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4 more days left of the 2016 – 2017 Winter Season

 

Upper Pipeline

We had a little rain earlier today and it was dry for the rest of the day. The temperature fell slowly throughout the day. At 2:00 pm it was 42 degrees at the summit of Sterling, so the snow was still spring conditions. The snow was pretty grabby yesterday but today’s cooler temperatures made the snow a little faster. The bumps on Upper FIS, Upper Pipeline, Snake Bite, and Full Nelson were fun to ski today. I also enjoyed the smooth soft groomed terrain of Lower FIS, Black Snake, and Lower Rumrunner.

 

 

 

John Farrell carving it up on Black Snake

Tomorrow we plan to have the Madonna I lift and Sterling lift operating with 35 trails open for intermediates and experts. 16 trails will be groomed for tomorrow that is 62 acres of freshly groomed terrain. Tomorrow’s forecast is a chance of flurries early then skies becoming partly sunny with temperatures between 34 and 46 degrees. Friday’s forecast is mostly sunny skies with temperatures between 36 and 48 degrees.

 

 

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Another gorgeous day

Snake Bite

Rental Shop is having an end of the season sale

Upper FIS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring has sprung for sure! Today was sunny with the temperatures reaching into the 70s. I love spring bumps because they are so soft. I had a blast today on Upper FIS. The bumps on skiers’ left are tighter and closer together, so you can make quick turns. The skier’s right side had bumps that were further apart and you could make bigger turns that were a little smoother. I also enjoyed Full Nelson, Snake Bite, Upper Pipeline, Upper Chilcoot, Mulcahy’s Link, Lower FIS, Upper Rumrunner, and Black Snake. It will be warm tonight and it will not freeze, so the conditions should be soft first thing in the morning. Tomorrow’s forecast is mostly cloudy skies, a chance of an early shower with temperatures between 44 and 57 degrees and falling through out the day.  Tomorrow we plan to have the Madonna 1 lift and Sterling lift operating with 50 trails open for intermediates and experts.

 

 

 

 

Sterling and Mount Mansfield seen from the Madonna 1 lift

 

The Top to Notch Building at the summit of Sterling with Mount Mansfield in the background.

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A little new snow overnight

 

New snow on Upper Exhibition

Well, we got a little bit of everything last night from snow, freezing rain, sleet, to rain. The new snow absorbed the rain and was pretty heavy. The new snow stuck to everything and was a little sticky. The new snow would hold you back nicely so I headed for steeper terrain like Chute and Smugglers’ Alley. I also had a great time cruising down Black Snake, Treasure Run and Practice Slope. I found that as long as I had my skis up on edge I would fly through the new snow, but if I had my skis flat on the snow they would slow down. The flat ski allows the wet snow to make a vacuum which slows you down. Once snow goes through a thaw-freeze cycle it will turn to corn snow the next time it warms up which is a faster snow.

Smugglers’ Alley

Tomorrow we plan to have both the Madonna I lift and Sterling lift operating with 62 trails open. We plan to groom 13 trails tonight, that is 53 acres of freshly groomed terrain. Tomorrow’s forecast is rain mixed with sleet early then freezing rain and rain later in the day with temperatures between 31 and 39 degrees. Wear something waterproof and enjoy the spring conditions!

 

Nate having fun on Upper Exhibition

Ice flow on Thomke’s

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Spring has sprung

 

Sterling Mountain

Today was a classic spring skiing and riding day. The snow set up last night so I started my day off with groomers.I ran into my good friend John Farrell a.k.a. Dr. John of 3 Mountain Equipment. We had a blast cruising down Upper Rumrunner, Black Snake, Practice Slope, Upper Chilcoot, Mulcahy’s Link, Lower FIS, Thomke’s Express, Crossover, Treasure Run, and Lower Exhibition. The snow was getting softer with every run. I ran into my good friend Chris Diegel of C.H. Diegel Photography in the afternoon and we made some sweet corn-ocopia turns on Sterling. The snow was soft all the way to the top of Sterling in the afternoon. Everyone is getting spring fever and we are ready for some Chillin’ & Grillin’, Backcountry Basecamping,  Drench Trenching, and live music filling the Upper Parking Lot.

Tele turns on Upper Exhibition

This is happening next weekend here at Smuggs! Tomorrow is Free Cone Day at Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream Shops.  Swing by the Smugglers’ Ben & Jerry’s Scoop Shop, 12:00 noon – 8:00 pm. This year, we are accepting donations for the Cambridge Food Shelf, so bring a food or money donation, and bring your sweet tooth!

