Ellicottville, NY 14731
Trail Map (click to enlarge):
Joe's Resort Review:
Holiday Valley is the largest and most popular resort in Western New York. Many in north central will make the day trip for some great skiing, but this resort is also best for those who want to make a nice winter retreat in a quaint and historic town. Ellicotville is not overdeveloped and a quaint town full of bed and breakfasts with plenty of small shops and eateries.
But the town is just a small part of it. The skiing is the main draw. The resort boasts 56 slopes spread over four different faces. There is a 750 foot vertical with 282 skiable acres. 37 trails are open to night skiing but unless there is fresh snow, I will stick with saying that morning is best, unless of course during some of those great lake effect events that this resort gets. As for the difficulty of the slopes, there is something for everyone. For the beginners, there is some real long greens to slowly wind down the mountain. More advanced skiers also have plenty of slopes to choose from and some of the intermediates are fairly long. And if you were looking for that one challenge, then The Wall is for you. I haven't been to the resort since I was a beginner/intermediate skier, so I have yet to do this trail. But I have heard that this bump run will challenge almost any skier, but make sure you are ready and the conditions are to your liking before trying.
This resort is perfectly placed to take advantage of lake effect snows from northwesterly winds. Occasionally, some very heavy bands will extend from Lake Huron and then across Lake Erie before bringing some very heavy snowfall. Take into account the lift into the mountains and the snow can really add it. The annual average snowfall is 180 inches, but there are a fair amount of years that they have surpassed 200 inches. And if Mother Nature does not cooperate, snowmaking is possible on 95% of the slopes.
Joe's Favorite Slope:
Mardi Gras. A nice length intermediate trail.