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Anyone ski Okemo & Stratton regularly?

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
I may give up on Hunter for next season. Thinking of the Midweek pass at Okemo & Stratton.
Do these mountains get a lot of good snow? I think my knees are telling me to start skiing on snow instead of ice.
Got in 34 runs on Day 25 of the season for me, Weds 3/9. Too bad the true vert is only 1520.

There was so much vibration from the refrozen surface that some of the fillings in my teeth came loose. My skis sounded like a '55 pickup with a chain on the bumper dragging an outhouse down a gravel road.
post #2 of 23

You have no control over the natural snow quantity...but Okemo's snow making and grooming is as good as anywhere in NE that I've skied. I'm a weekday Okemo/Stratton/Sunapee pass holder. Okemo gets the bulk of my time, then Sunapee, rarely Stratton.

post #3 of 23

I consider myself a slightly regular at stratton.(well it's where I ski the most atleat) While this year so far I've been 7 times and have just started finding some of the best terrain on the mountain.

There is in my opinion some great runs. For example I love upper liftline in the spring when they let it mogul. It can however get icy but so far this year the only ice as breakable crust one day(they just had rain), and some ice in December(that is from the day's I skied). In addition the mountain has glades that can be fun to explore and have some challenge. For example beneath the Shooting Star lift you can do a bit of some short cliffs(aound 7 ft I think) Another place that is great to ski is a shoot that comes down on to Upper Grizly Bear(or is it just Grizly Bear idk). It is roped off from another trail but they don't care as it can be acessed from the woods too.

post #4 of 23

Although I'm not a real Okemo or Stratton fan, I think both of these would offer better experiences than Hunter.  Mid-week is the time for both; they're both weekend destinations for a lot of people and it can get crazy there Sat-Sun.  Both are oriented towards the groomed and neither is steep -- but they're a pleasant place to arc.  For me, Okemo offers at least some more variety with the Jackson Gore terrain and the glades up on the left shoulder.  I find Stratton to be fairly monochromatic.

 

post #5 of 23

I've been skiing Okemo all week, and it has been terrific.  Today it was pretty rainy and foggy, but there was NO ONE on the slopes and the snow was actually very good.  We usually come up to Okemo once a year for a week and we have always been impressed.

 

The slopes are groomed to perfection.  I've skiied all over the Northeast and I gotta say that it is the best grooming I've ever skiied on.  There is also very good variety.  Overall, it would be a better option than Hunter.

 

I love Stratton, but personally, I would ski Okemo over Stratton just because of the groomers.  They are both very similar though.

post #6 of 23

To be honest I was just offered by a friend to go on a bus trip with him(I'm currently 13 so I can't really dp this by myself). The trip is to Okemo and as i have no intrest in groomers(You will find me in the woods or hitting the bumps). As I will be able to hit Okemo I will be able to give a better opinion on which is better.

post #7 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Backcountyplz View Post

To be honest I was just offered by a friend to go on a bus trip with him(I'm currently 13 so I can't really dp this by myself). The trip is to Okemo and as i have no intrest in groomers(You will find me in the woods or hitting the bumps). As I will be able to hit Okemo I will be able to give a better opinion on which is better.



Good luck wtih that! Ice!!!! The rain hit hard, so I bet they groomed lots of the terrain down and the woods would be bad, but tell us how it goes.

 

FYI OP, Okemo and Stratton aren't nearly as steep as Hunter either. I don't know a 30 degree pitch more than 2 turns at Stratton, and I imagine Okemo the same. While at Hunter, each of those double blacks provide sustained 30 degree pitches with usually some good bigass bumps.

post #8 of 23

World cup is sustained over 30 degree I am pretty sure. Thanks for the words on my trip however I have learnt I might be forced on a trip to NYC instead. My imediate response was why would I want to be stuck in a crowd surrouinded by buildings. I am trying to find a place to stay so I can go on the trip though.

post #9 of 23

The Okemo/Stratton/Sunapee pass can't be beat. It's a great deal for three ski areas that focus on high quality snowmaking & grooming. I prefer Okemo due to the added variety, but the pass gives you the option of all three. I was at Okemo last Tuesday and I was pleasantly surprised by how good it was.

post #10 of 23
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the info.

I'm going to get to Okemo in time for the free hour in the morning, to check it out. If I like it I'll buy the ticket, and ski all day.

Anybody got any suggestions on where I should start on the mountain for my first hour?

I'm thinking Northern Express; then down for a warm up run, then back up and over to the Glades Peak, then down from there. Get to the east side before the sun warms it up too much.

Does this make sense?
post #11 of 23

Pick any trail or lift you want. If you skied one trail at Okemo you skied them all.

 

World Cup sustained 30 degree pitch. Thanks for the laugh.

post #12 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by steamboat1 View Post

Pick any trail or lift you want. If you skied one trail at Okemo you skied them all.

 

World Cup sustained 30 degree pitch. Thanks for the laugh.



Hi, I didn't mean normally. They have it pretty excesivley build up at the moment which is actually making it tower pretty high. I was skiing the moguls as the rest was higher an groomed and at the beggining it was a good 20-30 feet higher than normal. In adition I geuss it isn't really 30 degree that was a bit of a mistake on my part.

post #13 of 23

The one time I've been to Okemo recently (well, last year) I was pleasantly surprised.  They had a lot of nice bump runs.  The bumps in the natural gully (forget the name) were actually pretty challenging.  I thought there was more to it than Sunapee (which I like too, but is pretty easy).  Never been to Stratton.  Magic is close to Stratton, by the way.

post #14 of 23
Thread Starter 
After reading these answers, I'm still not sure if either of these mountains gets a lot more natural snow than Hunter; if the surface of their trails is less icey (read: softer) than Hunter; or if I can get a good sense of the 'feel' of Okemo during the free hour of skiing in the morning.

