By Alicia Dziak

Is getting some air between you and the slopes your idea of a perfect day? Then EVL’s resorts won’t disappoint. With a variety of terrain parks to choose from, snowboarders and freeriders can flip, twirl, jump and fly their way into adventure.

Holiday Valley offers five terrain parks that are open to everyone and in a recent SKI Magazine Reader Resort Survey their terrain parks were voted 7th in the East.

According to Jane Eshbaugh, Holiday Valley’s marketing director, “We aren’t going for ‘bigger is better’ parks, rather we’re ‘right sizing’ the parks for the guests who ski and ride here.”

As of now, two terrain parks geared toward intermediate riders are open: The Rail Park at the base of Mardi Gras; and Fiddler’s Elbow, which had automated snowmaking added this season.

If Mother Nature cooperates, the other three parks will be open for the season soon. “The parks require extra snow for takeoffs and landings so they’ve been tough to get going this year!” Eshbaugh noted.

For those starting out, introductory (beginner) features are on the east side of School Haus and in the Riglet Park, both located by Creekside Lodge. The area to the east of School Haus is the Progression Park and Terrain Garden with introductory level smaller boxes, rails and snow features. It is a great place to learn how to use terrain features and a place to just relax and have some fun.

Moonshadow is as the boardercross course. “Moonshadow is really popular because all kinds of skiers and riders can have fun in it going around the banked curves and over the rollers,” Eshbaugh explained.

Foxfire is the most challenging park with jumps and rails and this season has been widened at the top and will share the lower section with NASTAR.

“Skiers and riders like the flow that the parks have thanks to Chris Perks and his knowledge in building great parks,” said Holiday Valley’s terrain parks manager Mike Nenno. “Chris has been working the last month building a bunch of new rails and boxes that I think most will enjoy. We have a couple of them out in the two parks that are open and a few more to add as we continue to build and add terrain parks.”

Upcoming terrain park events at Holiday Valley include USASA Boardercross events on Jan. 30-31 and NorAM Snowboard Races Feb. 21-23.

Those heading to HoliMont can also have their pick of unique features to show off their skills.

The Half Moon park is the beginner park and consists of smaller features that help kids get used to sliding on boxes and getting a little bit of air. Wild Thing has an array of features that range from entry level boxes to more advanced rainbow rails, C-Boxes and flat-down-flat rails. A jump line underneath the top section of the Sunset lift that has a small jump, medium sized jump and a bigger jump to finish it off.  After the jumps, the terrain park opens up into a section filled with some supercool features, including the famous Volkswagen Bug box. If the Sunset Chair Lift is open, the terrain park is open.

Whether you’re a newbie or a frequent flyer in the terrain parks, you’re sure to find out that hours of fun await you at Ellicottville’s resorts.

For more information, check out the terrain park pages at www.holidayvalley.com and www.holimont.com.