Located at 1275 Turnpike Street in North Andover is the Brightview Senior Living Residence. An interesting fact is that it is built at the base of a former ski area. The area used to be home to the former BostonHill ski area and is described below by (NELSAP) New England’s Lost Ski Areas Project. An interesting website that provide information on old ski areas that have faded into history.
Once Located off of Route 114 in Andover, MA, Boston Hills was one of your typical Eastern Massachusetts ski areas that offered skiing to the high populations of suburban Boston. The area was opened in 1957 and was founded by Bob Dunn. The area first opened with a J-bar lift and few rope tows. The area originally had a few wide slopes and an 1800 foot beginner trail. There was also snowmaking at this area in the late 1950’s, and was one of the first areas in the country to have it.
A double chairlift was installed around 1971, which increased the uphill capacity to somewhere near 4500 skiers/hour.
The owners decided to make Boston Hills into a summer recreation area as well. During the late 1970’s an Alpine Slide was added. While the vertical was only 240 feet, I’m sure this was lots of fun! The alpine slide continued to operate until at least the early 1980’s.
Perhaps the most unique summer attraction at Boston Hills was summer skiing! This was installed during the early 1980’s. They installed a mat with bristles on the whole front slope. You would ride the chair up, moisten your skis with water or a lubricant, then ski down! Unfortunately, you can imagine what would happen if you fell…lots of bruises!
Unfortunately, the area closed at some point during the late 1980’s. The exact reason is unknown, but was likely due to local competition, such as Bradford, Nashoba, and Wachusett, as well as non snowy winters.
During the 1990’s, an archery shop took over part of the base lodge, but this would close as well. Throughout the 1990’s, the Hall double chair remained in place, and the trails were at least mowed, because there was little growth.