Adirondack Ski Center
Porters Corners, NY
Note - this area is on private property - please do not trespass.
History ~ By the Year ~ Photos ~ Memories
Note - the history below was compiled through several sources, including our readers. Their full stories are below. We are continually researching this area and will have much more in the future. I am particularly interested in this area as it is the nearest major lost area to where I live near Saratoga Springs, NY.
Alpine Meadows, later Adirondack Ski Center, was a long lasting (45 years) ski area that operated in Porters Corners, NY, just south of Corinth and north of Saratoga Springs.
The area was founded by Ed Taylor who trained the army troops at my Rainier during World War II. After the war, he founded Alpine Meadows, around 1947. He had also been a representative for Tucker Sno Cats before this. His father had run a ski shop on Broadway in downtown Saratoga, which was eventually changed hands to Ed and his wife Jo. The shop moved around several times and is still in operation as The Alpine Sport Shop.
To the right is a map to the area, from 1951.
||The ski area itself was
quite unique in its layout. In its initial years, as many as nine rope
tows operated. Several were in tandem, and they led to the summit. The
vertical initially was about 600' served by these tows, and included the
wide open Alpine Meadows slope, and the Birch Run trail. In the early
1950's, a couple more tows were added, reaching the summit and giving
the area a full 1000' of vertical.
A major improvement from Ed Taylor occurred in 1951, when two platter pull (pomas) lifts were installed. These were some of, if not the earliest platter pulls installed. They were connecting to the summit. Another trail and beginner slope were added at this time. Several tows were removed when the platters were installed.
A j-bar lift was added around 1960, and the area continued to operate under Ed Taylor until likely around this time. It was then sold to Ernie and Shirley Winslow of Corinth, NY, who also owned Royal Mountain and Moon Valley (now Titus).
The new owners engaged in some more capital improvements. The J-bars and pomas were removed, and were replaced with Hall T-bars in the middle 1960's. The final rope tows are also removed. It is at this time that the area was renamed Adirondack Ski Center. Several more trails were constructed at this time, including Powder River, a birch gladed trail.
One of the t-bars was to the left as you face the ski area from the lodge, and served mostly beginner terrain. It had only a 95' drop. Another T-bar was to the right, and was longer, with a 274' drop. This brought skiers to the main lift, which was 2590' long and had a 500' drop.
Night skiing was installed, but was only used intermittently, in the middle to late 1950's and in the early 1980's. It is unknown to the extent night skiing was used.
Eventually, the area was sold to Tom Roohan and a "Stan" who ran the area for several years before selling to a non profit group. Unfortunately, they could not continue to operate the area, and it folded in 1993. One cause of the folding is a land dispute. Apparently, the ski area is in three parcels, and the owner of the middle parcel decided that they did not want skiing there. Thus, the area closed. Other likely factors include a lack of snowmaking, and no major lifts besides T-bars. Had they had snowmaking and a chairlift, I believe the area would be open today.
The area is near the Brookhaven Golf Course today, in Porters Corners. However - the area is posted no trespassing, so please do not venture onto the property.
By the Year
|1948, 1949||6 tows-450' tow, 2 parallel 1000' tows, 650' tow, 700' tow, 350' children's tow.||Alpine
Meadows-3100' long, 600' drop, pitch 28 degrees, 1000' wide, needs
8" to ski, served by tows.
Birch Run trail-2600' long, 540' drop, 20 degree pitch, 30-50' wide, needs 8" to ski, served by tow.
|Rates: $1.50 adult, $1 junior. Open weekends only||Ski New York State Guide|
|1949||6 tows total. #1 tow takes you to the canteen. #6 tow is 300' beginner tow.||Tows serve half mile long open slope and wooded areas.||Rates same as above. Well run by Ed Taylor. Ski school teaches Arlberg technique. Chalet serves hot refreshments. Rentals at Alpine Sports Shop.||Where to Ski|
|c1950||9 tows, 7 are connecting. Lengths from 400'-950'. Capacity 600-700/hr/tow.||Alpine Meadows slope (same details as below)-served by 9 tows. Birch Run and Powder River trails, same details as below.||Rates: $1.75 adult. Open Fri-Sun. Childrens tow (300')-$1/day.||Ski New York Guide|
|1951||2 connecting platter pulls (1600' and 2500'), capacity 600 per hour. 6 rope tows, 5 of them connecting, capacity 500-600 per hour. One tow is children's at 300' long.||Alpine Meadows
Slope-5280' long, 1170' drop, 300-1000' wide, needs 8" to ski.
Served by tows and lifts.
Beginners slope - 500'.
Birch Run trail-2600' long, 540' drop, 30-50' wide, needs 8" to ski, served by tows.
