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Question for the VT Guys (and Gals)

post #1 of 40
Thread Starter 
My roommate and I are making a weekend trip out to Vermont for some good skiing in Feb. We want to do a day at Killington and Sugarbush. We're trying to figure out where to stay that is somewhat central to the two and also has some sort of a nightlife. So, far we've found Rutland and Burlington. Where would be a better place to stay? Or are there others that we haven't thought of?
post #2 of 40
Killington offers great nightlife and it's all on the access road so it's best to stay there. There's are dozens of great spot with The Wobbly barn and the pickle barrel as classics.

Sugarbush was a little disappointing the last time I was there in terms of nightlife (Feb 2008 skiing was great). Perhaps someone who knows that area better than I can help you there.

I don't think you will find anywhere in the middle that would offer much in terms of nightlife. You would really be looking at a B&B or something like that along route 100 north....not to exciting in terms of nightlife.
post #3 of 40
depends where are you from? also what type of nightlife are you looking for. I went to school at UVM in burlington. nightlife there is going to be local based bar crowds. Fun but your chance of having fun is limited. and Btown is like over an hour to the bush and 2 hours to Kmart. i would recomend staying at Kmart the nightlife is all out of towners, much more fun for an out of towner, and you will be right a Kmart, and only 1.5 hours to the bush.
post #4 of 40
how old r u? btown is a college town which may make a difference. but id still say stay at kmart
post #5 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by roccityroller View Post
My roommate and I are making a weekend trip out to Vermont for some good skiing in Feb. We want to do a day at Killington and Sugarbush. We're trying to figure out where to stay that is somewhat central to the two and also has some sort of a nightlife. So, far we've found Rutland and Burlington. Where would be a better place to stay? Or are there others that we haven't thought of?
I'm not a Vermont guy (or gal) but I did stay at a Holiday Inn once.
Killington and Sugarbush are an hour apart (in good weather) connected by Rte. 100. Rte. 100 is a twisty mountain road, but it's well maintained so if you have 4wd it shouldn't be too bad. Hopefully it will be a very tough drive.
Up by Sugarbush, it's mostly local bars. Down on the Killington access road, there's all sorts of clubs. There's not a whole lot between the 2.
Sugarbush has the better skiing generally.
So, that should be enough info to make a decision, what's your priority.
post #6 of 40
The bush does have some great terrian as does Kmart. The OP asked the difference between staying in Btown and Killington. not at some B+B. so the answer is Kmart. Btown is way to far out of the way. and why would anyone listen to advice from a "Joey from Jersey"
post #7 of 40
Thread Starter 
Im from NY, my roommate is from Michigan, so I think that qualifies us as "out of towners"

We're both 21 so the college scene is where we would be looking for.

The thing is that, between him flying and me driving its going to be an expensive trip (NY being the only state that REFUSES to let gas prices fall below $2). And staying in Killington (at the mountain) is expensive, which is why we looked at Rutland.
post #8 of 40
you should be able to find something near Killington or maybe even in between the Bush and Kmart for not too much money. Vermont travel club has some discounts. But you might be able to get some for student rates elsewhere.

The bush itself is more of a quiet romantic small-town New England type getaway. Stowe is more money. Burlington is not close to Kmart, about an hour (or so?) from the Bush.
post #9 of 40
dont stay in rut-vegas. you will not be happy.
post #10 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by bwbski22 View Post
dont stay in rut-vegas. you will not be happy.
Oh, I bet they will be, unfortunately, they won't remember.
post #11 of 40
There are some cheaper options at K-mart. Hint don't look at the mountain owned joints.

Sugarbush has better skiing. K-mart better night life. Tell me where are your priorities??

there is nada in between.
post #12 of 40
I get the feeling people are telling, if you want to ski stay at Sugarbush, if you want to party and ski stay at Killington.
post #13 of 40
max got the drift
post #14 of 40
There are a few inns on Rte 100 in between the two in towns like Pittsfield and Rochester. Probably cheaper still are the off mountain older buildings on Rte 4 like Kokopelli Inn, Edelveis Inn, Valroc Motel, Turn of the River Lodge. Cheapest is likely to be some small motel in Rutland, but that is farther out of your way.
post #15 of 40
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the input.

