Montage Mountain, Blue Mountain reviews: two Pocono 1Ks
(day 9 [7th post] in a 10/9 circle route 14-15 season)
The great circle route of ’15 was extended. John had departed returning safely home via his newly acquired Pius. I had sampled New Jersey’s only 1K resort, Mountain Creek. I extended my usual schedule as, I drove into the night to locate and occupy my motel in the Poconos. This 14-15 season was great! The conditions were still fine, the coverage good. Pennsylvania lay before me. PA, here I come!
I was off with an early start to Montage Ski Area. It was another pleasant day – a lot warmer than the previous week. Perhaps I was further south, but significantly spring was rushing in on the east.
The trip was easy in theory, but a complication arose from an error within my Hyundai navigation system. A real human behind the reception counter at the hotel I was lead to informed me I was not the first person to be troubled in this manner. It had happened at least twice before that she knew. I wonder it they were driving a Hyundai? She set me straight. It was a simple correction and I was at Montage, the proper and correct area in short order.
Montage Mountain review:
Montage is well maintained friendly and the facilities are modern and well run. The main lodge and reception area are the first I’ve seen that are half-way up the hill. Yea a few are at the summit, most are at the base, but the Montage lodge is ded center halfway in (or down the hill. You can ski to the bottom or take a lift up once you get your ski pass.
The vertical drop of Montage is listed at 1000 feet exactly. I’ll grant it the benefit of the doubt. it certainly is a nice little area. The lodge was band new with a fast-food court offering more than one vendor. The common area was large, spacious and well lite with natural light from the large windows. It was appealing and enjoyable. The reception desk was very helpful, but being late in the season and a weekday, I didn’t chat with any instructors or patrol.
The area is compact listed as 120 acres of terrain. The more challenging runs were the lower half. The upper section serves as a fine teaching hill. The outer fringe runs did offer some trees, not real exciting, but again a good intro for beginners to the potential thrill and challenges of glades. The upper and lower sections did connect allowing for continuous top to bottom.
The bright sunshine substantiated my positive experience skiing Montage. You can’t have a bad ski day anywhere any time the sun brightly basks the slopes! I cruised the wonderfully groomed runs all morning and would do it over again in the PM, but I thought, “Why not go to Blue Mountain?” It was close by, and I might be able to ski an extra area if I combined two stops today.
Not anticipating the unexpected
So it was off to Blue Mountain, a short but very doable jaunt from here. However on my way, I missed an exit which on the interstate took my an incredible 20 or so extra miles to the next exit. I did enjoy the scenic journey through the Lehigh Valley of PA. But I had to pass through the lengthily tunnel not once but twice. On my return leg, I was traveling a bit fast ’cause I was instated with my foolish mistake. On the approach heading north I spotted what I took to be a very common eastern “road turd”, the seemingly ubiquitous ice clumps that accumulate in wheel wells to then peal off with the heat of the engine, the swarm sun or the over-used road salt.
Not that big, I gauged I would ride right over it, so I kept my cruise control engaged and held my tack to pass dead-center. It what was I fraction of a second, indeed my front bumper glided over unaffected. But almost instantly The center of the car was jolted upward. The CD player jolted my Great Courses” disc into ejection. My sun glass holder jolted open The entire car was thrust up and over by several inches and I almost lost control. That was no ice chunk!
I more coasted to a stop by gently applying my brakes highly concerned about possible damage. Nothing, (just as I had suspected) on the visible exterior, And a close inspection for leaks od busted stuff hanging down likewise revealed nothing (to my surprise and relief). So I return to task realigned on course, but at a lower speed. All seemed OK. But, the interior was disheveled with my eight days of accumulated stuff, all effectively bounced and thoroughly redistributed about the cabin. Looks like all’s well, but there’s another story here!
Blue Mountain review
Blue Mt. Was another favorable experience. It the larger resort of the two. One lodge was at the summit and the runs offered more of a challenge. The vertical is listed as 1082 feet with acreage of 182. The slopes seemed steeper, more varied with more woods and a greater variety of terrain.
A noteworthy crowd assembled as the dinner hour approached. My guess it was attributable to two factors. It seemed school groups had arrived, but I think the great weather and sun shine was drawing out folks who had to avail themselves of the late season conditions. I skied into the evening on the well lit runs chalking up a very full and enjoyable day.
With still had the one last PA 1K remaining on my list, I returned to my motel with a stop at my Internet center to enjoy the dollar menu, catch up on my email, and the day’s news. Returning to the hotel, it felt different without John’s streaming music, but I managed to fall into my usual deep sleep – like a baby with an innocent conscience. (HA! Believe that and you’ll believe anything!)
So there’s more of the PA Poconos. Come, Ski With Me!