BELLEAYRE, A SHORT RIDE FROM NYC

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We started our trip to Belleayre Mountain which is located off of State Route 28 in Highmount, NY. Two and half hours later we arrived and were greeted by the very friendly staff. This ski area has became one of the centers for winter sports in the region.

Belleayre offers something for everybody. From skiing to snowboarding to cross-country skiing and visitors just enjoying the view, you can enjoy yourself at Belleayre. The ski area designates over half of its runs as intermediate slopes, both advanced and beginner skiers and riders will find trails that they will enjoy. Youngsters will have fun on the SkiWee Carousel and intermediates can challenge themselves on Deer Run.

Our first run was on the Belleayre run, which runs parallel to the Supercheif chair lift. The first trail of the day always offers the amazing feeling of the snow hitting your face and the thrill of going fast. After the exhilarating ride down, we decided to take Lift 7 to the Yahoo trail which gave us the opportunity to either continue down the Yahoo trail or take Area 51 which is exactly what we decided to do.

After a few runs down the left side of the mountain it was time to test out the right side. In order to get there we had to take Lift 7 to the top and take Utsayantha down to the Algonquin trail and across the Tomahawk crossing. That brought us to the Tomahawk chair lift.

Belleayre Mountain's facilities offer the only Catskills Cat-access skiing and snowboarding. They have the Area 51 terrain park, two progression parks, and mogul trails ranging from intermediate to expert bumps and extensive glade skiing. Belleayre is a beginners paradise. The lower mountain trails are gentle and long. In many northeast ski areas the beginner trails are limited to short runs but at Belleayre the beginner runs are as long as a mile. Experts will find the upper mountain trails steep and challenging, and intermediates will have many trails to chose from. Most of the trails start off fairly steep, then flatten out to blue and green terrain. This is nice for mixed groups who have a range of ability but still want to ski and ride together. Intermediates can get off at the mid station and wait for their advanced friends to ski down to them and finish the run together.

The huge deck at Overlook Lodge is a great place for apres ski on warmer days. They have a full service cafeteria, cocktail lounge, in addition to ski shop and ski school located in this lodge and the food is pretty good too. Longhouse Lodge is located next to the Main Lodge and Sunset Lodge is located on the summit with vending machines midweek and a full-service cafeteria for the guests on weekends and holidays.

Belleayre strives to continually break new ground and stay at the forefront of the ski industry. By successfully operating for over five decades, it has attracted a dedicated staff, state-of-the-art equipment and a constant vision for the future. Skier and snowboarder visits have grown from 70,000 in 1995 to more than 175,000 skiers and snowboarders from all over the world. With 55 trails, parks and glades, 8 lifts, including our new High Speed Quad, Belleayre Mountain has certainly evolved from humble, yet promising beginnings into an efficient and growing organization - perfection in progress.

All day lift tickets on weekends and holidays for adults (age 20-64) are $64. Tickets for college students are only $54. Teen tickets are (Age 13 -19) are also $54. Junior tickets (Age 7 -12) are $42. While senior lift tickets (Age 65- 69) are $42. The 70+ skiers (Age 70 and above) can ski all day fore $20.

Half day lift tickets (12:15pm-4:00pm) are only $52 for Adults, $48 for College Students and Teens, Junior tickets and Senior tickets are $38 and 70+ tickets are only $20. Children age 6 and under ski for FREE.

Belleayre offers a Learn to Ski with Parallel from the Start, that is guaranteed to get you to the top of the mountain. This trademarked program utilizes famliar movements and skis designed with beginners in mind. The three- day program includes beginner lift tickets, rentals and group lessons. Complete all three days and you will receive a FREE Frequent Skier Card. You will learn to love winter because of the Parallel from the Start program.

You can learn to snowboard in an is all inclusive program designed to make snowboarding easy and fun. Belleayre offers a special approach and equipment that will teach you how to ride. This program includes a beginner lower mountain lift ticket, group lesson, and snowboard rental.

The Learning Zone is for first time skiers or snowboarders and a learn-to-ski or learn-to-snowboard lesson is available for $30.00. Instructors in The Learning Circle will teach you the basics - your equipment, balance in motion, sliding, turning, control. Staff is available seven days a week to guide you through the Learning Zone stations.

STATS:

Longest Run - 12,024 ft. Snowmaking - 96% of terrain

Vertical Drop - 1,404 ft. Skiable and Snowboardable acres - 171

Uphill Lift Capacity - 10,980 people per hour Hours of Operation -

Lodges are open 8:00-5:00 pm daily.

Lifts operate 9:00 - 4:00 pm daily.

8 Lifts include:

1 Detachable High Speed Quad - "Super Chief" located in the Intermediate/Expert Area

1 Fixed Grip Quad - "Tomahawk" located in the Intermediate/Expert Area

1 Triple Chair - "Lift #7" located in the Intermediate/Expert Area

2 Double Chairs - "Lifts #1 & #2" located in the Novice/Beginner Area

1 Handle Tow - Located in the Novice/Beginner Area

1 Magic Carpet - Located in the Novice/Beginner Area

1 Magic Carpet - Located in the KidsCamp Area. For children enrolled in KidsCamp Program only.

There are 50 Trails, 5 Glades, 1 Terrain Park, 2 Progression Parks rated as Beginner 22%, Intermediate 58% and Expert 20%.

They also offer 9.2 km of Cross-Country Trails that are free to use, but only have natural snow cover and are not patrolled or groomed.

If you live in the NYC area and want a fun ski trip close to home, visit Belleayre and tell them you read about them in the Ski Bum News.



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