The Bear Mountain Mogul Challenge is a rite of spring for bumpers and tailgaters. (Killington)
Fans of Bear Mountain at Vermont’s Killington have a revitalized base lodge and housing, as well as a new South Ridge Lift and trail improvements to look forward to. The two-year development plan is estimated to cost $60-70 million, with a resulting retail value of $110 million once construction is complete.
Phase 1 of the Bear Mountain Revitalization Plan, called “Base Camp at Bear Mountain” is expected to begin in summer 2018 with the construction of six or seven multi-family buildings estimated to cost $45 million, plus a major remodeling of Bear Mountain Base Lodge (keeping the original footprint), the installation of a fixed grip quad chair lift on Killington’s South Ridge, and on-mountain improvements for skier flow including bridge and tunnel work. On-mountain improvements are expected to cost approximately $8 million total.
“This Bear Mountain Revitalization Plan is especially exciting for me because I know that our core group of season pass holders has wanted a new South Ridge lift since the day we removed the old one,” says Mike Solimano, president and general manager of Killington Resort. “With the trail work our team has planned, this layout should greatly enhance the Killington experience by improving connectivity between the north and south sides of the resort, and I’m glad to have a local Vermont company planning and executing this important project.”
Phase 1’s on-mountain trail improvements include reestablishing the Snowshed Crossover trail with the construction of a ski bridge and tunnel to enhance the on-snow experience for lower ability levels, while at the same time maintaining uninterrupted top-to-bottom flow on the more advanced terrain in the Bear Mountain area
The new South Ridge Quad chair lift will carry skiers and snowboarders from the top of Bear Mountain and bottom of the South Ridge trails to the top of Killington’s South Ridge area, just below the Killington Peak Lodge. Constructing the new lift along the previous South Ridge lift’s return line eliminates the need for any significant trail clearing or rerouting of trails.
“From the top of the Bear Mountain Quad, the long-awaited replacement of the South Ridge lift will give skiers and snowboarders easy access the resort’s north side terrain including the Canyon and Snowdon areas, or easy access to the many trails in the sunny South Ridge area,” says Jeff Temple, director of mountain operations for Killington Resort. “We’re also excited to offer a bridge and tunnel solution that provides a more quality ‘tour’ experience for beginner and intermediate skiers riding the south side trails off the K-1 Gondola while at the same time maintaining the quality top to bottom skiing and riding experience in the Bear and Needle’s Eye areas.”
Phase 2 of the Bear Mountain Revitalization features construction of 18 duplex buildings near the foot of the Devil’s Fiddle ski trail with an estimated cost of $25 million, and is expected to begin during summer 2020.