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TOWN GUIDE: Let's Go Skiing!

A comprehensive guide to Vermont’s downhill ski resorts.


STORY BY

BENJAMIN LERNER


PAINTINGS BY

PETER HUNTOON

PETERHUNTOON.COM

The heart of winter is the perfect time for an enjoyable Vermont vacation. Across the state, celebrated ski resorts and villages of all sizes offer world-class skiing, snowboarding, dining, and lodging experiences. Whether you’re an accomplished alpine veteran or an inexperienced newcomer, the timeless thrill of coasting down a windswept and scenic Green Mountain ski trail is hard to match.


Stratton Mountain Resort

5 Village Lodge Rd., Stratton Mountain, VT 05155

Trails: 99

Lifts: 11

Summit Elevation: 3,875 ft. Vertical Drop: 2,003 ft.

Skiable Acres: 670

Stratton.com


Stratton Mountain Resort is Southern Vermont’s premier ski resort and winter destination. With well-maintained ski trails, fast lifts, and a lively resort village, both solo skiers and visiting families will feel right at home. For quick access to the mountain summit, head to the Gondola 10 lift near the base lodge. The American Express lift is a wonderful option for riders looking for a shorter run, and the Tamarack 3 Lift will bring you directly to the Mid-Mountain Lodge, which offers on-mountain indoor dining with a full-service kitchen and bar.


Stratton Mountain Resort features 160 acres of glade terrain sure to appeal to seasoned off-trail skiers, and their five terrain parks provide a wide range of obstacles for riders seeking to test their aerial skills. The East Byrnes Side boardercross park was designed by the Stratton Parks Crew in collaboration with X Games and Olympic Medalists Lyndsey Jacobellis and Ross Powers. At the Big Ben Terrain Park, experienced riders can maximize their potential on expansive park elements such as ride-on boxes, flowing rollers, and down bars. For inexperienced trick riders, Progression Park is an excellent starting point. Looking to learn the basic fundamentals of skiing and snowboarding? The Villager 2 lift leads to beginner-friendly terrain.


For wintertime fun for the whole family, stop in at the Coca-Cola tube park and slide down a snowy hillside on an inflatable snow tube. For those who wish to explore Stratton Mountain in a different way, the Stratton Mountain Nordic Lodge offers guided snowshoe tours and Nordic skiing lessons. Ski and snowboard rentals are available at Village Rentals from 8 AM - 5 PM daily (with longer hours on holiday weeks); and daily lesson bookings, seasonal programs, specialty workshops, and camp bookings are available on the resort’s website.


Stratton Village has many additional amenities, including The Stratton Training & Fitness Center, which houses an indoor saltwater swimming pool, multiple exercise rooms, indoor tennis courts, a yoga room and several massage rooms. Fireside yoga classes are held during the winter at the Black Bear Lodge, taught by experienced yogis who are extensively trained in multiple yogic disciplines, and Stratton Village is home to many restaurants and bars. For an upscale retail experience, head to the Stratton Village shops. Von Bargen’s Fine Jewelry features a scintillating selection of fetching regalia; and First Run Sports, Burton, Equipe Sport, Syd & Dustys, The North Face, The Dashing Bear Boutique, and The Stratton Clothing company offer high-quality ski and snowboard gear and apparel.



Sugarbush Resort

102 Forest Dr., Warren, VT 05674

Trails: 111

Lifts: 16

Summit Elevation: 4,083 ft. Vertical Drop: 2,600 ft.

Skiable Acres: 581

Sugarbush.com

Standing at the Southwestern edge of the Mad River Valley, Sugarbush’s twin mountains serve as an inviting beacon for approaching skiers and vacationers. Sugarbush’s diverse array of ski trails provide thrilling recreational opportunities for skiers and riders of all skill levels, and a trip to the charming towns surrounding the resort is every bit as memorable as a spirited ride down the slopes.

