The cost of lift tickets these days is off the charts. Per day (USD) $98- in Australia, $102- in Whistler and $105- in Vail. Then about $110- to ski in Europe (approximate costs). It does get cheaper the more days you buy but overall unless you’re from a wealthy family dynasty, are a banker or have multiple kidneys to sell visiting the snow is bloody expensive. So much so that perhaps buying your own resort or renting one out with 99 of your friends for a week is nearly comparable. And if money is no option why not get membership at some of the best places in the USA.
BUYING A RESORT
There are currently three snow fields available for sale in the USA. The most expensive one is only $3.5MIL, and it’s profitable! Owning your own resort would be like owning your own jet – so costly but oh so cool!! Same would go for renting – it’s the new cool for people with money.
BLACKTAIL MOUNTAIN, MONTANA: $3.5 MILLION
Steve Spencer, ski area general manager and one of the founders, said the ski area is listed for $3.5 million. The sale includes the summit lodge, lifts, equipment and the special use permit from the Flathead National Forest, which owns the land the ski area uses.
“We’ve been operating the mountain for 19 years and all of us are well past retirement age so we figured we should start looking for an exit plan,” he said.
Spencer, a Flathead Valley native, helped found Blacktail in the mid-1990s. The mountain opened in December 1998 and since then has grown in popularity. Today, about 100 people work at the ski area and it hosts approximately 45,000 skiers and riders annually.
Spencer said the mountain is profitable and that there are many opportunities to expand the ski area.
“I hope whoever buys it will take it to the next level,” he said.
Personally this wins as my pick of the bunch to buy!!
MARSHALL MOUNTAIN, MONTANA: $2.95 MILLION
Just seven miles outside of Missoula, Marshall Mountain offers a unique opportunity to own a slice of ski history within a snowball’s throw of Missoula. Featuring 156 acres of skiable terrain, a renovated base lodge and a handful of lifts, the ski area is listing for $2.95MIL US.
At an asking price that cheap, this is a pretty good chance to get the mates to go all in on a private alpine playground.
I don’t think Marshall Mountain gets much downhill action these days. I can’t seem to find any pics of the mountain with snow on it and think it is best for non-winter months and also for the lifts to get you to the top for snow-shoeing and other alpine activities. Or just build your own megalomaniac lair.
MAPLE VALLEY, VERMONT: $950,000
Nestled between New York City and Boston, Maple Valley Ski Area could be a weekend warrior’s dream.
For less than the price of most houses in the ‘burbs, you could own 16 trails and over 1,000 vertical feet of Vermont ski goodness. Maple Valley Ski Area hit the market last summer at just $950,000, a fantastic price for 370 acres of private terrain in New England.
Just a couple of hours from Boston and New York, Maple Valley features two chairlifts, a T-bar and a three-story base lodge that might be one of the coolest places on the East Coast to reside. I live in Sydney and this resort is about as much as a two bedroom apartment so it’s a fracking bargain!!
RENTING A RESORT
If you’re a few million short of buying your own snowbound megalomaniac lair perhaps renting a resort and pretending for a week or so would be more up your alley.
EAGLE POINT, UTAH
Some of these mountain rentals are actually incredible value. Eagle Point Utah is only $10000- for 200 people per day, how good would that be for a massive birthday party!!! Check them out HERE.
PLATTEKILL MOUNTAIN, ROXBURY NY
Plattekill Mountain just out of New York starts at only $3500- a day for up to 250+ people. If you fill your 250 quota that’s $14 each to board/ski for the day. I’d prefer to get 25 friends and have the entire resort for $140- each – HELL YEAH!! Not much more than a general lift ticket in most resorts anywhere but NO LIFT QUEUES!! Check them out HERE.
SILVERTON MOUNTAIN, COLORADO
Then there is Silverton Mountain in Silverton Colorado. It has 25 membership luminaries and only ONE CHAIRLIFT but is classed as one of the bets places to ski/board. One chairlift is all you need to access a high alpine environment surrounded by 1,819 acres of amazing descents in every direction. There are loads of bowls, chutes, cliffs and wonderful natural terrain features to be discovered everywhere.
Silverton Mountain is the highest and steepest ski area in North America with a peak elevation of 13,487 feet and has no easy way down. Besides avalanche mitigation work, the mountain is left in its natural state with no cut runs. Their base lies at 10,400 feet with a single lift dropping you off at 12,300 feet. The chairlift unloads at the top of a circlet which provides easy hiking along a ridge to access terrain that can total 3,000 foot vertical drop in a single run.
Mountain buyouts for this resort start at $14000- a day. I would kill to do a day of runs at this place!
If money is no option hit up the below places for annual memberships at private resorts. Cimmaron sounds insane and is my favourite of the bunch. Even their website requires password access but the offer is unparalleled.
Colorado’s Cimmaron Mountain Club, which opened in September near Telluride, has ONLY 15 memberships, which run a cool $3.2MIL apiece. Included is a 35-acre slice of the property where you can build the snow home of your dreams, plus unlimited guided or snowcat skiing/boarding on 2,000 untouched acres. I NEED TO BE RICH FFS!!!
Cimmaron Mountain Club, Telluride, Colo.
Peak elevation: 11,460 ft.
Total membership: 15 families
Cost of entry: $3.2 million to buy in, plus $50,000 or more per year
Hermitage Club, Wilmington, Vt.
Peak elevation: 3,200 ft.
Total membership: 800 families
Cost of entry: $85,000 initiation fee, plus $9,500 per year
Holimont Ski Area, Ellicottville, N.Y.
Peak elevation: 2,260 ft.
Total membership: 1,800 families
Cost of entry: $17,000 initiation fee, plus $290 per month
Plymouth Notch, Vt.
Peak elevation: 2,900 ft.
Total membership: 350 families
Cost of entry: $12,500 initiation fee, plus $6,000 per year
Yellowstone Club, Big Sky, Mont.
Peak elevation: 9,860 ft.
Total membership: 864 families
Cost of entry: $300,000 initiation fee, plus $39,500 per year
What’s your pick for the best of the bunch. I’m going to fantasize about buying Blacktail Mountain in Montana, renting out Silverton Mountain in Colorado for yearly parties and obtaining a membership in Cimmaron Mountain Club in Telluride. DREAM GOALS!!!