History Personal Memories Listings by the Year Current Pictures
|Klein Innsbruck was, unfortunately, the last major eastern Massachusetts area to close. It began operation during the late 1960's or around 1970 in the town of Franklin, with a classic Hall double chair and a rope tow, on 4 slopes and a trail. Most of the slopes were not all the wide and were as wide as many of today's "trails" at larger ski areas. The area grew, adding another Hall double chair by 1977.
|The area continued to
operate thru the 1970's and 1980's, adding plenty of snowmaking to
eventually cover 80% of the area. Night skiing was also added during the
1970's, as was typical of most eastern Massachusetts areas.
The rope tow was eventually removed and replaced with a pony lift at some point during the 1980's.
|A view of the slopes in the 1980's, from their brochure. A. Hamilton also provided NELSAP a similar brochure. Notice how the slopes are not all that wide, and that there was a decent variety of skiing at this area.
|And a Terraserver view of the same area. Notice that a few patches of snow can be seen on the slopes, and that the view almost matches the overhead on the left.
|A topographic map of the area, showing the 200' drop ski slope on Oak Hill.
|Unfortunately, the good
times at Klein Innsbruck came to end during the winter of 1999/2000. The
area had made some snow and had operated until around early February,
but mild weather made snowmaking difficult. The area did not likely
operate during February Vacation week.
I visited the area that year to scout it out as I had no heard much of it in the prior years...I found that two slopes had snowmaking, including this one, which was the middle slope. This picture here is of the last man made snow at the area.
Later in 2000 we heard from Andrew Davis of Sno Country Reports who told us the area was closed and would be developed for Senior Citizen Housing. The area has not been developed yet and is in pristine shape. For recent pictures, click here.
Scott Fletcher: A small area in Franklin, MA just closed within the past year - Klein Innsbruck. I have only had the opportunity to ski it once about a year ago - two doubles and a couple of runs if I remember.
Susan Hammond: I was a ski patroller there several years -- right up to the end. One of my friends was on patrol at KI (that's how I got involved).
David Schoenfeld: My son Jonathan learned to ski there in 1986, he was 5 years old. There was an elderly ski instructor there who gave him a private lesson. He tied a rope around Jonathan's waist and slowed him down that way. While Jonathan took his lesson, his two older sisters played a game. They would ride the chairlift and then try to ski down fast enough to catch the same chair as the one they rode up on. There were no lines and they usually made it. It wasn't much of a ski area but the kids loved it.
Shanna Marszalkowski: I first learned to ski there at the tender age of 2, my grandfather owned it so I had the privileges of enjoying the area free of charge for many many years. I also had the pleasure of working pretty much all the department within the ski area. I always looked forward to the ski area opening. It was a lot of fun in it's hey-day. It was very sad in the end to see it lose business and end up closing, I think that it deserved a little more than just a silent disappearance. I just wanna say hi to all the people I know from those days... It was always a lot of fun except when people would park in my parking spots in front of my home.
The ski shop that was referenced was later turned into the area for ski school and then into the house. My father was the main care-taker of the place he was pretty much in charge of everything.. I guess you could say he was the operations manager. The ski area was quite a family affair considering over the course of the years there were various members of my fathers side that worked in the departments. My father's cousin Steve was in charge of all the grooming. I also know that the ski area opened in 1967.
We're looking for more memories, so send them in if you used to ski there.
Listings by the Year
|Double chair, rope tow, 2000/hr capacity
|Parking for 500 cars, NE Exposure, cocktail lounge, snack bar, rentals, American Technique
|Ski Guide to the Northeast
|2 double chairs, rope tow
|5 slopes, 1 trail
|Operates daily, ski school patrol, rentals, repairs, ski shop, restaurant
|2 double chairs
|1 trail, 5 slopes
|Snowmaking, season Dec - Mar
|Billy Kidd's American Ski Guide
|2 double chairs, 2400/hr capacity
|5 slopes, 1 trail
|Vertical 200', open ever evening, weekends, holidays, $18.00 weekends, $13.00 nights, snowmaking 70%
|2 double chairs, pony lift
|1/3 mile main slope, 4 slopes, 1 trail
|80% snowmaking, rental shop, National Ski Patrol, night skiing
|Area closes before late February. Senior citizen housing planned
|Andrew Davis, Jeremy Davis (no relation) personal visit, newspaper article
|Double chairs remain
|Slopes still clear
|Nothing built yet!
|Jeremy Davis' personal visit
Recent Pictures of the Area
Click on each thumbnail for a larger version:
Base of far right double chair (Brian O'Malley).
Feb 22, 2002 Pics:
The beginner area, where the rope tow and pony lift once operated
Snowmaking guns lined out just below the lodge
The main lodge
Looking up the main double chair lift slope
The base of the main Hall double chair
Rules for using the lift
The operator's shack
Looking up the main Hall double chair
A closeup of the classic Hall logo on the double chair
The middle slope
The far right chairlift (used much less often)
Head back to Lost Massachusetts Ski Areas
Head back to the Main Page