The trails on the two mountains at Sugarbush – Lincoln Peak and Mount Ellen – are all organized into smaller sub-regions. Instead of relying on a singular lift that leads to the top of each peak, Sugarbush uses an intelligently-designed lift system that efficiently moves skiers around the two mountains with minimal lift lines. All of Sugarbush’s 16 operational lifts are purposely placed in locations that allow skiers to explore the mountains with optimum ease and comfort. Novice skiers will no doubt flock to the Welcome Mat surface lift at the bottom of Lincoln Peak. The Welcome Mat is a perfect place for first-timers to perfect the fundamental skiing skills necessary to progress onward to the Village Quad lift. From there, the possibilities are limitless.


For skiers with an appetite for altitude and adventure, the Castle Rock lift area on Lincoln Peak is known for its classic New England-style natural snow skiing. For ambitious and motivated trick skiers and snowboarders, the Riemergasse terrain park on Mount Ellen is celebrated for its innovative layout and flow. The terrain park is created in the style of a skateboard park, allowing riders to design the flow of their runs to their liking. Rental and repair services are available at both Lincoln Peak and Mt. Ellen, and the Sugarbush Ski School offers private and group ski and snowboard lessons and kids camp programs.


In addition to the Sugarbush base village, the nearby towns of Warren and Waitsfield are full of enticing retail and leisure options for both families and romantically-minded couples.



Bromley Mountain Ski Resort

3984 Vermont Route 11, Peru, VT 05152

Trails: 47

Lifts: 9

Summit Elevation: 3,281 ft. Total Vertical Drop: 1,334 ft. Skiable Acres: 178

Bromley.com


With affordable ticket prices, diverse ski trails, and friendly staff, it’s no wonder that “Vermont’s Sun Mountain” has become a perennial favorite of both Southern Vermont residents and visiting vacationers. The trails all converge at the bottom of the mountain in front of a centralized lodge. Inside, tasty snacks and food are available at The Marketplace, a quick-serve cafeteria-style dining area. Upstairs, the Wild Boar Tavern offers sit-down table service with panoramic mountain views. Featuring 18 beers on tap, drink specials, a wide variety of wines, signature sandwiches, and salads, it’s a great place to unwind after a day of wintertime fun.


Ski and snowboard equipment rentals are available on-site at the main lodge, as well as ski lessons taught by knowledgeable professionals. For kids who want to learn the basics of skiing or snowboarding in a safe and encouraging setting, their award-winning KidsRule camps serve as a fantastic introduction. Looking to stay on the mountain? Bromley Village Rentals offers a vast assortment of rooms, which range from cozy one-bedroom suites that are ideally suited for romantic getaways, to four-bedroom on-mountain condominiums that are perfect for families. Ski in and ski out directly onto the mountain and skip the hassle of a drive, or take the complimentary shuttle directly to the Bromley base lodge. For further fun and shopping opportunities, head down Route 11 to nearby Manchester and enjoy some of the best retail and culinary offerings that Southern Vermont has to offer.


Killington Resort

4763 Killington Rd., Killington, VT 05751

Trails: 155

Lifts: 22

Summit Elevation: 4,241 ft. Total Vertical Drop: 3,050 ft. Skiable Acres: 1,509

Killington.com

Killington Resort is the crown jewel of Central Vermont’s skiing and snowboarding scene. With well-groomed cruiser trails, fast and narrow New England ski runs, and thrilling mogul trails that are sure to test the mettle of the most experienced skiers, Killington truly has something for everyone. A total of 22 lifts service this vast alpine kingdom, which encompasses five separate mountains and features six fantastic terrain parks – including the only certified Woodward Mountain Park in the Eastern Atlantic region of the United States. Freeskiers and aerially-inclined snowboarders will rejoice at the broad panoply of innovative features and obstacles at Killington’s terrain parks, including their all-natural terrain park, The Stash, and the Dream Maker terrain park, which boasts a massive half-pipe with 18-foot walls.


