Titus Mountain: Somewhere Over the Rainbow

I’ve been feeling nostalgic. Between laps at Woods Valley, I spent my holiday downtime watching old ski and snowboard movies. Cult classics like Ski School and Out Cold had me longing for the good old days. Can I say that? I’m not even 30 yet.

I’d heard Titus Mountain had that old school feeling, and this past weekend, when the rain returned to Central New York, it was clear where I needed to go, as far north as possible.

It was a 3-plus hour drive up to Malone NY. After a late start in the freezing rain, we made it around 1pm. The snow was coming down lightly as we hurried to get our tickets. The lodges gave off an old school vibe and classic rock was blasting over the speakers.

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Gore Mountain: A Big Step Forward

I skied Gore two days this holiday week and — all things considered — the mountain was in pretty good shape. During the week before Christmas significant rainfall wiped out the thin natural base leaving everything very firm.

first chair

It was great to see Gore’s snowmaking firepower on display. There were issues with the gondola both days, leading to lines that left me uncomfortable. I was grateful for the AE2 and ended up riding it exclusively in the morning.

The two days I skied were before the debut of the new Lift 6, so the gondola was the only route to the top. Both days I took it only once, to access Topridge and the summit. At one point on Tuesday I considered booting it from the saddle to the top of Bear. I’ve certainly done crazier things in my days.

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Holiday Valley: Social Distancing the Rain

I’m sure most people don’t think of my home — Utica NY — as a ski town. I could go on about the city-owned ski slope and local history, but its true advantage is being located in the middle of the state. Much of the best skiing in New York is within a day trip of my apartment.

Mardi Gras lift

I’m also lucky to have a forward operating base at my parents house in the Finger Lakes. While the rest of the state was getting rain on Christmas Day, Western NY was getting lake effect snow from Lake Erie. With the Bills winning the AFC East and 8 inches of snow on the hill, Holiday Valley skiers were smiling. I left my folks place early Saturday morning with my sights set on Ellicottville.

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