New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Stowe or Okemo, 21-24 January

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Ok, here's the dilemma: "To Stowe or not to Stowe? That is the question."

I'm thinking of making a sojurn to VT over the inauguration day period. Work is borderline insane right now and I need a small dose of VT to get throught the winter. I'm not asking for much: just a few nice runs down Perry Merrill, Nose Dive, and maybe Liftline if I am feeling bold.

I'll be traveling from Washington, DC, by car with my wife. We both have a long love affair with Stowe. Her's dates back to the first time I took her there in 2000. Mine dates back to high school. It was at Stowe that I first discovered the pleasures of a real mountain. The rest is history. For my wife, Stowe represents her first REAL ski experience in the United States She's from Slovakia and Stowe reminded her of the Carpathian mountains where she learned to ski.

But now the doubts: rain, cold, long drive. Hmm. Maybe Okemo would be a better bet because of its superior snowmaking and also the shorter drive: 1.5 hours close to DC=three hours less drive (the distance from DC to 7 Springs). I've never skied Okemo, nor has my wife. I took her to Killington last year and she hated it: too flat, too borring, and the worst layout she's ever experienced in a mountain.

Thoughts? Do I go to Stowe or take a chance with Okemo. My fear with Okemo is too much flat terrain and too many people on Sat. and Sunday.
post #2 of 19
Well, today's rain was pretty much a non-event at Stowe. More like sleet, and cold enough at the surface that the guns were still going most of the day. All the trails that you mentioned are in good shape and I expect them to stay that way for a while now. Is it worth the extra 1.5 hr drive? That's for you to decide.

Oh, if K was too flat, you're gonna hate Okemo. Nice mountain, I like it, but if K was too flat...
post #3 of 19
Go to Stowe-Stowe is north of the rain/snow line that exists in Vt. if it warms up. Okemo is south of it. What good is the great grooming if it is a wash-out.

FYI-Okemo is only boring if you are a double black diamond skiier. They have lots of blues and diamonds that are like higher level blues-I love it there-but weather must always determine where to go.
post #4 of 19
Have to agree with Epic. If you thought Big K was flat, then Okemo will be torture. The Jackson Gore area is a little better though.

A compromise would be Pico. Not crowded and very old-time NE. Not real steep, but better than Okemo.

I would opt for Stowe myself, but that extra 2 hours is a real bitch at the end of an already long drive.
post #5 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by TerpSKI
Have to agree with Epic. If you thought Big K was flat, then Okemo will be torture. The Jackson Gore area is a little better though.

A compromise would be Pico. Not crowded and very old-time NE. Not real steep, but better than Okemo.

I would opt for Stowe myself, but that extra 2 hours is a real bitch at the end of an already long drive.
You also have Mad River and Sugarbush which might be a nice mix.
post #6 of 19
Thread Starter 
Thanks folks. I'm actually leaning now towards Okemo because it looks like this cold snap that begins this weekend will last for a while. Hence, Okemo might be ok--especially given its emphasis on snowmaking and grooming. It's warmer microclimate also might make it more enjoyable during this deep freeze we seem to be headed towards.

I'm now less concerned about flat terrain--compared to the grass we have in the Mid-Atlantic, anything in VT will seem steep.

A couple of additional questions? What's a good motel/hotel that's near the slopes and reasonably affordable?

Also, what's a good strategy for avoiding the Saturday crowds? I like Phil's Pico idea. The other idea would be Acutney.
post #7 of 19
Thread Starter 
Thanks folks. I'm actually leaning now towards Okemo because it looks like this cold snap that begins this weekend will last for a while. Hence, Okemo might be ok--especially given its emphasis on snowmaking and grooming. It's warmer microclimate also might make it more enjoyable during this deep freeze we seem to be headed towards.

I'm now less concerned about flat terrain--compared to the grass we have in the Mid-Atlantic, anything in VT will seem steep.

A couple of additional questions? What's a good motel/hotel that's near the slopes and reasonably affordable?

Also, what's a good strategy for avoiding the Saturday crowds? I like Phil's Pico idea. The other idea would be Acutney.
post #8 of 19
I would choose Pico over Ascutney because there is abetter chance of natural snow. Ascutney doesn't have much water so doesn't make much snow compared to Okemo or K'ton. If there is natural snow you may want to consider Magic, you may complain about other things but the terrain is interesting and the slopes empty.

