Wisp Resort: A Huffington Post Travel Ski Resort Guide
01/02/2012 05:58 pm ET
Jan 05, 2012
The Huffington Post
Wisp Resort in Maryland is a popular destination for skiers and snowboarders. As part of a series on ski resorts, Huffington Post Travel offers our guide to Wisp Resort, featuring all the key information snow lovers need before they hit the slopes.
Wisp Resort, in McHenry, Maryland, near scenic Deep Creek Lake, has been in operation for more than 55 years. Located in western Maryland's panhandle snow belt, it's often the first ski resort in the area to open. It's a four-season destination, but the resort is especially appealing to skiers, snowboarders and snowshoers. With trails for all skill levels and a variety of amenities, Wisp Resort has something for everyone during ski season. Travelers can fly into Pittsburgh's airport, about two hours away, or into one of the airports in Washington, D.C., or Baltimore, both of which are less than three hours away.
The mountain at Wisp offers a wide range of activities for skiers and snowboarders, along with nine tubing lanes, snowmobiling, ice skating and Nordic trails. The mountain receives an average of 100 inches of snow per year and has 90 percent snowmaking capabilities, which offers ideal conditions for a large portion of the season. Wisp's elevation is 3,115 feet, with a 700-foot vertical. The longest run at Wisp is 7,920 feet, ideal for intermediate skiers. The season usually runs from November through March. The lifts and grooming report offers updates on current conditions.
Trails And Lifts
The 32 trails and 12 lifts are ideal for beginner, intermediate and experienced skiers. About 40 percent of the trails are geared toward beginners, 28 percent are for intermediate skiers and 32 percent are for advanced skiers. Night skiing is available, with 90 percent of the ski terrain lit for after-sunset skiing. The resort's three terrain parks also offer a range of skill levels, from extreme and pro to intermediate and beginner. For warm-weather visitors, the resort offers a Flying Squirrel Canopy Tour that provides a guided zip line experience, cruising through the mountain terrain from a loftier perspective. Resort visitors can also check out the year-round roller coaster or golf course.
In The News
Wisp Resort hosts the annual Subaru Master the Mountain event, which features free ski and snowboard lessons, giveaways and music. Wisp also participates in the NASTAR program, with a variety of races for all ages throughout the season. Single NASTAR passes cost $75, and family passes cost $150. Most of the NASTAR events are open to beginner and expert skiers alike.
A basic lift ticket at Wisp Resort costs $68 for adults and $48 for children. Season passes range in price from $299 to $1,500, depending on the type of pass and age of the skier. Guests can contact the lessons office for pricing on classes for children and adults. Rental equipment is $10 to $55, depending on the type rented and time of rental.
Wisp Resort offers numerous apres-ski options for everyone in the family. The resort has an oval outdoor skating rink connected to a 100-ton chiller to ensure quality ice during the winter. Skate rental is optional. A hotel is available, as are several vacation homes nearby for larger groups. Dining choices abound, with restaurants serving a variety of cuisines. For rest and relaxation, the Sewickley Spa at the resort offers several packages to soothe and rejuvenate skiers after a day on the slopes. The town of McHenry features additional dining and lodging options.
WATCH: Wisp Resort
Beginner snowboarders cut up the slopes at Wisp Resort.