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Vintage Vermont, March 2011

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

 

Vintage Vermont four day ski trip, made by Jamesj, Laurel Hill Crazie (LHC), and Vince.

 

Suicide Six 2/28/11: Officially opened by rope tow pioneer Bunny Bertram in 1936, but an improvised tow operated here as early as 1934 making it the first ski lift in the Eastern US.  Vertical drop of only 650’, but about 500 feet of it is a straight shot down the face of the mountain with four or five good bump runs. Heavy drizzle turned loose snow into quick sand. 

 

View of Suicide Six from base area

BK and VT 2011 113.jpg

 

Like a knife thru buttah

BK and VT 2011 120.jpg

 

This line was suicidal in 1936, still a good bump workout 75 years later.

BK and VT 2011 132.jpg

 

 

Mad River Glen (MRG) 3/1/11: Founded by Roland Palmedo in 1948.  Beautiful day at one of the cathedrals of our sport. MRG did not get the rain we saw the day before in central VT and the entire 2000 vertical feet of this mountain was soft and very pleasant to ski.  Good terrain, good vibe, good people. Best overall trail conditions of the week.  If you love skiing and have never been there, you owe it to yourself to visit MRG, preferably on a weekday. 

 

LHC takes his first ride on the Single Chair at MRG.

BK and VT 2011 142.jpg

 

Tres Amigos at summit of single chair

BK and VT 2011 145.jpg

 

View of Camel's Hump from MRG

BK and VT 2011 140.jpg

 

Icefalls, moguls and LHC, they go together.

Copy of BK and VT 2011 148.jpg

 

LHC and Vince with bag lunch in Stark's Nest at the summit of single chair.  Note Laurel Mountain, PA logo on LHC's vest.  He was an instructor there. Vince is an instructor at Seven Springs, PA.

Copy of BK and VT 2011 150.jpg

 

Jamesj psyched for video on Paradise Glade, note 40 year old Blue Knob pin on jacket.

Copy of BK and VT 2011 160.jpg

 

LHC in Paradise.

BK and VT 2011 161.jpg

 

LHC scoping out mandatory air in Paradise Glade.

Copy of BK and VT 2011 164.jpg

 

 

Sugarbush North (Mt. Ellen) 3/2/11:  Youngster of our vintage group, founded in 1963 by Walton Elliott.  All bump runs were concrete so we went cruising. Then around 11AM a series of snow squalls moved in.  We found the best snow on the mountain after lunch in Exterminator Glades.  It wasn’t quite “Paradise”, but it was fun and memorably challenging.  In the end we had ourselves a very fun mini powder day in 3-4 inches of new snow.

 

Near the summit of Sugarbush North (Mt. Ellen, elev 4083')

Copy of BK and VT 2011 178.jpg

 

Snow squalls moving in.

BK and VT 2011 182.jpg

 

Exterminator Glade at Mt. Ellen

Copy of BK and VT 2011 196.jpg

 

Coming out of Exterminator Glade

BK and VT 2011 199.jpg

 

mini powder day

BK and VT 2011 210.jpg

 

GO STEELERS

Copy of BK and VT 2011 211.jpg

 

 

Pico 3/3/11: Founded in 1937 by the parents of Andrea Mead Lawrence, Pico (Pie-Koh) was the site of the first t-bar installed in the US in 1940.  We saw varied weather on this trip (typical of March in VT) and it was minus 2 when we arrived at Pico.  All bump runs were rock and the glades were glazed over. We skied the groomers from the top of the summit HSQ and did our best to stay warm.  Found skiable bumps off the old yellow Outpost Double Chair with lattice lift towers.  Then we headed south for the return home.  Very fun ski trip to Vermont.

 

Pico was crowded...NOT!

BK and VT 2011 224.jpg

 

Springtime in Vermont - minus 2 degs air temp.

BK and VT 2011 231.jpg

 

the Outpost double chair at Pico.

BK and VT 2011 237.jpg

 

This was our (my son and I) first extended ski trip with Laurel Hill Crazie (LHC) and I wanted to send him a shout-out.  He’s a real Pittsburgh Steeler and has worked in the Western PA steel mill industry for 30 years.  LHC is an intelligent, big-hearted gentlemen with rock solid ski skills and a deep appreciation for snowsports history – the perfect guy to enjoy Vintage Vermont with us.

 

I also want to thank Epicski for offering tickets via the Free Face Shots in Vermont Contest last month: http://www.epicski.com/forum/thread/100906/free-face-shots-in-vermont-contest

 

Who says skiing has to be expensive, the key is traveling weekdays and keeping your eyes open for publicly available bargains. Below is cost information for our party of two adults and one college student, four days skiing.