These unique and tantalizing ski terrain features are complemented by a wide assortment of additional on-mountain activities, including snowmobile tours, snowshoeing and on-site spa treatments. Rentals are available at several well-stocked shops, such as K-1, Ramshead and Snowshed; and ski and snowboard lessons and programs offered by the Killington Snow Sports School provide helpful instruction for skiers and riders of all experience levels. For those in search of stylish and comfortable on-site lodging, the Killington Grand Resort Hotel is situated in a prime position for easy ski slope access. With a convenient ski-bridge that leads to Killington’s lifts, a heated outdoor pool, and well-appointed guestrooms and suites, there’s no need to venture beyond Killington’s bounds to enjoy splendid Vermont hospitality. For a casual aprés-ski nosh, stop in at the Clubhouse Bar & Grill or the Snowshed Lodge for some scrumptious American fare and tasty drinks.

Pico Mountain Ski Resort

73 Alpine Dr., Mendon, VT 05751

Trails: 57

Lifts: 7

Summit Elevation: 3,967 ft. Total Vertical Drop: 1,967 ft. Skiable Acres: 468

PicoMountain.com


Winter sport novices will feel comfortable and safe on Pico’s gentle learning terrain, and experienced skiers and boarders will no doubt relish their steep and narrow trails and glades. Pico Mountain’s Snow Sports School offers specialized learning programs and lessons for children, novices, and advanced skiers and riders, and the Pico Mountain Rental and Repair shop is well-stocked with quality skis and snowboards that are available at reasonably priced rates.


Pico Mountain’s central base area features an inviting lodge with rustic stone fireplaces. Want to start your day on the sweet side? Head to the Waffle Cabin for breakfast, which is located adjacent to the Pico Lodge. For lunch and après-ski dinners, pop into Last Run Lounge, which serves scrumptious sandwiches, soups and salads at lunch, and flavorful drinks and rotating food specials after the ski slopes wind down. For local lodging, make a reservation at the welcoming Pico Resort Hotel & Condominiums. Located on-site at the base of the mountain, their rooms range from one-bedroom studios to lavish three-bedroom units with lofts. Pico Mountain Resort is open Thursday through Monday, with additional opening days during peak periods throughout the winter season.



Bolton Valley Resort

4302 Bolton Access Rd., Richmond, VT 05477

Trails: 71

Lifts: 6

Summit Elevation: 3,150 ft. Vertical Drop: 1,704 ft.

Skiable Acres: 300

BoltonValley.com

Nestled in the Northern Green Mountains, an enchanting alpine village stands in the midst of 5,000 acres of high-altitude wilderness. With spectacular views of Lake Champlain, well-balanced terrain spread over three separate mountain peaks, and convenient lodging options, Bolton Valley Resort is a wonderful option for both families and solo skiers. The Bolton Valley ski village is a self-contained oasis where visiting vacationers will find a plethora of enjoyable sporting and après ski activities. Ski, snowboard, and “splitboard” rentals are available at their rental shop, and the Big Rock Mountain Shop at the Base Lodge has an impressive selection of high-end ski and snowboard apparel and gear.


Bolton Valley Resort’s Sports Center houses an indoor pool, hot tub and sauna, an exercise deck with treadmills, ellipticals and stationary bikes, an indoor skatepark, and a poolside lounge that serves appetizing snacks and drinks. The Bolton Valley Ski and Snowboard School offers lessons for both children and adults at all ability levels, and Bolton Valley Resort is well-known for their Backcountry Program.


For a memorable après ski experience, stop by James Moore Tavern on the top floor of the Bolton Valley Base Lodge. With a warm fireplace, stunning views, nightly culinary specials, and 18 on-tap beers, this casual and friendly pub is a welcoming haven for skiers who are celebrating a successful day on the slopes. For a flavorful taste of wood-fired heaven, head to Fireside Flatbread. Their delicious pizzas are cooked to perfection in an artisan clay oven, and are custom-made

to order. The Inn at Bolton Valley offers comfortable and relaxed lodging accommodations at the base of the mountain, and also houses a game room and on-site fitness center.

Burke Mountain Resort

223 Sherburne Lodge Rd., East Burke, VT 05832

Trails: 50

Lifts: 4

Summit Elevation: 3,270 ft. Vertical Drop: 2,011 ft.

