New Year, New Wilmot

1/9/2017 - Laura Wendling

Family-Friendly, Sports & Outdoors

2017 has kicked into high gear here in Kenosha. One of the main winter attractions in our area is Wilmot Mountain. Since 1938, this iconic destination has served the skiing needs of residents and tourists alike.

What’s exciting is that Wilmot is now part of the Vail Resorts’ Epic family. What exactly does this mean?  Well, you now directly benefit from over $13 million in improvements, for starters. Wilmot was great before, but these latest updates will inspire both novice and experienced skiers.

The hubby and I trekked out to Wilmot during the holiday break to brush up on our skiing skills. Admittedly, we are both novices, even with our Midwestern roots. However, the hospitable folks at Wilmot took incredible care of us from beginning to end. We enjoyed a fabulous (and educational) skiing lesson, and then relaxed while enjoying a savory dinner at Walt’s Tavern. While we visited, we were amazed at the improvements and were thrilled to see a wide range of people enjoying the amenities – families, young adults, and us, er, older folks. <laughing> Wilmot has something to offer both beginners and experts! Insider tip: Don’t forget Wilmot is not only for skiing…there are special snowboarding and snow tubing areas too! Be sure to the check the website for hours.

So what’s new? Check it out:

More room, more service! Wilmot “regulars” will immediately notice the Main Lodge transformation. The open concept doubles the seating capacity and traffic flow. Lots of room to move around, get settled, and get into your gear!

Increase in lift capacity. There are 3 new quad lifts and the existing lifts were renovated.

Expanded terrain park and a high-speed rope tow. Plus, more than 40 features designed and built by terrain park experts. More for my “number” friends: There are nearly 120 skiable acres, 23 trails, 7 lifts, 2 surface conveyer lifts and progression terrain parks with a double high-speed rope tow. The separate tubing area has 22 lanes and 2 surface conveyer lifts to give you a ride back to the top. 

No snow? No worries! The snowmaking system has miles of new pipe and 56 new snow guns.

Kiddies reap the rewards too. Kids can learn to ski at the 4,000 square foot Children’s Learning Center and Ski School. What’s really cool is the separate drop off area. Two new conveyer lifts and regraded terrain really make this an exceptional beginner experience. If my daughters were little again I’d be hanging out here in a heartbeat!! I even wanted to try this area for myself, as I’m a newbie on the slopes. Haha!  Insider tip for adults: There’s a great window area overlooking the Children’s Learning Center! If you need a break from the cold, you can relax in warmth (with a cup of coffee or cocoa) and easily watch your kids. 

Hungry? The Ski Hill Grill offers “quick-serve” dining, allowing die-hard winter sport enthusiasts to grab and go. Faster food intake means more time on the mountain, right? The menu includes Chicago style hot dogs, burgers, yummy soups, and of course, Wisconsin cheese curds. If you’d rather sit down and have the full dining restaurant experience, be sure to visit Walt’s Tavern (formerly the Iron Kettle). Walt’s Tavern features American contemporary entrees, as well as wine, specialty cocktails, and craft beers. We had an incredible dinner and rewarded ourselves with a tasty adult beverage after our lesson. Our middle-aged, non-skiing, bodies welcomed the break after our fun day! We then “chilled” at the inviting outdoor fire pit. A neat way to unwind.   

Shopping. Forget something? Wilmot’s ski shops have you covered. There’s a wide variety of hats, gloves, goggles, sunglasses, and other clothing. Or bring home some Wilmot Mountain branded gear as a souvenir!

Easier than ever to get on the mountain! Get your tickets and rentals from the new exterior ticket windows. Or, skip the lines and do it all online! Insider tip: remember you can book your lessons online too. All lessons need to be booked 48 hours in advance to guarantee times.

It’s evident that the Vail team at Wilmot put a lot of time, thought, and effort into the renovations. I was very impressed by the attention to the little details throughout the grounds. We have a winter recreational gem right in our backyard! I really hope you get the chance to visit and experience all the improvements sometime soon.

Laura Wendling

Community Blogger

Chicago, IL > Buffalo, NY > Kenosha, WI. Geek, reader, fitness enthusiastic. Mom to two fierce daughters and two cats. Soon to have an empty nest – ready to explore our community with husband!