|Evergreen Valley Ski Resort|
|Vertical Drop:||1050 feet|
|Past Lifts:||3 doubles|
|Left: Evergreen Valley in the 1970s|
|Recent NewEnglandSkiIndustry.com News:
Last updated: February 7, 2017
Located on 1,690 foot tall Adams Mountain in western Maine, Evergreen Valley is the largest defunct ski area located in the White Mountain National Forest.|
Dating back to 1962, Evergreen Valley ski area was originally envisioned as a small town ski area. Sno Engineering put the cost of development of a small area at $299,000.
In February of 1965, the developers of the ski area received a special use permit from the White Mountain National Forest for 310 acres.
As the years passed, however, plans escalated. By the time 1970 approached, Evergreen Valley had grown to become a $4.5 million, 1,050 acre four season resort development. Three Mueller double chairlifts were installed that year, serving a 50 acre trail network. Night skiing and snowmaking capabilities were also at least partially installed. While the area was advertised for the 1970-71 season, the developers ran into financial and legal issues before the area could open. As a result, Evergreen Valley sat idle.
Evergreen Valley Finally Opens
In 1971, Robert Friedlander looked at the property and devised a plan to take over the area and open it. Starting operations on December 16, 1972, the ski area had a formal opening ceremony with Maine Governor Curtis on March 3, 1973. The Exeter North Corporation conducted ski operations at Evergreen Valley, which had swelled to become an estimated $7 million development.
Evergreen Valley in the 1970s
In addition to a $1 million base lodge (which featured three cocktail lounges), the resort also featured three double chairlifts and night skiing. Beyond skiing, the resort featured a marina on Kezar Lake, a Robert Trent Jones 9 hole golf course (an additional 9 holes would be planned but never completed), a motel, swimming pools, and tennis courts. Winter activities included snowmobiling, indoor tennis, a heated pool, and equestrian sports. Up to 1,200 acres of condominiums were to be developed.
Two new trails were added for the 1973-74 season, including Outer Limb on the upper mountain. These were likely the final trails to ever be developed at Evergreen Valley.
In 1974, the area offered season pass holders a snow insurance policy, which would pay out $25 if the area operated for less than 75 days.
In July of 1975, the resort hosted the New England Folk Festival, drawing thousands of concert-goers.
The Maine Guarantee Authority commenced foreclosing procedures in the fall of 1975, resulting in the area closing for the 1975-76 ski season.
The Woodsong trail in the 1970s
The Maine Guarantee Authority sold the area for $1.25 million to Rupert Aldrich, Henry Paradis, and Bruce Williams in the fall of 1976. A further roadblock was encountered that fall, when the new owners discovered much of the non-attached equipment and furnishings had been removed. Nonetheless, the area was able to operate for the 1976-77 season. Aldrich became the sole owner in August of 1977.
Another Missed Season
The area did not operate during 1979-80 due to lack of snow. An agreement to sell the area to a group led by Albert Hollis's Bradstone Development corporation fell through in the fall of 1980.
The Maine Guarantee Authority started foreclosure proceedings once again in 1981.
In early 1982, Ray Denger, Brad Gilton, and Rodney Reed entered into an agreement to purchase the area from Aldrich. Reed was then arrested for fraud (involving the earnest money he put down on the deal), resulting in that transaction falling through. Denger and Gilton then attempted to buy Evergreen Valley without Reed, but were unable to obtain financing.
Third and Final Closure
The ski area obtained a $75,000 loan in the fall of 1982 to continue operating, however it likely did not open for the 1982-83 season. The Maine Guarantee Authority purchased the resort for $500,000 at public auction on May 25, 1983.
The base area (2009)
Offseason functions continued for at least a short time, including the lodge and pool hosting Rumford High School's senior party in June. However, in October of 1983, the guarantee authority, now operating under the name of Finance Authority of Maine (FAME), voted unanimously to close the resort that fall.
Attempts at Reopening
FAME agreed to sell the resort to Richard Shain and Leonard Zimmerman's Valley Recreation Corp. for $1.6 million in June of 1984. Valley Recreation Corp. intended to reopen the ski area for the 1984-85 season (with future plans to build a hotel and host concerts), however it ended up backing out of the October 31 closing when it discovered defects in the property title.
In March of 1985, Zimmerman agreed to purchase Evergreen Valley from FAME for $1.725 million, with a closing date of May 7, 1985. Shortly after the deal was disclosed, another bidder, George Guinane, filed suit to block the deal, claiming tampering with the sealed bid process, based upon his $1.6 million bid on the property. The suit was ultimately dismissed, resulting in a revised October closing date between FAME and Zimmerman. A planned 1985-86 reopening was announced by Zimmerman in August of 1985. The deal did not close, resulting in Zimmerman forfeiting a non-refundable $222,000 deposit.
In February of 1986, former Maine Guarantee Authority board member Robert Bahre entered into an agreement with FAME to purchase the resort. On May 12, 1986, Bahre purchased the area for $1.35 million.