Skiable Acres: 178

SkiBurke.com


Lauded by scores of online reviewers as one of the “best-kept secrets” in Vermont’s ski scene, this hidden gem of Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom offers diverse and enjoyable trails and terrain in an absolutely breathtaking setting. Novice skiers can coast down the easy and mellow trails on the lower mountain, and more advanced riders will find a blissfully- exhilarating challenge in the steep and powdery inclines and narrow glades of the upper mountain.


Burke Mountain Resort’s team of ski and snowboard instructors are well-equipped to aid in the athletic development of any winter athlete. Group, private, and adaptive lessons can be booked through the resort’s website, and skis and snowboards are available for rental at the Burke Mountain Rental Shop, located in the Sherburne Base Lodge. After a long day of winter recreation, stop by The View Pub for some much-needed drinks and comfort food. For on-site lodging, book

a room at the Burke Mountain Hotel & Conference Center.



Smugglers’ Notch Resort

4323 VT Route 108, Jeffersonville,

VT 05464

Trails: 78

Lifts: 8

Summit Elevation: 3,640 ft.

Vertical Drop: 2,610 ft.

Skiable Acres: 310

Smuggs.com


With fun winter events and activities, award-winning children’s ski school programs, a childcare center, a teen center, and a sensational mountain village, it will come as no surprise that Smugglers’ Notch Resort (affectionately referred to as “Smuggs” by their loyal visitors) has been rated the #1 best family resort on the East Coast for several years by SKI Magazine’s Reader’s Choice Awards. Six lifts spread across three mountains provide access to over 300 acres of pristine ski terrain. Beginners will find pleasurable and accessible skiing and riding on Morse Mountain. Intermediate and expert skiers will discover numerous thrilling trails on the higher peaks of Madonna Mountain and Sterling Mountain.


Other family-friendly events and activities include tube sliding, family snowshoe scavenger hunts, winter carnivals, and outdoor winter walks. Aqua aerobics classes are offered at their indoor pool, which is also ideal for lap swimming workouts. In addition, an outdoor skating rink allows guests to savor the wintry beauty of the surrounding mountains while gracefully gliding on the ice. For ski and snowboard rentals, repairs, and ski tuning services, visit 3 Mountain Equipment at the base of Morse Mountain. Novice skiers and snowboarders in search of expert instruction should enroll in their First Timer Ski or Snowboard Program, which is offered to both children and adults.


At the Fun Zone 2.0, kids of all ages will find something to smile about.


Whether they’re scaling the face of the indoor rock wall, testing their athletic skills at the Ninja Warrior course, indulging in a friendly game of laser tag, or gaming to their hearts' content at the on-site arcade, they’re sure to make some happy and long-lasting memories. Smuggs offers on-site condominium rental accommodations at five different communities, which are located throughout the larger campus. Condominium booking is available through the resort website.

Magic Mountain Ski Area

495 Magic Mountain Access Rd, Londonderry, VT 05148

Trails: 50

Lifts: 6

Summit Elevation: 2,850 ft. Vertical Drop: 1,500 ft.

Skiable Acres: 205

MagicMtn.com

With steep topography and narrow, twisting descents, Magic Mountain’s advanced trails are perfect for skilled skiers who yearn for a heart-pumping downhill experience. Their more approachable novice-friendly trails still retain the throwback quality of a classic New England ski resort, offering all skiers and riders who come to visit Magic Mountain a chance to reconnect with the authentic origins of the sport. While recent investments and equipment upgrades have allowed Magic Mountain to smooth some of its rough edges, it still remains firmly rooted in its origins as a quintessential Vermont ski resort. Fresh powder days are the stuff of legend at Magic Mountain, and there are ample opportunities for sensational tree-skiing in the multiple glades that are interspersed from boundary to boundary. Skiers who wish to engage in the time-honored tradition of uphill hiking to reach the mountain summit are able to obtain uphill passes through the resort’s online portal.

In order to ensure a safe passage, they are encouraged to stay up-to-date on weather reports and are required to stay within the bounds of the designated uphill trail on the East side of the mountain. (Skiers and riders who trek uphill do so at their own risk, and Magic Mountain and Old Mill Road Media hold no liability.)


