WILMINGTON Whiteface Mountain is getting a makeover as the Olympic Regional Development Authority (ORDA) seeks to reclaim the old Cloudsplitter Trail that was part of Whiteface in the 1950s.
Construction began earlier this month of Lookout Mountain, a new development set to open for the 2008-09 winter season.
ORDA spokesman Sandy Caligiore said that the $7.5 million dollar project would span two years, with ORDA spending about $4 million this year and the remainder next year.
The project will add about 6.5 miles of additional terrain to bring the the Whiteface total to 24.5 miles. Whiteface is limited to 25 miles of skiing and riding in its current unit management plan.
The completion date is set for Dec 2008. Four trails (three expert and one intermediate) will open for the 2008-09 winter season.
We must continue to upgrade our venues, as per the state-mandated Unit Management Plan, and remain competitive with New England resorts. When ORDA/Whiteface stood still in the early and mid 1990s, our visitors went elsewhere. We wont let this happen again, said Caligiore.
The new 2-mile intermediate run under construction will connect with an existing trail to provide 2.5 miles of easy cruising to the base of Kids Kampus.
The vertical drop of Lookout Mt will be 2,600 feet. Among the features of the new facility are snowmaking, triple chair and glades. ORDA officials hope to re-open a small existing lodge that is accessed by trail.
Skiers and riders will enjoy this new terrain as it opens a part of the mountain this generation has not experienced. It also shows visitors that we are committed to improving Whiteface each year, said Caligiore.
Hiking and biking the trails in the Lookout Mountain area is prohibited for safety.