On top of Ol’ Sterling… all covered in SNOW

Old SterlingRockin’ Ron for Hugh. 23 inches of snow in the past week and another 3 to 6 inches of snow by Thursday morning is in the forecast! The mountain is in great shape going into the Holidays. Today’s combination of fog and early winter/late afternoon light had me singin’ Foggy Mountain Breakdown. In fact, a mogul snuck up on me as I rounded the hairpin turn on Upper Chilcoot. You know that “woo” feeling, when your stomach stays in the air a little longer than the rest of your body. Later, I talked to a guest who said he very much enjoyed his first day of skiing the East in 48 years, and his first day ever of skiing at Smuggs! In related news our Nordic Center is open with 12km of trails. We’re all covered in SNOW!


Ya never know… until ya go!

Snow SnakeRockin’ Ron for Hugh. By the time I hit the slopes it was more mixed precip than the white fluffy (aka clear snow in Snow Reporter parlance). After all these years, I don’t know why I was surprised that the trails were nice-n-creamy. I was also surprised when Sam the Snow Snake snuck up on me while I rode Mogul Mouse’s Magic Lift! I was surprised because it’s not every day you see a reptile on a Lift Tower. BOO-HISSS!

P.S. Try saying “Mogul Mouse’s Magic Lift” 5 times fast.


Bread and Butter

SnowmakersRockin’ Ron for Hugh. I stopped by Snowmaking Headquarters to talk to Justin T and the Crew. Snowmaking is planned for tomorrow – perhaps as early as 6am. The snowmaking guns will be blowing on the “Bread and Butter” trails. These are the trails on Sterling Mountain that are the first to open and the last to close each winter. The trails are Upper Rumrunner, Crossover, Treasure Run, and Lower Exhibition. Guns may also be operating on Smugglers’ Alley, Thomke’s Express, and Birch Run, as well as a fan gun placed near Sterling Lift. Pictured here are Dave, Chris (buttering his bread), and the other Justin.



Sugar Frosted Mountains

sugar frosted mountainRockin’ Ron for Hugh. We received a light frosting of sugar-like snow on the upper elevations. This morning I took this picture from the front of the Base Lodge. You can discern a dusting in the distance. It won’t be long until Mother Nature and our Snowmakers make much more of the sweet stuff!


New Snowguns!

2014.10.14 Birch Run Snow Guns

Rockin’ Ron for Hugh. Our Head Snowmaker Justin T (that’s Thoelke not Timberlake) informed me that 155 brand new, energy efficient snowguns have been added to our snowmaking arsenal. These guns will increase coverage on our already extensive snowmaking network. Pictured here is the bottom of Birch Run Terrain Park with some of the new snowguns – Park Rats* rejoice! Also there are 3 new Fan Guns that can be transported by sled to various sites around the Resort. Our anticipated Opening Day is Friday, November 28th for Winter 2014-15 Lift Operations. I’m fired up about them firing up the ‘guns’, just don’t let the Blog editors fire me for bad puns :P

*Park Rats – an affectionate term for those who spend copious amounts of time jibbing, hucking, and performing quality control on terrain features.


Thank you for a great 2013-2014 Winter Season!

360 pass Rockin’ Ron for Hugh. It is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to winter… but wait… we say say a happy hello to spring, and an even happier hello to SUMMER! You can dive into fun at Smuggs with the 360 Pass. It’s a deal you can’t pass up – just click on the picture.

Q: What did one snow person say to the other snow person? A: Do you smell carrots?


Morning Has Broken

Apr 20, 2014 Easter Sunrise Mick Apr 20, 2014 Easter Sunrise Lift down

Rockin’ Ron for Hugh. An Easter Sunrise Service was held atop Sterling Mountain today. The Mountain Ops crew got here extra early to load the Lift at 6:00 am. A beautiful sunrise over Madonna Mountain greeted everyone with a yellow hello. Karen Boushie from Smuggs PR handed out pamphlets with the service and song lyrics. Pastor Mick Comstock of the 2nd Congregational Church of Jeffersonville then delivered the service. Sara Lourie played accordion and the crowd sang along to “Morning Has Broken” and “Amazing Grace”. After the service, skiers, riders, and hikers proceeded down the mountain. Other folks rode the Sterling Lift back to the Base. To those who celebrate it – Happy Easter!

Morning has broken like the first morning.

Here is a nice message  I received on Monday, April 21st:  I am new to Vermont and felt this was something my husband and I really needed to do. It was absolutely incredible. We are over sixty non-skiers and being so out there on the chair lift was stunning. I will have the image of the mountains as we rode back down etched in my memory til I die.  – MK


“Fresh” Prince

Apr 16, 2014 Brendan FreshRockin’ Ron for Hugh. What a difference a day makes.Yesterday was torrential rain and today was sunshine and powder. I saw Dave Sills (aka P1 or Patrol One) at the Top of the Notch. He said they had a heck of a time assessing the conditions this morning. After just a couple of runs, I can see what they went through. Well, my hat (or helmet) is off to you Dave, and the rest of Patrol and Mountain Ops. I chanced upon Greg Fatigate and he raved about the Birch Run Terrain Park, and he was right – it was in excellent condition with 4 rails and 3 jumps. Pictured is Brendan Simpson getting some fresh powder on the trail that connects Thomke’s to Bootleggers and Smugglers’ Alley. We skied a nice variety of terrain including Highlander Glades and Pipeline.Today was a crowning achievement to the season – we felt like Princes of Powder – like Jon Snow in Game of Thrones.