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Seven Springs, PA Question

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

 

I have a question regarding crowds, can anyone who is a regular there give me some advice? 

 

I'm thinking of taking the kids there for 2 days around X-mas.  One option is to drive out there on the 23rd, ski on the 24th and 25th, come home on the 26th.  I'm thinking that skiing on x-mas eve and x-mas day would be EMPTY, PERFECT!  Of course, I'd have to convince my mom to delay our x-mas celebration, but I think she'd go for it.

 

Another option is, I could do x-mas with the family at my parents as normal and take them something during the week between x-mas and New Years.  But, I'm afraid it will be MOBBED!

 

Thoughts?

 

While I'm at it, for a family that include an expert skier, and upper-intermediate skier, and 2 young kids that are progressing onto intermediate terrain, is Seven Springs or WISP a better choice?  Or, anywhere else in the region?

 

Thanks!
 

post #2 of 17

I'm a pretty solid regular at Seven Springs (as it is my closest mountain). I usually get in about 30 days there a year (at least in recent years). That said, I can't speak specifically to Christmas Eve and Christmas Day - I'm usually bound by family obligations during that time. However, the week between Christmas and New Year's is usually PACKED. I wouldn't recommend it due to the crowds and the way you describe your family's skiing abilities.

 

Overall, I don't think 7 Springs is incredibly user friendly for young skiers/beginner skiers or for those who don't know how/when to avoid the crowds. In general, most anyone in the Pittsburgh and often DC areas who think they can ski go to Seven Springs. While I don't discourage people learning and working on their skills at all, I do have trouble with those who think they can ski because they can bomb down 700 feet of vertical without turning. Seven Springs is full of those. When I ski on weekends, I often feel like I spend a lot of time worrying about not getting hit (and I am generally confident skier). Around a lift I generally take a pretty aggressive stance with my poles set far away from my body to keep people from running over the tails/tips of my skis. I've had it happen more often than I like.

 

If you are looking for a more family friendly place, Hidden Valley might be a better choice - at least for your younger kids. Any true expert skier will get bored at either Seven Springs or Hidden Valley pretty quickly, but the Valley seems like it would be a better fit based on how you describe your family. I can't speak to Wisp.

post #3 of 17

D makes some good points.  It won't be empty, but generally significantly smaller crowds on your pre-Xmas and Xmas dates.  Hard to beat the "resort" amenities in our region that SS offers.

post #4 of 17

I feel like I need to add an addendum: I'm actually NOT a Seven Springs hater. It's the best in our region (except when there's enough snow to ski Blue Knob). I just worry about the experience the OP would have with the family during the holidays.

 

post #5 of 17
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the input.  I'm closer to Whitetail than 7Springs, and for myself and for day trips could care less about resort amenities, so I ski there most of the time.  More vertical too.  I expect to go there a few times with the kids for day trips over the winter.  So, I thought I'd find something else in the region for a 2-3 day trip.  In that case, resort amenities matter, so I figure we'd give 7-springs a try.  Based on your advice, I'll definitely avoid the week.  My experience in skiing New England over xmas was that you are fine up until the 26th, but from the 26th on it's not even worth trying... I'm hoping it's the same around here.

 

Anyone else have any other thoughts?

 

 

 

 

 

 

post #6 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by msawyer13 View Post

 

 One option is to drive out there on the 23rd, ski on the 24th and 25th, come home on the 26th. 

 

<snip>

 

While I'm at it, for a family that include an expert skier, and upper-intermediate skier, and 2 young kids that are progressing onto intermediate terrain, is Seven Springs or WISP a better choice?  Or, anywhere else in the region?

 

Thanks!
 



Where are you driving out from?

 

post #7 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmy View Post





Where are you driving out from?

 



You're trying to get him to go to Whitegrass, aintcha.

post #8 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmy View Post





Where are you driving out from?

