The ski area “The Small Mountain” (Muntele Mic) is a mountain resort from south-west of Romania located under the peak mountain with the same name. It is considered to be “ The Banat’s Pearl”.
The base of the ski area “The Small Mountain” is located at the altitude of 1545m.
The ski area is formed from 3 lifts and 4 snow slopes, in total, about 4 km of snow slopes.
An amazing panorama is seen from the snow slopes towards The Caransebes’s Hollow but also towards The Tarcu’s mountains, which are found nearby.
The Small mountain massive takes part of the geography unit of the Tarcu Mountains, occupying the nord-west region of the Middle Carpathians.
The maximum altitude of the Small Hill is 1802. Because of its lower altitude, The Small Hill is afforested in good part. The contact with the Tarcu Massive is made through the Jigorei ridge.
The history of the The Small Mountain resort begins in 1930 when the first building was realised: The Mountain Hunters’ Chalet.
On the 12 July 1936 the resort’s inauguration was made. There were about 1500 people from Lugoj, Caransebes, Timisoara, Bucuresti but even from the villages around the mountain.
In 1972 has started the construction of the building of the chairlift, from the Philanderer Valley to the resort, at the altitude of 1531m. At the moment, this is not usable.
The resort has developed very much because of the ski area.
The access in The Small Mountain Resort is made from Caransebes, on the county road DJ 608A. It passes through the towns Zervesti, Turnul Ruieni and Borlova. The road goes up in serpentine on the Philanderer Valley until it reaches the alpine and then in the resort.
You can only go by car, there is no pubic transportation. From Caransebes to The Small Mountain are 37 km.
Up until recently, tourists went by car to the chairlift station (25km from Caransebeș) and from here with the chairlift. At this moment the chairlift is not working which leads to traffic jams along the way up.
The major problem of the access on The Small Mountain resort is that the road, on the section between the old chairlift and the ski resort (about 10km) is not well maintained. When ice is formed on the road a lot of cars get stuck. This fact lead to the inability to drive safe to the resort because the road in many places it has a too narrow width. The stuck cars can not be bypassed.
Very important! Don’t try to get in the resort by car without being equipped with snow chains. If you don’t want to have problems with the jams hit the road in the morning.
As you climb in altitude, a beautiful panorama opens towards The Tarcu Mountain.
Parking: at the base of the ski area there is a parking lot where you must pay a fee (20 lei/day).
If you get in the morning at the resort, you have the chance to get a place in the parking place. Otherwise you will need to leave your car on the wayside.
The description of the ski area from The Small Mountain:
The north slope:
- Length > 960m;
- Level of difference > 260m;
- Slope inclination 29%;
- The slope is equipped with ski lift and night light;
- Degree of difficulty > middle.
From the top of the slope you can go down both on The Sun Valley and on the slopes Borlova 1 and 2.
Getting down on the northen slope you can divert 100m to visit the White Cross from the altitude of 1670m.
This is a monument for the heroes who fought for the nation reunion.
The Sun Valley slope:
- Level of difference >180m;
- Slope inclination 16%;
- The slope is equipped with ski lift;
- Degree of difficulty > middle.
- From the top of the slope you can go down on the Borlova slopes 1 and 2.
The Borlova slopes 1 and 2:
- Length > 1000m (each slope);
- Level of difference > 122m;
- Degree of difficulty > middle;
- Both slopes are served by the same ski lift;
- The Borlova slope 1 is served by the night light.
All the slopes are linked an it is very easy to go from one to the other.
Ski lift installation costs: there are talks for the application of a card that includes all the slopes.
The north slope and the Sun Valley slope have the same cards at the following costs:
- 3 ascents > 12 lei;
- skipas/day adult (between 9 am- 5 pm) > 70 lei;
- skipas/day child (between 9 am- 5 pm) > 35 lei;
The minimum number of ascents is 3. There is a card warranty fee of 10 lei and the money recovered at the refund of the card.
The Borlova slope 1 and the Borlova slope 2:
- 3 points card>12 lei;
- 6 points card>20 lei;
- ski pass/day adult (between 9 am- 5:30 pm) > 65 lei;
- ski pass/day child child (between 9 am- 5:30 pm) > 55 lei.
The value of one point=1 climb to the ski lift. There is card warranty fee of 10 lei, recovering the money when returning the card.
Positive aspects at the Small Mountain ski area:
- good prices;
- large variety of ski variants;
- beautiful panorama to the Caransebes hollow and Țarcu mountains;
- the slopes are well maintained;
- The altitude is big enough that it allows a long period of ski.
- Because of the slopes which have big width, they are not crowded,
- those who are at higher level with skiing or snowboarding can get out of the slopes exploring the virgin areas of slopes.
Negative aspects at the Small Mountain ski area:
- poor access, it is made through the county road which for many times get stuck because is not well maintained;
- is not marked anywhere that this road is not accessible without snow chains.
Accommodation and food: in the resort there are many pensions with the possibility of housing.
In the winter season the occupancy level is very high but you have the alternative of housing in Caransebeș. The disadvantage is that you have to travel the access road (37 km) each morning. The cost of the rooms/night varies between 120-150 lei.
If you want to rest or take a brake, you can choose from the plenty of the restaurants and the terraces.
Equipment for rent: at the base of Northen slope there is a renting center for winter gears.
If you practice ski touring we propose you a nice trek from the Cuntu chalet to the Tarcu peak. This tour can be made even with snowshoes. If you don’t know the area you can ask for a mountain guide.
Other possibility of ski in the Banat area is the Valuig slope from The Semenic mountains.
We gladly recommend you this ski area because it offers very good ski conditions at acceptable prices.