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The Granite Peak Blog

Find out what’s happening at Wisconsin’s Legendary Resort

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100% Open. Parks. Moguls & More.

Posted: Jan 13, 2022

Our Snowmaking Team wrapped up the 2021/2022 campaign on Wednesday and we are now 100% open across all of our trails.  The guys did a phenomenal job this season getting all of our trails open before the MLK Weekend.  Last year we didn’t get to this point until late in January.

Another big deal is that by the weekend all of our terrain parks will be built out and we’ll have numerous mogul runs available for guests to bash bumps.  We seeded moguls on skiers left of Sundance and will look to add some more on IdleWild and Intermediate moguls on Meadow soon.  We’re working on having our Aspen Boarder Cross course up for the weekend as well with fun rollers berms and tables that are fun for all guests!

Our mantra is Legendary Snow and we wish to make sure you have fun on all of our slopes.  Our team will be renovating our steep terrain often through the use of our Winch Cats other tricks of the trade.  Look for rollers and more to also be added to our lower trails as we wish to enhance terrain.

Looking ahead to this weekend temps look to be near 20 and we should have partly sunny skies both Saturday & Sunday.  Our team has been working hard in the base area to clean up snow and move tables around this week.  PGA was here today and more heaters are now hooked up out on the Historic Deck along with more furniture and of course we will have wood burning fires going.

Live music will take place in Sundance both Saturday and Sunday afternoon & evenings.

We’re excited about our snow conditions out there as all of our trails have been skiing really well.  I can’t commend our grooming team enough for the performance they have done this season.

Hope you can join us this weekend.  Reminder that Silver Passes are blacked out this weekend but as always you can ski after 5pm.  If you aren’t a season pass holder and have not bought tickets yet I strongly encourage you to do so as the pacing right now is looking like we will sell out Saturday before Friday morning.  Buy Tickets here.

We’ve added some more tables to the Sundance Lodge and are putting out all of our picnic tables throughout the base area.  As always a reminder that bags are not allowed in the chalets and should be left in your cars along or use our lockers.

All lifts will be spinning Saturday & Sunday and we’ll have special hours on Monday for the MLK holiday as lifts will open 9am – 9pm.

Thank you again for making Granite Peak your skiing and riding destination.

Greg

Greg Fisher

Family Fun & 100% Here We Come!

Posted: Jan 5, 2022

This weekend packs it all in with the most snow & terrain in Wisconsin!

As the calendar flips to 2022 I can’t thank my staff enough for a successful and fun Christmas Holiday & New Years week.  During that week we fully opened our Historic Restaurant and building, added 8″ of new snow (and removed it all from our parking areas) and opened up the Dasher lift along with two new terrain parks in the East!  (more…)

Santa Groomer Rides

Christmas Week is Here

Posted: Dec 22, 2021

Christmas Week is upon us and we’re ready to have some fun with our guests from all around!  The team has been working hard and everything is lining up for a great week ahead.  

Snowmaking has been really ramping up as we approach the end of the year and the team continues to wow me in their strategy, execution and dedication to simply make as much snow as possible.  The East is now open and by Christmas morning both our main terrain park White Wolf will be available for our freestyle enthusiasts and Mission Ridge will open with some fun ski terrain for all. Snowmaking has moved on to the West and is already fired up on Top Notch, White Lightning, Timberwolf and Sweet Return.  

Mother Nature helped out a little bit with some natural snow on Tuesday and snowmakers finished up in the East and are now in the West. By the time you wake up on Christmas morning we will be “Golden” as in everything in Gold should be open!  Upper Timberwolf, White Lightning, Snowshoe & Sweet Return are on our next list.  That will give us 40 trails and 125 acres!  That – I’m very proud of.  

Our goal here is to Dasher as soon as possible but we need some help from Mother Nature to get there.  It’s looking good right now that we’ll be making snow on the lower section of trails towards the middle of this week into the holiday so stay tuned! 

Santa made a brief visit to Granite Peak last weekend and the man is of many talents.  He met with our operations team in the morning and then he came and took little ones on groomer rides.  Before leaving for the North Pole he stopped in and said hello to our Little Legend graduates.  

LIFT HOURS: 

  • Christmas Eve through January 2, 2022
    • 9am – 9pm 

ADVANCED TICKETS – BUY THEM!

We do anticipate that the week will be busy and if you haven’t bought tickets yet we strongly suggest you do as we will keep to capacity limitations.  I can tell you that 12/27 – 12/31/21 is already very strong. If you are not a Gold Season Passholder and wish to ski during the day I STRONGLY suggest you purchase a ticket now.

FOOD & BEVERAGE: 

All our buildings and food outlets will be open starting Sunday, December 26, 2021. 

