By Emily Buckley, editor-in-chief
Cache Valley winters can be long and hard. In fact, many residents dread the very thought of them. Still there are many others who revel at white fore- casts that continue into March. That same group is likely to be thrilled that Cache Valley is now home to Utah’s 15th and newest ski resort, Cherry Peak, located near Richmond.
Although the official opening date for the resort is still to be determined, the resort will welcome winter sports enthusiasts this season with a manmade snow-making system, 21 runs, two triple chair lifts (and two more coming next year), a 500-foot magic carpet for beginning skiers, two terrain parks, three-lane tubing, ice skating and a large night skiing area. The resort will boast a 1.25 miles long. Approximately half of the resorts runs will be intermediate, with the rest evenly divided between beginner and advanced runs.“For locals this resort has been designed to be very convenient,” said John Chadwick, Cherry Peak Resort CEO.” Located just 20 minutes from downtown Logan, the resort makes it possible for enthusiasts to come for a full day or for an hour or two in the afternoon or evening.
The vision of this resort didn’t come to be quickly; in fact it is something John had hoped for his entire life. He had grown up enjoying the family land that is now home to the resort, but didn’t ever think his dream of turning it into a world-class ski resort would ever become a reality.
“Then, about 15 years ago, and Olympic ski coach, Ramon Birkner, asked if asked if he could hike and ski on our property,” John said. “At the end of the day he sat at the bottom of the hill and told me we needed to make it a ski resort, and proceeded to give me some ideas about where to put runs.”
Years went by, and when the land came up for sale John bought it and, with the help of an investment group, moved his back-burner dream to the front of his priorities.
“There will be something going on every day of the year at Cherry Peak,” said John. “The 15,000 square foot lodge will host weddings, corporate retreats, family reunions, parties and other gatherings. We will have mountain biking trails open and concerts during the summer and an early opening for ski seasons thanks to our ability to make snow as soon as nighttime temperatures get cold enough.”
John says that at any one time he expects the new resort could accommodate about 1,000 skiers on its 203 acres. “On big days we could see two or three thousand because not everyone stays all day.”
General Manager Forrest Fackrell said season passes will cost just over $300. “We will be offering both day and night passes. Our day passes are $42 and evening passes are $22. We will be open six days a week.”
Brett and Jody Porter and their sons Cardon, Stockton and Garrett, pictured above at the new Cherry Peak Resort, are among the many Cache Valley families looking forward to skiing at Cherry Peak.
Their two older daughters, Brooke and Brenna, also enjoy skiing and are pictured with their family to the right.
“Our family has always enjoyed skiing together,” Jody said. “Each of our kids began skiing as toddlers (some even rode in a pack on my back before they could walk). We are looking forward to another great ski resort close to home.”