The lifts were likely removed per US Forest Service orders in the early 1990s. The lifts were purchased by Big Rock ski area, two of which may have been resold.
The base lodge (2014)
As of 2009, the resort was for sale for an estimated $2.8 million. While the lifts have been removed, the base lodge is still stands at the foot of the overgrown ski area. It is unlikely that Evergreen Valley will ever reopen.
Click on lift name for information and photos
Year by Year History
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|"Like my brother Joe, I have many fond memories skiing there with our dad and our sister Sara too. Sara and I composed a song, "Undercover Mogul" -- kind of a country-rock number, that we liked to sing on the lift up. Skip was a great instructor, encouraged me and improved my mogul technique. I never had the guts to do inverted aerials, but he brought us to a few freestyle competitions at Pleasant Mt. and maybe Mt. Abram and I felt the thrill of trying to do a good line of moguls or my routine at ballet for the judges. Those were fun times and I've since taught my two kids to ski and skied in France and out west in Utah. You never forget where you learned though. There were some cold days and you really had to want to be out there -- and we did. Sad that EGV's owners seem to have had a bit of an Ozymandias complex and couldn't just go with "Thoreau Fare" and keep things simple. Hindsight is 20/20, I guess."|
|Jon Delogu, Mar. 18, 2017|
|"I have terrific memories of EGV. I skied here (when it was open) from the early 70s through to the early 80s. My dad had one of the time share units. I took classes from Woody and Skip. We tried to ski every weekend in the winter - and almost all of it was at EGV. Sadly, with climate change in full force, I don't see how a small resort like this can ever be successful again for skiing... just look at the trouble Saddleback is having at recreating itself. That said, I still have the memories, and the love of skiing - which I now travel to SLC for : )"|
|Joe Delogu, Mar. 18, 2017|
|"My first husband's grandfather Rubert owned the place we had gone up a couple of years ( 79 & 80) for the New Years Eve party. My oldest was born 9 months later in 1980 and the following year learned how to climb stairs in one of the timeshare condos. Lots of fond memories of the lodge"|
|Pattie Glavin Bourque, Mar. 1, 2017|
|"Spent a lot of time there my father Bud Bowley was the caretaker there for some years and lived in the old farm house. He has since passed away I think he would be saddened if he saw it now as I am."|
|Jeff Bowley, Feb. 13, 2017|
|"I learned to ski there when I was 3yrs old. Must have been 1977. With my dad. I remember standing in between his legs and going down the slope. I've been skiing ever since. We used to spend February vacations in one of the timeshares. When I got my driver's license, one of my first rides was finding my way to evergreen. I walked up one of the overgrown slopes and carved my name in one of the trees. Miss those good old days. "|
|Andew Crockett , Jan. 9, 2017|
|"Generations of my mothers family (Adams) were born and raised in the farmhouse that was located close to where the tennis bubble was. I my mother was the last to be born there.
My father worked there building the golf course and continued to work there after opening. I would go there to ski and use the pool. I learned to ski on the "bunny slope".
I find it terrible to see what is there now and how it is neglected. Fond memories!!!"|
|Andy Thompson, Sep. 11, 2016|
|"We used to go sledding there in the mid to late 80's, and we went fishing with our youth group. I remember going sledding, and being one of the few people that went to the top of the slope just in front of the lodge, and starting from the ski lift hut to sled down. I ran into someone who decided to set up at the halfway point right in front of me, and it was a total yard sale of sled, inner tube, and people. Great fun!"|
|Heather America, Jul. 19, 2016|
|"I attended the concert there in the summer 0f 72 or 73. It was put together hastily after the promoters lost there site in New Jersey. It was a bit chaotic because of the lack of permits if I recall A lot of State and Local police at the gates. The Eagles were the headliner but never showed. Poco and John Prine and Richie Havens were the highlights and a whole lot of other bands over 3 days. A great time and never forget the black car in the sand pit. "|
|Jay Dee, May. 9, 2016|
|"i worked in the kitchen there in the mid/late 70s for a while. someone earlier mentioned attending a concert there - i remember that, too. it was outdoors, and if my memory is not TOO fuzzy (c'mon...it was the 70's!), i think i recall the White Mountain National Blend being there, and maybe (as the guy mentioned) the Eagles played, too, or at least some band did a really good job covering some of their songs. a lot of bands were there, though, and some good ones, too."|
|Bob J., Apr. 11, 2016|
|"I remember when it was being developed,my Grandfather took me for a ride one Sunday afternoon so to see the work going on. It was a beautiful sunny crisp day! I'm from Fryeburg and I miss those days! Good memories! "|
|Kathy (Gilman) Defiore, Oct. 30, 2015|
|"My wife's grandparents owned the old farm on the Evergreen property who sold it to the developers. (Thurstons) She remembers many a wonderful summer spending time up there with aunts and uncles playing in the forests and streams. I grew up in North Lovell and did some work there as a teenager for the local people who were the early developers of the property. We also pastured a beef cow on the Thurston farm on occasion. I don't know what saddens me more to see it sitting vacant or to see this what was once a quiet remote mountain valley covered with the ruins of humanity. "|
