Whiteface Opens 2020

I did what I needed to do, to get first chair, on Whiteface’s opening day 2020. I cleared my schedule and drove to the Adirondacks on Friday afternoon. I woke up at 5am Saturday morning and left our place at six. I arrived in the River Lot at 7:30 and booted up there.

the drive to Whiteface

I went over the bridge to the base lodge, through the tunnel and up to the Face Lift. A small group waited patiently as mountain ops finished the grooming on Fox, the final stretch of the only way down. Broadway to Lower Valley to Fox.

Ron Kon saw my skis, which pretty clearly ID me, and he introduced himself. We talked about Whiteface, and uphill policies, and ski days. It was Day #13 for him.

Continue reading

Hunter: The Season Opens in NY

After the 2019-20 ski season ended with a whimper on the wind, I was determined to ski every chance I got this year and be thankful for it. So when Hunter Mountain — one of three hills that I can day trip from Long Island — announced Opening Day 2020, I made a reservation.

Alan Belsky
photo by Gabrielle Feilen, Hunter Mountain

I pulled into the muddy lot to the right of the main building a little after 9:30. Everyone was funneled into one entrance greeted by three or four Hunter employees with scanners. I breezed past the ticket windows serving a handful of customers and through the underpass without going into the lodge. A ribbon of beautiful white snow and a mass of maybe fifty people were in line or milling around the base, all wearing masks.

Continue reading

Man, I Wanna Be a Local

Man, I want to be a local. And this year, I’m not alone. Second homes in the mountains have been occupied full time since the spring, and the real estate market in the Adirondacks and Catskills has been off the hook.

But for me, this isn’t a new thing. I’ve been dreaming of living in the mountains of New York since I found them for the first time back in 1988. I discovered my love for cold and snow and remote locales, freeheeling in leather boots in the Siamese Pond Wilderness.

While we have a plan to make it happen, it’s a few years off, in 2024, so it’s not going to help me this season.

In pursuit

Continue reading