 

Tomorrow we plan to have both the Madonna I Lift and Sterling Lift operating with 62 trails open. The Birch Run Terrain Park is open. 15 trails will be groomed for tomorrow that’s 68 acres of freshly groomed terrain. Tonight’s forecast is calling for an inch of new snow.

 

Treasure Pitch

Tomorrow’s forecast is rain, freezing rain, sleet, mixed snow early then some freezing rain and rain in the afternoon with 29 and 37 degrees.

 

Black Snake with Mount Mansfield in the background

Tele turns on Black Snake

Treasure Pitch

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April Fool’s Day

 

Justin getting some air on Chute

The new snow that we received last night and today was just perfect. It was heavy and stuck to everything, which allowed us to open so many trails today. Robin’s Run, Madonna Liftline, Black Hole, and Freefall from the traverse were all open. I skied Freefall this morning and it was wonderful. The new snow held me back nicely and I did not have to work as hard controlling my speed. I would have to say that the best snow was at higher elevations, especially later in the day when the temperature came up a little. My son Hugh B and I got to ski with our good friends Ken, Justin, and Loic. We skied Upper Fis, Lower Doc’s, Goat Path, Dan’s Ford, Chute, Hangman’s Drop, Black Snake, Lower Chilcoot, Upper Chilcoot, and Lower Pipeline.

Ken having fun on Hangman’s Drop

I would have to say that Upper FIS was one of my favorite runs of the day. It was groomed on Wednesday night, but it was not groomed last night. It was still pretty flat from Wednesday night’s grooming and with the 8 inches of new snow on top it was amazing. The bumps were soft because they were made of the new snow. Tomorrow we plan to have top to bottom skiing and riding on all 3 mountains with 4 lifts operating, including the Madonna 1 Lift. We have 71 trails open with terrain for all ability levels. 30 trails will be groomed for tonight, including Upper Drifter, Snow Snake, and Thomke’s Express for a grand total of 123 acres of freshly groomed terrain.

 

 

Ken on Chute

Tomorrow’s forecast is calling for flurries early then partly cloudy skies later with temperatures between 28 and 39 degrees

 

Hugh B finding some fresh

April Fool’s Day Fun

Justin on Hangman’s Drop

Loic having fun in the new snow

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Someone hit the refresh button again

 

Snow Sport University

The snow has really been piling up lately and that is setting us up nicely for the rest of the season. We received 62 inches of snow in the past 9 days and 334 inches this season so far. The new snow that we received last night is nice and light due to colder temperatures that we had when is was snowing. It was pretty windy today and it moved some of the snow around. I found many untracked turns in the woods and even on the sides of the trails today. There will be many untracked turns tomorrow on Madonna Mountain, because the Madonna I Lift was on wind hold today.

 

 

 

Fresh turns on Exhibition

We are 100 percent open! Tomorrow we plan to have top to bottom skiing and riding on all 3 mountains with 6 lifts operating, including the Madonna I Lift with all 78 trails open. 28 trails will be groomed for tomorrow, including Upper Drifter, Black Snake, and Curley’s Cutback for a grand total of 111 acres of freshly groomed terrain. Tomorrow’s forecast is mostly sunny skies with temperatures between 10 and 23 degrees. We have many events going on this weekend like the Maple Sugar Festival at the Boyden Valley Winery and Maple Open House Weekend. The Black Bear Tavern Apres Sport Party is featuring Fiddlehead this weekend.

 

 

Thomke’s Express

On Saturday, March 25th it is the Blast from the Past race, hosted by the Smugglers’ Notch Ski and Snowboard Club. I know it is still a few weeks out but you want to start getting ready for the 6th Annual Pond Skimming, the Chillin’ & Grillin’ Annual Tailgate Party, and the 2017 Backcountry Basecamp all happening the weekend of April 8th and 9th.

