Peak Resorts, which owns and operates six Midwest ski areas in Missouri, Indiana and Ohio, is spending several million dollars this summer expanding and remodeling two of the sites. New jobs will be created with the expansion.
Hidden Valley Ski Area, the popular day-trip area near St. Louis, is beginning a $2 million expansion that will add 30 percent more skiable terrain, a new quad chairlift, and includes a half-million dollar renovation of the ski area’s food and beverage operation
Hidden Valley has been serving the lower Midwest since 1984 and offers a nice choice for Gateway City residents who otherwise have to drive hours to find a ski area. With a decent 310-foot vertical drop, it currently offers 13 trails, two terrain parks, and a tubing area serviced by a quad chairlift, two triples, and three surface tows, including a carpet lift for the beginner area.
The new terrain adds more intermediate and advanced runs and opens some glade skiing. One of the new trails will be the resort’s longest run at just under a half-mile. It’s anticipated approximately 20 new jobs will be added during the ski season to support the expansion, which is expected to be ready this coming season.
Tim Boyd, Peak Resort’s CEO, pointed out that the long-term investment decision was based on not only their commitment to provide local snow sports enthusiasts the best possible terrain, but also on Hidden Valley having become a regional destination for many southern skiers.
“The expansion will enhance Hidden Valley’s ability to continue to attract out-of-state visitors as well as improve facilities for local skiers,” he said. “The expansion is also a celebration of our upcoming 30th anniversary.”
They’ve also begun construction on a new 48,000-square-foot base lodge at Brandywine, which operates with Boston Mills located across the valley. The two are located between Cleveland and Akron, Ohio.
The new facility, which is expected to cost upwards of $5 million, will replace three existing buildings. All skier services now will be housed under one roof, which will be a welcome change for customers. It’s expected to be completed by the start of next season.
The ground level will include lift ticket windows, a 10,000-square-foot rental area, restrooms, and retail shops. A second floor cafeteria and bar featuring twice the seating of the old facility, will be enhanced with a wall of windows overlooking the slopes. A large patio and sundeck accessible from both ground and second floor levels also will be included.
Between the two ski areas they offer a 240-foot vertical, 17 trails, and 16 lifts. They get busy on winter weekends, but between the two they can handle up to 20,000 per hour lift capacity. Terrain is available for all level skiers and riders, but surprisingly nearly half is rated advanced.