Lift tickets: 

Suicide Six – two free vouchers from Epicski contest and an $18 student half day ticket;

MRG – three lift tickets from Liftopia @ $24 each;

Mt. Ellen – one free ticket from the Epicski contest and $58 two-fer coupon from City Market of Burlington;

Pico – two free ticket vouchers from an online Dave Mathews Band promotional deal offered late in 2010. 

Total four day ticket costs, all obtained via means open to the general public:  $148.

Lodging:  three nights Golden Lion Inn at Sugarbush Access Rd - $379 including tax for a large, plain efficiency apartment with full kitchen and access to a good hot tub right outside the door.

Food:  $00.00 - used leftovers from Epicski/DCSki Blue Knob Gathering 2/26&27 for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. 

Gas/Fuel:  We used Laurel Hill Crazie’s 1997 VW Diesel TDI that drove 500 miles for about $50 in fuel.

 

 

 

 

post #2 of 18

That was an enjoyable read, thanks for taking the time to put it together and share!

 

 

post #3 of 18

I am heading up soon with some other of the Epic vouchers. I'll look for the City Market in Burlington to pick up a 2fer at Sugarbush. Nice pictures, I've skied all of the runs pictured but usually not in such nice conditions. Good read got me ready for my trip.

post #4 of 18

Nice report & glad you had a good time. I just got back from VT. myself last night. I found it odd that you said MRG was soft & didn't get the mixed precipitation Mon. while Mt. Ellen which is right next door & higher elevation did. I even talked to my friend Tuesday that works at Sugarbush & he said it wasn't worth the trip up there. Any way I skied 4 days at K-Mart this week & you had to stay pretty much on the groomers. Anything not groomed had a hard icy crust on it but once it was groomed out there was nice soft powder underneath. Good thing is that they had about 85% of the mountain groomed, even trails that very rarely see a groomer. The only non-groomed trail worth skiing that I found was Royal Flush since it gets hit by the sun more than any other trail & softened up a little.

 

As for price I spent 4 days up there & spent about $200 including lift, lodging, gas, food & adult beverages. Lift ticket is already paid for since I have a season pass & lodging costs me $22 a night at my ski club lodge located about 20 minutes from K-Mart. Gas went up about 35 cents a gallon on average since i was last up just before Presidents week.

post #5 of 18

Excellent report. Concise text, many nice photos. Thanks!

post #6 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by telerod15 View Post

Excellent report. Concise text, many nice photos. Thanks!



Rod, One night in the hot tub I was sipping some of your leftover microbrew thinking you should have been there with us.

 

For others;  I guess it's a freak of nature, but conditions in this instance were significantly better at MRG over nearby Sugarbush.  Note about Burlington City Market $58 2-fer at Mt. Ellen - it's only good at Mt. Ellen and I had to buy a $7 sandwich wrap from the market to get it.

post #7 of 18

icon14.gif

post #8 of 18

Thanks for the great TR.

post #9 of 18

Nice TR!

post #10 of 18

Thanks for the kind words, Jim. I had a great time and MRG was the highlight. The conditions were great, packed snow all over the mountain. Even the groomers were sublime. After the cord was gone the loose snow held well, no granular, and the base was hard pack.

 

I'm sitting in the base lodge at Timberline,WV and it's been snowing since around noon, looks lioke 4+ on the ground and a steady shower. It's good out there now and should be tomorrow too.

 

My camera is back at the room but I'll post a few VT pics later.

 

 

post #11 of 18

Hey Jamesj,

 

Nicely done.  I call that a "ski safari".  You are also a very good writer.   Done many of them in my life and am planning more.  You are on your way to covering all the areas in New England if you care to.  While I started on my quest to hit every New England area in 1980, I was really inspired to step it up when I read George Woods journey to cover 51 northeast areas on his 50th year of life.  I hit all the big ones quite a while ago.  I'm now working on the smaller ones, such as Cochrans, Northeast, and the tons of tiny community areas in Maine.  What you've hit on is what I call the "fabric of skiing".  Skiing is all about experience.  Every one experiences it differently, and it's fun to see it through other's eyes/  Next time you're out, make it a point to get to meet some local legends, like Betsy Pratt or Marilyn Cochran.  It really frames the skiing into a great experience. 

 

Keep the cameras rolling!

 

post #12 of 18
Thread Starter 

Good ideas from Billski.  We almost stayed at Betsy's Mad River Barn, but needed a kitchen.  My helmet is off to you, esteemed proponent of Skiing on the Cheap threads at Alpine Zone!icon14.gif

post #13 of 18

"Rod, One night in the hot tub I was sipping some of your leftover microbrew thinking you should have been there with us."

 

Oh no! I would have hurt myself!

