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.


Summer’s hard work supports Winter fun

It’s been a busy summer in Mountain Operations. Probably the biggest news on the mountain is snowmaking: this summer, for the third year in a row, Smuggs purchased another batch of new tower guns!

These guns are from two different manufacturers and are energy efficient, meaning they need less air to make snow. This will allow us to make more snow with the air capacity that we currently have. Efficiency Vermont provided a really great incentive plan this year which helped us to purchase the quantity of tower guns that we did this summer. We will be adding 120 more HKD Impulses, one more HKD Fan Gun and 36 Snow Logic Tower Guns. They will join our current fleet of 250 tower guns that we have purchased over the last two years.

We’ll be receiving the guns this fall to install for the start of the 2014-2015 winter snowmaking season; in fact, delivery may occur as soon as next week. The drilling rig that drills holes for the posts that the tower guns sit on has already completed the holes for the new posts. We’re excited to add to our fleet given the great performance of the guns added over the last two seasons. The high efficiency guns yield faster terrain coverage and quick refreshing of trails for the best possible onslope experience.

Our brush crew will be starting trail clean-up in early September. All part of winter prep!


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.


The Party Faithful (or Faithful Party-ers)

Apr 13, Party Faithful 1 Rockin’ Ron for Hugh. The season isn’t over for this hardy crew. As long as there’s a run to take – there’s fun to be had. Good food, good friends, good times. Pictured left to right: Unknown Man in a Ski Helmet doing a Daft Punk impersonation, Doug, Trish, Brett (his first appearance on this year’s Blog), and Fletch.



The Road to Mama

Apr. 11, 2014 Rockin’ Ron for Hugh. From Jeffersonville take Route 108 South and that will bring you home. Madonna Mountain  (aka the Mother) will be open for skiing and riding this weekend! Who says your mama don’t love you?

P.S. I know I’m not alone in thinking that when you drive up a mountain you should be heading North. Let me know if you agree.