First day of the season - not the worst place to start and a good Ikon "burner" day. Over half the mountain was open and conditions started out excellent and improved throughout the day as it snowed non-stop and they were blowing snow on some of the trails. Even a few tree skiing sections were open but it's too early in the season for me to drop in. Staff was very friendly and lodges are nice. They cater to a particular clientele (well heeled intermediate skiers) and do it very well.
I was able get to Stratton this afternoon. They were claiming 5", but they picked up more. There was a no snow lull around 2pm and then the snow picked up again around 2:30pm and dropped another inch or 2. It continued until about 6pm.
The slopes were well covered with a slightly heavy, creamy powder. There was some ice and hard pack in spots, but you could find untracked or filled in spots until closing. It was about 26d and windy.
I am looking forward to tomorrow.
Friday was an excellent day. The trails were packed powder and some boot deep powder in spots. It was cold and windy and they were blowing snow on the Snow Bowl side. It did not open until after lunch and then only Spuce. I did not have one lift ride with another person all day. High temp at the top was minus 6.
Snowbowl side roped off
Saturday was also an excellent day, much less crowded on the trails and lifts due to the cold temps, 10f, and winds. There were minimal liftlines, other than the gondola. Conditions did get scratchy, but at 1:30 it started to snow and conditions improved. We skied empty trails until 4. For the last hour we had fresh tracks on most trails.
First runs on World Cup were powder
Somebody hit the auto shut down switch 😂
It is 27f now (Sunday) and it looks like we have 5 to 7 inches here. It looks like it is still snowing on the mountain. Warmth and powder on the menu.
Sunday turned out to be way more crowded than Saturday. The combination of 6 inches of overnight snow and temps in the high 20s brought out everybody. We loaded on the first chair at 8:30, but most of the mountain was already shredded. Stratton has an early access pass that allows people on the mountain at 7:45am. We did speak to a couple of early access skiers, but they said the mountain was shredded for them, too. They guessed the employees and ski patrol must have had all the first tracks.
Despite the lack of fresh tracks, the skiing was excellent most of the morning. Eventually the steeper trails became piles of snow surrounded by rivers of ice and hard pack. We switched to the low angle trails and found lots of packed powder and even some fresh tracks.
By mid-morning, lift lines on the high speed lifts were around 15 minutes.
That really doesn't look too crowded all things considered.
Killington was crowded, as expected, but we were able to stay ahead of the crowds for a good part of the day. We really enjoy Stratton, but the crowds can get unwieldy due to their more condensed layout. Then there's Mount Snow... I can't even imagine what that place was like this weekend.