Killington: Drop the Mic

I don’t know why I count ski days, and I’m not sure I want to know. I do know that I’ve averaged 35 days a season over the last five years with little variance. It’s become a bit of a benchmark for me. With 34 days this season and friends planning to rip under a sunny sky, I drove to Killington for Ski Day 35.

Sort of. Friday afternoon Zelda and I were to attend the “States” gymnastics meet about an hour north of home. As you might suspect, the wheels were in motion. I devised a two-car strategy to allow me to head directly from the competition to our place in the mountains, within striking distance of Big K.

Continue reading

Prospect Mountain: Return to Forever

The March snowstorms that pummeled New York also left their mark on Vermont. Over eight days, Prospect Mountain, east of Bennington, received 80 inches of snow.

prospect mountain

With family commitments in the second half of March and warmer temperatures on the way, I thought my ski season would end at the Lake Placid Loppet. But in another surprise storm, the gods smiled and dropped five more inches of snow at Prospect late last Friday night. I had to work Saturday, but Sunday was full on for skiing.

If you’ve browsed NELSAP, you might be scratching your head — as they list Prospect Mountain as a lost ski area. Prospect opened in 1939 with a rope tow. Over the decades, it grew, but still relied on natural snow.

Continue reading

Return to Pico: Soul in Central VT

I hear skiers call Pico a “family hill” or “locals’ mountain” but to me it goes well beyond that. Pico has tons of soul. Despite detachable quads and comfortable amenities, Pico is a throwback with a history that dates back to 1937.

That’s when the mountain was opened by Bradford and Janet Mead, an adventurous couple that had skied in Europe and whose daughter, Andrea, would eventually win Olympic gold twice in 1952. In “Skiing in the East — Ski Trails and How to to Get There” by The Federal Writers’ Project, Pico is described as featuring two huts (one top, one bottom) an 1100 foot tow and “a pleasing combination of open slopes, practice runs and expert trails.”

Continue reading