Lift Festival

Site Information and History

whalebackWhaleback Mountain is intertwined with the proud tradition of New England skiing that dates back a hundred years, with New Hampshire being called the cradle of U.S. Alpine skiing. Did you know, however, that over the last few decades New England has lost over 500 ski areas? (See New England Lost Ski Areas Project at www.nelsap.org. Granted, many of them were rope tow operations, but they kept skiing alive at the grassroots community level. A number of operations have re-opened, including good old Whaleback with its vintage Poma Double Chair. As part of the rich small mountain tradition that belies the foofy, slick resort, we thought we'd share some of our history with you.

1955

Olympic Nordic Jumper, Ernie Dion, founded Snowcrest (to be renamed Whaleback) in 1955 with a Poma surface lift on the run we now call Spout.

1969

Jim Griffiths bought Snowcrest in 1969, changed the name to Whaleback, and the next year installed the Poma double chairlift to the summit. Our Poma double is 2,500 feet long, rising 700 vertical feet, powered by an electric drive with diesel auxiliary. Rumor is that it's the only one in operation of its kind in the country.