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Suggest a ski resort in New England for large family group, diverse abilities, some non-skiers?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hello everyone,

 

Some family members and I are trying to organize a ski/snowboard weekend for the winter 2014-2015.  Group size looks like it will be somewhere in the 8-16 person range, roughly half adults and half kids. 

 

Abilities range from high intermediate to beginner, and some of the adults are non-skiers.  Kids’ ages are going to be from 16 down to maybe 7-8 for the youngest. 

 

People would be driving in from the Boston area, CT, and upstate NY so VT is more centrally located for everyone than, say, ME would be. 

 

We’ve done this a couple of times in the last few years with a smaller, core group and this time we think we’d like to expand it.  We have done Mt. Snow and Stratton in the last few years.  Both mountains are a good fit for our core group in terms of size and terrain. 

In terms of priorities I would say we are looking for:

 

  • ·         Proximity to slopes, either ski-in ski-out or free shuttle ride
  • ·         A base area (or town) with some dining and entertainment options (I found the Stratton base area rather sterile and we didn’t get the memo that if you wanted to eat dinner at one of the two restaurants you had to make reservations by 9 am). 
  • ·         If there are daytime entertainment options for the non-skiers that would be great but it isn’t mandatory.

 

 

I see both Smuggler’s and Killington have special packages for groups, does anyone have any experience with them?  I’ve been to both, years ago, but it wasn’t with a group. 

 

Thanks in advance for any advice.

 

post #2 of 9

I hear your desire to go to Vt.  

 

However, the town of North Conway in NH has all you'd want in a ski town.  There are lots of restaurants of every sort.  Any kind of lodging can be found, from elegant bed and breakfasts to old grand hotels and standard been-there-done-that motels.  Four ski areas are within easy driving distance, and parking is free and close to the base lodges of all four.  Black Mountain is in the town next door (small; see the horses!).    Attitash has a mountain coaster running in the winter, and Cranmore, unbelievably right in town, has night tubing and night skiing along with an athletic center that you can buy access to by the day.  Wildcat is close, just up the road from Black.  It features classic New England trails with a view of Mt. Washington and Tuckerman Ravine across the street, a view you won't forget.   

Sunday River in ME and Bretton Woods in the other direction are both about 1 hour's drive,

if you still crave more places to ski.

 

The Red Jacket Inn has an indoor water park.

 

 

There's a very large outlet scene and downtown has colorful shops if you have shoppers in your group.


There's also a vintage train station across from the village green with daily runs for family fun.

 

Oh, one more thing.  The Appalachian Mountain Club's Visitor Center in Pinkham Notch sits

at the base of Mt Washington and at the trailhead of the Tuckerman Ravine trail.  You can

eat a family-cooked meal in the center at 6:00 pm 365 days a year.  You'll be in the company

of folks who just hiked down the trail.  Good stories will be told.  It's best when crowded, so

call ahead and see what the dinner traffic is likely to be.


Coming back with one more thing to do apres ski.  Drive 45 minutes to the Mt. Washington Hotel, an

historic old massive architectural wonder, and enjoy a $10 Irish coffee in the grand hall.  The crowds

will mostly be in ski clothes, except the wedding parties.  The best seats in the hall are by the fire, under

the moose head.  The concierge will give you a chess board or checkers or Parcheesi setup if you ask.

Then take the tour.  It's free.


Edited by LiquidFeet - 8/24/14 at 4:03pm
post #3 of 9
John,

Killington has lots of dining options and a mix of skiing. The less experienced skiers might be better taking the shuttle bus to Pico Mountain, especially if it is a crowded holiday weekend. Killington has a good beginner area (snowshed) and a low intermediate family ski area (ramshead). Beyond that, much intermediate terrain either intersects at points with skier traffic of varying ability level (keep your eyes peeled) or has been converted to terrain park. For stronger skiers there are tons of terrain options.

The big negative to Killington is the lack of activities for nonskiers. A tubing park is about it. There is no village; instead there is a long access road. Lots of ski shops, restaurants, bars, and hotels. There is free shuttle bus access along the access road and between the Killington base areas.

If you do go to Killington, it is big and different peaks have different character. Find a mountain ambassador in a red jacket and ask for advice on how your specific group might best spend its first half day while you get a feeling for Killington.
post #4 of 9
LF does Mt Washington Hotel have shuttle service to any nearby slopes?
post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by XLTL View Post

LF does Mt Washington Hotel have shuttle service to any nearby slopes?
It's right across the road from the Bretton Woods ski area. It's truly a wonderful place. We had to stay there during Hurricane Irene and my daughter still talks about it.
post #6 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by XLTL View Post

LF does Mt Washington Hotel have shuttle service to any nearby slopes?


Yes, to Bretton Woods.  Omni owns both.

post #7 of 9

Your New Yorkers will not appreciate the drive to NH.  VT is definitely the best location to bring together your disparate groups.  I have done similar weekends. Meting family for Boston and the finger lakes region of NY at Killington, Stratton and Okemo.  We used to rent condos for a pre Christmas weekend and gather anywhere from 6 -12 people of varying ability and often a non skier or so (grandparents). Okemo is centrally located and there is a fair sized town, Ludlow right there.  No base village but nowhere in the region really has one.  Tremblant would be ideal but way too far for everyone to drive for a weekend.  Killington would also be good as any advanced skiers in your group will be less than challenged at Okemo, Stratton, or, from what I have been told, Bretton Woods.

post #8 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by crank View Post
 

Your New Yorkers will not appreciate the drive to NH.  VT is definitely the best location to bring together your disparate groups.  I have done similar weekends. Meting family for Boston and the finger lakes region of NY at Killington, Stratton and Okemo.  We used to rent condos for a pre Christmas weekend and gather anywhere from 6 -12 people of varying ability and often a non skier or so (grandparents). Okemo is centrally located and there is a fair sized town, Ludlow right there.  No base village but nowhere in the region really has one.  Tremblant would be ideal but way too far for everyone to drive for a weekend.  Killington would also be good as any advanced skiers in your group will be less than challenged at Okemo, Stratton, or, from what I have been told, Bretton Woods.

 

So very true.

post #9 of 9
Very nice work LF great job
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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Mountain/Resort Related Forums › Resorts, Conditions & Travel › Suggest a ski resort in New England for large family group, diverse abilities, some non-skiers?