For experienced skiers seeking to explore the mountain and elevate their skillset, Magic Mountain offers specialized group clinics, including tree skiing clinics, mogul clinics, and uphill skiing classes. Group and private lessons are also available for novice and intermediate skiers, and the First Timer Bundle is ideal for total newcomers. Ski and snowboard rentals are available at the lower level of the main lodge, and the Black Line Tavern is a lively hot spot for après ski activity. For local lodging with a traditional and rustic ski-chalet ambience, book a reservation at the Snowdon Chalet Motel. The rooms are affordable, pets are welcomed, and the fantastic woodland views are not to be missed.

Mount Snow Resort

39 Mount Snow Rd., West Dover, VT 05356

Trails: 86

Lifts: 20

Summit Elevation: 3,586 ft. Vertical Drop: 1,700 ft.

Skiable Acres: 600

Mount Snow is seamlessly designed to accommodate the preferences of skiers at all skill levels. The larger mountain is comprised of four separate faces and areas: The Main Face, the North Face, Sunbrook, and Carinthia. The Main Face is home to many of the best cruiser trails on the mountain, as well as multiple gentle and meandering trails that are perfect for novices who wish to enjoy the full experience of a long, continuous ski run from summit to base. The Sunbrook face features several scenic, ungroomed trails, which hearken back to the days of traditional New England Skiing. The North Face is a challenging proving ground where accomplished ski and snowboard veterans can savor some of the steepest terrain in the Northeast. Many trails on the North Face are left entirely ungroomed, offering a truly traditional Vermont skiing experience. The terrain parks in the Carinthia area are perfect for skiers and boarders at all experience levels, and are chock-full of tantalizing obstacles, rails, and jumps, as well as Mount Snow’s gargantuan super half-pipe.

Private and group ski and snowboard lessons are taught by Mount Snow’s talented and friendly instructors, and their youth development and competition programs offer emergent winter athletes the perfect chance to hone and perfect their skiing and snowboarding skills. For on-site ski and snowboard rentals, visit Sundance Retail and Rentals or The Grind Tune Shop and Rentals, both of which are located within the bounds of the Mount Snow campus. The Mount Snow Tubing Hill is perfect for kids and adults who want to enjoy some carefree wintertime fun, and guests in search of a rejuvenating respite should book a relaxing treatment or massage at the on-site Naturespa at the Grand Summit Resort Hotel. The Grand Summit Resort Hotel provides elegant mountainside accommodation, and also houses a health club, outdoor heated pool and jacuzzi, and farm-to-table restaurant. For those in search of comfortable and affordable lodging, the Snow Lake Lodge is also located on the resort grounds.

Mad River Glen

57 Schuss Pass, Waitsfield, VT 05673

Trails: 60

Lifts: 5

Summit Elevation: 3,637 ft. Vertical Drop: 2,037 ft.

Skiable Acres (trail acreage): 115

MadRiverGlen.com

As one of the few remaining ski areas that prohibits snowboarding, Mad River Glen is an Elysian haven for consummate skiers. Mad River Glen’s challenging and diverse terrain has garnered a worldwide following, and it has maintained its iconic status by offering a truly distinctive ski experience. Mad River Glen’s ski lift system is purposely designed to limit skier density. Its single and double chairlifts allow each skier to enjoy the mountain without being encumbered by large crowds. Mad River Glen’s flawlessly-cut trails mold perfectly to the mountain’s contours, offering an immersive and fluid ride from summit to base.

Although Mad River Glen is no doubt a revered temple for accomplished skiers, it also serves as a marvelous training ground for novice and intermediate skiers, as well. The Birdland area features well-maintained and unchallenging trails, and many of the trails that branch out from the Sunnyside Chair are ideally suited for developing skiers who have mastered the fundamentals of the sport. At the top of the Single Chair lift, seasoned skiers will find a veritable paradise in a vast assortment of difficult trails. Some feature moguls, while others are world-renowned for their steep, dynamic and technical terrain. Due to the growing popularity of backcountry skiing, Mad River Glen has also recently piloted a backcountry guide program.


