Afton Alps, Hastings
Categories: Ski Areas, Nature & Parks, Outdoor Activities
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I wasn't able to go skiing, but I was able to see the lifts and talk to the local staff on this local jewel located very close to theTwin cities. The grounds are part of a golf course that are quite l... read more »
We went skiing at Afton yesterday, a busy Saturday in February. The sun was out and crowds were beginning to build. The snow had been groomed and was in great condition in the morning, even in the Hig... read more »
Hi! I grew up coming to Afton as a kid and was pleased to bring my own kids. Locally, we have most recently skied Buck Hill and Lutsen and I was looking forward to seeing how Afton has changed. Each t... read more »
Cons: Terrain park was small and over-packed. Pros: The lift operators were the best operators we have seen. They were friendly, engaging, and safety was apparent. Layout of the hill is a bit funky and makes it hard to get or remember where you want to go, but that also made for some fun and challenges on getting to the next place. The actual facilities are a bit out dated and dirty for the bathrooms and eating areas. I would not put this area up to a "Vail Resort". I am assuming that Vail will work on the facilities as there were a bunch of different places to choose from, just not one fantastic place (unless we missed it). Some staff said there was better places to go skiing in the area, which was a bit awkward coming from employees. The rail jam, this is why we came to Afton. It was the worst experience we have had during a rail jam. Definitely not what was expected out of a Vail corporation. The judges were acting unprofessional and it was not ran safely. When we first checked in one of the judges yelled out to the group of kids asking, "whose parent's signature do I need to forge this week for the release waiver." The assumed head guy running the rail jam,(Steve, I think) was unorganized, unprofessional, rude, and a jerk to say the quickest and least. He even shouted under his breath a rude comment after my child won a prize, allowing for all of his buddies and fellow competitors to hear it. His comment was made to a 6 year old to insult him and his Dad. It definitely did insult us, but in the end we knew that he was just being a jerk. The rail jam was not blocked off, so anyone not in the contest could be snowboarding down the hill. The judges did not know who was in the contest or what age group they were competing with. Along with this the judges then had there young friends (competitors go find out the other kids ages during the competition). During the competition it was definitely unsafe with all the competitors riding down at the same time along with normal ticket holders going in the jam area. It does not make sense for competitors who are doing big tricks to watch out for bystanders. The biggest issue with safety was one of the big pipes (rails) actually did slide out of it's place and went down the hill while someone was riding it. This could have been easily solved with the people running the competition (park crew) doing a grooming in between the age groups. It did make the staff at the office aware of how bad the rail jam was ran. The people in the office were very nice and seemed to know who was the jerk running the competition (I think Steve) as I did not have to get many words out before they suggested his name. The GM of Afton did give us a nice phone call with regards to the issue. Letting us know most importantly that Afton is not really a snowboarding hill and more of a race hill, as they do not have the right people in place for snowboarding yet. This was nice of him and he did offer to buy our family a dinner. Thank you for trying to make it up to us. We did not accept the dinner as most importantly being a season pass holder we are just looking for better standards and living up to a name that we can come back to with a family and a resort ran properly in all areas. We would have loved to put 5 stars down if it were just for the skiing, lift operations staff (Tall Henry was great), food service in the cafeteria, and pro shop were fantastic. But the real deal was the judges/guys running the rail jam were a bunch of overgrown children that give snowboarding a bad name and definitely do not put class in the sport. In the end if you want to go here for a family event, it could be a great place...but I would stay away from the rail jams until they get things fixed. Hopefully Vail/Afton hears from more people and they get things running properly in the park.
We have our 5 year old at Afton Alps Ski School, the program is amazing; well-run and organized. It's truly no hassle check-in after the first day (on the first day there was a bit of set up in regards to rental equipment, etc, but still everything was well explained, they do ask to come an hour earlier on the first day to accommodate initial set-up). The rest of the season, we show up 15 minutes before class, go to rental, grab her already ready rental package and proceed to the gathering area; no waiting, very efficient! 5 minutes into the class, they are off on the hills skiing!!!! Each group is clearly marked by the gathering area. I am impressed with this program, we have been to Buck Hill last year, not even comparable. They have lift buddies for each kid who goes on the lift, and have to wear a vest, so I know each child is secure while having fun! Fantastic program and we will definitely be returning next year with both of our kids!
Love the ski hill, worst frolf course I've ever played. Everything so heavily wooded hard to walk through so many bugs and course makes you walk up a ski hill
It was EPIC as my lift ticket said it would be! Right when we got there, like an idiot I got our van stuck trying to pull too far into a parking spot. The maintenance guy came and pulled me out and wouldn't even except a tip! Very nice about it. Everyone was smiling and ready to help you out. Hills were well maintained. Pricing..... may be an issue for some. For the 5 of us it was just under $400 as we needed rentals. For the douchebags that give poor ratings because of the cost? Read the rates b4 you go there! I've skied for over 30 years in MN and can tell you It is the best ski place close to the city. Spirit mountain doesn't cut it either, if you want "better" you'd have to drive to Lutsen or get on an airplane.
The best there is in the Twin Cities. Well taken care of. Season pass options include skiing in Colorado -- which is great.
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