- Overall Rating 3
- Family Friendly 4
- All-Mtn. Terrain 4
- Terrain Park 0
- Nightlife 1
Pros: It's within driving distance from a huge chunk of the Southeast
Cons: The terrain, purely due to location, is limited and the runs are short
Recommended For: Family Friendly, Empty Nesters
Date Visited: Dec 1, 2009
I visited PNS today for the first time in about 15 years. I was pleasantly surprised! First of all, I was surprised that they were even open yet. Secondly I was surprised at how many improvements have been made since the last time I was there. Thirdly I was surprised at the quality of the man-made snow.
Living in Tennessee, I'm kinda limited when it comes to being able to drive to someplace where I can ski. Gatlinburg is probably the closest, but it's so dangerous because of the layout and the number of newbies that I refuse to go there again. Paoli is where I've been taking the family for years because they have always done such a good job of making and maintaining the snow, even though the terrain is not very challenging. PNS is a place that I visited back in about 1993 or 1994 and came away with a kind of low-rent impression of the place. The lodge was small, the lifts were slow and I seem to remember feeling like it was crowded. Today when I arrived the first thing I noticed was that the snow blowers were still making snow. i knew that before long the temperature would rise enough that that would come to and end so i didn't spend too much time on it. The next thing I noticed was that the lodge was MUCH bigger than I recalled. The third thing was how nice and clean the parking lot looked with obviously new pavement and lines. Overall, my impression was very favorable.
At $30.00 the lift ticket was very reasonable, I thought. When I got out on the snow I was struck by the variety of terrain and how chalenging it was. In contrast to Paoli Peaks where ALL of the runs are groomed, PNS lets some of their runs bump up naturally. Also, PNS had some steeper stuff than I remembered. While the runs are varied enough to be amusing they are still in Indiana and, therefore, short. The chairs are slow but that can be a good thing on a crowded weekend day when more people in line and on the chairs means fewer people actually on the slope at a given time.
The atmosphere was that of a weekday with a conspicuous absence of kids. On weekends I can imagine it getting pretty crowded. I didn't take my kids today but I know they'd enjoy skiing there. I talked to several folks who are regulars and they all said it's a place to avoid on weekends. I didn't meet anybody who worked there who wasn't friendly. That's not something I can say about all of the resorts I've been to.
This is not a destination resort by any stretch of the imagination. It's a day area for folks who live in the south and are really hard-up for some snow time to go play. Keep its purpose in that perspective and you can have a great time at this little ski area.