If you look up the hill from Houghton or Hancock, you’ll notice a lot of heavy machinery climbing the snow covered mountain.
“We’re getting ready for opening. We’re going to open December 1st. We’ve got 25 guns and we’re pumping out of the canal and making, I would say, the best man made snow in the world. And Mother Nature obviously helps out a lot,” said Mont Ripley General Manager Nick Sirdenis.
December 1st is next weekend and between now and then every department of the facility is embracing the upcoming season. Sirdenis said, “We’re selling season passes. We’ve got lockers that are just about all sold out. We’ve got our ski shop just about all out together.”
As the shop employees stock the shelves with inventory, the snow guns are running and groomers are prepping a thick snow base for the opening. “The T bar will be open top to bottom and part of Center Bowl and Toot’s Tumbler right behind me. The terrain park will have some events set up and features set up as well,” said Sirdenis.
Initially those few runs will get the season started for weekend use while the staff spends weekdays making more snow until the season fully opens. “We would open up then Friday, Saturday and Sunday on the weekends until the 14th, and then everyday for the rest of the season,” he said.
By that time all of the runs should be open, making room for the annual holiday programs. “We have a lot of events. We have our Christmas Ski School. We have races during the Christmas time. We’re up and getting ready to go,” Sirdenis said.