Whitecap Mountain Resort is located in Northern Wisconsin around Hurley. It is in the area where Big Powderhorn Mountain and the Big Snow Country resorts are located, so this area is a ski mecca for the region. Of the resorts Whitecap was the saddest of them. Not sad due to the terrain but because of owner neglect. The resort is definitely run down and one had to wonder when it would totally shut down.
Whitecap Mountain Resort — And Then…
Someone who gives a hoot about the resort bought it. Immediately via social media the new ownership ginned up excitement about the future of the resort. The new ownership employed the cheap season’s pass tactic and it worked (at least on me) and I purchased three — one for my brother, one for my brother’s wife, and one for me.
The circumstances of life and the need to save for my Whitefish trip meant I was unable to get to Whitecap until last weekend when we planned a family trip with our parents and my brother and his wife. Unfortunately, my wife was assigned a weekend day to work and she was unable to go.
Whitecap Mountain Resort — Standard Disclaimer
This review is written on my own initiative and I have received no compensation to write it. The aforementioned season pass purchase was made with my own personal funds. Further I have no financial interest in Whitecap Mountain Resort nor do I personally know anyone who does.
Whitecap Mountain Resort — Getting There
Of the resorts in “Big Snow Country” Whitecap is the most remote. Take HWY 51 north and when you get into Hurley take a right on HWY 73 and then follow that until you arrive in Iron Belt and then be on the lookout for a right turn onto County Rd E. Then Whitecap is about four – five miles from that turn. Provided the weather is good HWY 51 will be in good driving shape, 73 decent, but Cty E proved to be rather dicey — take care on HWY E lest ye end up in the ditch!
Whitecap Mountain Resort — Staying There
Whitecap offers hotel lodging. People say the decor is dated but I thought the decor was timeless. What was dated though were the old style CRT TVs and VCRs in the rooms. I did not check to see if the VCRs were Beta or VHS. The hotel definitely showed the neglect of the previous owners with leaks and the check in office was rafters and such. However, I liked our room which was a big one and slept six without a problem. The room was two levels with an enclosed room on the second level and a jacuzzi tub up there as well. The bottom level was a standard hotel room with two queen beds.The hotel is on the mountain so you can definitely ski in and ski out.
The hotel offers basic food (burgers and brats, chilli, and chips) and drinks. The hotel also offers a large swimming pool and jetless hottub (I assume another neglect of the previous owners). In addition, a basic continental breakfast is put out for guests and you cano order hot food too (though that you pay for).
Ironwood and Hurley also have hotels and lodging you can stay at.
For dinner we went to Ironwood and Hurley. I do suggest the Branding Iron in Hurley and I also will suggest Angelo’s Pizza on US 2 in Ironwood (east side of town).
Whitecap Mountain Resort — Skiing There
So how was the skiiing you ask? Good, once I readjusted to Midwest ski resort standards and once I started skiing over by the Winehut. There was quite a bit of fresh snow in the recent days and once my brother reported that there were “wild” runs by the hut I immediately headed over there.
The main run especially for warming up and beginners is entitled Sud Bowl and is a wide open groomer run. It is moderately pitched a great run for beginners. There are a few features more advanced skiers can hit to provide challenge and the great thing is you need to make a definite effort to get to them so a beginner can easily avoid them.
Over by the Wine Hut the runs have steeper sections and were mostly left ungroomed so there was good powder skiing over there. Those runs are fun and provided me with challenge. Also, be sure to check out the runs under the chairlift that serves the Sudbowl area there are some narrow lines with soft snow there.
On the other side of the resort is “Eagle’s Nest Mountain” where there are some double-black diamond runs to be found. I went over there once and returned to the main area via a blue square run.
Whitecap Resort has skiing for levels of skier from friendly green groomers to what appears to be very challenging double-black diamond runs.
Whitecap Mountain Resort — Other Notes
Whitecap is home to a frequently cited scary chairlfit. However, there are signs on both sides of the lift instructing riders they MUST unload. There is a way to ski to both sides of the resort but going from Thunderhead Mtn to Eagle’s Nest involved skating and poling. Hey Whitecap, allow us to ride that chair across! I asked a lift attendant about that and his response was that yeah people do occasionally ride across. He did not seem like he was going to “jack” anyone up for riding across.
Whitecap also just took delivery of a new winch-cat groomer. So that is a huge sign of the new owner’s commitment to the resort. Unfortunately, Whitecap after dropping money into the main lodge lost that main lodge to a fire. However, the owner has committed to having the new one open early in the 2020-2021 ski season, again solid commitment.
Whitecap Mountain Resort — My Final Word
You go to this place in the Winter to ski and Whitecap is definitely a skier’s resort. Will I go there again? Yes I will. I suggest you go there too.