or Connect
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Mountain/Resort Related Forums › Resorts, Conditions & Travel › First Vermont trip - a few questions! [from Toronto]
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

First Vermont trip - a few questions! [from Toronto]

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

I live in Toronto and have skied Blue Mountain (Collingwood) all my life - it's more a big hill. I'm looking to take a road trip out to VT and hit up 1 (or more than 1?) resorts

 

Have a few loaded questions - hope you guys can help!

 

1) As I said I've basically only done Blue Mountain - have hit Mont Tremblant in QC a few times. I consider myself very comfortable skiing and would enjoy probably almost any run. I just learned snowboarding this year - I've gotten a lot better, but it's still my first year. Would these large mountains simply be too challenging, or would there still be plenty of runs to enjoy and challenge myself?

2) Any specific resort recommendations? I'm thinking of bringing BOTH my ski and snowboard gear, so I will try to do both

3) Thinking of going alone - any tips/suggestions to meet up with people?

4) If I'm alone, I'm mostly concerned about off-track/gladed/off-piste and the risk of hurting myself without anyone around to help me. Thoughts?

5) Since I'm driving, any recommendations on accommodations? Mainly looking for parking of course, shuttle to the lifts and access to night life

6) How long should I go for? I'm not used to "spending the day" on these giant mountains. I'm a go-getter and want to enjoy as much as possible, but I don't want to plan for a week if you can really only do a couple days, for example

7) Anything else I should be considering?

 

Very happy to provide any additional information if it helps get more helpful answers! :)

post #2 of 17

If you can comfortably ski most everything at Mt. Tremblant, then most on-the-map stuff at VT areas isn't going to be terribly troublesome.

 

As for specific resort recommendations -- it really comes down to what you're looking for.  You do say:

Quote:
Mainly looking for parking of course, shuttle to the lifts and access to night life

 

Parking is never really a problem in Vermont; all the ski areas have big parking lots, because they (almost) all get fairly crowded on the weekends.  As for access to night life -- the undisputed king of Vermont Skiing Nightlife is Killington.

 

Whether or not Killington is home to the type of skiing you'd most enjoy is another question entirely.  Do you think that groomers are something that you take to get to something more interesting, or do you prefer to mostly ski groomers and head off the beaten path occasionally?  Do you know (approximately) when you're planning to go?   Weekends vs. weekdays?

 

The only reason to not bring both your skis and snowboard would be Mad River Glen which is still "skiers only".  That said, MRG is close to a couple other ski areas all of which allow whatever snow-sliding device you care to strap to your feet.

 

As for skiing alone.  I wouldn't head off into the woods alone, but skiing any marked trail alone isn't really any big deal.  You can always program the ski patrol contact number into your cell phone as well.  Once your plans are finalized, you can always post your itinerary here and you can usually find somebody willing to join you / show you around a bit as well.

post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 

So the problem is mostly whjat I am used to is hard-packed snow/machine-groomed. I look forward to experience more powder!

 

Of course, even realistically even a few inches of loose powder is unlike what I have to deal with here (utter crap!) and then of course there can be spots with powder waist-deep, which I can't wait to try

post #4 of 17

In Vermont, more north= more better. Jay Peak and Smugglers Notch have the best terrain for beginner tree skiers, Stowe has the best restaurants,  Mad River Glen has natural snow, the best snobby old school attitude and the best lodge and bar, Sugarbush has great terrain, and Killington has the best night life and (usually) the latest spring skiing.  South of Killington is flat and groomed, except for Magic, which is mostly natural snow.  Magic and Mad River glen must be struggling this year because of the weather.

That's all you need to know about skiing in Vermont.

 

BK

post #5 of 17

I'm not sure there is one mountain in vermont that can get you everything you asked for, but I think Sugarbush would check off most the boxes. 

Varied terrain, lots of ungroomed runs on both peaks ( Sugarbush encapsulates Lincoln peak and Mt. Ellen, two completely seperate mountains that are connected by an express quad) good options for food and drink ( nowhere near what youd get at killington, but the skiing is SOOO much better at the Bush) and every level of accomdation within 10 minutes of the mountain. 
I stay at the Hostel at the end of the access road, but you can also choose to drop $400+ a night at the base lodge luxury rooms, or anything in between. 

All in all, 

Killington has the most to do while youre not skiing, Jay Peak has the best terrain, and Sugarbush is the best of both worlds, in my humble opinion... I mean theres got to be a reason I'm a season pass holder at a mountain 4 1/2 hours away from my house, right?

Good luck

post #6 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaitlyn2004 View Post
 

So the problem is mostly whjat I am used to is hard-packed snow/machine-groomed. I look forward to experience more powder!