Powder River-5280' long, 1170' drop, 40-100' long, served by tows and lifts.
|Served by busses and taxis. Ski shop rents skis and poles. Heated and lighted shelter serves refreshments. 2500 skiers is capacity. $3 adult ticket for pomas/tows, $1.50 for just tows. Children's tow rate, $1. Open 930am-430pm, Wed, weekends, holidays.||Ski New York Guide.|
|1952||Platter pulls and 5 tows||Same as above, except Beginners Slope now called "Easy Way"||Rates: $2.50 adults. Otherwise, mostly same as above||Ski New York Guide|
|c1955-1958||2 cable lifts, 5 tows||2 slopes, 2 trails||Open weekends, holiday, and Wed nights. All trails sno-cat maintained. Instruction, rentals||Ski New York|
|1962||Same as below||3 slopes, 3 trails||Packer, ski school, rentals||Eastern Ski Map|
|1963||J-bar, 2 platter pulls, 1 tow. Lifts in tandem.||2 slopes, 2 trails||600 skier average on weekends. Operates weekends and holidays. Still called Alpine Meadows||Buxton's Ski Guide.|
|1964||J-bar, 2 platters, 1 tow.||3 slopes, 3 trails, novice and intermediate.||Ski patrol, school, packer||Eastern Ski Map|
|1965||-||-||New 800' Hall T-bar with 95' drop, 1200 skiers/hr, 450' min. Another new Hall 1421' T-bar with 274' drop, 1200 skiers/hr, 450' drop. Called Adirondack Ski Center.||Skilifts.org|
|1968||Now 3 T-bars||-||New 2590' Hall T-bar with 504' drop, 800 skiers/hr, 450'/min. Called Adirondack Ski Center.||Skilifts.org|
|1970-1971||3 T-bars||5 trails, 5 slopes||Rentals, $5.50 a day||Ski New York Guide|
|1973||3 T-bars, 3000/skier per hour capacity.||8 trails and 5 slopes. Base elevation 900', vertical drop 1000'. East exposure. No snowmaking.||Edward Harran, Manager. Open weekends/holidays. Snack bar, rentals, warming hut. Parking for 500 cars. Ralph Brodwin ski school director, American technique. 4 instructors, 1 certified. $6.00 adult, $5.00 11-15 yr old, $4.00 under 11.||Ski Guide to the Northeast.|
|1977||3 T-bars||1000' drop||"Medium" rates, operates weekends, rentals, base lodge||Skiing USA|
|1982||3 T-bars, 1100/hr capacity||Longest run 2.5 miles, 1000' drop||Open weekends, holidays, Sat nights. Open Mid December-Mid April||Billy Kidd's Ski Guide|
|1986||3 T-bars, 2100/hr capacity||10 slopes and trails, longest 2.5 miles||Rates: $9 full day, $6 half day. Open weekends and holidays only. Ski school direcdtor: William Bennett. Day lodge with cafeteria. Beginner area enlarged by 5 acres. New Thiokol/2100B for daily grooming||White Book|
Here are some great Google Earth shots of the area today.
|Looking up from the base area. These wide slopes were served by a couple of T-bars.||The entire mountain at a glance. Notice the lower slopes at the bottom right. You would ride 2 T-bars before reaching the main T-bar to the summit. Note the overall narrow trails that the longer T-bar served.||Looking down the slopes from an elevation of about 1750'. Looking closely, it appears that the T-bar is still standing, as the towers are barely visible. Note how the wider trail from the summit has several tree islands. This is possibly the Alpine Meadows Slope.||A closeup of the summit area, showing the possible wider Alpine Meadows Slope.|
Bill Normile: I learned to ski at Alpine Meadows, which was called Adirondack Ski Center at one point in its history. If you haven't been there most if not all of the lift lines are still in place (there were 3 T-bars in all). the lodge is still there, but the warming hut at the very top of the mountain burned down a couple years ago. I spend a lot of time up there riding the old trails on ATV or snowmobile although the bottom 2/3's of the mountain is now posted.
Ken: It was located in South Corinth and owned by Ed Taylor, who sold it to a Dentist (Winslow?) from Saratoga. He changed the name of the Area to Adirondack, I believe. Tom and Jody Roohan and another partner (Stan?) bought it and called it Alpine again.
Fred Goldstein: It had three T-bars, one atop the other, so you needed to ride all three to get to the summit. I don't think it made snow, though it caught a fair amount off of the mountains. It could have used a snow gun or three. It was pretty tall (maybe a thousand feet vertical) and good "intermediate" terrain. They were apparently in the process of putting in lights, for night skiing, but I don't know if that project ever finished -- I recall some light poles rather permanently on the ground near the base lodge.
David Singer: I remember skiing at Alpine Meadows, Corinth, NY during the 1950's. I probably skied there last in 1960, since I went away to boarding school in the fall of 1961. I remember that they had a surface Poma lift. Also it was the first gladed area I ever skied, very beautiful with birch trees spaced widely apart.
