I never get tired of this view.

Black Mountain in NH will not open for the 2023-2024 season. Sad news for the mountain, and sad news for me and mine.

 

The Fichera family, who owns Black Mountain, shared the news on their social media channels on Wednesday, October 11. The story was picked up and covered by Eric Wilbur in the New England Ski Journal; you can read his piece here. In short, rising energy costs and unpredictable weather have made it untenable for this small, family-owned mountain to operate during the upcoming season.

 

A Love Letter to Black Mountain in NH

For the entirety of the 2010s, I hosted apres-ski parties, first as part of the FNX Snoriders, then as part of the RadioBDC/indie617 Coors Light Drafters. All winter long, we’d hit Boston-area bars on Thursday nights, give away lift passes for mountains and resorts in the Whites, ski and ride those mountains and resorts on Saturday, and throw a killer apres-ski party for all the winners and listeners.

 

Of all the mountains we’d hit, Black Mountain was my favorite. It’s quintessential, old-school New England skiing and riding. Their rope tow dates back to 1935, their Lostbo Pub has a cozy, neighborhood vibe, and the terrain can’t be beat. This isn’t a resort experience with long lift lines and too-wide trails. This is like skiing in your buddy’s backyard…if they had hundreds of well-groomed acres.

 

When I first started hosting the apres-ski parties, my kid’s mom had the brilliant idea of taking advantage of all this mountain access and getting our kids on skis. My oldest was a fast learner, so after a few years, our annual trip to Black became “Daddy & Jacob weekend.” We two would stay at Whitney’s Inn, eat at the Shovel Handle Pub, and ski and ride our hearts out on Spruce and Juniper.

 

Those are some of my fondest memories of winter weekends in the White Mountains. And we’ve continued to add to those memories: even though my apres-ski hosting days are behind me, Jacob and I still make a trek to Black every winter. Now, we bring his younger sibling along, the three of us taking in the views, shredding the gnar, and soaking up that unique Black Mountain vibe.

 

I’m heartbroken that we won’t get to experience Black this winter. But my heart breaks even more for the Fichera family and their employees. It must have been a difficult decision indeed not to open for the upcoming season. I hope like hell they bounce back. I hope when they do that you’ll give them a visit. And I hope you’ll support the other independently owned New England mountains this winter.

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