Snow Guns, Trails, Clock Tower, Bunkers Sure to Impress

By Jann Wiswall

Holiday Valley Resort has been hard at work all summer entertaining golfers, swimmers, hikers, adventure seekers, wedding parties, conference goers and all of its other guests with its usual energy and attention to detail. But in consistent Holiday Valley fashion, the resort is also pouring $3.4 million into four-season improvements intended to wow visitors every time they come back.

After investing $13 million in the resort in 2012 building the fabulous new main lodge, and another $3.1 million in 2013 for improvements such as the new Overlook Terrace, 70 new snow guns, Riglet Park for the littlest riders and skiers, to name a few, Holiday Valley’s 2014 improvements are aimed to please even more.

To provide more weather independence, an additional 58 new HKD Impulse automated snow guns are being installed on Snowledge, The Wall, Morning Star and Crystal, giving Holiday Valley the ability to make even more and better quality snow all season long across the mountain. A turbo fan gun also is being installed at the Holiday Valley Tubing Park.

Three new connecting trails have been cut. One, from the top of Morning Star to Crystal, will be named Peppermint Lane. Another, from Sunrise to Bear Cub, will be known as Bear Paw. The third, which will be an extension of Cindy’s, will give beginners access from The Inn to the base area and the Snowsports School from Sunrise. New trail and slope maps will be available as soon as the snow falls to guide guests through the additions.

A new stone clock tower and bridge is nearly completed outside the main lodge. The clock tower’s design is similar to the one that was razed during the 2012 construction of the new lodge and serves as a meeting place and information station.

Several non-winter season improvements have been made already. Sky High Adventure Park has a new black diamond course that has been wildly popular all summer long. A new hiking trail from the top of the Spruce Lake chairlift to Sky High opened in time for chairlift ride season that began last weekend.

Down by the new Holiday Valley Lodge, the resort has improved the deck around the pools and Cabana Bar with space for outdoor games. A new, timber-frame canopy over the Cabana Bar will be installed this fall.

At the award-winning Double Black Diamond Golf Course, bunkers on the back nine will be rebuilt this fall.

And renovations of the lovely Inn at Holiday Valley will be completed soon, with new furniture, carpets, wall treatments and countertops to make guests’ stays even more comfortable and cozy.

If you’re new to Holiday Valley, you might be interested in a few facts about this marvelous resort:

The mountain has a top elevation of 2,250 feet, a base elevation of 1,500 feet and a vertical drop of 750 feet. The resort is situated on 1,400 acres, with 300 skiable acres during the day and 180 acres at night. There are 58 slopes for 30 miles of skiing/boarding, 13 lifts, five terrain parks and 10 miles of cross-country/snowshoeing trails.

Non-winter activities include golf, swimming at a three-pool complex, mountain biking, hiking, chairlift rides and more.

Sky High Adventure Park, which opened in 2011, features 13 aerial courses of varying difficulty with 142 platforms and 170 elements such as bridges, ladders, obstacles and zip lines. There’s also a Mountain Coaster and a new Climbing Forest.

Year-round amenities include a spa, several dining venues (some seasonal), free Wi-Fi, and extensive conference and event services for groups up to 1,000.

Plus, Holiday Valley hosts numerous fundraising and “fun-raising” events all year long. For all the information about Holiday Valley and the lovely village of Ellicottville, visit