If you’re looking to buy a ski area for a discounted price, here’s your chance. The Keene Sentinel reports that Granite George near Keene, New Hampshire will be up for sale at a foreclosure auction on June 3rd at 2 pm EST. The auction will be occurring at the ski area. This follows news in December from owner John Baybutt announcing that the ski area was unlikely to reopen. The mountain was previously valued at nearly $544,000 in 2019.
Granite Gorge’s history has been a roller coaster. The mountain opened up as The Pinnacle in the 1959-60 season, but then closed in 1977 due to a lack of snowmaking and subpar winters. The land sat vacant until 1999 when Baybutt Construction bought the land and started work on reopening it. The mountain reopened as a snow tubing and rope tow operation in 2003. A double chairlift was added in 2005 and helped create a major terrain expansion. The last ten years of operations at the mountain were disastrous. The mountain faced foreclosure in 2013 but was able to manage its way around it. In 2016, multiple mechanical issues caused their chairlift to roll back, causing two chairs to ram into each other. Two people needed to be taken to the hospital, but no serious injuries were reported. In 2019, their summer camp license was revoked after children weren’t supervised by lifeguards while swimming, and the counselors lacked the proper experience to run the camp. The mountain faced yet another auction in 2019, but the owners got out of this situation by “meeting the bank’s terms and paying those taxes.” After the pandemic shut down operations in March 2020, the place hasn’t opened since. Reopening the ski area has great potential, as there are many Keene area residents, especially schoolkids and Keene State students, who are looking for a quick drive to get some turns in.
This video from Lindsey D. in May of 2020 below gives you an idea of what the ski area was like in its final years. The yurt was available for overnight stays via Tentrr and gave access to the ski area and the lodge for bathroom use. As shown in the video, the experience gave off some abandoned and spooky vibes.
Image/Video Credits: Granite Gorge Ski Area, Keene Sentinel, Lindsey D.