Nordic Trail Joins Superpipe on the Chopping Block

By Beacon Staff

As Whitefish Mountain Resort enters the final weeks of its annual discounted season pass sale, resort personnel gear up for winter. Earlier in the year, the resort announced that the Superpipe would no longer be built. Now, the groomed Nordic trails also meet the ax.

Resort officials cite two reasons for ceasing maintenance of the cross-country ski trail: grooming difficulties and use.

In recent years as the resort sold off housing development lots, new roads crossed over the Nordic trails on overpasses. The resulting tunnels do not accommodate the large grooming machines. “When we get big snowfall accumulation, we basically have no way to remove it from the trails,” said Donnie Clapp spokesperson for the resort. “The problem, from our perspective, is that this puts us in a situation where we can’t deliver what we promised.”

Plus, there is a question of use. Development also removed some of the easier trails. While new trails were added, converting Stoltze logging roads to ski routes, the resulting steep course left little level ski terrain. “Right now, we feel that the cross-country center is only used and liked by advanced Nordic skiers,” said Clapp. “We would love to have a real Nordic center, but our efforts aren’t matching our result. Eventually, we’d like to design a better product.”

Other changes for this season include the removal of the Superpipe, which will be replaced by a permanent boardercross course and a large quarterpipe. In answer to customer requests for a broader menu, the daylodge will broaden its offering with burgers, paninis, and soups and plans to serve breakfast.

“Last year, we had a new road, a new building, and new lifts to complete, which were all very big projects,” explains Clapp. “This year, we’re looking forward to being able to really concentrate on how we run the resort without having to worry about how those kinds of projects are going to work out.”

Meanwhile, the resort is selling its discounted season passes through Sept. 30.