Black Mountain of Maine
|Black Mountain of Maine|
|Location||Rumford, Maine, United States|
|Nearest city||Lewiston, Maine|
|Vertical||1,380 ft (420 m)|
|Base elevation||1,000 ft (300 m)|
|Lift system||4 (2 chair, 2 surface)|
|Night skiing||6 trails|
Black Mountain of Maine is a ski resort in Rumford, Maine which is most famous for its Nordic skiing facilities, and has hosted several national cross-country skiing championships on its 17 km of trails.
The downhill skiing area was expanded in 2005, and has 35 trails (including 5 glades) serviced by two chairlifts, a T-bar, and a rope tow. It also has a terrain park with a half-pipe, and a separate snow tubing area.
In 1924, the Chisholm Ski Club was organized in Oxford, and soon after built a ski jump in town followed by cross country trails and eventually a small ski slope. This early site held statewide cross-country competitions.
In 1950, the cross-country portion of the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships was held at this early Rumford ski area, after the planned site of Lake Placid, New York did not have enough snow. The competitors were housed with town residents as there were not enough hotel beds available. The following year, the site also held the tryouts for the 1952 Olympic United States Ski Team, and two skiers from Rumford (Chummy Broomhall and Bob Pidacks) made the team.
The cross-country trails were designed by Rumford native and two-time Olympian Chummy Broomhall, who also designed the cross country trails for the 1960 Winter Olympics in Squaw Valley, California and the 1980 Winter Olympics at Lake Placid, New York. They have since held the 1976 NCAA Cross Country Championships, the 1991 US National Biathlon Championships, the 1993 U.S. Masters Cross Country Championships, the 1996 U.S. Junior Olympics, and the United States Ski and Snowboard Association Cross Country National Championships in 1993, 1999, 2003, and 2004.
The downhill area was much more modest, with a single T-bar lift servicing a few trails with a vertical drop of 470 feet (140 m), and did not expand much for many years. In 2003, the ski area was purchased by the Maine Winter Sports Center, and shortly afterwards significant improvements were made. A new double chair was installed in 2003, and a triple chair to the summit was opened in early 2005, increasing the number of trails to 20 and the vertical drop to 1,150 feet (350 m). The day the triple chair to Black's summit opened was a memorable day for many Rumford locals. Legendary Black Mountain skiers such as Pat Lever and Ethan Carter said the day was "probably the most exciting day of my life.”  A new 13,000 sq ft (1,200 m2) lodge was also built.
In mid-2004 the resort banned tobacco use at the mountain.
- "Chisholm Ski Club". Retrieved 2007-05-16.
- Jones, Paul. "Spruce Street Tow". Retrieved 2007-05-16.
- "Ski History Dates". International Skiing History Association. Retrieved 2007-05-16.
- "Family friendly ski slopes cover Maine's Western mountains". 2007-02-16. Retrieved 2010-10-10.
- Burke, Heather (2005-01-30). "Black in a new light". Maine Sunday Telegram. Retrieved 2007-05-16.
- Phillips, Pete (November 2003). "What's up at Black Mountain of Maine?" (PDF). Maine Winter Sports Center. Retrieved 2007-05-16.
- Aalberg, John (2004-01-02). "Black Mountain of Maine – Ready for the 2004 National Championship". FasterSkier. Archived from the original on 2007-04-04. Retrieved 2007-05-16.
- Canfield, Clarke (2004-12-19). "Maine ski lodges undergo major expansions". Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-10-10.
- Churchill, Chris (2004-08-27). "Maine ski area bans tobacco". Morning Sentinel. Archived from the original on 2004-09-01. Retrieved 2007-05-16.