Category: News

All About Beech Mountain’s Free Youth Sledding Hill

Boomer's Blog

Boomer’s Blog

My human friends tell me all the time how expensive life can be. But, fret not, people. Up here on Beech Mountain, there’s a free youth sledding hill that’s open all winter!

Yeppers, you read that right. The cost is nada, zilch-o, zero. None of those green slips you carry around.

Not only is it free, it’s also fun!

I spoke with my buddy Sean Royall recently. He’s the director of parks and recreation up here on Beech Mountain. He operates the sledding hill and told me all about it …

Boomer: So who are the lucky people who get to go down the hill?
Sean: It is for ages 12 and under. There’s a bunny slope where adults may ride with smaller children, ages 5 and under. The bobcat slope is for 12 and under. It’s a little steeper and a little longer.

Boomer: Do you make the snow for the sledding hill, or is it au naturel?
Sean: It’s a mix. It’s great if we have natural, but being on the East Coast, you can’t rely on that. When temperatures allow, the snow gun is running all day and night. We do a Happy Hill Report that includes how long the snow gun’s been running, how deep the base is, if it’s icy or smooth. We try to groom it as much as we can to keep it safe.

Boomer: What equipment do you need to sled?
Sean: You can bring your own sled. You can use anything except a metal-runner type of sled. If you don’t have a plastic sled or tube, they sell them at Fred’s General Mercantile and right beside Town Hall. If you don’t have a sled, that’s not a problem. You can find one very close.

Boomer: Did I hear something about music playing and hot chocolate nearby?
Sean: We have a speaker with music playing. Beech Mountain is always trying to create a family atmosphere. You can stop by the Visitors Center (next door) to use the restrooms, get free Wi-Fi and say hello. It’s a good spot to warm up. The Brick Oven Pizzeria is just across the street. We also have special events, such as a snowman building competition and a bon fire with hayrides.

Sean says the hill is open daily, weather permitting. Hours are: Monday-Friday from 1 p.m.-5 p.m. and Saturday-Sunday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. For more info, click here.

Enjoy!

Sue Says: Make a Family Field Trip to Beech Mountain

Boomer's Blog

Boomer’s Blog

Hey Gang,

Sometimes on a chilly day I like to stay in my nest and surf the web for other bloggers. Recently I came across a great post by Sue Rodman of FieldTripsWithSue.com.

Sue rocks. She’s based in Atlanta and covers fun activities for families across the Southeast. Sue recommends bringing the whole family to Beech Mountain for a swell vacation that will have your crew chirping about how much fun they had.

She points out that Beech is a great family field trip in multiple seasons: winter, summer and fall. Here’s an excerpt of what she wrote about winter:

“There are several ski resorts in North Carolina, but Beech Mountain Ski Resort is the only one with an Alpine Village that includes shops like Ski Beech Sports and Beech Village Gifts, as well as restaurants, including the Beech Mountain Brewing Company and the View Haus Cafeteria. The Alpine Village also includes a 7,000 foot ice skating rink, kids 4 and under skate free with a paying adult. And the latest addition for playing in the North Carolina snow is a tubing park, located adjacent to the Alpine Village at the base of the mountain. Here chutes are up to 700 feet long. There are daily sessions lasting an hour and 45 minutes. Riders must be at least 42” tall and this is an activity to do before or after skiing, as no ski boots are allowed.”

Sue also gives a shout-out to warmer activities:

 “Although many think of the mountains in North Carolina as a wintertime getaway, more and more folks are heading to Beech Mountain NC in the warmer months, for hiking and mountain biking, as well as the gorgeous views.”

If you wanna read the entire post (and see some cool pictures!), all you have to do is click here.

See ya soon in the resort village or on the snowy slopes!

Yours truly,
Boomer the Squirrel

Skiing 101: Lesson, Lodging, Lift Ticket & Rentals for Just $101!

Skiing101Hey Gang,

Did you know January is National Learn to Ski & Snowboard Month?

Yep, that’s right. A whole entire month dedicated to learning a fun winter sport that so many people enjoy up here at the highest ski resort east of the Rockies.

If you’ve ever wanted to learn to ski (or snowboard), but have never known how to go about it, the folks at Beech Mountain Resort have made it easy breezy. A few years ago they came up with Skiing 101, an idea so good it won an award from the National Ski Areas Association!

Skiing 101 at Beech is a program that provides one night’s lodging, equipment rental, helmet rental, full-day lift ticket, and a beginner ski or snowboard lesson at Beech Mountain Resort. And best of all, it’s just $101 per person, double occupancy.

The month-long program is available Monday-Friday to anyone age eight or older. I’ve watched a ton of lessons from my nest high in the trees, and I can assure you the instructors are really, really good at making non-skiers feel comfortable.

“Skiing or snowboarding can be intimidating if you haven’t tried them before, so we offer a learning experience that’s easy, safe and fun,” says my pal Talia Freeman, marketing director for Beech Mountain Resort. “We take you though each step. Everything is covered from equipment rental to lift tickets to the proper way to carry skis. We make all the rounds and ensure you arrive at the lesson on time and prepared.”

