Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Rippin’ Bumps in Southern NH?

Could it be that southern New Hampshire’s little Pats Peak, with just 710 feet of vertical, will have rippin’ bumps this season? Here's some text from a recent Pats Peak news release:

“This year Pats Peak is solidifying its grip on the best steep/bump skiing in Southern New Hampshire. The Hurricane trail will be home to the only fully automatic SMI fan guns in all of New England. Snowmaking pipelines will charge automatically and guns will turn on and off as temps permit. Blizzards will be produced almost every night to keep the best bump run in Southern New Hampshire in great shape all season long…. And to showcase Pats Peak’s obsession with snowmaking, they are also adding two high capacity water pumps to force the snow out even faster…. With the addition of night lighting on the Hurricane trail, it will be open day and night….”

So, why do I care about this tiny area that I've never skied? Two reasons. Firstly, this summer, my wife, my dog and I moved from the White Mountains of northern NH to the Concord area, and I’m now living just 13 miles from Pats Peak. For months, I‘ve been thinking that the nearest decent bump skiing would be 45 minutes or more away. After I read this press release this past weekend, Otto the rottweiler and I drove out to Henniker and hiked up Pats Peak to see this Hurricane trail for ourselves. It’s tough to judge steepness in the summer, isn’t it? But the trail did look relatively steep. I don’t know… maybe as steep as Cannon’s Rocket trail? Maybe as steep as Zoomer? Or Loon's Flume? Steeper than Waterville's Tyler, I think, but no True Grit. It's tough to say. Otto thought it looked like it could hold a good B-level course, anyway. I’ve never skied bumps at night, but a little nighttime mogul skiing could be just the mid-week stress reliever I need down here in the south. And this trail could be just what I need on those Saturday’s and Sunday’s when I don’t feel like making the long drive to the bigger mountains.

And the second reason I care? Because I love to hear (as I know so many of you do) about mountain managers who embrace mogul skiing and try to provide terrain for us bumpers.

Check the place out for yourself at www.patspeak.com.

11 Comments:

Blogger joem said...

i dunno danno.. i'm just not buying it...i'm so suspect of all of em now - especially after that fraud evan dybvig went on and on about bumps last year before opening whaleback and delivered pretty much nothing.... i won't believe it till i see it.. and even then.. it means nothing if they are not going to tear them down and at least reset them every 2 weeks... if they don't do this they will be crap just like flume and the front side of cannon is 80% of the time.. i gonna have to see it to believe it... the boys and i have been fed to many lines of bull cookies to trust anyone anymore

11:32 PM  
Blogger joem said...

riddle me this?
why is it that resorts can allocate " snow rangers " up the wazoo to stay late till 5pm in the dark on most days to rake the landings smooth in the park and buy million dollar machines to pipegroom the pipe, yet can't seem to put 10cents into MAINTAINING a bump line...
why is that?

11:35 PM  
Blogger Dan DiPiro said...

A healthy skepticism, Joe. I don't blame ya.

One thing, though... an alternative to grooming them out regularly is blowing tons of snow on them, which is PP's stated plan. We'll just have to see, I guess.

As for your riddle... we both know the answer to that: there's money in them terrain parks.

Am I going to get to ski with you guys this year or what? Oh, and there are these Boston parking tickets I've been meaning to talk to you about....

-Dan

9:24 PM  
Blogger jsul185 said...

Okay Dan it's January 13th and I can't find a bump on any hill. This weekend could be the turning point. Think snow for Sunday and Monday. I was at Loon midweek, snow guns were blasting everywhere. I spoke to a local skier who has a cool website www.skine.net. He does daily terrain updates, pretty cool.

10:47 AM  
Blogger Dan DiPiro said...

I know, JSUL... rough season. But, yes, it does look like winter is finally here.

Let me know how things develop at Loon over the next week or two.

Turns out that little trail at Pats Peak is a pretty nice bump run. It's steep enough. Haven't skied it in a week, but they've blow some new snow on it recently and I'm eager to return to it.

Cannon is starting to get most of the mtn covered, but there aren't many bumps.

I'm having fun, though, trying out all of my new Rossi gear: skis, bindings, boots and poles. Nice stuff.

My most valuable distraction during this lousy winter: running!

-Dan

7:36 PM  
Blogger jsul185 said...

I skied Waterville Jan 31 and Feb 1st.WV has bumps on 4 different trails!!! The bumps were sweet. The lines were so tight it was sick. They have bumps on stiller which is a beginner trail on far skier right. The comp run on tyler and the bumps on Old T are back. The best bumps were on Utter Abandon. I can't say enough, they were sweet tight lines that should hold up past the Feb vaca week. Too cold this week to smash bumps but I'm going to ski Feb 11 and 12 next week. JoeM is sking 14,15. I might have to extend my days off. Joe and I don't have the same days off but we might both ski tues and maybe wed. I'm dying to smash some bumps when temps are in the 30's. We'll be at WV next week unless Loon puts bumps in on lower rummer runner. I heard Loon has bumps on Flume but in my opinion they usually suck.

Glad to hear the book is doing well.

11:34 PM  
Blogger Dan DiPiro said...

Thanks for checking in, jsul185. And glad to hear the crew is finding some good bumps. I was away this week, but heard northern New Hampshire had some nice skiing this weekend. Yeah, I'm craving those spring bumps, and temps, too.
-Dan

7:39 PM  
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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dan, about this time last year I wrote here about my new Rossignol Exhibition mogul skis. I characterized them as 'squirrely' and wish to retract it now. These skis were only tuned wrong (i.e. razor sharp near the shovels) I blunted the fronts and once that was corrected they are wonderful in the bumps and most other places too. Thank you. Jude (Oakland, CA)

4:31 PM  

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