Priorities are skiing first, obviously. And we're skiing both mountains while we're there, no matter where we stay.
post #16 of 40
I've never stayed there, but I know that Turn of River Lodge is pretty cheap. Really close to Long Trail Brew Pub too. If you find a cheap room in Rutland you are actually pretty easy driving distance to Killington area for partying. Be careful out there. Also, Rt 100 p to Sugarbush is a pretty easy drive even in the snow.
post #17 of 40
Turn of the River is super cheap, right next to Skyship base, and relatively close to the access road.

DO NOT stay in Rutland! The only things in Rutland are strip malls, gas stations, hotels, grocery stores, and chain restaurants.

Here is what I would do:

1) Hit up K-Mart on Saturday and park at the Skyship base (on Rt. 4, not on the access road)

2) Apres on Killington access road on Saturday night. Check out Wobbly Barn, Pickle Barrel, etc. Pickle Barrel is especially good for the college crowd.

2) Stay at Turn of the River Lodge Saturday night (I've been going there for years, it's a lot of fun and feels like a hostel):
http://www.turnofriverlodge.com/

3) Drive to Sugarbush Sunday morning (give yourself 1.5 hours in good weather and 2 in shitty weather)
post #18 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by bwbski22 View Post
dont stay in rut-vegas. you will not be happy.
HA!

What happens in rut-vegas stays in rut-vegas.
post #19 of 40
If you want to go to VT and ski a couple of Mountains, why pick those two? I think you are causing yourself a lot of unnecessary driving! Sugarbush/MRG, Sugarbush/Stowe, Stowe/Smuggs, or Smuggs/Jay would all be better combinations IMO. Once you get to northern VT (ie. 'bush) why not stay there. There is no reason to go back south.
post #20 of 40
just stay by the access road at kmart. you want a bar sceen. dont stay anywhere else. period. if i didnt own a home at okemo, and needed to stay and ski somewhere, i would be at kmart. but luck be has it that i own a great house on a lake at okemo.
post #21 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayPowHound View Post
If you want to go to VT and ski a couple of Mountains, why pick those two? I think you are causing yourself a lot of unnecessary driving! Sugarbush/MRG, Sugarbush/Stowe, Stowe/Smuggs, or Smuggs/Jay would all be better combinations IMO. Once you get to northern VT (ie. 'bush) why not stay there. There is no reason to go back south.
I agree. Rt100 between Sugarbush and Killington is a long nothing drive, especially late in a day after skiing (and much worse in snow). After you're back in the hotel, it's hard to pick yourselves up again to go party. Then again, you're much younger than I am.
post #22 of 40
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by chanwmr View Post
I agree. Rt100 between Sugarbush and Killington is a long nothing drive, especially late in a day after skiing (and much worse in snow). After you're back in the hotel, it's hard to pick yourselves up again to go party. Then again, you're much younger than I am.
I don't see there being an issue getting this crowd motivated to go out and party, but i see what you're saying. Staying at 'bush isn't a terrible idea, is there anything to do there after a good day of skiing?

And, random question, why is it called "kmart"
post #23 of 40
I agree with JayPowHound, why pick those two? Stowe/Sugarbush would be easier and you'd get plenty of bars in Stowe. Stowe's much better skiing than Killington too, imo
post #24 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by roccityroller View Post
And, random question, why is it called "kmart"
It's the biggest east coast area. It's usually crowded (although not if you know where to go) and everyone has been there at least once.

It's considered the big box store of skiing. By contrast a place like Sugarbush or MRG would be considered more the mom and pop shop.
post #25 of 40
Thread Starter 
So how are lift lines when you compare the 2?


Remember, the only time i was to VT was when i was 8, i was too young to appreciate what i was skiing, but i skied 'bush, smugs, and one other one right around the b-town area. So i don't know anything about any of these mountains.

So, here's a new question. We want to ski 2 mountains, and the group i'm going with is going to look for some Terrain park shit (maybe a little progression park to get our winter legs back) and some decent powder to play in. What's our best 2 mt. combination?
post #26 of 40
Lines will likely be a little shorter at Sugarbush, but I've never found Killington bad, even on weekend. There are just so many lifts, that you will always find some with no lines. The only time I would see a problem are 3 day holiday weekends.

