ROXBURY — An upcoming foreclosure auction for a well-known ski area on Route 9 was canceled as of Friday afternoon.
Granite Gorge Ski Area had been slated for sale Monday morning by its mortgage holder, Hampshire First Bank, according to a listing by Epping-based James R. St. Jean Auctioneers.
Historically, Granite Gorge has offered tubing, snowshoeing and cross-country and downhill skiing. Last winter, though, the business’ chairlift wasn’t inspected, according to a state agency, and co-owner Fred Baybutt cited a bad snow season.
The auction listing said the 146-acre property is worth $543,595 and has 20 trails; a lodge with a lobby, a rental center, and a bar and grill; a yurt; and a maintenance building. More than $13,000 in 2018 taxes were owed on the site, the listing said.
The Nashua-based firm handling the previously scheduled auction, Merra & Kanakis, wasn’t immediately reachable for comment after business hours Friday.
A post on the Granite Gorge Facebook page around 1:30 p.m. Friday announced the auction’s cancellation with a discounted season pass for family tubing.
Baybutt said Friday night that the business met the bank’s terms and paid the 2018 taxes, as part of the agreement.
He plans to relaunch the winter youth program, and while downhill skiing will continue in some form, Baybutt isn’t sure yet if the chairlift will be running this winter.
Posts online starting in May had indicated Baybutt was looking for someone to take over the bar and restaurant, but he said Granite Gorge will keep that in-house and will announce plans in the fall to “diversify” that part of the business, perhaps opening it sooner than ski season.
Baybutt said he’s glad to keep running Granite Gorge, calling it a “win-win for everybody,” including the community.