Historic Bar & Grille will be open for sit down dining starting at 11am daily and of course our daily Sundance Chalet will open at 8am until close.  REVI Design is currently working on the Historic Deck and we anticipate having seating, heaters, and tables available during the Holiday Week along with the 10th Mountain Pizza Shack. Here you can find personal pizzas, pretzels, snacks as well as soda and beers.

LIVE MUSIC & EVENTS

Sundance will also play host to musicians throughout the week with Max Koepke kicking things off on Sunday 12/26.  See the schedule –>

Shaggy’s will be here for a ski demo on 12/28 which should be fun for guests to try out some pretty cool skies from a Midwest Based company!

NEW YEAR’S EVE

That night we’ll have a torchlight parade at 7pm followed by a huge fireworks show that all family members can enjoy and watch.  Max will also perform in the Historic Chalet while we count down to 2022 from 8pm – 12:30am. 

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

Finally on a personal note just wanted to wish all of our staff, season passholders, community partners, friends & family a wonderful holiday season.   

It’s been a pleasure to get to know so many of you and meet many more.  

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year.  Hopefully I’ll see you out on the hill. 

Greg

Greg Fisher

 

Roller Coaster Weather

Posted: Dec 16, 2021

I’ve been through some crazy weather in my career but the 36 hours that was December 15 -16, 2021 – I think I’ll remember for a while.  Thankfully the ski area had no issues after the storm and we are back open with 30 trails, 100 acres and we’re looking really good for snowmaking over the next week as we approach Christmas!

We’re lucky to have a great team here and I’m also thankful to the general public, our guests, and passholders for your patience as we put the snow surface back in shape on Thursday.  Conditions will continue to improve as we make more grooming passes and hopefully Mother Nature can help us out with some shots of snow.  OpenSnow has some snow in the forecast nothing major but an inch here and an inch there does go far in helping out with terrain.

Our snowmaking team has already fired up and as I type this (Thursday 5:30pm) we’re making snow on Idlewild, Mission Ridge, WhiteWolf, Shadowridge and Wildwood.  We’re also making snow in the West on Top Notch, Timberwolf & White Lightning.  It is still pretty windy out there but I’m stoked to see the snow flying already.

I can’t say enough about the operations team.  It was a long morning for the grooming team and a few of our groomers are also snowmakers.  As soon as they were out of a cat they were strategizing on snowmaking and were walking the slopes at 1pm and we were fired up by 3pm. Grizzlies, Pumas and Polecats are all running tonight and will be as long as I can tell as the temperatures don’t really get above freezing anytime soon.

Saturday Cupid will spin again and we will operate it daily starting Tuesday and into the Holidays.

Historic Chalet had a soft opening last week but it was busy and it was awesome.  I was stoked to see this place back open and fully operational.  We did a small menu but what I sampled I was impressed.  Our Chef Charles is a magician and we’re lucky to have him.  I had the Carnita Tacos one day and the wings the next, both were awesome.  Starting Friday the full menu will be available and some of the items Charles has are mouthwatering.  We’ll have sandwiches like “The Jerry” – a Jamaican Jerk chicken thigh with a tangy sauce, a “Boom Boom Shrimp Wrap”, and Chef Charles’ own “Crafty Burger” with options to have an onion ring or cheese curds atop your burger!  Wings, nachos, soups, and salads will all be available along with a special of the day and a dessert of the day!

REVI was here today and beams are going up on the deck!  More furniture is slated to arrive next week and by Christmas Day we could have it almost done.  I have to give my friend Dave over at REVI some love as he’s been dealing with all sorts of delays and challenges but we’re going to get it done he and I are determined to have this ready for guest use during the Holiday Week!

Speaking of which here is our plans for Christmas Week 12/24 – 1/2:

  • Lifts 9am – 9pm
  • Sundance 8am – 9pm
  • Historic will not be open Christmas Eve & Christmas Day but open 11a – 8p daily after
  • Live Music Daily in Sundance
  • 12/28 Shaggy’s Ski Demo 
  • New Year’s Eve:
    • Torchlight Parade 7pm
    • Fireworks Immediately Following
    • Live Music with Max Koepke in Historic 8pm – 12am
    • Balloon Drop & Champagne Toast 12am

If you live in the area I’m hopeful your home is safe and with power. I know we had some tree damage around here and we do have a few employees still without power.  Hopefully that will be resolved soon!

Hope to see you this weekend.

Greg

Greg Fisher

Little Legends

Mother Nature Helping Too?!!

Posted: Dec 8, 2021

SNOW! We’ve been getting some this year! Last season it took until nearly February for us to pick up any sort of snowfall over a few inches. We’ve gained almost eight this week alone, with a nice helping of six on Sunday and another two yesterday.  

