Themes That Pick Up The Resort Name Can Be Catchy And Easy To Remember.

What’s in a name? A few resorts create a theme for trail names. Memorable. Cutesy. Provocative (?) Here’s a trail sign from Waterville Valley Resort.
Credit: Don Burch

Sometimes trail names are descriptive (Easy Mile at Suicide Six), sometimes they are a tribute (Thanks Walt at Mt Snow for its founder Walter Schoenknecht), sometimes they’re humorous (True Grit and No Grit at Waterville Valley), sometimes sensational (Widowmaker at Sugarloaf and Snowshoe) and at several mountains they follow themes. What follows are ski areas where some or all of the trails are themed-named. (This article sourced some of these factiods from a Boston Globe article, What’s The Most Popular Ski Trail Name In New England?)

Gore’s trails are named after Adirondack local sites. The 46er trail is named after the 46 high peaks in the Adirondacks, and the Tahawas trail is named after a ghost town in the area.

Guess where? Wildcat, of course.
Credit: Don Burch

At Wildcat, trails have feline names like Wild Kitten, Polecat and Hairball.

Pat’s Peak trails have names related to types of wind including Tornado, Backdraft, Squall Line and Vortex.

Camden Ski Bowl, within five miles of the ocean, has nautical themed trail names such as Spinnaker, Crow’s Nest, Scrimshaw, Mainsail Glade and Clipper.

Mt Abram’s trails are named after the Rocky and Bullwinkle Show. These include Dudley-Do-Right, Boris Badenov, Snidley Whiplash, Fractured Fairytales and Frostbite Falls. Wonder how that happened?

Whaleback has trails named Leviathan, Fluke, Blow Hole, Blubber and Harpoon.

Many of Saddleback’s trails are fly-fishing themed. Examples are Jitterbug, Wooly Bugger, Gnat, Nymph, Tight Line and Warden’s Worry.

King Pine’s trails are, of course, related to pine trees and their products. Pokey Pine, Pine Board and Knotty Pine are examples.

Many of Loon’s trails are terms from the logging industry; Flume, Ripsaw, Crosscut and Walking Boss.

Oz Peak at Sunday River has trails named Flying Monkey, Tin Woodsman, Emerald City and Poppy Fields.

Gunstock has trails named Trigger, Ramrod, Flintlock, Recoil and Pistol.

Magic Mountain has trails named Magician, Hocus Pocus, Wand, Up Your Sleeve and Wizard.

What’s your most notable trail name?


  1. Mike Dowling says:

    Jay Peak has a few trails Viking-themed (Valhalla and Ullr’s Dream) or people who started it (Perry Merrill and [Harold] Haynes) or who gave welcome-to-JP chats to newbies in French & English (Andre’s Paradise for Andre Poirier); plus unofficial trails requiring local knowledge (Dogpatch, Corona Highway, The Dip).

  2. Aaron Shapiro says:

    You left of the best of Mt. Abram’s – Fearless Leader

  3. LuAnn Snyder says:

    Vail Ski Resort was founded by Pete Seibert and Earl Eaton in 1962, which was named after Charles Vail, designer of the highway that passed through the valley. Seibert joined the U.S. Army’s 10th Mountain Division, an elite group of mountain warfare light infantry that trained at nearby Camp Hale and served in World War II. RIVA RIDGE trail name comes from the infantry’s best-known combat achievement on Riva Ridge in the mountains of Northern Italy in February of 1945.

  4. Mark Hutchinson says:

    Okemo has Cheif and Wardance, a lot of indian names. But my favorite trail Is Nose Dive at Stowe. The home of the sugar slalom for many years!

  5. Two of the most memorable trail names I found are at the Santa Fe ski area: Desafio (which means Challenge in Spanish) and Muerte (Death). Death is preferable for most skiers. The Challenge trail (Desafio) is vey bumpy and I think it is never groomed. The Muerte (Death) trail is perfectly groomed and often used for ski races.

  6. Bill Tidmore says:

    A friend skied a new trail in Alaska with his guide who said “This is first time for this trail,you can name it” He named it 4 Jacks. The reason? He sold his wheels and tires from his off road race truck to pay for his ski trip. The truck was left on 4 jacks.

  7. Sometimes political correctness rules. Many years ago, some of the treed skiing on Killington Peak the locals named Toilet Bowl were cut for a new trail. The locals wanted the traditional name kept, of course. But elicit to many giggles on a trail map.

    A compromise was reached. The Resort told the locals, ‘We’ll call it Royal flush’.

    No, this was not in or about a poker hand. Royal was a popular maker of commercial toilets, their Quiet Flush II model common in ski area restrooms.

    So of course, to maintain tradition, to the old timers it’s still Toilet Bowl.

    PS, to Emilio: ‘Death is preferable for most skiers…’? It’s quite funny, taken out of context.

  8. Cathy Meyer says:

    Perfect North Slopes, in Indiana, has theatrical names-Showtime, Back Stage, Call Back, Runway, Encore, Center Stage, Special Effects, etc.

  9. My quatre favorite North Country trail names are@: Jay Peak–The Green Beret; Whiteface–Cloudspin and old Moon Valley–Sunset Strip; Mont Sutton–.Sous Bois IV (quatre, 4, slur it as katra in French)

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