Indy Pass Series: Ober Gatlinburg

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Ober Gatlinburg sits adjacent to Mt. Harrison, with a commanding view of the LeConte Massif and the Great Smoky Mountains.

Ober is just one of six ski areas within a two-hour drive of Asheville, NC. Though, in all the years I’ve spent in AVL, I’ve never made it to Gatlinburg. With Ober being on the Indy Pass, this was the FIRST on my list.

Ober has been successful at pivoting over the years. With its slightly lower altitude and southern location, ski area operations have been forced to be just one component of a greater, year-round resort/amusement.

There is no doubt that Ober has had to pivot again, in the age of Covid. But, I’m happy to report that Ober is alive and well, with a bustling mall and open attractions for the whole family.

I went on Friday, and arrived at noon (which is when the slopes open during the weekdays). Picking up my lift-ticket was seamless . . . If you have an Indy Pass, you’ll be happy to hear that you can avoid the lift-ticket window, and you can report right to Guest Services.

There were a handful of runs open, and I took one of the first chairs . . .

Started off with some runs at the bottom and worked my way up the mountain, over the course of the day.

Fun park set-up with a down-flat-down rail, mini table-top jump, as well as a round and corrugated feature.

As I continued to work my way up the mountain, I took the Black Lift which ascends to mid-mountain. To my suprise, Mogul Ridge had slid, and there was a mini-avalanche that took place overnight. Ski patrol had the run closed off, for good reason, and since then Mogul Ridge is back open!

When I arrived at mid-mountain, I was pleased to see a heard of white-tail deer grazing on fresh grass.

Herd of deer at mid-mountain station

This is just a slice of the fun you can have at Ober Gatlinburg. The terrain, zero lift lines, and fun-filled atmosphere made for a rip of a day. Enjoy yourself and be responsible (a.k.a. wear a mask).

The beauty of the Indy pass is that the passholder gets two days at each of the 50+ resorts. I can’t wait to get back for an even better second day . . . See you then!

The Indy Pass Series is a feature on the six southeastern ski resorts, in the Indy Pass network, during the winter of 2020-21. 

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