 

Of course, even realistically even a few inches of loose powder is unlike what I have to deal with here (utter crap!) and then of course there can be spots with powder waist-deep, which I can't wait to try

 

Your chances of getting some fresh snowfall in Northern Vermont is reasonably good; whether or not it's enough to call it a "powder day" is another matter.  Your chances of getting into something even approaching waist-deep are really slim unless you luck into a monster storm or you go deep into the woods and try to find something.

post #7 of 17

A big question is how are you coming, QEW or across NY State?  If your coming through Montreal, then Stowe or Jay Peak are obvious choices.  If you're coming across New York, then Gore and Whiteface are logical, as are the middle Vermont places like Killington or Okemo.  All the big places are about 2000' vertical and all a lot of varied terrain.  And no, do not ski in the woods alone, there is typically little cell phone coverage.   You'll have a good time wherever you go and, if you are looking to ski with some other people, you should be able to connect with some folk.  Strap them on and go.

post #8 of 17
Thread Starter 

I'm flexible with how I would drive there... just coming FROM toronto is all

 

Killington looks like it might have some good specials which would be a nice $$$ savings. Honestly I'm starting to think none of them would be a bad choice since they'd all be such a step up from what I am used to

 

And I'm also thinking that I'd only ski backcountry if I could find people... wouldn't snowboard it regardless... so maybe backcountry is fairly irrelevant

 

It looks like Killington has more skiable area/runs than Stowe but I doubt I'd capture the whole mountain anyways... especially boarding!

 

Agh, decisions, decisions!

 

 

 

Side note: A lot of the specials/lodging listed are mainly for groups.. are there in fact any specials or even lodging set up that is perhaps more hostel style? Would be a good opportunity to meet people - probably other smaller groups/individuals who would also be open to doing things together

post #9 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaitlyn2004 View Post
 

I'm flexible with how I would drive there... just coming FROM toronto is all

 

Killington looks like it might have some good specials which would be a nice $$$ savings. Honestly I'm starting to think none of them would be a bad choice since they'd all be such a step up from what I am used to

 

And I'm also thinking that I'd only ski backcountry if I could find people... wouldn't snowboard it regardless... so maybe backcountry is fairly irrelevant

 

It looks like Killington has more skiable area/runs than Stowe but I doubt I'd capture the whole mountain anyways... especially boarding!

 

Agh, decisions, decisions!

 

 

 

Side note: A lot of the specials/lodging listed are mainly for groups.. are there in fact any specials or even lodging set up that is perhaps more hostel style? Would be a good opportunity to meet people - probably other smaller groups/individuals who would also be open to doing things together

If you can make a quick decision, I'm meeting up with a small group who are getting together in and around Stowe March 2-5.  Mostly women who are advanced skiers, if that's of interest.  Might be someone willing to share a room.

post #10 of 17

My vote would be for Jay Peak or Sugarbush.  I love both.

 

 

I'm a Vermonter

 

JaneB

post #11 of 17
Thread Starter 

Now I'm thinking of arriving on Sunday, maybe leaving on Friday or Saturday and hitting up BOTH Stowe and Sugarbush. Experience both mountains and both villages

 

Sound like a reasonable plan?

 

The only part that would SUCK is if weather went against me and put snow where I wasn't!

post #12 of 17

A decent low cost lodging option is Turn of the River Lodge near Killington.

 

http://www.turnofriverlodge.com/

 

This would give you the option of skiing Killington, Pico, Okemo and/or Sugarbush. 

post #13 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaitlyn2004 View Post
 

Now I'm thinking of arriving on Sunday, maybe leaving on Friday or Saturday and hitting up BOTH Stowe and Sugarbush. Experience both mountains and both villages

 

Sound like a reasonable plan?

 

The only part that would SUCK is if weather went against me and put snow where I wasn't!


Base yourself out of the Stowe Motel and Stowe is 5 minutes up the road, Sugarbush/MRG(if you are skiing) about 45 minutes south, and Jay Peak about 1 hour north. Should give you a wide sample of the good stuff in Vermont.

post #14 of 17

If you are going to do Sugarbush, stay at the Hostel Tevere . less than $40 a night, super clean ,friendly and they have a bar and great restaurant down stairs!

post #15 of 17

+1 on the Turn of the River Lodge.  Reasonable rates, old school with fireplace and comfy lounge, lots of other skiers to discuss strategy with at breakfast and apres ski.   Close enough to the nightlife on the access road, but not IN it.   Very close to the gondola and Bear mtn end of Killlington (quick entry and exit to skiing).   Staying in a lodge / hostel anywhere in Vt would be a good idea so you could meet other skiers, get their opinions and, hopefully, get invited to go skiing with them.

post #16 of 17

Agree with most. Stay mid-upper VT for the better terrain. I LOVE Mad River but thought Sugarbush was pretty sweet also (not sure how Castlerock is doing this year with less snow than others).

 

Killington is cool, but if it were me, I'd stay up north more - cant go wrong with hitting Sugarbush, Stowe, and Smuggs

post #17 of 17

Just back from a week at Sugarloaf, which confirmed my #1 piece of advice about skiing in New England:

 

Go midweek and avoid weekends.

 

As others have said, if you can ski Tremblant, you'll do fine elsewhere in the northeast.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Resorts, Conditions & Travel
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Mountain/Resort Related Forums › Resorts, Conditions & Travel › First Vermont trip - a few questions! [from Toronto]