 


 

The Baltimore, MD area...

post #9 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by cantunamunch View Post





You're trying to get him to go to Whitegrass, aintcha.



Hey what's up there BigFish. I'd suggest Tucker County WV but not for this mission. msawyer you know what to expect crowd-wise, Wisp might be a little better as far as skiing with your up & coming intermediates but the resort feel you get at 7 Springs is pretty unique in the Mid-Atlantic.

 

post #10 of 17

I'd like to give a different perspective regarding 7 Springs. I skied there for the first time with my family last year from Dec 27-Jan 1. Our family includes the range from littlest boy who is afraid of some greens, intermediate boy and wife, very promising boy who will follow me nearly everywhere, and me who is a level 7-8 and lacks elegance in big moguls.  We stayed in the big hotel at the base, in a "Tower Slopeside Family King" room. The crowds were not bad at all. Some lifts had lines, others didn't. The worst was the Polar Bear Express that takes you from the Front Face to the North Face -- I think I had to wait 20min one time. However, it's a lift you only take as transport to the other side, not really for skiing laps. Other lifts were 2-5min, and you could often just ski onto Avalanche and North Face chairs. I have had far more horrendous lift lines in Colorado and Tahoe. During Xmas week the lifts open 1 hour earlier (8am) so you can get in some good runs while the sleepy people are still abed. There is night skiing which I generally avoid.

 

The only thing that was annoyingly crowded was the main cafeteria at lunch, and one of the restaurants at dinner. At lunch it was less crowded in one of the restaurants adjoining the hotel, or at the Tahoe Lodge at the top of the mountain (or in your condo if you rent one). At dinner, the "Timbers" restaurant had a wait but the "Slopeside" never did and had a better buffet. There were also other eating establishments.

 

We bought a "Super 7" pass which allows 7 days of skiing in the season (not necessarily consecutive), and used 5 in December and the remaining two in February. The 7-day pass was less than the cost of 5 full-day lift tickets, so it was a good deal even though we weren't sure at the time that we'd be back later in the season. There was a free overnight ski check for hotel guests, so you don't need to lug your gear back to the room.

 

Considering the minuscule so-called mountains around here, I think that 7 Springs is one of the better ski areas near DC/Baltimore, and better in some respects than Snowshoe WV: it's much closer, and not nearly as windy. Snowshoe does have a little more challenging terrain, including the back slope, and it has the artificial village which is either better or worse depending on whether the 50mph wind is howling. Also, at Snowshoe the hot tub & sauna are open to all, whereas at 7 Springs they are reserved at additional charge. I think the 7 Springs hotel is substantially less expensive than the condo in the Snowshoe "Seneca" building that we usually rent.

 

 

post #11 of 17

^^^ This is a great perspective, Jeff. I guess I never consider it from the stance of the resort-goer. I usually drive up and back in the same day or crash at my shack a mile down the road. Changes things a bit, eh? Good advice.

post #12 of 17


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DSloan View Post

^^^ This is a great perspective, Jeff. I guess I never consider it from the stance of the resort-goer. I usually drive up and back in the same day or crash at my shack a mile down the road. Changes things a bit, eh? Good advice.

I wish I could drive up & back in one day. My day-trip hill is the aptly-named Round Top, which is pleasant but tiny.
 

 

post #13 of 17

I used to live in Harrisburg. I know of that hill . . .

post #14 of 17

I looked at their web site -- looks pretty nice for a small ski area!

post #15 of 17

A little thread creap. What is your opinion of roundtop? I am looking at a position in york, pa -- so I'd assume that's where i'd ski.

 

thanks!

 

post #16 of 17

Nice race program, nice moguls.   Very small hill if those two do not float your boat.   Weird snow, very styrofoamish during cold spells.

post #17 of 17

Round Top is a nice family ski area, but it is small because of the lack of decent mountains in the East. Take the job because you like it, and ski where you have to -- don't take the job because the skiing near Troy PA is good.

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