Despite Waterville Valley being the closest major mountain to my home, it is an area I rarely visit. My last trip to Waterville was in late November 2003. I still have yet to take the full measure of Waterville and ski all of its advanced trails. But I know enough about the mountain to know that what you see is what you get — which is why I usually travel the few extra minutes it takes to get to Cannon, where what you see is barely scratching the surface.
First turns of the 2003-2004 Season! I matched my earliest opening day with last year’s November 30th at Cannon Mountain. Sadly, Cannon has delayed their opening day one week this year, so I opted for the cheapest lift ticket I could find with Waterville Valley weighing in at only $25.00. Upon parking my car, I started jumping up and down next to my car in anticipation. It was a child-like giddiness.
A park was built next to the lodge but I did not walk over for a closer inspection. Skiing was available on the High Country Double only in the morning with uploading via the High Speed Quad. The High Country Double was running as slowly as ever and offered only one trail open underneath. This lift officially gets my nod for the slowest chair lift in New England. Twice as slow as the Willoughby Quad at Burke without the slightest bit of an exaggeration. With long lines early in the day, one racer decided it would be quicker simply to hike back up! And it was!