Belleayre 1/9/18 + New Gondola Photos

NELSAPNELSAP advanced
in Trip Reports Posts: 368
An excellent day of skiing today at Belleayre!

It has been about 15 years since I was last there, and honestly, I barely remembered skiing there. There have been new trail additions since then, and most importantly, the addition of the Super Chief Express and the new Catskill Thunder Gondola.

Temperatures were just below freezing, periods of snow showers that dropped up to an inch near the summit and dusting below, 36 trails open, and $48 Liftopia ticket.

No crowds to speak of, and lifts were ski on. 

The new Catskill Thunder gondola is awesome. For the first time, you can ski the entire vertical of the mountain without taking multiple lifts. During the week, they are not running Lift 7 or Tomahawk, at least not today. So, if you're skiing trails like Dot Nebel or Deer Run, you need to ski down the new Lower Deer Run to the gondola. No biggie, it gives you the 1350' of vertical, but the lower 400 or so of that is on a green.  If you cut over on Expressway to around Overlook Lodge, you can then ski any of the lower mountain trails back to the gondola. Which is a new option - unless you wanted ride the 10 minutes up the double double over and over again (that lift is a prime candidate to be replaced by a HSQ).

Speaking of the gondola, talked with a lot of nice skiers on it. Almost every one asked "Where are you from?" and when I say Saratoga, they all react in disbelief. Nobody believes that someone would drive 2hr 20min SOUTH to go skiing. Seriously, people were very surprised. When I explained I wanted to check out the new lift, they understood though.

The skiing reminded me a lot of Jiminy Peak - steep trails off the summit, which is flat. Similar vertical for the main mountain. But the trails are quite enjoyable - a good sustained pitch for top 300' of vertical, then trails mellow out. There are a good # of options from the summit of Super Chief or the gondola to keep you busy for the day. I particularly enjoyed Seneca, Peekamoose, Algonquin, Yahoo, and Mohawk.

The gondola did stop for 15 minutes while I was on it - started getting nervous, it eventually started up. Turns out there was some kind of an auto shutdown for "gondolas being too close together" alarm, and they had to get a tech to clear out the code or something.

Enjoy the photos, JD
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Comments

  • ski_itski_it expert
    edited January 10 Posts: 2,117

    Thanks for the great report. Yet another place I wished I've skied. I've been there in the fall and I remember the great scenic views from there.

    That's really funny, and I'd never would had imagined that was so far south of you, maybe an hour ten, but it is...I checked. I know the feeling well. You know I've had similar looks of delusion on my treks. Looks like you really covered the place. Any views of Highmount?

    ISNE-I Skied New England | NESAP-the New England Ski Area Project | SOSA-Saving Our Ski Areas - Location SW of Boston MA
  • ciscokidciscokid expert
    Posts: 2,246
    So not 1 snowjournaler join you?
    Nice report
    Looking forward to Highmount resurrection someday
    Dr Lane should revisit
  • Posts: 2,351
    Thanks for the report, I love the old Dopp. double-double.
    - Sam
  • JMaulJMaul advanced
    Posts: 315
    Nice report and good job on the amount of runs.

    I wonder if they plan to have more cover at the gondy terminals. Looks very open, especially the top.

    Lift 1 and 2 should be replaced. I got stuck on it one time with my daughter. For close to and hour.

    Nice pic of the old t-bar line. Was always fun to poach but now it's listed as Big T Glade. Interesting...
    You ski because even if you don't do it well, it's still a blast....
  • mapnutmapnut expert
    Posts: 896

    I thought from looking at the topo that Lower Deer Run (below the road) would be bothersomely flat, flatter than the runs off the double-double. Any poling necessary?

    It looks like none of the gondola line is skiable. Does it intersect with Upper Seneca?


  • NELSAPNELSAP advanced
    Posts: 368
    Glad you all enjoyed the report! Lower Deer Run was all downhill - I didn't have to pole, but it's not the most exciting run -  just a runout. There was one quick dip in it but nothing much. The gondola intersects with Upper Seneca - goes right over it.
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