 

 

Come make tracks here at Smuggs

Snow Reporter testing the product

Top of the Notch Building at the summit of Sterling, home of the Snowshoe Adventure Dinner

A good bench mark

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Great conditions and great weather

 

Picture yourself here

Fat-ypus skis had a demo today in front of the Base Lodge. I stopped by to check it out and see what they had. They suggested that I try the M5 all mountain ski and I did. I had a blast testing it out on groomers and powder in the trees. I headed over to Sterling next to see the George Tormey Challenge which are athletes ages 10 to 13 racing Dual Giant Slalom on Saturday and Dual Panel Slalom on Sunday.  You need to focus on the gates coming at you when you are racing and when someone is right next to you doing the same thing it can be hard to do.  It can also push you to go faster when you see the other racer pulling away from you. It was exciting to watch this head to head competition. I look forward to watching the fast action of the dual panel slalom race tomorrow on the Practice Slope. The Practice Slope will be a busy place tomorrow because there is also the Molly Fund Benefit Rail Jam at the Zone Terrain Park. This special rail jam benefits the Molly Rowlee Fund, which supports families with children undergoing treatment for cancer.

Carving it up on Lower Madonna Liftline

This is the fifth year at Smuggs for this event, and it promises to again be awesome – come out and have some fun and support this great cause! The good times include music, giveaways, and a raffle. Registration starts at 9:00 am at the Yurt in Parking Lot 1, the Jam starts in the Zone Terrain Park at 11:00 am! www.mollyrowlee.org

 

The forecast for tomorrow is partly sunny skies with temperatures between 20 and 33 degrees. We are 100 percent open with top to bottom skiing and riding on all 3 mountains with all 8 lifts operating and all 78 trail open. Robin’s Run is open from the work road down. Tonight we plan to groom 30 trails, including Upper Drifter, Snow Snake, and Black Snake for a grand total of 122 acres of freshly groomed terrain.

Riding down Lower Catwalk

A sign of good times

Schaffer family on Morse Mountain

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Race training

race 3Today’s forecast called for cloudy skies with some showers likely, but we really lucked out and hardly got any rain. I got to ski with my nephew T.J. this morning and we had a blast. We skied Hangman’s Drop, Chute, Black Snake, Full Nelson, Practice Slope, Upper Pipeline, Smugglers’ Alley, Treasure Run, and Lower Exhibition. The snow was fast but very edgeable. We had a great time playing on the huge snowmaking whale on Full Nelson, at the bottom. The backside of the whale is steep and just so much fun. Talk about steep I watched some racers training on Snake Bite this afternoon. They were running slalom gates on Snake Bite and the Practice Slope. Snake Bite deserves respect especially when it has gates on it.

race 1Tomorrow we plan to have top to bottom skiing and riding on all 3 mountains with 6 lifts operating including the Madonna I Lift. We have 54 trails open with terrain for all ability levels. Tomorrow’s forecast is snow showers early then flurries 1 to 2 inches of accumulation possible with temperatures between 16 and 29 degrees.

race 4 race 2

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Wow what a beautiful day

 

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The view from the summit of Madonna Mountain

 

 

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Looking down Catwalk

Today was pretty amazing with all the sunshine. I headed up Madonna Mountain this morning and I did not want to ski down. There were great views in every direction. I hiked up the stairs to the warming hut and Ski Patrol building. It was fun to watch people as they were taking in all the great views and trying to figure out what the best background would be for their group photo. Upper FIS was so good yesterday that I just had to ski it again. The groomers had done a wonderful job once again. The sun was at my back and I could see the shadow of my spray as it came off my skis.

 

 

 

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Ski Patrol taking in the view

Tomorrow we plan to have top to bottom skiing and riding on all 3 mountains with 6 lifts operating, including the Madonna I Lift. We have 57 trails open with terrain for all ability levels. 25 trails will be groomed for tomorrow, including Upper Chilcoot, Hibernator, and Black Snake for a grand total of 100 acres of freshly groomed terrain. Tomorrow’s forecast is mostly cloudy skies with some showers likely with temperatures between 49 and 56 degrees. The rain becomes snow Wednesday night into Thursday with 2 inches of accumulation possible.

 

 

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Snowmaking

Snowmaking on Black Snake

Snowmaking on Black Snake

We are presently making snow on the Zone Terrain Park and on Black Snake. We have some great snowmaking temperatures for tonight and tomorrow. We are expecting 1 to 2 inches of natural snowfall Friday night into Saturday. There is also a snow storm brewing for Sunday night. We have top to bottom skiing and riding on all 3 mountains with 7 lifts operating including the Madonna I lift. We are 94 percent open with 73 out of 78 trails. 32 trails will be groomed for tomorrow including Upper FIS, Snow Snake, and Smugglers’ Alley for a grand total of 121 acres of freshly groomed terrain.

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Tower fan gun at the Zone