 

I've skied in Vermont more than a few times but mostly at Stowe and Killington with visits to some of the other obvious choices. Jay, Stratton, Mt. Snow, Sugarbush. Also Madonna and Glen Ellen as a small child. Would love to do a trip to some of the "other" Vermont resorts. I'd ski MRG, I actualy prefer ski areas that exclude a large percentage of the lift riding population, but I have to think of MRG in the same way I think of Deer Valley, where I had a couple of great cat runs for five bucks each, not complaining, just saying...

 

post #14 of 18

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jamesj View Post

 

Vintage Vermont four day ski trip, made by Jamesj, Laurel Hill Crazie (LHC), and Vince.

 


 

LHC takes his first ride on the Single Chair at MRG.

BK and VT 2011 142.jpg

 


View of Camel's Hump from MRG

BK and VT 2011 140.jpg

 

Icefalls, moguls and LHC, they go together.

Copy of BK and VT 2011 148.jpg

 


Jamesj psyched for video on Paradise Glade, note 40 year old Blue Knob pin on jacket.

Copy of BK and VT 2011 160.jpg

 

LHC in Paradise.

BK and VT 2011 161.jpg

 

LHC scoping out mandatory air in Paradise Glade.

Copy of BK and VT 2011 164.jpg

 

 

Sugarbush North (Mt. Ellen) 3/2/11:  Youngster of our vintage group, founded in 1963 by Walton Elliott.  All bump runs were concrete so we went cruising. Then around 11AM a series of snow squalls moved in.  We found the best snow on the mountain after lunch in Exterminator Glades.  It wasn’t quite “Paradise”, but it was fun and memorably challenging.  In the end we had ourselves a very fun mini powder day in 3-4 inches of new snow.

 

Near the summit of Sugarbush North (Mt. Ellen, elev 4083')

Copy of BK and VT 2011 178.jpg

 

Snow squalls moving in.

BK and VT 2011 182.jpg

 

Exterminator Glade at Mt. Ellen

Copy of BK and VT 2011 196.jpg

 

Coming out of Exterminator Glade

BK and VT 2011 199.jpg

 

mini powder day

BK and VT 2011 210.jpg

 

GO STEELERS

Copy of BK and VT 2011 211.jpg

 

 


 


SWEET!

memories of the old daze...

 

They still hand out wool blankets on the MRG single when the weather gets really 'brisk' ???

 

luv that place...

 

 

Sugarbush North / Mt Ellen - that would be the old  'Glen Ellen' Ski area ?

 

did some patrol there, BITD...

 

great thing about the NE areas was 'exploring' for some of the 'secret' (or so it seemed at the time...)  off-trail stuff...

 

nice, thanks for the memories

post #15 of 18

Quote:

Originally Posted by moreoutdoor View Post

 

Sugarbush North / Mt Ellen - that would be the old  'Glen Ellen' Ski area ?

 

did some patrol there, BITD...

Yup - same place, just under the Sugarbush name now.  For a while, it was called "Sugarbush North," and you can still get a season pass and day ticket that's only for the Mt. Ellen side.  It's now connected with the Lincoln Peak area via the Slide Brook Express quad, which only runs on weekends or holidays and can be closed by high winds (as it was this past Saturday).  If SBX isn't running, there is a shuttle bus between the two areas that runs twice an hour.

post #16 of 18

502c1c19_VermontFeb.28-Mar32011002.jpg

 

Vince and Jamesj with Suicide Six base lodge below

 

2f731a47_VermontFeb.28-Mar32011009.jpg

 

Jamesj on the MRG single

 

eb13130d_VermontFeb.28-Mar32011014.jpg

 

15d52b83_VermontFeb.28-Mar32011016.jpg

 

9c6fec1b_VermontFeb.28-Mar32011023.jpg

 

Jamesj scoping his route through Paradise

 

1bb6e8a7_VermontFeb.28-Mar32011024.jpg

 

and that's just the beginning

 

c02063c3_VermontFeb.28-Mar32011026.jpg

 

fa9c4cd3_VermontFeb.28-Mar32011029.jpg

 

 

 

 

post #17 of 18

Enjoyed this TR!  Thanks!!

post #18 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamesj View Post

We almost stayed at Betsy's Mad River Barn, but needed a kitchen. 

James,

You got to go meet Betsy ASAP.  The mountains will (hopefully) be here forever.  Betsy will not. 

 

btw, I skied at Storrs (NH) and Northeast Slopes (VT) yesterday.  Legends  Two non profit areas struggling to survive and doing it with success.  Storrs has some neat, active ski jumps.  Northeast is 75 years old, steeped in a lot of small town history - great people -spend some time visiting with the operators.  Sure beats the McSki corporations.  Very refreshing.  Send some business their way and buy a raffle ticket for some Praxis skis at Northeast!

 

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