The recent spate of nor’easters has been a bonanza for snow sports enthusiasts in the northeast. Contributor Mike Roth recently visited Mount Snow and Killington, VT between some of those record-breaking snowfalls. Here’s his take on some recent powder days in the Green Mountains of Vermont.
By Mike Roth – It doesn’t happen here in the East very often but the two Nor’easters that hit caused many trees to fall on power lines, houses, highways, and cars and raised havoc with traffic. However, there was a silver lining at many of the ski areas of New York, Vermont, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Maine.
Although the percentage of skiers is a very small part of the entire population, we as die hard skiers welcome the snow and are going to make the best of it. As it turned out the latest storms dumped 41” of fresh snow over 72 hours on Mount Snow and slightly less at Killington, which is further north in central Vermont. This is fantastic for mid-March.
Skiers look and long for powder days. Many of us may have experienced those days out West where heavy snowfalls are plentiful, but once in a while the East will get some substantial dumps and this was such an occasion. On Thursday, March 8, Mount Snow received 27” of fresh snow. Fellow skier Mikey Malone went there. He called me and had a hard time expressing how fantastic it was. Since then more snow has fallen and as I mentioned above a total of 41 inches covered the slopes in a little more than a week.
Now granted you need to know how to ski powder. One comment came back to me from my friend Mikey from his experience at Mount Snow. There was actually a line of people looking for a refund on their tickets because it wasn’t groomed! I am assuming the snow fell so fast there wasn’t time to groom or perhaps the mountain only groomed a few trails and left the rest for the freshies. Many ski areas do refund your lift ticket in the first hour if you don’t like the conditions.
Jump to Friday March 9, – 24 hours after the storm. The roads were clear so we made a bee line to Killington. There were five of us and one had not skied in 15 years. I was concerned and wanted to make sure he had a great time. We stayed on the easier trails and by his 2nd run, with a little instruction, he was back in the saddle. He was hurting a bit, not from falling but by being out of shape. I could hear his thighs screaming as he went down the trail since he had not used those skiing muscles in a long time, and was totally out of shape.
We had lunch at the Peak Lodge which is very pricey but still a great experience, especially when it’s a clear day and you can see the panorama for miles. The menu is varied with something to suit everyone. It does get crowded up there and it takes some jockeying around to get a table, but if you can get there early or later you have a better chance at getting seated quickly.
Oh yes, did I mention Killington received another 10”? It’s always great when the skis glide through the snow and you hear nothing but the sounds of silence. That’s especially true in the East where we’re used to hearing a lot of scraping on the New England powder (hard pack).
There are more storms coming our way. I’m heading for Burke Mountain, VT to try and catch more fresh powder. I’m crossing my fingers.