I'm looking for some place within 6 or so hours of NYC that gets snow. Real snow. I want to give my knees and feet a softer ride next season.
post #15 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phlogiston View Post

I'm looking for some place within 6 or so hours of NYC that gets snow. Real snow. I want to give my knees and feet a softer ride next season.

 

The only way to get real snow 6 hours from NYC is fly to SLC (or CO). There is no "feel" to Nokemo - everything's the same vanilla, nondescript, trail that they could change the names on any nobody would know.

 

Here's something we should all be able to agree on from a thread next to yours -

 

Originally Posted by Veloscente View Post
 

Quote:

 

... I tend to approach E.Coast skiing with the lowest expectations that I can muster, and can honestly say I've only been gravely disappointed so far with Statton, but not because it failed to live up to my expectations, but because it fails to live up to its own.  That overpriced, overgroomed molehill suffers from the worst delusions of grandeur I've ever encountered in a resort (end of rant).

 

 

You're not going to get real snow at Mt. Snow either, but at least with the North Face, you'll get some semblence of sliding downhill vs. the berms that are Flatton and Nokemo. And if there's real snow, Magic is your only real destination short of K-Mart.

post #16 of 23
A buddy of mine was at Hunter at the same time I was skiing at Okemo. He complained that Hunter was solid ice, while the conditions at Okemo were quite nice, if that helps. But then again, this is New England we're talking about.
post #17 of 23
Thread Starter 
THAT is what I was trying to find out.

How about within an 8 hour drive of NYC? I'm going to start a new thread.
post #18 of 23

This has been an unusual year in New England, with a lot of storms that hit Mass and southern Vt/NH more than further North.

So this year was better than average for the Okemos/Sunapees/Magics area.  But they still get a lot of snow even in a normal year.

 

 The problem with New England is not a lack of snow -- it's roller coaster temperatures that melt or degrade the snow.

 

If you have the flexibility to go the day of or day after a storm, there is a lot of good snow to be had.  If you have to wait for a pre-scheduled day, you are going to be unlucky more often than not.  But this is true even in northern New England (just not quite as much).

post #19 of 23

 

One man’s opinion... lived in NYC 10 years and now in Jersey burbs for a bit. If I just want to get out on the snow and don’t care I go to Mt Creek (very close to where I currently live). Looking for a bit more I go to Hunter. Real ambitious day trip or over-nighter  its Mt Snow.  2 nights or more it’s the Bush or Stowe. If you are expanding your drive to 6+ hrs I think Stowe is the spot you want. Jay is an option as well but up there. 

 

I have had great trips to other spots too, but for me Sugarbush and Stowe are drives I can handle without getting too stir crazy and as consistent as NE can be… which is to say not very consistent but better than others.

 

IMO you can’t expect a full day of quality snow out of any “mountains” within 4 or so hours of NYC. You are only going to get a few good hours. Hunter for what the drive is from NYC is not all that bad. Stratton, Okemo.. not worth the extra travel time for me. Like it was said above, with the north face at snow you can at least get some challenging terrain.  

post #20 of 23

There seems to be a lot of prejudice here against Stratton that I don't understand.  I think it has a bit more variety than Okemo. It probably gets more snow than Okemo, being an average of 600 feet higher.  Plus the main face has northern exposure.  Those who like woods say Stratton has some of the best.

 

 

post #21 of 23

I ski Stratton and in my opinion you need to know wheree to ski on the mountain for the conditions. If it is snowing and you aren't afread of a storm head snow bowl. If it's just plain windy and cloudy head sunbowl. It can be dead wind and sunny sometimes when is is terrible in snowbowl(just too cold and icy).  Another thing is at stratton don't be afraid to duck a rope in my opinion. I don't mean go on closed trails as that is just stupid. I mean ski under the lifts. They mogul up and have the most challenges outside the glades. It is funny as I do laps under the lifts at time because they don't care enough to pull your pass for the most part. Though you can get yelled at from kids on the lift saying you aren't suposed to ski there... I laughed so hard when one kid yelleed at me. In adition fall and expect some looks from tjh lift. I was jumping off a mogul thtat happened to send me of a 3-4 foot drop(wouldn't say a cliff) and it made me eat it.

 

P.S. If they tell you that it is a closed are underneath the lifts say you were getting something or came through the trees.

 

Edit: Looks like I might not be hitting Okemo afterall and may hit stratton again. It is funny how my dad with 20 yr old skis never wants to spend money on my skiing. I am now really sad I can go and compare the mountains and be much of a help on which is better.


Edited by Backcountyplz - 3/16/11 at 4:08pm
post #22 of 23

I ski Okemo a lot (over 20 days this year) and it is good depending on what you are looking for.  It is a great intermediate mountain and most of the diamonds there are very easy, so you do not have to be a strong skier to ski the vast majority of the mountain.  The mountain has a lack of steepness and the only challenging trails are some of the tighter double diamond glades.

 

That said, they do an incredible job of making snow and grooming and ice is never an issue there.

 

In essence both mountains are very similar in this regard though Stratton is somewhat more difficult but the snowmaking and grooming are not as good.

post #23 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phlogiston View Post

After reading these answers, I'm still not sure if either of these mountains gets a lot more natural snow than Hunter; if the surface of their trails is less icey (read: softer) than Hunter; or if I can get a good sense of the 'feel' of Okemo during the free hour of skiing in the morning.

I'm looking for some place within 6 or so hours of NYC that gets snow. Real snow. I want to give my knees and feet a softer ride next season.


6 hrs will get you to Stowe! (ok, barely)

 

That will be your best bet of snow quantity, quality plus terrain variety.

 

It's not cheap though.
 

 

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