First day of the tour, at Catamount, was December 1. I was sold on the Indy Pass as soon as I scanned the list of mountains included. Of the included hills included, Catamount is the one where I have spent the most time. I liked Greek Peak the one time I skied there. Magic Mountain is a new favorite too. Those tickets will get used. Bolton Valley and Suicide Six have been on my radar for a while so maybe having the Indy passes will finally give me the impetus to follow through on my curiosity. Berkshire East and Shawnee offer new opportunities for exploration too.
But Catamount is like an old friend. My kids and I have history there and still love it.
And since Catamount’s so convenient, only two hours from my house, it was only logical that it would be the first Indy Pass hill we visited. NYSB’s first Catamount post titled titled “In the Sweet Spot”, we meant to express Catamount’s many good qualities, chief among them its location. If you’re coming from Brooklyn, Queens or Long Island, it’s almost thirty minutes closer then the Catskills resorts.
I got the boys up and on the road by 7 AM. The forecast called for a ton of snow later in the day but the morning weather was clear. We made such good time up the Taconic Parkway that we had time to stop for waffles, eggs and more coffee at the Martindale Diner, one of those classic unchanging establishments that you find all over upstate New York. It really hit the spot.
We were at the hill by 9:30; the lifts were scheduled to start loading at 10. Right away, we could see how much work has gone into improving the resort’s physical infrastructure over the last year.
The new lodge isn’t quite done but it already looks great and the improvements to the old one made a huge difference. Catamount had a decent amount of terrain open for their second day of operation; three chairs and a carpet were running for probably five different ways down.
A few fast laps on the double chair helped loosen up our dormant leg muscles. We then spent the day moving around the hill, sampling each open trail. There was enough open to make for a fun day. We even rode the magic carpet once to avoid a flat traverse to the triple chair.
In spite of a late breakfast, my kids were ready for a lunch break by noon. Some times it seems like they never stop eating.
When we got back on the lift, Junior spotted a little jump that some kids had built on the side of the trail so that was our entertainment for the afternoon.
It being their first day of the season, my boys didn’t quite have the reserves to make it to last chair. We quit right about the same time the snow started coming down hard, which was fine. As much as I would have liked to enjoys the refills, I knew hanging around would make the drive home that much worse. It was a white knuckle event as it was, totally different from the relaxed trip of the morning. We made it home just fine though. Overall, I was pretty satisfied with the first stop on our Indy Pass tour. Full steam ahead.