- Overall Rating 3
- Family Friendly 4
- All-Mtn. Terrain 3
- Terrain Park 0
- Nightlife 0
Pros: Nice trails (the ones that were open anyhow), inexpensive on Tuesdays
Cons: Making snow during a blizzard makes no sense
Recommended For: Singles, Family Friendly, Empty Nesters
Date Visited: Jan 1, 2009
I hit all three local resorts on consecutive days (you can look up my other reviews). I hit Beech on Tuesday which is half-price day ($19 for a full or twilght ticket). Turns out I only did a half-day anyhow, but that's not the resort's fault. It was COLD on the day I went, 4 degrees F, blizzard conditions, with strong winds that made all the snow stick to one side of the trees. The snow was so thick and was blowing so hard that you literally couldn't see the next chair ahead of you on the lift once you got a ways up the mountain. And yet they're out there making snow in this mess, making everything even harder to see (see this review -- http://www.onthesnow.com/north-carolina/ski-beech-mountain-resort/reviews_b.html?review_id=6753 -- this was the same day I was there). At one point, I was flying down a hill and got blasted by a snowmaking machine. What they were shooting was still slightly wet though, so it hit my goggles and instantly froze there. Instant blindness, lots of fun. After doing a few hours of this, I had had enough. I spoke with some other more experienced skiers, and they said that they had never been skiing where it had been that bone-chillingly cold and windy.
The slopes that were open were good. Lift lines were short. I wish they had opened more terrain, specifically the Oz Run around the back side of the mountain. There were no black diamond slopes open the day I was there, although one opened a day or two later. Didn't deal with rentals (do yourself a favor and go to Snow Toys in Banner Elk for a better deal and better service than you'll ever get at the resorts). The lodge seemed nice, very busy on a day when it was much nicer to be inside.
I thought Beech was okay, and might've enjoyed it more if it weren't so crazily cold. The cheap Tuesday tickets are a decent deal. I might come back if they can get their terrain all open and deal realistically with whether or not snow really needs to be made during a blizzard.