What a tremendous few weeks it has been. Christmas / Holiday break was busy and the week after even saw an extended stay for many who were from out of state residents that carried into our Family Festival Weekend which was also well attended. We have some exciting news to share so please read on!
EXPANSION MOVING FORWARD!
Right before the holiday on December 14th the Natural Resources Board approved an amended Rib Mountain Master Plan which included numerous new activities and trails here at Granite Peak and across the entire footprint of the Rib Mountain State Park for which Granite Peak is located. It was a very exciting process that saw over 40 individuals and local Wausau business leaders including our ownership, myself, and others testify in front of the NRB as to the huge opportunity this expansion could mean for entire community.
This process has been years in the making well before I ever arrived here and I couldn’t be more thrilled to be involved with the future. It was one of the main reasons why my family and I moved to Wisconsin from New Hampshire. Full details and more information on the Rib Mountain Master Plan & Granite Peak Expansion can be found here but here is an image of the approved map that shows expansion to the East and one to the West.
The expansion to the West was the singular biggest thing for skiing and snowboarding that Granite Peak could ask for. This new pod of trails will be primarily beginner terrain with top to bottom runs that allows for beginners to really experience the thrill of making it to the top of the mountain once the conquer the carpets of our beginner areas.
Mountain biking, hiking and a multi-use trails are also included in the plans which will really provide year round opportunities for Granite Peak.
CELEBRATING 85 YEARS OF SKIING & RIDING ON RIB MOUNTAIN
While we’re excited about the future we are also celebrating the past! Skiing has taken place on the north side of Rib Mountain State Park since the 1937/1938 season when Fred Pabst (yes the same family that started Pabst Brewing Company and PBR!) and the Civic Conservation Corp installed the first J-Bar lift to give winter enthusiasts an easy way to get up and down the hill.
Today Granite Peak is Wisconsin’s largest ski area and growing. To celebrate our history and to help fund our needs for volunteer ski patrol assistance we’ll be hosting the first ever Granite Peak Gala at the Hilton Garden Inn Ballroom. This 21+ formal event will feature dancing & live music with Max Koepke, heavy passed appetizers, full bars and a silent auction to benefit our 100% Volunteer Ski Patrol. $85 per person or $150 per couple gets you in the doors along with a free drink ticket and a chance to win some door prizes Hope you can join us for what will be a fun and exciting evening while helping us raise some money for our patrol volunteers!
SNOWMAKING CONTINUES INTO JANUARY
Our goal every year is to finish snowmaking by the first of the year but rarely does Mother Nature help us out. This year is no exception and she’s been quite finicky lately with high humidity which has really hampered us from finishing off the West. If you’ve skied with us since January 1 you know that we have yet to see the sun here in Wausau in 2023 and the clouds have been really low, enclosing our little piece of paradise in a pretty good fog 24/7 it seems. The high humidity really cuts down on our production and only intensifies the cloud / fog cover throughout the region. Something we are mindful of for our community. We do plan to get back it on the five trails in the West that remain. I think we’ll fire up our snowmaking again Sunday through next week in the West and maybe even in some other areas to bolster our base depths. We also are going to look to make some terrain enhancements including moguls and rollers across our terrain. More to come as weather forecasts come into play.
NEW FOOD OUTLET THE TAILGATE TRAILER
We have a new food outlet on Main Street. The “Tailgate Trailer” features hot dogs and brats from Trigs Smokehouse along with beers and root beer from Point Brewing out of Steven’s Point. This quick grab and go option is perfect for a quick bite to eat. Picnic tables and mushroom heaters are also on Main Street which will offer another alternative to our chalets and decks! It is located across from the Retail & Rental shop entrance.
Finally I want to recognize some of our staff who have done tremendous jobs the past few weeks. Every week we send out an employee newsletter that updates our staff on upcoming events and information. Within these we also recognize exemplary employees who have gone above and beyond. The past few weeks have included Katherine from Retail, Cam from Parks and Alpine Learning Center, Aiden in Rental and Tuning as well as our Chalet “Mom” Pattie. All of our staff are extremely important to make this place run but these four have gone above and beyond to provide exceptional service to not only our guests but to their staff peers.
I’ll see you out on the slopes!
Any plans to add a new hotel near Granite Peak ?
When will the new expansion areas be open for skiing?
We’ll start the process of planning this spring.
What are the prices for food, snacks and beverage at the tailgate truck?
$5 beers. $8 Brats / Dogs
Bit of an aside, but I was charged $8 (after passholder discount) for a 12oz can of Athletic non-alcoholic beer in the Sundance Chalet last weekend. Does that pricing seem right to you?
Will there be a way to get to the main base camp and Comet lift if taking the new lifts K or H?
You’ll likely have to take Cupid or Dasher to the top of those respective lifts to then gain access back to the main Comet lift terminal but time will tell. Lots of planning still ahead.
Any plans to add ski in / ski out logging at Granite Peak off of the new runs?
First we are focused in on the actual on mountain amenities. On mountain lodging is probably a ways a way still.