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Blackwater as seen from the south slope of Ragged Mountain in 2012
Blackwater Ski Area
Andover, New Hampshire
Status: Open
First Season:1960s
Vertical Drop:436 feet
Standing Lifts:Surface lifts
Past Lifts:Surface lifts
Left: Blackwater as seen from the south slope of Ragged Mountain in 2012
Recent NewEnglandSkiIndustry.com News:
Located in Andover, New Hampshire, the origins of Proctor Academy date back to 1848, when Andover Academy first opened. After a few decades of changes and relocations, the institution became Proctor Academy in 1881. Proctor Academy is presently a private boarding school for grades 9-12.

Early Decades of Skiing

Skiing at Proctor Academy dates back to the mid 1930s, when Roland Burbank brought the sport to the school. By the 1940s, Proctor had its own rope tow served slopes adjacent to the present day playing fields.

Blackwater Opens

The early days of Blackwater
The early days of Blackwater

The early to mid 1960s brought two new ski areas to the Andover-Danbury area. A large ski area opened for the general public on the north side of Ragged Mountain, featuring a double chairlift. At some point before, during, or after the opening of that ski area, a backcountry ski trail was cut from its summit to the Proctor Academy campus.

Meanwhile, on a hill just south of Ragged Mountain, Proctor Academy built its own new ski area, named Blackwater. The initial development was serviced by a rope tow.

Gradual Modernization

A T-Bar was reportedly purchased from a ski area in Michigan in 1968 and installed for the 1969-70 season. Athletic Director Bob Wilson enlisted the help of students in enlarging the ski area for the new lift.

While other nearby ski areas struggled to stay open, such as Ragged and King Ridge, Proctor pushed Blackwater Ski Area forward in the 1990s by installing snowmaking and night skiing. Yarrow's Lodge was then completed in 1997.

2007 Capital Campaign

The base area
The base area

A capital campaign hit overdrive in 2007, as Proctor worked to upgrade the ski area. For the 2007-2008 season, $550,000 was raised to replace the T-Bar (with a T-Bar from the former King Ridge ski area), install a handle tow, improve trails, and expand snowmaking.

During the fall of 2012, Proctor ski coach and former Temple Mountain owner Sandy Eneguess widened the racing slope to meet FIS regulations. More recently, references to the ski area have transitioned from 'Blackwater Ski Area' to 'Proctor Ski Area'

Though technically a private ski area, Blackwater often plays host to area outing clubs, as well as regional and statewide races. A set of ski jumps at its base are quite popular and feature snowmaking. Cross country skiing is also integrated into the development.

Lifts
Click on lift name for information and photos
Standing Lifts
Installed
The T-Bar circa the 2000s
T-Bar
Hall
T-Bar
2007-08

Past Lifts
Seasons
The T-Bar circa 1970
T-Bar
Constam
T-Bar
1969-70
-
2006-07

Visitor Memories
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External Links
  • Proctor Ski Area - official site
  • History of Proctor Skiing - YouTube
  • Blackwater Ski Area - New England Lost Ski Areas Project
  • Last updated: October 23, 2016

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