Article from LA Times dated February 2008.
Mt. Waterman ski resort to open Saturday.
Yup, you read that right. Mt. Waterman, the oldest ski resort in Southern California, plans to open Saturday at least four years after the chairlifts last delivered skiers and snowboarders up the slopes of the Angeles National Forest resort.
Recent storms created an impressive 7-to-8-foot base of snow at the ski resort that’s just an hour’s drive from downtown Los Angeles.
But the snow was also a mixed blessing: For two weeks, conditions kept skiers away because Highway 2, the only road to Waterman, was closed. Caltrans recently plowed the road, and the resort has been telling folks about the proposed opening mostly by word-of-mouth, according to spokesman Roberto Martinez.
“We’ve got more than 1,000 people on the e-mail list,” said Martinez.
Martinez is part of the Waterman crew who has “a tremendous passion for the mountain.”
“If you see 18 guys going down the same line flying down the mountain, that’s us,” he says of the investors who have been skiing Waterman since they were kids. Martinez says the group plans to open nearby Kratka Ridge as a tubing-snow play park next year.
So why has the resort been closed for four years? It’s complicated and explained on the website. Since Rick Metcalf and his crew bought the resort in June 2006, they’ve spruced up and upgraded the neglected resort. They also had to wade through national forest and other permits (the land is leased) and fix the place up.
“We certified the lifts, we’ve really cleaned up the mountain and made it nice,” he said.
Curious visitors and old fans will find a small but “challenging hill known for its steep terrain,” Metcalf said. Like generations of locals who learned to ski at the little resort, beginners will find less-intimidating runs on which to practice their turns. Three chairlifts serve a 1,500-foot vertical drop and a top elevation at 8,000 feet.
The resort doesn’t rent equipment on the mountain but contracts with Sport Chalet in La Cañada Flintridge (920 Foothill Blvd., near the Highway 2 offramp of the 210 Freeway).
Mt. Waterman will be open 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Thursdays through Sundays and on holidays. Lift tickets are $49 weekends and holidays, and $39 Thursdays and Fridays. It is located on Highway 2, 33 miles northeast of La Cañada Flintridge. Details at www.skiwaterman.com.