My feelings of Blue Mountain are well documented, it really isn't so much a disdain for the mountain itself but the poor snow that is granulated sugar over ice that is only slightly harder than some of the rocks I rode over today. I went to Blue today with a sceptical but open mind, the reason for being sceptical wasn't so much for Blue, but that it was the first year for the trails and to an extent trails need to mature.
I arrived at Blue to a pretty full parking lot, there was not only mountain biking going on but a car show and other things as well that I am not going to get into here. Seeing the bikes that were riding around, Blue is drawing a pretty serious crowd. After signing my waiver and paying my reasonable lift ticket price of $15.00, I head over to the chairlift. There are a few guys ahead of me and it appears that only every 3rd chair has a bike attachment on it, not an issue now, but later when it gets more crowed the line is closer to 30 minute. As I get off the lift, a "red shirt" greets me and asks if I need any direction. I ask for a suggestion and I am told to take 7 to 4 back to 7. As soon as I turned on to 7, I was impressed with how the trail was set up, ti felt like a trail that was there for seasons. I then take the climb up to 4 which was a little more technical than I wasn't ready for. The lower part of 7 is pretty much a green ski trail which was like a fire road. I took that over to the duel slalom course which was a lot of fun and very well designed.
When I got down to the lift again, I realized that my suspension was set up too stiff with too much rebound. I released some air and headed back up. The second run was a ton better with the suspension muuuch smoother. Instead of taking 4 in the middle, I tool 7 top to bottom (still with the dual slalom). Where I barely hit 25 MPH on the first run, being bounced around a lot, this run I hit into the 30's a couple of times.
On the next 3 rides I took 7 into lower 4. Lower 4 was a ton of fun, it really reminded me of 6 or 11 at Killington.
I am one to make my dissatisfaction as well as my satisfaction known. I made sure to find the guy in charge, I am guessing it was the guy, he looked important, he had TWO radios. I told him how impressed I was with the job they were doing and the quality of the trail network. I talked to some of the guys who did the trail work and told them that they should be proud with the work they have done.
If they are basing their decision on the feasibility of running the lifts on this weekend (and it sounds like they are), with this crowd, I cannot see how they cannot open every weekend. Now can they get the guys that did the work on the trails to do the snowmaking. ;-)