Woodcock: Mr. Taylor trained the Army troops at Mt. Rainier for WW II . After the
war he started Alpine Meadows Ski Area in Porters Corners, NY with his wife Jo. Ed Taylor was a rep for Tucker Sno Cat in Medford Oregon, Dartmouth
Ski Co., Gerry, and more that escape me right now. Ed's father ran a ski shop on Broadway in Saratoga
Springs, which Ed and Jo took over and moved to Court Street then to Spring Street. It was named The
Alpine Sport Shop. This was purchased by Thurlow and Dot Woodcock and moved to Clinton Street, all in Saratoga
Springs. The shop now is about a 1/16 mile from the old Skidmore Ski Area.
I worked for the Taylor's at the ski shop and the ski area. At Alpine Meadows I started skiing in the winter of '54 - '55. Alpine Meadows was sold to Ernie and Shirley Winslow at that time of Corinth, NY. who ran it under the name of Adirondack Ski Area. They also owned Royal Mt. in Johnstown, NY & Moon Valley in Malone , NY. Then it was sold to Tom Roohan and Stan ??? (sorry) who ran it as Alpine Meadows until it was leased to a non profit corp. of area citizens. The area finally folded about 13 to 14 years ago.
The ski patrol at Alpine Meadows would take the nite and holiday shifts at Skidmore.
Parker: I moved to So Corinth Thanksgiving Weekend in 1947. I was nine years old at the time and my brother was seven.
Mom says we never got so much snow as we did that year but, naturally, the ski lodge they were starting wasn't open.
We moved into the "hotel" which was, in reality, a stagecoach stop on the New York to Montreal run. That was where the town was named when one of the big wigs of the day opened the Bible to Corinthians. Dad always said "Thank God he didn't open it to Leviticus." The hotel is still partially standing at the southern end of the "old road" which was old Route 9N. It's the big place on
the right headed south out of South Corinth. In the late 1800's the town was moved four miles up the road where the Hudson
River had a water falls for power. Corinth became So Corinth and Jessup's Landing became Corinth.
Sometime around 1950 Alpine put in a "platter pull" on the main slope. It's very similar to a poma. A few years later they put a platter pull on the lower slope. There were some rope tows around the mountain including one above the Main slope to service a narrow wooded trail whose name was Powder River. One of the first "gladed" trails.
Alpine was run by a great guy by the name of Ed Taylor. He had a daughter about my age who was a great skier. I could never catch her but I sure tried. We liked skiing with her because we couldn't get thrown off the mountain for fast skiing. There were four or five of us kids in So Corinth who skiied and Mr. Taylor would let us in for a buck a day. That's down from the regular adult price of $3.50
In order to get the dollar a day for skiing, my brother and I had to wash dishes. We had a group from Brooklyn and a group from
Long Island who came up regularly to stay at Parkers' Ski Haven. I don't know about the early days, but the folks charged $4.50
a day for room with a huge family style dinner and breakfast in the later years. Sometime in the mid fifties.
In the early fifties, my folks realized they couldn't make a go of it putting a ton of coal a week into the furnace at the hotel and we
moved five houses down the street on the other side still taking in skiers. This house burned several years ago. (My folks were
My brother worked at the ski area later in high school, mostly carrying wood for the stove in the warming hut. He also filled in
wherever else he was needed. I don't remember if he got paid or just skiied for nothing. One time he cleaned all the old ski
boots out of our shed, took them up to Alpine and traded them for one good pair. At that time I was skiing on a pair of hickory
skiis that came from Montgomery Wards. $16 for skiis, boots, poles and bear claw bindings. They were my first pair with steel
edges. I remember getting Cubco safety bindings for Christmas my senior year in high school. Prior to having those hickorys,
I had a pair of skiis I made with the man across the street but that's another story.
Alpine was open Saturday and Sunday, Tuesday and Friday nights, and Washington's birthday week and the week between Christmas and New Years. If there was snow.
I graduated from college in 1961 and moved to Massachusetts and lost track of Alpine Meadows.
Steve: I grew up skiing an area just out side Saratoga springs NY. It was originally call alpine meadows, built by a family friend. It grew from rope tows to 3 separate t-bars. the name was changed to Adirondack when it was sold. My father worked as a kid on the rope tows, then became a member of the ski patrol, and patrol leader for many years. I started skiing when I was 4 or 5 , and skied there till it closed in the 80's.
Fuller: My family used to ski at Adirondack Ski Center in South Corinth, NY
in the '70's before we moved out west in 1977. It was a great place, only open weekends and
holidays, no snowmaking-so no ice and it had 1000 ft. of vertical. I remember
that it had a series of three T-bars to the top, each one getting progressively steeper and harder to ride. I have many fond memories of skiing there.
If you have more information on this area just let us know.
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