good crowd, excellent maintanence, very good food
small and short runs
Another great time at Bear Creek. As a family of five, with 5 to 11 year old children, this is a perfect mountain for us. While the lift ticket options are not as varied as at Camelback, and thus a little pricey, the maintenance, the helpfulness of the lift staff and ski patrol and the overall environment is well worth the price. We have never rented, so I cannot address how their rental situation works. However, we did lose a walkie talkie (since two of the kids are often on their own, we all have communicators so we can keep in touch) and they called us a month later to let us know the status (still had not found it.)
The really good thing about the mountain is that for something so small , it has plenty of varied terrain from a very easy "bunny" slope fed by a surface lift, to a fairly easy and short beginner trail to a long beginner trail. My wife, who is not much of a skier really enjoyed her time their honing her skills up to the straight long central blue trail. My 8 year old had plenty of challenging very steep moguls to work on, but were short enough that he could build his skills while not getting stuck on something very long like at Elk. Then there are the two and half terrain parks - a short simple one for my 5 year old and beginning riders, and then the two major parks that are wicked and very varied.
We ate excellent $5 burgers straight from the outside barbcue on the deck, making us feel as if we were apres ski at Vail. Some may complain about cost, but aside from Elk, the food is about the same price as other mountains like Camelback and Shawnee.
The lodge, while somewhat small, is the nicest in terms of seating quality, availability of lounge chairs, quality of food and entertainments (large screen projector an dflat panel TV showing the olympics). Plus the nice outside deck with large octagonal picnic tables. Lots of modern electronic lockers, a game room for th ekids, plus the hotel and spa ski in and out.