Not worth the drive from Chicago

by: subsonik - Jan 29, 2009

  • Overall Rating 1
  • Family Friendly 3
  • All-Mtn. Terrain 2
  • Terrain Park 1
  • Nightlife 1

    Pros: Steep (but very short) runs.

    Cons: Icey, Crowded on weekends, only 1 lift during the week, poor conditions almost always

    Recommended For: Family Friendly, Empty Nesters

    Date Visited: Jan 1, 2009


Full review

Unless you're standing on top of Alpine Valley during or immediately after a major snow storm, expect icey conditions and some of the worst man made snow. During the week, they'll have only one lift operating and once I went and they were blowing snow on the 2 or 3 open runs. So as your flying down these really short runs, everyone is getting blasted in the face with tiny iceballs. Not fun! Also, because it's the only hill in sight for as far as the eye can see, any wind will basically pick up all the snow and blow it off the hill. I went on a very windy day once in Jan and that was the last time I'm going here. Suggestion: Drive 1 hour more north to Merrimac to Devils Head: bigger hill (500'), more runs, more acres, better snow conditions (although it gets icey there at times), better grooming, better park features, and usually less crowds. I've gone to DH on decent snow days on a saturday and there was hardly anyone there! I can say that if you need a quick downhill fix and don't feel like making a long drive, then Alpine may do the trick, but it's depressing when you compare it to anything out west or even some of the larger Mid-west/Great lakes hills. Pros: Lift tickets are reasonably priced, lifts rides are quick (it's a small hill), and the chairs are fairly comfortable for a small resort. They also have a quad, which is a plus. It is what it is.

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