By David Schissler
(January 2013) Here’s your chance to own a ski area in Maine. Just before Christmas the Berry family listed Saddleback mountain in Rangeley with a Portland real estate broker. The prospect of taking on a partner is also under consideration.
Back in 2003 the family purchased 8,000 acres including the ski area. They intend to keep approximately 7,600 acres. In the last 10 years they’ve pumped $40 million worth of upgrades into the facility. The asking price for the 400 acres of ski trails, lifts, base lodge and most of the 120 or so condominiums is $12 million. With a summit of 4,120 feet the mountain has a vertical rise of 2,000 feet, has two fixed grip quads, two doubles, 66 trails on 220 acres (the longest trail is just over 3 miles) with 85% snowmaking coverage.
In the decade the Berry’s have owned the mountain they’ve increased the workforce from 66 to 250 employees. The family is intent on ensuring the resort will continue to be a source of employment in a part of Maine with limited opportunities for work.
“Saddleback is one of the most special places in the world,” Faith Berry was quoted as saying in theWaterville Sentinel. “It’s beautiful and exquisite and the townspeople are wonderful. We want to try to make sure [the sale] is done right. We want it done in a way that is sensitive to the beauty and the environment. Our hope for a buyer is someone willing to be supportive of the local area to become involved.” www.saddlebackmaine.com.