As far as places to stay, Ludlow is fairly expensive because demand is high as Okemo is popular. I have stayed at the Best Western and Okemo View (?) and both were fine.
post #9 of 19
I have only been to Stowe once but it totally blew away all of my experiences at Okemo. The extra drive should be worth it I think.
post #10 of 19
Thread Starter 
I opted for Okemo because it is a shorter drive and they intend to blow a lot of snow before I get there (at least that's what they say). I've never been there and that's always a good reason to go to a new mountain--never stop exploring...

Thanks for all the advice, I'll let you know how it goes.
post #11 of 19
Okemo.........no matter what this miserable winter sends, Okemo keeps coming back fresh and white......After ten years here, even I am amazed..........This is one of the worst winters I can remember, and this mountain bares her teeth at the most awful conditions to come along in five years and provides skiable terrain. It is simply remarkable.
post #12 of 19
Thread Starter 
Hugo:

Thanks for the shot in the arm. My wife looked at the weather last night (cold!!!!), and got a little concerned. I told her that conditions look great, and crowds should be low because it is the weekend after the 3-day, and cold is just something she'll have to live with. Without cold, there is no snow!!!

Got any suggestions for places to eat dinner off mountain?
post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnfmh
Hugo:


Got any suggestions for places to eat dinner off mountain?
There is a little breakfast place right in town that is great. And "Checkers", has an awesome Blackened Prime Rib, I had it a few years ago and I still dream about it.

Food prices on the mountian are tollerable, but where they kill you is in hte drinks. Bring a couple of cans/bottles to drink with your lunch.
post #14 of 19

Good Restaurant

There is a pretty good place in Ludlow. Unfortunately I don't remaber the name, but it is on the left side of the main road as you ar heading to Okemo just on the edge of town. I know its not real helpful, but maybe someone else can provide the name.

ALso a couple good pizza places on the main street in Ludlow, one sit down and informal the other more of a takeout, Also good.
post #15 of 19
For off-mountain dining, I'd try Harry's, on Rt 103 heading north, about five miles from the base of the access road. Or Sam's Steakhouse, also on 103, on the south side of Ludlow. Neither place is fancy, or cheap either. There's D J's in town...mixed reviews there, but they've been there a long time. There are others that may be as good, or better; and my information is kinda dated. Oh...a lot of the younger set seem to like Wicked Good Pizza, no personal knowlledge though. Have a great time.
post #16 of 19
Don't go to Okemo if you're a decent skier. Crowded, expensive, and soooo boring. Besides, Stowe just got dumped on.
post #17 of 19
Wicked Good pizza...that's the name of one of the pizza places. Good "NY style", better than most you will find in DC (beside Vace of course)
post #18 of 19
Thread Starter 
Mac:

I made my reservations on Friday so I am committed. Okemo is receiving some snow as well--2-3 inches yesterday and about the same the day before. Also, it is bringing new terrain online with its snowmaking system.

I'm on this quest to find half-decent skiing in Central or Southern VT. I went too Killington last year (a place I loved as a kid) and was mildly dissappointed. Many of its trails skied small because they covered less than 1200 feet of vertical. I could have handled that but what I really hated was the GREAT NORTHERN and GREAT EASTERN. These trails create a ridiculous number of interchanges on the major skiing trails, and cause a stop, start experience for intermediates and advanced skiers on many trails. What I like so much about Stowe is that most of its trails ski big and don't have too many crazy intersections. I have no idea what Okemo will be like but it looks better designed than K-Mart, and being 2 hours closer to DC is a major plus. Also, the mountain 2-3 degrees WARMER, which makes a big difference during a cold snap. Finally, all those high-speed detachables will mean less time riding lifts in the cold.
post #19 of 19
Have a wonderful time!


My suggestion is go up the lifts early, and do your best not to come all the way down until you have to. You can have a ridiculously long wait in lift lines on the bottom at 10:00 AM. I have not been there for a number of years, so if they have added gondolas, sixpacks, etc. to the bottom, disregard my advice.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Resorts, Conditions & Travel