Sunday here was one of those beautiful days where the snow was falling gradually throughout the day, and the temperatures were hovering right around 32!  I went out to make some turns at 4:30 pm, right after the snow stopped, and it was absolutely pristine.  As I left, the line at our ticket windows was pretty healthy for the night session, so I hope you were out here.  

Looking ahead, we are again in line for another healthy dumping of snow Friday into Saturday.  The GFS (a weather forecasting model used by meteorologists) has us in for eight to twelve inches of snow! However, unlike last weekend’s snow (which dumped 14 inches at our sister resort Lutsen!), this one is coming from the southeast and looks to be lining up to smack Rib Mountain with a healthy dump.

Even if a single flake doesn’t fall you’ll be in good hands.  his week has been cold, cold, cold, and our snowmaking team has been absolutely crushing the opportunity using every possible snowmaking device we have on-site to use the temperature to our advantage.

It has been so cold, that to be as efficient as possibl, we have been using some of our older technology called Homies that can produce high volume at really cold temps!  The water crystalizes pretty much instantly and these guys spray exactly where we need it. 

Our team has been focusing their efforts on the East and buttoning up the middle of our ski area this week. I think you’re going to like the map below and the conditions you’ll find here this weekend.  

Weekend Expectations & Beyond

Everything between Stonebridge in the East to Miracle in the West will be open. This includes the three chutes off the top of Blitzen, all the beginner green trails to the East of Mystery, and some of our steepest terrain like Superstition, Carver and Woodspur. In the middle Blackbear, Sky High, & Carmie’s will also join in. Ry and the park team will be adding new features in Aspen  In the graphic below, everything in purple is planned to open and everything in light blue is where we are moving to as I type this. White Wolf & Timber Wolf already have a huge head start!

Lower Stonebridge to Cupid Quad will make its debut on Saturday. We wish to get our little exit green trail “Buffett’s Pass” available for our beginners who accidentally find themselves down there as the Cupid Express only services expert terrain. We’ll be pushing that out on Friday.  

Sunday night I rode the chair with one of our new volunteer ski patrollers who will be making the trip from Green Bay every week. He was on his last run of the day as his shift was ending. He was thankful for the great conditions and that the drive home was going to be a bit more relaxing than the drive in!  

I can’t say enough about our Ski Patrol and what they do here for our ski area as well as for our community as a whole. Many of them are medical professionals in the region and WAOW Channel 7 recently did a story on two of our veteran patrollers (Legends, maybe) Scott and Jim. 

Both gentleman I absolutely enjoy having around as they’ve provided me with a ton of great advice, service to our resort, and I truly have fun in their company. Hopefully you never have to take a toboggan ride but if you do, know you are in good hands! 

Granite Peak Ski Patrol

LITTLE LEGENDS UNDERWAY

Also on Sunday was the start of one of my favorite programs – Little Legends! 100 kids were out on Hot Cocoa and our learning area right after it stopped snowing along with 30 instructors. This program is designed for our never-ever little guys and girls! We had some wonderful smiles exiting the slopes and I hope that Sunday was the start of a life long passion for some of these little guys and girls.  

Little Legends

Christmas is coming up and we’re going to have a special visit from the big guy himself next weekend. We are still working out the schedule with Santa but he’s a man of many talents and he’ll be hosting children for Groomer Rides! Again he’s a busy man these days and we are still working out logistics so stay tuned to our website and social media.  

Finally a few things on the Historic Chalet!  

  1. The new HVAC system is done and it’s keeping the entire building at a nice comfy temperature! 
  2. We’re opening up the chalet Saturday and Sunday with the bar and a light menu that will include pizza, pretzels, and a few other appetizer-like options. We will open up with our full menu, servers, and hosted sit down seating starting Friday, December 17th.  
  3. Our contractors have unfortunately been dealt supply issues, which has caused delays. Starting on Monday the middle beams of the deck will be going up and we anticipate having use of that area the weekend of the 17th. While we had hoped to be up and running by now, we are going to roll with it. Please know we are going to get it going this winter and open on weekends.  

If you are traveling out to the mountain Friday night or Saturday in the snow please drive safe. Our friends at the Wisconsin DOT do a wonderful job but they have plenty to handle with so major routes running through Wausau. Don’t worry we’ll have plenty of fun as we’ll be open daily starting Friday!  

Happy Holidays and let’s hope Santa brings us some more snow around the holidays..  

Greg

Expanding Terrain

Opening Done. Onto Expansion!

