The biggest ski areas weren’t always that way.
Discount lift ticket website Liftopia recently posted vintage ski area maps for 10 major areas, including Sugarloaf and Sunday River.
Sunday River was far from an eight-peak destination resort in 1958, its inaugural year. The map shows just a couple runs, Cascades and Sunday Punch, located between Locke and Barker mountains. A couple of the cross cuts were there, including Rocking Chair, now called Over Easy, and Cross Bow.
Compare that with today: The ski area has 135 trails, 15 lifts and enough condo units to house an entire small town.
Sugarloaf has always been an imposing mountain, although over the years time dozens of new trails have been cut, giving skiers more variety.
In fact, most of the expansion of Sugarloaf’s footprint has come in the last 5 years or so, with several new experts-only glade trails in Brackett Basin.
Here’s what Brackett Basin skiing looks like, via a skier with a helmet camera:
If you want to see more vintage maps and watch ski areas (and map quality) grow over time, skimap.org has yearly maps over decades for most major ski areas, even if they’re not quite as old as the Liftopia maps.