|Neil Wilson, Oct. 28, 2015|
|"My mother owned a timeshare unit that we went to every February school vacation week. We would ski the mountain for a $20 weekly ski pass. We would ski from the back of the inn down to the main lodge and lifts. We still go back to visit at the inn every year. So sad to see the trails over grown and lifts gone. The main lodge is in sad shape with rotted and caved in decks and broken windows. As a child i thought the lodge always looked massive and majestic. "|
|Karin Lawler, Mar. 23, 2015|
|"I was a member of the ski school the first year Skip Meaker was ski school Director. Woody Woodward's daughter was also a member of he school along with Debby, Barbara, Sandy (he was a harbor pilot in Portland)I remember a nice staff party when Rodney Reed was giving out time shares as prizes. He was arrested soon after that. My wife, Faye, and I still talk about all the pleasant memories we have of that place. "|
|Richard Pelletier, Dec. 17, 2014|
|"We bought our family timeshare when Rupert Aldrich owned Evergreen Valley. Our family spent numerous wonderful ski vacations there and clung to the hope that someday it would return to its's former glory. The lodge was the most beautiful one that I have ever seen. When the mountain closed, we would drive to Sunday River to ski with the hope that someday it would re-open. To hear it probably will never re-open makes me very sad."|
|Elaine Scarfo, Nov. 2, 2014|
|"I worked on the main lodge for about a month in the fall of 1970. I had recently left the military and they were paying around $4.00 per hour . That was about twice as much as most of the other jobs were paying at that time. Sorry it never turned out to be a thriving business."|
|Royce Rankin, Jul. 31, 2014|
|"I attended a country rock concert at Evergreen Valley and was trying to figure out details of the show. I was thinking that New Riders of the Purple Sage was on the bill, or maybe it was the Eagles? I'm searching for any information about it if anyone can help. Thank you."|
|Ken Lipshez, Jun. 23, 2014|
|"to Ayden DeSanctis, if this came on the market I would be very interested in turning this into a ski mountain again. herd somewhere they tried selling it in the 90's for 550 grand?"|
|Isaac Seigle, Jun. 2, 2014|
|"I skied it in 2014 very grown in I hope someone will buy it and make it a ski resort again"|
|Ayden DeSanctis, May. 27, 2014|
|"I was a ski instructor at Evergreen Valley back in 1974 when Woody Woodward was director of the ski school. (What an amazing man Woody was!) I was fresh out of college with a Liberal Arts degree and no clue as to what I wanted to do, except ski! So off I went to live on Kezar Lake and work at the mountain. It was a good year for me, but I had no idea the area was struggling so much. I've often wondered what happened, and now I know. It's so sad, but the good times remain in my heart."|
|Paula Hatch, Mar. 26, 2014|
|"My Great Grandparents owned that land many years ago. They were Gammons and McKeens. If I could, I would buy the property back and offer it to my Grandaughter Brogan Horton for her animal Rescue . What a nice and peaceful place for abused animals to be rehabilitated and renewed. I have pictures of the old farm and the area. I love to visit 'The Old Home Place'."|
|Betty C. Horton, Mar. 1, 2014|
|"As a child, my family vacationed at Evergreen Valley. My grandparents took my mother and her siblings to ski and enjoy it as children and kept their timeshare after the ski lodge closed. We may not be able to ski, but my husband and I are now carrying on the tradition of vacations and long weekends in the mountains. This is easily one of the most beautiful, relaxing places in Maine! We look forward to our next stay!"|
|Anna Grant, Feb. 10, 2014|
|"My grandfather Rupert was a very hard-working and honest businessman. He did everything he could to save Evergreen. I worked for him for the final two years along with my Aunt Annie. Rupert lost his fortune but he loved to watch people enjoy themselves at his resort. He lost a leg due to cancer at the age of 18 but never stopped fighting to realize his dreams. I never met anyone who had nothing but nice things to say about him. His legacy of diligence and determination continues to inspire me when I face difficult times. As a child growing up my gramps was my hero and I still miss him very much. I hope to see him in heaven some day. A place where there is no pain or sorrow. "|
|Mike Aldrich, Jan. 25, 2014|
|"My father started taking us there in 1980. He still has his membership today. It was during the summers but I remember the the pool, restaurant and horse back riding in full swing. He was going to have a week in winter too so we could start skiing but the trails never reopening. I used my dads week in July 2013. It was great to be back after almost 20 years. It was also disappointing to see the deterioration of pool and clubhouse. I hope one day EVG finds some measure of it's former glory."|
|Tim Maddocks, Jan. 24, 2014|
|"My father ski'd here in the 1970s. I hiked to the top and ski'd down in 2010. It was pretty overgrown then. Unless anyone does some tree-trimming I may be one of the last to ever ski it!."|
|Gus Crothers, Nov. 29, 2013|
Evergreen Valley - New England Lost Ski Areas Project
Adams Mountain - FranklinSites.com Hiking Guide