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Ready-Up Rangeley -- Saddleback Mountain Is Prepping For 2020/2021 Season


One of the most disappointing things we see in the ski industry is the closing of a ski mountain. It doesn't matter the reason, just that the lifts will no longer be turning. However, on the opposite end of the spectrum is the chance to experience the wonder of a mountain being reopened and brought back to its original splendor or more. Saddleback Mountain in Rangeley, Maine is going to have that experience.

Reports from across the niche areas of the internet that are devoted to snow sports are coming out saying that Boston-based Arctaris Impact Fund LP, which purchased the mountain this past January, is still on schedule to get the mountain back on track and open for the coming season. 

It has been five years since lifts spun at Saddleback, but not only will they begin turning again this year, the lifts will have a couple of upgrades. This includes a brand new, high-speed detachable quad chairlift. The new lift upgrade is part of a multiyear plan to upgrade the mountain across the board. Other upgrades include a redesign of the main lodge, snowmaking expansion, and the addition of new mountain bike trails, all coming in for a price tag of $38 million.

If all continues to go as planned, Saddleback's opening day could fall between the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. This is in spite of COVID-19 concerns. Though, just as every other mountain will have to for the coming season, Saddleback will be working to make sure that the hill is not only ready to go with the completion of the current upgrades, but also safe and compliant with local and state guidelines for COVID-19.

As with any ski town that has lost its mountain, it could be said that the town of Rangeley will be very excited about the return of the local hill. That won't only be about the jobs that will be returning to because of the hill or the financial blessing a reopened ski hill will be for the local economy as a whole. It will also be like having a family member return after being long since gone. Let us all hope this reunion with Rangeley's local mountain is everything they hope it to be.


Photo: A skier at Saddleback Mountain, ME - Credit: Jack Flanagan / CC BY

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