the base of the double chair. If so, it may have smoldered for a while, before it was seen and reported. For the moment, until the insurance company can make their official determination of cause, the shack ruins will stay where they lay.