The best two terrain park places are Mt. Snow and Killington.
post #27 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayPowHound View Post
If you want to go to VT and ski a couple of Mountains, why pick those two? I think you are causing yourself a lot of unnecessary driving! Sugarbush/MRG, Sugarbush/Stowe, Stowe/Smuggs, or Smuggs/Jay would all be better combinations IMO. Once you get to northern VT (ie. 'bush) why not stay there. There is no reason to go back south.
Stowe and Smuggs are not as convenient to each other in the winter as they would appear. Smuggler's Notch itself is closed to cars in the winter, so you have to drive way around on state highways to get from one to the other. At least, we had to do that 5 years ago...haven't been there since then.
Stowe is definitely a reasonable place for nightlife. I seem to remember that it was more the "older folks with lots of disposable income" crowd than "college kids with a few bucks between them and lots of hormones", though.
post #28 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virtus_Probi View Post
Stowe and Smuggs are not as convenient to each other in the winter as they would appear. Smuggler's Notch itself is closed to cars in the winter, so you have to drive way around on state highways to get from one to the other. At least, we had to do that 5 years ago...haven't been there since then.
Stowe is definitely a reasonable place for nightlife. I seem to remember that it was more the "older folks with lots of disposable income" crowd than "college kids with a few bucks between them and lots of hormones", though.
True. It's about a 45 min. trip to get around the notch in the winter. Still shorter than driving 'bush to K-ton though.
post #29 of 40
The skiing really isn't that bad at Killington. I dunno how it got the name Kmart. Although we have a saying "Kmart sucks" like from the Rainman movie .

There are steeps and difficult terrain there as well as a range of intermediate and beginner stuff. It's a little hard to get around in some ways and skis smaller than it seems but it's still a great place to ski IMO and they get a lot of snow.

The other places are fine just don't measure up to apres ski partying for what you're looking for. Stowe is fine but going to be more $$ I think especially to stay. But there's a lot up there to do too.
post #30 of 40
In my opinion, much of the 'Beta' on Killington in this thread is very stale.

Killington changed owners a year ago. They jacked up prices on season passes. They killed off all the comp tickets and steeply discounted day ticket deals that were floating around so most people are now paying full boat ticket window prices to ski there. The net result is that skier visits probably dropped to 650,000 last year down from north of a million during the truly busy years. The numbers were so poor that Killington won't even release them to the town as part of the approvals and planning process for the new base village.

They still make as much snow as ever. The new owners spent the last 18 months repairing a decade of neglect of the previous owners. It's mostly invisible things like fixing all the leaks in the snowmaking pipes, replacing roofs, and painting lifts & base lodges. They replaced one lift, fiddled with traffic flow in that area to do away with trail intersections, and installed a Burton 'Stash' terrain park that looks like it will kill & maim from the hiking I've done up there. The new owners operate the place very lean but you don't notice that on weekends unless it's crap weather with few customers on the hill.

Basically, it's the same old Killington but with half the people. Last Saturday was the first time it felt busy all season and even that wasn't anything like years gone by. They had a cash prize rail jam event out in front of the base lodge and a big pile of racers up on the hill so the main Killington Base Lodge was a little jammed. Killington sells a lot of $650 blackout season passes and those people don't show up during holiday periods further detoxifying the place.

Killington is the first resort on the Green Mountain spine that gets 250" of natural snow. That opens up the tree skiing and you can ski between virtually any of the cut trails if you have the approprite tree skiing skills. Sure, you're going to find a better skiing surface farther north at Sugarbush where you have less than half the skier visits but the difference isn't as pronounced as a few years ago when Killington was outright jammed with people. Killington also has the infrastructure advantage of infinite water supply and a huge snowmaking system. When Sugarbush has a lean snow year or just saw a big thaw, there's not much they can do but wait for it to snow. At Killington, you can at least know that you'll have some fresh manmade to play on.

If the new owners spun the freakin' lifts into May and stayed open until they ran out of snow, I'd have no problems with the place.
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