Need some quality name-brand ski apparel? Stop in at the Mad River Glen General Store at the base of the mountain. Rentals, waxing, edging and sharpening services, and binding release checks are available at their on-site rental shop.

For casual lunchtime and après ski food and drinks, head to General Stark’s Pub. Ranked as one of the world’s top après ski bars by Men’s Journal, this full-service bar and eatery has a well-rounded menu with satisfying appetizers and a wide variety of Vermont micro-brew beers. Although Mad River Glen does not have on-site lodging, the Mad River Valley is home to many attractive hotels and bed-and-breakfasts. For modern comfort in a classically- charming setting, book a room at the nearby Mad River Lodge. In search of a classic Vermont bed-and-breakfast experience? Make a reservation at the West Hill House B&B. (For more on the West Hill House B&B, see page 66).

Jay Peak Resort

830 Jay Peak Rd., Jay, VT 05859

Trails: 81

Lifts: 9

Summit Elevation: 3,968 ft. Vertical Drop: 2,153 ft.

Skiable Acres: 385

JayPeakResort.com

Jay Peak Resort is well-known for its abundant snowfall, affordable lift rates, and passionately enthusiastic resort staff. With more snow per season than any other ski resort in Eastern North America, the trails and glades that weave across Jay Peak’s windswept mountain face are nearly always saturated in luxurious layers of fresh and natural Vermont powder. Their liberal in-bounds policy permits adventurous skiers and snowboarders to explore every nook and cranny of the mountain, where untold joys await seasoned riders in search of off-trail excitement.


Novice skiers will find a safe start in the designated slow zone, with relaxing trails that are easily accessible from the Metro Quad, Taxi Quad and Village Double Chair lifts. The Flyer Express Quad and Aerial Tram provide efficient base-to-summit transportation for intermediate and expert skiers and boarders, and the Jet Triple Chair and Bonaventure Quad allow experienced riders to access some of the most challenging terrain on the mountain. The trail system features several long and winding intermediate routes that offer breathtaking mountain vistas from Jay Peak’s highest ridgelines. Established riders in search of an unparalleled adrenaline rush will luxuriate in the thrilling experience offered by Jay Peak’s high-incline glades, which are scattered throughout the mountain. Jay Peak Resort is also home to three progressive terrain parks, which are thoughtfully designed in a matter that allows trick riders at all stages of athletic development to hone and perfect their skills in a safe and gradual manner.


Ski and snowboard rentals are available at their convenient Tramside and Stateside rental shops, and repair services are offered exclusively at the Tramside rental shop. In addition to standard skis and snowboards, Jay Peak also offers specialized Burton “Learn to Ride” (LTR) snowboards. Made with flexible material that is intentionally contoured to make stopping and carving easier, the LTR snowboards are ideal for novice riders. Private and group lessons, kids’ instructional programs, guided mountain tours and seasonal camps are available for booking on the resort website.

Stowe

5781 Mountain Rd., Stowe, VT 05672

Trails: 116

Lifts: 13

Summit Elevation: 4,395 ft. Vertical Drop: 2,360 ft.

Skiable Acres: 468

Cultured vacationers in search of an elevated winter sports experience will fawn over the magnificent ski trails, dining options, and lodging accommodations at Stowe Mountain Resort. The resort is located in an enchanting village at the base of two majestic mountains – Spruce Peak and Mount Mansfield. As the tallest mountain in the State of Vermont, Mount Mansfield offers some of the best skiing on the East Coast. As Stowe celebrates its 85th anniversary of continuous operation, it continues to build on its already stellar reputation through a series of targeted improvement campaigns. The new high-speed quad at Mount Mansfield provides proficient skiers and snowboarders with swift access to their electrifying double-black diamond trails, and a recently-completed inter-mountain transfer gondola allows guests to move from Mount Mansfield to Spruce Peak with ease and comfort.


