Trapp Family Lodge: Return to the Hills

The day after the Craftsbury Marathon, I drove to Trapp Family Lodge for a recovery ski. I hadn’t been there in 15 years.

Yes, that Trapp Family. The hills are alive, sweet vocal harmonies, cavorting in alpine meadows, and all that. After fleeing Austria, the von Trapp Family settled in Stowe, VT, buying a substantial piece of land and opening their first guest house in 1950.

In 1968, the Trapp Family Lodge opened a cross-country ski center. According to their website, it was “the first of its kind in North America.” Mohonk Mountain House began offering ski tours to their guests in the 1930s, but they didn’t — and still don’t, to my knowledge — have a lodge for day guests.

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North and Northeast

If you don’t live near-ish to where it’s going to hit, sometimes, even with fairly accurate medium range weather forecasts, getting the goods can feel like a military assault — as much logistics as action.

This last storm thankfully crested on a Friday. A rarity, I can assure you as my schedule is always the same and I am always watching the weather in winter. When it appeared, I knew I had to do what it took to get, somewhere. Probably the farther north, the better.

After a lot of talking and texting about Le Massif de Charlevoix and other exotic and distant locales, as the weather pattern firmed up, we settled on Whiteface and Jay.

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Bolton Valley: Vermont’s ATV Indy

Thanks to some strategic scheduling, I found myself in northern Vermont with some free time on Friday. After talking with Harvey and checking the Indy Pass resort list, I loaded up my car early and made the short trip to Bolton Valley.

As I approached, I started getting excited. It’s the kind of mountain road that feels like it will lead you to a promised land. Bolton reveals itself slowly; a few miles up the access road, you’ll pass the quaint Timberline Lodge. I continued on to the base lodge a few minutes further up.

Rolling in to the main base area, I saw other early-bird AT skiers. Bolton has a friendly uphill policy, and quite a few locals take advantage of it for early morning workouts.

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