by: gma - 28th April 2009

  • 2
  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Expert
  • 3All-Mtn. Terrain
  • Family Friendly
  • Nightlife
  • Terrain Park
  • Value
Terrain
Rock Hard Snow

Full review

Catamount has its strong points. Its got 1000' of vertical which ranks pretty well in the immediate area. Some of the terrain is pretty well pitched and the trail layout allows for a good time to be had by those of any skiing ability. Its lift capacity is adequate. Its lodge is functional and you can do better than cafeteria food for lunch. Its snow is a nightmare. I expected a firm day. However, I'd skied very close to Catamount a couple days earlier on edgeable, enjoyable packed powder, we didn't have any weather in the interim that should have impacted the snowpack and, Catamount was a gleaming glacier. I didn't ski the fairly steep signature trail, Catapult. After a few rides on the chair above the trail, I chose not to be among the brave few to ski the blue. I watched good skiers struggle. I watched marginal skiers flail. I did not see a single skier navigate the thing without skidding or washing out all day or, even anybody stringing more than a few turns together without doing one or both. I myself was busy chipping my teeth and breaking my back on stuff without quite enough pitch to send me on an uncontrolled slide into who knows what if I happened upon a turn that just plain wasn't going to happen at all. The fun quotient goes down just a bit when you can't count on your skis doing anything you ask of them with your boots. Catamount is a decent hill with rock hard snow. Guess that means go when Mother Nature provides either fresh, or corn. Otherwise, bring the stiffest skis you have and make sure you can shave with them before you go.
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