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Magic Mountain, January 31st, a first-timers perspective

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 

I finally visited Magic Mountain in southern Vermont on Saturday.  Magic was closed for a long time, but it re-opened a few years ago.  They rely heavily on natural snow, but Vermont has actually been getting help from Mother Nature lately, so I paid the place a visit.

 

Challenge 1:  finding the place.  The "Magic Mountain" sign on Rt. 11 is pretty much obscured by snowbanks these days.  I've cycled past it a couple times during the summer months though, so I had a pretty good idea where it was.  Pulled into the upper parking lot at 8:00.  There were all of three other cars there.  Ummmm, this place is open today, right?

 

Anyway, walked up to the base lodge, bought a lift ticket, and -- unlike in most base lodges where you're fighting for a spot to get geared up -- I sat down anywhere I wanted because there was basically nobody there.

 

Magic really only has two chairlifts, both doubles -- the red chair and the black chair.  I'm not sure when the black chair last actually was operational.  Judging by the amount of snow and ice piled up on the black chair, I'm guessing it's been a long time since they fired it up.  The red chair takes you to the top though, so what else do you need?

 

The trail under the red chair gave me a good visual as to what Magic means by the "double black" designation.  It's a lift line trail in every sense of the word -- just wide enough to fit a double chair, a couple cliff bands, giant bumps, rocks and dirt poking through everywhere, you get the idea.

 

I took a warm-up run down something that was more-or-less groomed, meaning the center third was groomed, and the sides weren't.  Now it hasn't snowed since Wednesday, and there were still sizeable amounts of deep snow on the trail sides.  It was unbelievably dense, heavy snow, but there it was.  Wow.

 

Everything to skier's right of the red chair is fairly mellow and probably groomed out.  Everything to skier's left of the red chair is natural -- steep, ungroomed, unmarked  obstacles, the works.  Easily the most "adventerous" terrain I've encountered in southern Vermont, and trails like Red Line and Magician would hold their own against anything in the northEast.

 

I skied all day, open to close; twice all day I had to wait maybe two minutes.  Most of the time I just skated right onto the chair or had a one or two chair wait.  How they make enough money to stay open is a mystery.  I almost never saw another person on the trails.

 

So....  If a good day of skiing for you means having slopeside lodging, riding high-speed chairs, eating fancy meals, don't bother going to Magic.  If you need lots of trails, great grooming and nice bamboo poles marking all the obstacles -- don't bother going to Magic.  If you want to just ski awesome terrain with some genuinely friendly people and can do without the whole McResort scene -- get yourself to Magic.  I can't wait to get back there.

post #2 of 20

Nice tr KevinF!

Glad to hear Magic still has some.  Haven't skied there in years and back then you could get off midway on the chair. Can you still do that?

 

post #3 of 20

Nice report Kevin.  Just got there myself for the first time a few weeks ago and I'm looking forward to a return visit.

post #4 of 20

yeah it is a great place for a natural local experience.  I've been skiing it since they reopened and heard about it from my cousin who skied it when it was closed (via moonlight, a few drinks and climbing ;)

 

Hopefully they get some more snow and I'll hit it later in the week ...

 

post #5 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tog View Post

Nice tr KevinF!

Glad to hear Magic still has some.  Haven't skied there in years and back then you could get off midway on the chair. Can you still do that?

 

 

Sure, you can get off mid-way.  Raise the safety bar and jump.    There's no official mid-way unloading station anymore though.

post #6 of 20
Quote:

 

So....  If a good day of skiing for you means having slopeside lodging, riding high-speed chairs, eating fancy meals, don't bother going to Magic.  If you need lots of trails, great grooming and nice bamboo poles marking all the obstacles -- don't bother going to Magic.  If you want to just ski awesome terrain with some genuinely friendly people and can do without the whole McResort scene -- get yourself to Magic.  I can't wait to get back there.

Noticing mucho Magic with recent Liv4ski, SKI-3PO now your TR…also; nice turns with the summary Kevin…certain panache not often found here.        


 

post #7 of 20

Great TR.  We should have an epicski gathering for east coast Bears at Magic.

post #8 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinF View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tog View Post

Nice tr KevinF!

Glad to hear Magic still has some.  Haven't skied there in years and back then you could get off midway on the chair. Can you still do that?

 

 

Sure, you can get off mid-way.  Raise the safety bar and jump.   

 

Such tracks were clearly evident on my recent visit...it wasn't a very high jump at that point, but interesting to see tracks materialize out of nowhere.

post #9 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by liv4ski View Post

Great TR.  We should have an epicski gathering for east coast Bears at Magic.

That's a great idea. It sounds like the kind of place I'd love. Let's get ourselves a group rate and go! You organizing, liv4ski? :-)
 

post #10 of 20

I love that place!  The terrain easily rivals Stowe, Killington, etc.  It's a great mountain without the B.S.  Plus, you gotta love the lack of pretty much any crowds -- I just hope they can keep it operating!!!

post #11 of 20

I'd totally be up for a Magic trip!

post #12 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tog View Post

I'd totally be up for a Magic trip!

Me too.

 

post #13 of 20

+1.

 

BTW I was there the same day as the OP -- superb conditions but "crowded" by Magic standards.  Once I waited about 5 or 10 minutes to get on the chair, but the trails were wide open .  Owner (Jim Sullivan) said they were 2 or 3 weeks from getting the black chair back up and running.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by epic View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tog View Post

I'd totally be up for a Magic trip!

Me too.

 

 

post #14 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ice Queen View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by liv4ski View Post

Great TR.  We should have an epicski gathering for east coast Bears at Magic.

That's a great idea. It sounds like the kind of place I'd love. Let's get ourselves a group rate and go! You organizing, liv4ski? :-)
 

Magic is best experienced with fresh snow - more so than most other mountains in VT that have extensive snow-making.  We have not had new snow in a long time and there is no snow in the forecast for this week.  Should we start a thread in the Getting Together forum to see if we can organize a trip after the next big snowfall?

post #15 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by ts01 View Post

+1.

 

Owner (Jim Sullivan) said they were 2 or 3 weeks from getting the black chair back up and running.

 


 

That's great, but I'm not gettin on.  Bad enough riding the red

post #16 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by liv4ski View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ice Queen View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by liv4ski View Post

Great TR.  We should have an epicski gathering for east coast Bears at Magic.

That's a great idea. It sounds like the kind of place I'd love. Let's get ourselves a group rate and go! You organizing, liv4ski? :-)
 

Magic is best experienced with fresh snow - more so than most other mountains in VT that have extensive snow-making.  We have not had new snow in a long time and there is no snow in the forecast for this week.  Should we start a thread in the Getting Together forum to see if we can organize a trip after the next big snowfall?


 

 

I would totally be down!  If we could keep a close eye on the weather, we could have a good week to put something together...  That and I just spied Magic tickets at a discount site on the cheap...  Hmmm...   

post #17 of 20

ill be up there on saturday the 7th for the black magic comp.

 

also thats the TGR east coast summit dates as well. see you guys there if you if show up.

post #18 of 20
Thread Starter 

I'd be up for going there again after another good snowstorm...  As you said, the current weather sucks though. 

post #19 of 20

Nice description Kevin. Makes me wish I lived close enough for a day trip.

 

Thanks for sharing! 

post #20 of 20

where are those discount tickets for magic?! tnx. 

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