Those who are newer to the sport and looking to hone their skiing skills will enjoy a leisurely descent down the lower slopes of Spruce Peak on the Meadows Quad. Intermediate skiers and snowboarders who long to savor a spirited descent down Mount Mansfield should take the gondola lift from the base. After disembarking from the gondola lift, meticulously-maintained cruiser trails abound, offering priceless panoramic views of the surrounding region. Multiple freestyle terrain parks are replete with fun and creative obstacles, such as jumps, ramps, bonks, funboxes, rails, and other natural and constructed features. Private and group lessons for kids, adults, and first-timers can be booked through the resort website, and seasonal instructional programs for kids and teenagers such as StoweBusters and the All Access Adventure Program provide wonderful opportunities for young skiers and riders to reach their athletic goals. Ski and snowboard rental and repair services are available at several on-campus shops, including TrueNorth Retail & Rental, Front Four Retail & Rental, and Spruce Rental & Stay Tuned Repair. The shops are staffed with friendly and polite ski experts, who are happy to offer advice and guidance to riders of all experience levels.

For fashionable, high-end winterwear, head to TrueNorth Retail & Rental to browse through a curated selection of name-brand ski apparel. Guests with a fondness for sugary sweets should stop in at Spruce Peak Toy & Candy Company, and The Stowe Shop houses a vast arsenal of Stowe-branded goods and clothing. Down the road, the town of Stowe offers extensive additional dining options and shopping options, which include farm-to-table bistros, artisan coffee shops, rustic gift shops, and renowned custom and estate jewelry boutiques.

Okemo Mountain Resort

77 Okemo Ridge Rd., Ludlow, VT 05149

Trails: 122

Lifts: 20

Summit Elevation: 3,334 ft. Vertical Drop: 2,200 ft.

Skiable Acres: 669

Outdoor enthusiasts have flocked to the storied slopes of Okemo for decades, creating a vibrant winter sports community that continues to grow and blossom. Okemo’s ski terrain encompasses the faces of two separate mountains: Okemo Peak and Jackson Gore Peak. The two mountains are linked by several interconnecting trails, and the well-structured lift system allows riders to access all corners of the resort from any starting point.

Skiers and boarders who start their day at the Jackson Gore Base Area can begin their ski journey on the Coleman Brook Express Quad lift, which leads to several easy trails that serve as perfect training grounds for novices. From there, more enterprising riders can proceed down a linking trail that leads to the Quantum Six chairlift. Expert skiers will enjoy a lightning-quick descent down the numerous challenging trails that weave across the snowy surface of Jackson Gore Peak, and intermediate skiers will find a lengthy cruiser trail that leads from the summit to the base. Skiers of all skill levels who wish to continue onward to Okemo Peak should follow the slow-paced and accessible Sunset Strip Trail, which connects the two mountains over Jackson Gore Junction.

From there, riders can proceed down the intermediate Sidewinder trail past the Solitude Express Quad, which provides direct service to several intermediate and advanced trails. To reach the rest of Oke- mo Peak, riders can continue down Lower Mountain Road to the Clock Tower Base Area, which is a convergence point for several additional lifts. The Sunburst Six Quad lift leads to an open clearing near the top of Mount Okemo, where riders can continue onward to the Glades Peak Quad and the South Face Express Quad.


New this year, Okemo has upgraded two upper-mountain lifts (installing a new six-passenger express lift at Jackson Gore and replacing a fixed-grip triple with a four-passenger express bubble chair) and cut a new connector trail that leads from the Jackson Gore Junction to the base of the new Evergreen Summit Express, making the summit and its variety of terrain more accessible. Skiers and riders approaching from the Jackson Gore area have faster and easier summit access, relieving congestion at the resort’s primary summit lift, the Sunburst Six, and improving the overall mountain experience for skiing and riding guests.

