Skip to content

Paintearth County’s Valley Ski Hill nears opening date

The Valley Ski Hill’s new groomer is hard at work! (Photo submitted)

After some weather-related challenges, the Valley Ski Hill, located in the river valley between Flagstaff and Paintearth Counties, finally has an opening day.

The ski hill is tentatively set to welcome skiers for the 2024 ski season on Saturday, Jan. 20, 2024.

“Brett’s projected opening date was Jan. 13, but it will be too cold,” said Reid Fordice, president of the ski hill board, referring to Brett Andre, the hill’s manager.

Provided the weather is warm enough to be safe, the opening day will proceed.

According to Fordice, Andre has been working on making snow at the hill since Dec. 9, however, with the above-average seasonal temperatures the region has been facing through December, the process has been slow-going.

Still, with the recently stabilized upper slopes and new water and electrical systems installed for snowmaking, the facility has made good progress. Also aiding the snowmaking is the purchase of a new groomer, which recently entered service for the club.

With the updated systems, the goal is to have the hill open before Christmas, however, that is heavily dependent on the weather.

“If it’s not one thing, it’s another this year,” said Fordice, referring to polar temperatures that have gripped the region.

When the hill does finally open, it will be celebrating its 76th season.

SEE ALSO: Valley Ski Hill holds milestone anniversary celebration in Alliance

Programs returning to the hill in 2024 are the Battle River and Valley Nancy Green Skiing programs, the Battle River Alpine snowboarding club, which meets twice a week, and a freestyle club.

For those who haven’t been on skis in a while and want to brush up, the Valley Ski Hill offers private lessons.

All instructors and ski patrollers on the hill are certified through their requisite governing bodies, says Fordice.

The Valley Ski Hill employs eight to 12 part-time staff at any given time during the winter season, who assist the 7,000 to 8,000 skiers from around the region to ski at the hill.

For more information, and to get updates on opening, check the Valley Ski Hill out on Facebook, head to its website at, or call 780-879-2106.

The snow on the hill stands in contrast to the bare ground surrounding it. Photo submitted)
Because pf the warm weather, most of the snowmaking has been done at night. (Photo submitted)
Snow making continues! (Photo submitted)

Kevin Sabo

About the Author: Kevin Sabo

I’m Kevin Sabo. I’ve been a resident of the Castor area for the last 12 years and counting, first coming out here in my previous career as an EMT.
Read more