Snow Creek Resort
Hidden Valley, Eureka • 20 skiable acres on 300′ vertical
Specs: Summit elevation: 775′. 6 Lifts: 1 quad, 2 triples, 3 surface. Terrain Mix: 37-63-0. Uphill capacity: 6000/hr. Longest Run: 1800′. Season: usually December through March. Night Skiing 7 days. Rentals & Lessons. Annual Snowfall: 15″. Snowmaking: 100%.
The SKInny: A friend of mine believes that life is ten percent situations, ninety percent attitude. Keep that in mind when you ski in Missouri. As far as skiing goes, the situation is about as bad as it gets, so make sure you have a good attitude. If you can approach this with a positive outlook — or if you don’t know any better — you’ll have a great time at Hidden Valley. A new quad chair has cut liftlines. Conditions are hit or miss, so is the service, but overall you have to give this resort credit for making a go of it in a floodplain. Operated by Peak Resorts, who don’t get enough credit for providing a skiing product where there otherwise wouldn’t be any.
Signature Trail: Missi’s Wish.
Snow Creek, Weston • 25 skiable acres on 300′ vertical
Specs: Summit elevation: 1100′. 4 Lifts: 2 triples, 1 double, 1 surface. Terrain Mix: 30-60-10. Uphill capacity: 5000/hr. Longest Run: 1800′. Season: usually December through March. Night Skiing 7 days. Rentals & Lessons. Annual Snowfall: 20″. Snowmaking: 100%.
The SKInny: This is the better of the two Missouri ski areas that Peak Resorts operates, we should say a lot better. Very good place to learn, fun for groups, families, etc. Also good for a tune-up…and the alternatives are few and far between. Tickets seem a bit pricey, but again, operating a ski area amidst the wheat fields is quite a gamble.
Signature Trail: Sixshooter.
Lift Tickets at Discount: This is a “clearinghouse” of sorts that many ski areas use to raise cash by selling discount tickets in advance, called Liftopia. If you haven’t used this service, it is important to knowfor certain that you are going on a specific date. The deeply discounted tickets must be purchased in advance; generally up to two days out. The sticking point is that some ski resorts only make a limited number of tickets available to Liftopia for any given day, so they might be sold out if you wait too long…so, as soon as you are absolutely, positively sure that you will be skiing on a certain day, click this link to get deeply discounted tickets. I’ve used this service many times, but again, ONLY when I am absolutely certain I will be skiing on a specific date. You need to have access to a printer to print out your receipt, and you have to take identification with you to the mountain. I’ve knocked a third off the price of some tickets. Not every area participates, but it’s well worth checking if you’ve got a date nailed down.
Mom has a pretty raw deal on the average ski trip. They’re expected to make sure every child is geared up and ready to go…settle the arguments, feed the family, prepare the snacks, pack the chapstick, and so on…and then ski the black diamonds with dad after the second lesson.
The book, Skiing: A Woman’s Guide by Maggie Loring and Molly Mulhern Gross ought to be mandatory reading for every ski mom. It not only provides the basics for managing the gang, it also gives a step-by-step instructional guide from a woman’s point-of-view. This link is to amazon.com, where you can usually pick up a used copy for about two bucks. Mom, it’s the best two bucks you’ll spend all winter.
Hotshots are skiers who can ski anywhere, anytime, in any conditions, and generally enjoy showing off those skills. Wanderers are skiers who like to go exploring, to essentially get “lost” and move from face to face, seldom skiing the same trail twice. Newbies are the girlfriend/boyfriend/wife/husband who has never skied before, but gamely insists on going along. Obviously, Blues represents intermediate skiers, while Blacks refers to experts.
A note about ski area statistics: Although it’s hard to believe, some ski areas are (gasp!) less than truthful with their numbers. Like the guy who lies about his, uh, shoe size, some ski areas believe that inflated numbers make their resort sound more appealling. When these numbers are obviously questionable, we put a note: (?!) and will attempt to verify the legitimacy of the claim.
A Signature Trail Is mostly subjective. Whether it’s history, reputation, the view, or degree of difficulty…it’s the run you have to do, even if it isn’t necessarily the best the resort has to offer. If a ski area calls a trail by two names (one at the top, and another at the bottom) in an effort to claim more trails, we go by the upper name. If a trail is called “Upper Whatever” and “Lower Whatever,” we simply list it as “Whatever” in this index.