Half and full-day ski and group snowboard lessons are available for adults, and full-day group ski lessons organized by age are available for children. Private lessons are also available, and skiers are encouraged to participate in Okemo Mountain Resort’s signature ski education programs and seasonal programs, such as the Women’s Alpine Adventure program and the youth competition program. In addition, Okemo’s new Supernova Slider Club program allows young skiers and snowboarders ages 7-14 to take advantage of all of the resources offered by the illustrious Okemo ski school without committing to the season-long program. Ski and snowboard rentals are available at Okemo Clocktower Sports at the Clock Tower Base Area, and Okemo’s campus hosts several shops that sell durable and chic ski apparel and gear. Okemo Made houses a treasure trove of Okemo- branded merchandise, and Snowsports Shop is home to a vast collection of top-notch ski clothing and equipment.

The village community surrounding Okemo resort is broken into multiple distinct residential areas, which are comprised of condominiums and private residences that are available for rental through the resort website. For luxe on-site hotel lodging, book a room at one of Okemo’s newest properties at Jackson Gore Village.


Editor’s Note:

Trail conditions, trail and park openings, and weather patterns at Vermont’s ski resorts change on a frequent basis. Make sure to dress accordingly, check weather reports regularly, and ski or snowboard at a level that is safely in line with your skills and abilities. For up-to-date trail maps and weather reports, please visit the websites listed below each resort heading.



Off The Beaten Trail


Cochran’s Ski Area

910 Cochran Rd., Richmond, VT 05477

CochranSkiArea.com

A small, family-friendly ski resort located just east of Burlington. Featuring eight trails and three lifts, this resort is dedicated to the mission of providing area youth and families with access to affordable skiing. Lessons are available on-site, but rentals are currently not available. Please come prepared with boards or skis!

Lyndon Outing Club

1580 Lily Pond Rd., Lyndonville, VT 05851

SkiLyndon.com

Located near Northern Vermont University – Lyndon, this affordable ski resort offers the only night skiing and snowboarding in the Northeast Kingdom. The mountain features eight trails and two lifts, and there is a snack bar in the lodge on site. Rentals and lessons are not available on-site, so please come prepared with boards or skis!

Middlebury College Snow Bowl

6886 VT Route 125, Hancock, VT 05748

MiddleburySnowBowl.com

Located near Middlebury College, the Middlebury College Snow Bowl is the home of the nationally-recognized Middlebury Panthers Ski Team. This small resort offers fun, accessible skiing and snowboarding for the whole family. With four lifts and 17 diverse trails, the Middlebury Snow bowl has uncrowded lifts and short lines on most days. Rentals are available on-site, as well as lessons, and lodging and dining options abound in the charming nearby towns of Middlebury and Rochester.


Suicide Six

247 Stage Rd., South Pomfret, VT 05067

Suicide6.com

Suicide Six is a small and historic Vermont resort with a fiercely-devoted following. As the oldest ski resort in Vermont, its trails are beloved by skiers from around the state. With three lifts and 24 trails – including its infamously wide-open and steep trail “The Face” – it’s a perfect local ski option for vacationers who travel to nearby Woodstock for winter vacations. Rentals and lessons are available on-site.


Northeast Slopes

3269 Quechee Main St., Quechee, VT 05059 NortheastSlopes.org

This small community ski area is home to 30 acres of skiable terrain, 12 trails, and the longest-running rope tow in the United States. The junior rope tow is perfect for kids who are just learning how to ski, and the high-speed rope tow and T-bar provide faster transport to the top of the mountain for advanced skiers. The mountain features both scenic cruiser trails and steep glades, and lift tickets are very affordable. A small snack bar offers locally-sourced hot and cold refreshments at the base of the mountain. Rentals and lessons are not available on-site, so please come prepared with boards or skis!


Ski Quechee

10397 VT Rte 25, East Corinth, VT 05040

QuecheeClub.com/skiquechee

On the grounds of the Quechee Club, a small, yet beautiful ski resort stands above Vermont’s breathtaking Quechee Valley. With 13 trails, three lifts, and a seasonally-dependent terrain park, Ski Quechee is a fantastic option for tourists visiting the Ottaquechee River region. The Quechee Club also houses a restaurant, ice skating facility, indoor pool, and racquet courts. Rentals and

lessons are available on-site.



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