Registering for Skiing 101 at Beech is simple. Just contact any of the participating lodging options listed on the Skiing 101 page at: www.beechmtn.com/skiing101 and ask for the Skiing 101 package. The accommodation will book you a cozy room and provide a voucher at check-in to be redeemed at the ski resort for a lesson, equipment rental, helmet rental, and lift ticket.

Lodging is available Sunday through Thursday nights. Ski and snowboard lessons are available Monday through Friday.

Skiing 101 is in its fourth year. It debuted in January 2013 and received an award from the National Ski Areas Association as the top campaign to promote learn-to-ski month.

So grab a friend or family member – remembers eight years of age and older – and take advantage of this opportunity to venture into a new sport during National Learn to Ski and Snowboard Month.

Further details are available at: www.beechmtn.com/skiing101, or by calling (800) 468-5506.

See ya soon in the resort village or on the slopes!

Yours truly,
Boomer the Squirrel

Whee! It’s Gonna be a Fun Winter on Beech

Boomer's Blog

It’s going to be a really fun winter on Beech Mountain.

My friends at Beech Mountain Resort have added a SWEET snowtubing park in the resort village. It has super long runs so your tail flows in the breeze as you glide along the snow, plus there’s a cool Magic Carpet to get you back to the top. My little legs like that!

Snowtubing is located adjacent to the ice skating rink. You can buy tickets for both of those activities at the same place, and a ski lift ticket is not required to go tubing or skating.

I love it when the ski resort village is bustling with happy people, and that should be the case this winter. In addition to tubing and skating, folks can buy cool Beech Mountain Resort souvenirs at the gift shop, sample tasty craft beers at the brewery, or eat and watch sports at the newly-remodeled Beech Tree Bar & Grille.

Out on the mountain, there a bunch of new snow guns to make the white stuff when Mother Nature isn’t. I watched from the trees this summer as they put several fancy guns on Upper White Lightning, which is an exciting black diamond run.

Me and my snowboard generally stay on the intermediate slopes, so you’ll have to let me know how conditions are on White Lightning. (by the way, the resort has a completely new rental fleet of Burton snowboards available)

North-Carolina-snowtubing_Beech-MountainBeech Mountain Resort also spent a lot of time during the offseason installing new electrical systems and mechanical upgrades on the two main chairlifts.

Seeing all the upgrades motivated me to store up a lot of acorns this past summer to supply plenty of nourishment for a winter full of outdoor fun on Beech Mountain.

Hope to see you in the resort village or on the slopes!

Yours truly,
Boomer the Squirrel

 

Talking Shop with Billy the Brewmaster

BillySmith_brewmaster

My buddy, Billy the brewmaster

Hey gang, it’s Boomer the blogging squirrel.

Did you know North Carolina has gone nuts for craft beer? There are more than 130 breweries and brewpubs in the state. Anytime I visit my cousin Darryl in Raleigh or my other cousin Darryl in Charlotte, we check out a brewery or two. We squirrels are pretty laid back, so the brewery scene fits us just right.

Here on Beech Mountain, we now have our own brewery. It’s called Beech Mountain Brewing Co. and my buddy Billy Smith is the brewmaster. We talked shop over a couple of beers.

Boomer: Brewmaster is a pretty cool title, but what does it mean?
Billy: It means you’re in charge of quality control. I have to try all the beer to make sure it tastes good. Not a bad gig! (Beats the heck outta collecting nuts.) I also maintain and run the brew system, create the recipes and keg the beer. My assistant brewer, Max, is a lot of help around here.

Boomer: Beech Mountain Brewing Co. is nearing its two-year anniversary. What’s been most fun in those two years?
Billy: I’ve only been working in the brewery for six months, but there have been a lot of fun moments. I’d say the most fun aspect is putting together the recipes and then seeing our guests’ reactions when they try the beers for the first time.

Boomer: The first beer the brewery made was the 5506’ Pale Ale. What’s up with that name?
Billy: Our 5506’ Pale Ale is one of my favorites. Using Cascade, Centennial and Chinook hops, it’s very crisp and has a nice citrus character. It’s an excellent beer for summer or winter. Its namesake is the elevation of our mountain, 5,506 feet. We also have a bar on the mountaintop named 5506’. I think one of the coolest things you can do around here is drink a 5506’ Pale Ale at the 5506’ Skybar while at 5506’ elevation.

Boomer: I’ve knocked down a craft beer or three, but I have some friends who are newbies. What is a good beer for someone starting out?
Billy: I highly recommend our Beech Blonde. This beer is very light, crisp and sessionable (that means easy to drink in brewmaster speak). It’s similar to a domestic lager, but it has more character and flavor. I also recommend our Wee Heavy Scotch Ale (funny name, tasty beer). When people see a big, dark beer, they often think it will taste bold and bitter. Ours is as far from that as you can get. It’s sweet and smooth with a nice caramel flavor and hint of chocolate.

Boomer: Winter is coming quickly. What are you most looking forward to for this year’s ski season?
Billy: I’m looking forward to shredding the slopes after a brew session, then coming back down to enjoy a delicious beer by the fireplace.

Come on up and join us!