Posted: Nov 29, 2021

Another opening day weekend is done and it was awesome to welcome you all to Granite Peak again or maybe for the first time! No matter how many opening days I’ve done they always give me goosebumps, jitters, and of course a little anxiety.  Now our focus shifts to expanding terrain.

I was so excited to see so many kids here on opening day. I drove in to check on a few things at 6:15am, and yes, there was one young man already waiting. I think his mom was in the parking lot sleeping! By 7am I think he had about 10 others behind him. And by 7:30 there were 30 eager opening day kids. (more…)

Group of snowboarders and skiers cheering

What to Expect on Opening Day

Posted: Nov 22, 2021

Tomorrow will be my 22nd Opening Day working in the ski industry. I can honestly say that the excitement, anxiety, and fun surrounding that first day hasn’t changed at all in two decades.  While I’m excited to get the season underway I want to take a moment to give you all a sense of what to expect this season. (more…)

Sunrise Snowmaking Shot

Opening Day – One Week from Today

Posted: Nov 17, 2021

Snowmaking To Continue! 

Opening Day is Set for Wednesday, November 24

It was incredible to finally get two consecutive nights of quality & productive snowmaking done. Both our night and day teams were involved and did a great job getting some piles down. Temps have been underwhelming, but the snow we received on Saturday night is undoubtedly an excellent assist for our snowmaking efforts.

(more…)

Ho, Ho, Ho. Bring on the Snow. Too Soon?

Posted: Nov 9, 2021

My friend Matt, over at Midwestskiers.com got us all excited on Halloween by proclaiming that the cold snap was coming and that the Midwest could be skiing by the weekend.

Well that fizzled out like a wet bottle rocket, but many including ourselves took advantage of the small window to test our systems and get at least put a little white out on the slopes.

We tip our hats to Tyrol Basin for pulling off a midweek afternoon hike park that looked like a ton of fun. We know it took a good amount of time and effort to make it happen for only a few hours but who cares! Muddy snow is still snow and it’s always good to see people skiing and riding not too far from home!  While Matt wasn’t technically wrong as people were skiing & riding – the snow like the temperatures have faded away.

Regardless it’s still early and for us it is more important to be sure that our systems are running across the resort and in fact we still are working on a few things prior to opening up our snowmaking assault for the season. But the test was very successful and still some snow remnants are sticking around. Whether they will still be there when we fire back up for opening remains to be seen.

Yes, I said “opening.” The question we get on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, over the phone and via email. “When is opening day?”

No this isn’t the Opening Day announcement you’ve been hoping for, and it’s not an announcement that we are pushing our date back either. This is just the hang with us while we wait and see as we all know from that first week temperatures can swing one way or another. Hopefully they continue to drop.

We’re going to give it our all to open as soon as November 20th but we’re not going to salvage making snow across multiple trails just to put 50 guns on just one run. We’re dedicated to opening with options for all guests on day one.

Today, NOAA put out an update to a forecast model through Thanksgiving. Starting this week, although we may see temperatures getting back into normal highs and lows, they are forecasted to drop to below normal towards the middle of next week, as indicated in the map below.  I’m not going to declare anything but I think this bodes well for all of us in the midwest!

NOAA Thanksgiving Temperature Forecast

This bodes well for snowmaking into the Turkey Day Holiday and beyond.

We welcome back another group of employees this week for our second orientation and our snowmakers are fully staffed for another run starting over the weekend. At this point, if it’s marginal, it’s still doable and we’ll get there as best we can.

I told my wife that this week I intend to winterize the lawn mower, put away the pool noodles (yeah I still have them lying in my garage) and put up the Christmas Lights! I don’t intend to turn them on just yet… but at least I can feel my fingers while I apply the little hooks across our gutters. Maybe that will help jump start Old Man Winter and get the cold going this season.

While we wait I encourage you to check out our new snow report / conditions page where we will update our daily information. I intend to update this as we make snow and just like last year we’ll link and give a brief summary daily on Facebook / Instagram every morning.

Be safe. Have fun. And don’t make fun of those of us who are putting up Christmas Decor. I just won’t have the time to do it in December.

So Ho Ho Ho Bring on the Snow…

Greg

P.S. This week is the last week to grab a Gold Unlimited Season Pass.  After November 15th they go away. 

It is Snow Go Time!

Posted: Nov 1, 2021

Snowmaking Season Has Started…

The calendar has officially changed to November and today the retail chains are dropping the ghosts, ghouls and candy corn of Halloween in exchange for trees, lights and candy canes of Christmas. Just like our retail friends we’re getting in the spirit of the season and while we might not be putting up our Christmas lights and trees just yet we are going to give the mountain a new white coat! That’s right Jack Frost is back in the air and our snowmakers have the itch to fire up our updated system starting tonight! (more…)