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Vermont Skiing 2018-2019

diymom

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
Killington divas- DH is giving a talk up that way (I'm considering Hanover, NH to be close enough) on April 22- 24. Will K'ton likely be open weekdays still, or only weekends?
 
Examples of why late season skiing in the northeast can be good fun for those with some time flexibility to storm chase and a willingness to drive on snowy roads in VT. But there can be a lot of variability of exactly which area gets the goods. Mount Snow had plans for events today that won't happen as scheduled, partially because of wind holds. Folks at Sugarbush will be having a much better time.

Mount Snow Conditions Report and Update 3/23/19
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Screen Shot 2019-03-23 at 9.15.40 AM.png

Sugarbush Conditions Report for 3/23/19

Screen Shot 2019-03-23 at 9.09.34 AM.png
 

SallyCat

Moderator
Staff member
I hate all of you.


Kidding! :grouphug:


I pushed back my EMT exam to this Monday, so I'm at home studying while everyone in Vermont enjoys a semi-surprise powder weekend. #adulting

:ballchain:
 

Serafina

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
Likely heading to Mt Snow tomorrow with my teen. Any recommendations for easier blues for our warm up runs?
That's my home mountain. I was out yesterday (absolutely premium spring skiing, the best of the best) and today (not so much, due to it getting warm yesterday afternoon and really cold last night). I went out at 10am this morning, and that was a little early for things to have softened up. Was glad to be on skis with good edges.

As far as the easier blues, I don't know where you usually ski, so it's hard to say what's "easy"-ish. The lifts that directly service the main easier blues are offline during the week this late in the season, so you don't have an option for not going to the summit. What I'd do is start with a trip down Long John. It's green, but not if you're used to Wachusett or Okemo - there it would probably be a low blue. It's a fun long run with fantastic views, so you wouldn't be losing out on anything at all by taking that as your warm-up.

After that, if they're running the Beartrap lift (they probably will be) you can drop down into Sunbrook on Thanks Walt (good signage showing you where to go) and lift up and out of Sunbrook on the 'trap. Thanks Walt is the easiest of the blues that you'll be able to access directly.

The next thing up would be to take Cascade down from the top (this is not a terribly difficult blue, but is more challenging than Thanks Walt), and then either move from that onto Snowdance (technically green, but it was a blue for most of the last ten years and at best it's "teal" - more blue than green). Very, very fun run - this is the one that greets you when you pull into the ski area from 100, it's a huge, wide strip of snow with big rollers. Can get onto it via the Snowdance pitch (definitely intermediate) or NE Time (novice, but fun old-school narrow winding trail).

Alternately, you can continue down the base of Cascade and access Canyon. Has one serious pitch - more difficult line is skier's left under the lift, easier line is skier's right by the trees, and lots of rolling terrain otherwise.

Check the snow report, and don't bother with One More Time or Overbrook (also accessed via Cascade) unless they've been groomed.

Ridge and the other blues over near there are significantly more challenging than the blues on the Canyon/Snowdance side of the face. Avoid Hop, Uncles, Cutoff, and South Bowl even if the snow report says they've been groomed. Some jerk in the management is currently exaggerating the open terrain by failing to close runs that are in bad condition, and there's a huge amount of blowback from the passholders on this matter. Likewise, there may be some runs (Cooper's Junction, in particular, which is a shame) that are marked as open on the snow report, but are actually roped and you can't get out of them because the lift isn't running. All those runs I mentioned above are in good condition, no funky stuff, etc.

The blacks are very easy to avoid at Mt. Snow. Most of them are clustered on the North Face, so as long as you stay out of there (it's well marked) and off River Run, you'll be fine with that.

One of my favorite loops is to lift up to the summit, ski down Thanks Walt, lift out of Sunbrook and down to Long John, and then to take a right on Season's (down in a big junction, easy to see on the map) which carries you over to Carinthia, where you can lift back up on Nitro and watch the kids throwing down tricks in the terrain park, and then either ski left off the lift to get back to the base of Beartrap, or ski right off the lift to get back to Long John.

If you look carefully, you can turn left off Long John onto the Low Traverse and take that over to the base of Ridge (blue, but easier than the big pitch higher up), base of South Bowl (mercifully free of ice floes), or Ego Alley (hella fun rolling blue) and get back to the base of the Bluebird that way. Just watch out that you don't wind up missing the turn off Ego Alley and wind up on Yard Sale (steep bumped-out headwall, and one of only two black on the main face).

I do not, repeat NOT recommend taking either one of the runs that goes down the main face under and next to the Bluebird lift line. They're blues that look a lot easier from the lift than they really are, and pick up a lot of traffic from people whose skills are not up to the task, and the surface consequently gets a lot of abuse. I don't ever bother with those runs unless it's first thing in the morning, they've got fresh cord on them, and you can see where ski patrol has tracked it up. This morning, it looked like cord but was really ice. And they were in terrible shape last weekend before last Friday's snow, and they're not holding up well. So I advise resisting the temptation.

All in all, conditions are pretty good considering how crummy the weather has been this winter, and the mountain is holding up really well! I hope you have a good time!
 
Conditions were quite fun today at Stowe - good coverage, icy up top but mostly enough frozen granular to get a great edge and rip once you knew the lay of the land, and some soft slushy stuff down low. Probably my last turns for the season unless I manage to pull off a weekend at Killington in May. 08124A3C-F3F5-458F-A9DD-A23E6A9C2167.jpeg
 
Not much of a surprise that Vermont skier numbers were way up for 2018-19 due to the great snowfall both early and late.

6/6/2019 Vermont Business Magazine
Snowy season pushes Vermont ski industry back over 4 million skier visits
" . . .
Vermont ski areas saw 207K more skier and rider visits this season than last, an increase of 5.2 percent. This season’s 4,178,533 total skier/rider visits were the most since the 2014-15 season and 1.2-percent higher than the 10-year average seen by the state’s ski areas.

Historic early openings with unprecedented amounts of skiable and rideable terrain set the stage for the successful season. Killington Resort first spun its lifts on October 19 – a full three weeks ahead of last year’s opening day and tied for earliest opening in the East. Mount Snow Resort enjoyed the earliest opening in its 64-year history on Oct. 27. Smugglers’ Notch Resort opened Nov. 23 with the most skiable and rideable terrain ever on an opening day – 58 of its 78 total trails. By Dec. 1, the state's percentage of open alpine terrain stood at 65; the average for that date over the previous 13 seasons was just over eight percent.
. . ."
 

SallyCat

Moderator
Staff member
The early snow here in VT was a blast, but the season itself felt more mixed. We had a weird pattern of snowstorm-rain-freeze. It felt as though every time it snowed you had a day or two to enjoy it before conditions went to heck. And if you couldn't get out right when it snowed because of work, you missed the brief window of decent conditions and the season felt more frustrating than the snowfall numbers suggested.

Then in late March or April, I can't remember exactly, but just as spring skiing season should have been at its height, we got an absolutely massive rainstorm that destroyed the snowpack and led to abominable surface conditions. Most people around here hung up their skis by the end of March and got out their road bikes.

No doubt, though, that the early snow got visitors thinking about skiing and booking trips earlier than usual, so I can see how it was a boost for the industry.
 

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