The leaves on the trees surrounding Ellicottville are quickly morphing into a bright orange hue, which can mean only one thing: the winter season will be here before you know it. Are you already picking out what new gear you want to purchase for the season? Did you know the answer to that question months ago? If so, then you must be ready for another fine season on the slopes. And what better place to break in your new gear than at HoliMont?
If you’re not a Member at HoliMont, it is an experience that can be tough to put into words because it really is just that - a fantastic winter experience. Picture setting your skis on edge and engaging your finely tuned, high performance skis or snowboard into pristinely groomed corduroy and ripping down one of HoliMont’s 52 slopes. Picturing it really doesn’t do it justice though. Until you can actually feel that crisp Western New York winter air on your face as you cruise down a slope, all you can really do is imagine what spending your winters at this family-friendly ski club is all about.
Just outside the quaint village of Ellicottville, NY, HoliMont Ski Area has a slightly different mantra than many ski areas you might be familiar with. HoliMont, you see, is a private ski club with a membership base that is very passionate about their little slice of skiing bliss. Rest assured, this is not your grandfather’s country club. People choose to become members at HoliMont due to its family-friendly atmosphere just as much as they do for its pristinely groomed terrain and snowmaking abilities. With a strong emphasis on children-focused ski school and racing programs that teach young members proper skiing/snowboarding techniques, and most importantly - lots of fun, the HoliMont experience is one that can be enjoyed by all age groups.
Experience HoliMont is more than just a marketing tagline. Think of it as a lifestyle suggestion or a word to the wise, if you will. Check out www.holimont.com
and follow the club on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, where you will find a continuous stream of content and action packed photos. But the social media experience won’t give you anywhere close to the true feeling of being at the club on a Saturday morning in February after Ellicottville has just gotten pounded with glorious lake effect snow and the HoliMont Mountain Crew has been hard at work all night long, grooming the slopes to their maximum excitement capabilities. On those days you will find out exactly what the edges on your skis are made for or how floating through the glades on a snowboard is as thrilling as any feature in the terrain park. It’s the little intricacies that truly make HoliMont a special place. This club was founded on family values, hard work and a deep-rooted love of skiing. So while the club has definitely evolved over the years, the one thing that has never changed is that it offers a one-of-a-kind family atmosphere.
HoliMont still has original members (the club was founded in 1962) who are still active in the club. Those people can tell you stories about hiking the hills in the off-season in order to remove any large rocks that could possibly cause damage to skis. Or they can spin tales about how the main chalet once doubled as a garage for the first snow groomer purchased by the club. Perhaps you’ll hear about how the chairlifts used to have numbers (i.e. One, Two, Three) for names instead of being called Exhibition Express or Greer. After all the stories are said and done, what you will really find out is that becoming a member at HoliMont is about more than involvement in a club; it basically becomes a home away from home and a vacation that you can enjoy all winter long.
OPEN TO THE PUBLIC
Membership not for you? Not to worry because HoliMont still has something for you! Years ago the HoliMont membership decided to open HoliMont to the general public every Monday through Friday (except for the week between Christmas and New Year’s). This change allowed any snowsports enthusiast to experience this special private ski club during its off-peak times. It’s not uncommon for people to use their vacation days (or sick days if you feel that “cold” coming on the morning after a powder dump) to take advantage of HoliMont’s Weekday Experience Pass (10 non-transferrable lift tickets and 5 snowsports clinics for as little as $215). Since the weekday traffic is considerably less than the weekend traffic, at times it is almost as if you have the slopes to yourself.
If you’ve been to HoliMont, then you probably have an idea of what the HoliMont experience is all about because it really is something that you have to take in first-hand. If that’s the case, then HoliMont looks forward to seeing you back this season. But if you have yet to give this quaint ski area a try, put it on your “to do” list. More likely than not, you’ll be glad you did.