It’s All Downhill in Perfect North Slopes
It all started with an imaginative college student back in the 1970s who envisioned a cattle and crop farm in Lawrenceburg as something more.
“My husband and his father were approached by a college student who had designed a ski area for his degree in recreation,” Ellen Perfect says. “He asked them, ‘Do you realize what a good location you have here?’ ”
The seed he planted grew into Perfect North Slopes, where the landscape does, indeed, work to their advantage.
“We’re in southeast Indiana – there are a lot of large, rolling hills in this area,” says Perfect, director of marketing, who met her husband after volunteering for the ski patrol.
Every winter, the family-friendly facility welcomes more than 300,000 fun-seekers. And Perfect North Slopes has something for every age and skill level.
“We have 22 different ski runs – some are very easy for beginners, and some are very steep, ‘black diamond’ runs,” Perfect says.
She strongly recommends lessons to make the most of your visit.
“We include a first-timer lesson with every lift ticket at no extra cost because we want everyone to have a good experience their first time out,” she says.
No lessons are needed, however, for one of their most popular activities: snow tubing.
“We have 23 tubing lanes – it’s one of the largest tubing areas in the Midwest,” Perfect says. “It’s very easy and controlled, so you’re not going to bump into another person.”
All of that frosty fun requires snow – and the Perfects never rely on Mother Nature alone.
“We don’t count on snow – when we get it, that’s kind of a bonus,” Perfect says. “As soon as it gets down to 28 degrees, we turn the snow guns on and make snow at night.”
Drawing from a 10-acre lake on the property, 200 snow “guns” blow water into the air, where it is frozen by high-powered fans. A grooming process then distributes the snow and smooths out trails.
While most skiers appreciate a smooth downhill run, slopestyle skiing is all about obstacles and acrobatics.
Perfect North Slopes offers two terrain parks – as well as clinics and contests – dedicated to this daring style of skiing. An offshoot of skateboarding and snowboarding, slopestyle made its debut as an Olympic sport at the 2014 Sochi winter games, where Hoosier Nick Goepper took home the bronze medal.
Goepper was only 5 years old when his mother enrolled him in ski lessons at Perfect North, where he eventually developed a talent for slopestyle.
“Nick learned to ski here, and it’s been really fun to follow his career,” Perfect says of the hometown hero. “When he comes back, he’ll ski with kids and do clinics – and all the girls get their phones out and tweet their friends.”
These days, the Perfects take great pleasure in dropping Goepper’s name at industry conventions, when representatives from larger Western resorts scoff at the idea of skiing in Indiana.
While slopestyle is for the fearless few, Perfect North Slopes makes it easy for anyone to stay active in the winter.
“Not everyone is on a soccer or football team. This is another outlet for kids, and they love it,” Perfect says.
In fact, many develop a lifelong love of skiing at Perfect North Slopes, a mecca for winter recreation for more than 35 years.
“We’ve introduced a lot of people to skiing,” Perfect says. “You can start when you’re 5 and still be doing it at 65. It’s a lifelong sport.”
The memories you make at Perfect North Slopes may well last a lifetime, too.