A Winter Weekend in Mentone Alabama

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Updated: 1/31/2014 8:11 pm

     After a week like we've just seen.. You might need a vacation.
     But why wait for warmer weather?
     News 12 Videographer Ashley Henderson takes us on a winter getaway at Cloudmont ski resort in Mentone, Alabama.

"How was it? It was good!"

Having never visited Cloudmont Ski Resort, though it's practically in our back yard, my wife and I were excited to finally get to visit last weekend.

Just an hour away from Chattanooga, it's easy to find, affordable, and in a beautiful setting. We stayed in a chalet right next to the slopes, and next to the river. 

Just down the road is the magnificent DeSoto Falls, which is one of the tallest falls, and prettiest scenes in our area. It's also easy to get to, so no long hikes necessary.

There is a great restaurant down the road called the Wildflower Cafe, which features live music on the weekends, and the long time entertainer there spices up your meal by visiting the various dining rooms, and playing familiar songs while the diners are invited to sing along.

But back at the slopes, even novices like me, having only skied twice in my life, can enjoy this one without too much fear of mortal danger. I do recommend using ski poles however, if you're not already an avid skier. Because the lift requires some ability on the part if the skier to hold on to the cable, and paying attention to keeping your skis straight on the way up, I was talked into skipping the ski poles. For me: big mistake.

When I exited the lift at the top, I suddenly realized, uh-oh, how am I going to get back down?!!

So I did the best I could by flailing my arms wildly, trying to maintain my balance, and I seemed to be getting back to the hang of things for a minute there, until I found that just because you haven't done the splits in 30 years, is no reason you can't be forced into that position again when your skis drift apart!

I made it back to my feet, and down the slope, and went one more time (without falling) just for good measure. But discretion being the better part of valor, I decided to quit while I was ahead. Maybe I'll do a bit more next time!

 "I'm just glad I didn't break my leg!"

It is quite a workout though, and after you work up a sweat and stop to rest, it's nice to be able to dry off, and warm up by the fire in the nearby ski rental cabin, or just dry your gloves.

There was a wide mix of people, abilities, and ages. Lots of veteran snowboarders, and folks who just needed to sit and rest awhile after their fall.

Plus, the well lit slopes made it easy for the more adventurous to venture back out after dark and enjoy another few hours of fun.

So, thumbs up from the Henderson family. Cloudmont in Mentone, Alabama is well worth a visit in midwinter.

From Mentone, Alabama, Ashley Henderson, WDEF news 12.

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