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Pipeline is a GAS, naturally!

Jan 21, 2014 Ryan on PipelineRockin’ Ron for Hugh.  It helps to know people in the know.  Hugh called me this morning and told me the snow was sweet but squeaky, and that skiin’ would be freaky. Then I got the word from Eli in Patrol that Pipeline was his pick, and oh-my-my, it was sick. Eli don’t lie. Round the way I met Mark from VA. We grabbed some grub at Green Peppers then grabbed some runs with Ryan and Justin - his sons. We found some pockets of pow on Pipeline, and I found Ryan for this picture of mine. Then Patrol dropped the rope on Highlander Glades and we dropped in unafraid. Hope you haven’t found these rhymes too grating but today was crisp and clear and invigorating.

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Powder Day

 

 powder and trees blog

We received 13 inches of new snow in the past 2 days! The new snow is light and easy to ski or ride through. Upper FIS was groomed last night, so it was smooth with about 6 inches of new snow on top. My skis were carving on the corduroy while the fluffy snow was flying around my boots and lower legs.

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Teleturns on the Treasure pitch

 

tele turn blogWe received 2 to 3 inches of new snow last night. Our groomers were out last night also and they did a wonderful job. They made 161 acres of freshly groomed terrain for our skiing and riding pleasure. Our snowmakers were also busy last night making snow on Smugglers’ Alley, Hangman’s Drop, Upper Pipeline, Thomke’s, Bootlegger, and Thomke’s Express. I was enjoying the great conditions with my son Hugh B when we ran into some good family friends. We skied half the day with them and had a great time on Madonna and Sterling.

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Cat Trax Express

 

jan. 18, 2014 cat trax blogSmuggs has a 12 passenger heated cabin snowcat that brings you up Madonna Mountain on Saturday mornings at 7 am. I rode in the Cat Trax Express this morning and it was fantastic. We met in front of the Base Lodge and loaded up the gear. We headed up Lower Madonna liftline to Link and then to Upper Chilcoot. The sky was clear and the moon was up. The light kept changing as we worked our way further up the mountain. Once we got to the summit we all took a few minutes to take in the beautiful views. The moon was still out and the rising sun had Mount Mansfield glowing. All of the sudden I could hear people stepping into their bindings. The skiers took off down Upper Chilcoot to get fresh tracks in the warm morning light. One of the great things about this experience is that it can be shared with people who do not ski or ride. They just simply get back into the heated cabin and ride back down the mountain. We are also doing rides at night to see the fireworks and more. For more information just go to our home page and click on Cat Trax Express. To book your reservation you can call 800-523-2754 or email ski-ride@smuggs.com

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Ice climbing on Sterling mountain

I was riding the Sterling lift with my wife Harley and we saw someone on the ice flow next to the big rock on Sterling liftline. You ski to the ice flow and then go ice climbing. Another cool winter experience here at Smuggs! This program is held on Tuesdays and Fridays. Here is some more information. Peak Expeditions is pleased to offer a pay per climb experience on the ice cliffs of Sterling Mountain. Just a ski lift ride away is one of the most adventurous thrills of a lifetime. Ride the Sterling lift and ski down Upper Rumrunner until where it goes under the Sterling lift – the ice cliff is directly adjacent. Stap on some crampons, grab some ice axes and give ice climbing a try with our experienced staff. Must have a valid lift ticket, accessible by chairlift only. Ice climb tickets can be purchased at the Base Lodge or the Village Center ticket booths. Weather permitting. $9 per climb or three consecutive climbs for $24, equipment provided, ages 11 & older.ice climb blog

 

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Prohibition Terrain Park

 

playgroundI was riding the Madonna II lift today. I could see a couple groomers on Playground. I was wondering what was going on. As I got closer I could see some rails on the side of the trail. That’s when it hit me that they were building the Prohibition Terrain Park. The Smuggs Terrain Park crew had already installed 2 rails. It will be nice to have another terrain park open. The skiing and riding has improved recently with the natural snowfall and snowmaking.

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Smugglers’ Alley

 

Jan. 15, 2014 tonyMy day off is Tuesday and I did not make it up on to the mountain. I was in Burlington yesterday and it was raining throughout the day. I was pleasantly surprised today with the snow conditions. It snowed on the mountain yesterday and it made a big difference. The photo on the right shows Tony having fun on Smugglers’ Alley. We also plan to make snow tonight on Catwalk and Upper Chilcoot.

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Black Snake Blues

Jan, 14, 2014 AriannaRockin’ Ron for Hugh. Let me clarify that skiing NEVER gives me the blues, on the contrary, it always makes me happy. But I’ve never understood why this intermediate blue trail was called Black Snake. Come to find out, there was a ship called the Black Snake that sailed Lake Champlain smuggling goods between the U.S. and Canada during the Embargo of 1807. I get the Smugglers’ connection, and maybe it’s the suggestion of a ship on a calm lake that inspired this fun-but-not-expert trail to get its blue designation. Anywho, I got to take my yearly run with Arianna (Angie from Wyndham gets to ski with her tomorrow) on Black Snake and we skied our blues away.

P.S.  Black Snake info from the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum.

P.P.S. When you drag the cursor over the title ‘Black Snake Blues’ it turns from black to blue

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Race training

 

Jan. 13, 2014 st mike girlThe Saint Michael’s College Ski Team was training today on Sterling Mountain. They had a GS course set up on Black Snake, Snake Bite, and Practice Slope. Snake Bite is a pretty steep trail and I respect anyone who races down it, especially GS. The racers were laying it out to the point that their hands were touching the snow.

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Grooming Sterling

 

Jan. 12, 2014 early groom blogI want to thank the Smuggs grooming staff. They changed their usual grooming schedule, so that the trails would be groomed right before we opened this morning. This allowed the snow to set up before it was tilled. The freshly groomed snow mixed nicely with the natural snow that we received this morning. .