by: Greg morell - 11th November 2010

  • 5
  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Expert
  • 5All-Mtn. Terrain
  • 3Family Friendly
  • 3Nightlife
  • 3Terrain Park
  • Value
superb & unique ski experience
don't spend enough time there

Full review

New Hampshire’s Wildcat Mountain is missing a few things-condos, hotels, waffle houses, and slope-side McMansions. What remains are the network of trails, four lifts and the glory of the White Mountain National Forest. Even the trail signage is understated and as unobtrusive as possible. It’s a frosty panorama of the natural wonders of tall pines, thick forest and a surround of huge mountain boulders that stretch across the horizon in all directions. At the base of that trail is the fastest chair lift in the East -- a snappy Wildcat Express Quad that whisks you up to the peak in just six minutes Once you’re at the top, Wildcat’s Polecat trail runs down to the base in three segments, Polecat-Tomcat and Stray-Cat. Total distance from top to bottom is 2.75 miles. This is the kind of green trail that challenges the novice but makes for a long speedy dash to the base for the intermediate skier. However, what there is no shortage of on this mountain is expert mogul trails. They are numerous and very challenging. The steepest and most daring is the aptly named Topcat, guaranteed to turn your knuckles white if you have the courage to try and skin that cat. The Cats rule on this mountain and the rider soon becomes familiar with Bobcat, Blackcat, Cheetah, Lynx, Cougar and Copycat -- and Wild Kitten provides a playful trail for advanced beginners. The summit scratches the sky at 4,062 feet and enjoys a vertical ascent from base to peak of 2,112 feet. Wildcat’s White Mountain locale places it directly across from the famed Tuckerman Ravine. It’s New Hampshire’s high spot for snow. Normal annual snowfall is over 200 inches, but this past year a major late February storm dumped over 50 inches in less than a week. While the rest of New England’s ski towns were swinging between rain and snow -- at Wildcat it was a total snow event.
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