“Trollhaugen Late Night Fridays are a midwest phenomenon. An experience where 1st-time newbs can find themselves getting sendy with global pros across Troll’s magical Haugen until the wee hours of the Wisconsin morning. There’s this weird community kinship that could only take place after 1 AM. It’s where trips to the Skolhaugen Lounge for liquid courage send you boldly screaming down a Bakken, to cruise the Valhalla jump, to watch the best live entertainment in the Midwest. It’s 2 AM, and you’re on the snow, all are welcome, none are posers, because when it’s 2 AM, and you’re on the snow, you’re one of us; making lifetime memories for only $20 9pm-3am.”– David Sutton, Marketing Director at Trollhaugen.
Trollhaugen Late Night has been a Minnesota/Wisconsin snowboard and ski destination for decades. As the sun sets and the resort lights flick on the night is only just beginning. Live music consumes the Skolhaugen lounge every Friday through late hours of the night, making it a hot spot for not only skiers and snowboarders but locals seeking a friendly Friday evening that is just 50 minutes north of the Twin Cities. A quick exchange of a $20 Andrew Jackson spot gets you a lift ticket that is good from 9pm-3am and an evening full of memories, laughs, usually a little too much to drink as well as a full experience of the midwest gem that is Troll.
“There are a lot of variables that make it such a cool place” admits newly appointed Assistant Mountain Manager, Adam Mahler. “The bar is iconic. It’s an old school chalet style with good cheap drinks.. you’re in Wisconsin, you can’t charge nine dollars for a beer here.” The indoor nightlife of Trollhaugen Late night has one of the most inviting and at home feelings, the place numerous locals and even international skiers and snowboarders. The Skolhaugen Lounge seems to be the place of interest to most, but there is plenty more to Trollhaugen Late Night than just the cheap drinks and bar scene.
“Just out (night) riding, it’s just something different… night riding is really cool, especially if you get good snow you can ride in the trees at night here, it’s insane..” says Mahler. As most Midwest on snow participators know, night riding is a way of life here. Trollhaugen, along with almost every other resort in the Midwest, does not close once nightfall hits. The sun dips below our 280′ vertical hill and its game on. People leave their 9-5 day jobs and gear up for a night riding completely under the lights. Something that comes totally natural to Midwestern riders may seem entirely bizarre and even difficult to a lot of out of region riders that visit Trollhaugen during our winter months.
Trollhaugen holds a spot on TransWorld Snowboarding’s Resort Guide as one the Top 3 resorts, and the #1 Resort in the midwest for the 2017/2018 season. Trollhaugen’s world-renowned parks are recognized for catering to a wide variety of skill levels from beginner to advanced levels of riding. “The parks are ALWAYS dialed, no matter the conditions our park crew works hard and stays late, they absolutely crush it” admits Mahler about the hard work put in by the park staff here. The late-night conditions are no exception to this fame. High-speed rope tows and a plethora of stoked riders gather at Trollhaugen terrain parks for a long night of rail wizardry and memories that won’t be forgotten.
-House Team Rider Kyle Kennedy and House Shop head Calvin Green are also apart of the elite crew of terrain park executives that keep Trollhaugen parks dialed. Give thanks next time you see them or buy them a beverage of their choice. PHOTO: Connor Nelson-
The number of people who show up for this on snow fiesta is the real mind boggler. The average ticket sales for this 2018/2019 season for a Troll Late Night has reached 800-900 passes sold a night. Yeah, you read that right. “I think the highest ticket sales we’ve had on a friday night was 1,515 tickets on one given night”, says Mahler, “Even if you don’t ride it’s still a sight to see.. you can grab some food or drink in the bar, sit on the patio, watch people ride, it’s really the best time ever.”
Late Night holds true as one of the most anticipated events of the winter season for riders not only in the Twin Cities metro but riders from all across the world. Troll has created an aesthetic, an atmosphere that is enjoyed and absorbed by all that enter under the bowed arch entrance out front. The sense of community and dare I say family quality, that Trollhaugen has created without even really trying has to lead me to believe that Troll Late Night is truly something that every snow sports enthusiast should experience firsthand. And if it turns out you didn’t enjoy your time had at the Haugen.. well, I guess there is a first for everything.
Title Image Rider: Keegan Tank
Photo by: Stephan Jende