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Sea of clouds

I rode the Madonna lift this morning for my first run. I could see little spots of blue here and there showing through the clouds. As I got closer to the summit everything got brighter. I then suddenly I rose above the clouds. I felt like I was in a plane looking down on the clouds.  Today was magical with the mountains sticking up out the clouds like they were islands. I said a sea of clouds as a title but it was more like a river as the clouds spilled over the mountains. It was like watching water because the clouds had waves that built up as they moved over different objects. As the clouds came over the top they would then roll down the mountain as if they were cascading. Everyone was staying on top of Madonna with their phones out taking photos and soaking up the beautiful sunshine.

Tomorrow we plan to have top to bottom skiing and riding on all 3 mountains with all 8 lifts operating. We now have 62 trails open with terrain for all ability levels. 32 trails will be groomed for tomorrow, including Thomke’s Express and Curley’s Cutback for a grand total of 122 acres of freshly groomed terrain.

 

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Clouds rolling over Sterling Mountain

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Ski Patrol at the summit of Madonna Mountain this morning

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Panoramic photo from the summit of Madonna Mountain

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Slalom training on the Practice Slope

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Skiers on Snake Bite seen from the Base Lodge

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John riding the corduroy on Upper Chilcoot

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This is how you flatten a slalom gate

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Cool early morning light

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Lee enjoying the nice conditions on Upper FIS

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Catwalk on Madonna Mountain with Mount Mansfield in the background.

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Making the Scene

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Looking toward Madonna Mtn from the Sterling Lift. You can glimpse the moon in the center of the sky through the flat light of a December afternoon.

Rockin’ Ron for Hugh.

I got in my first turns of the season! With the Snow Macon, the Natch and the sunny skies, my timing was perfect. As I skied a Blue Trail, the late afternoon light cast a blue hue (not to be confused with Hugh) over the mountain.

It was great to breathe the mountain air and let the mountain scenery take my breath. You shoulda seen the scene.

 

 

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Sleeper storm

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We received 4 to 5 inches of new snow in the past 24 hours and 17 inches in the past 4 days.  The snow is getting deeper and the trail count is on the rise.  The conditions are just fantastic. The snow that we received Friday and Friday night we a little heavier and made for a good base.  The snow on top has been lighter because of the colder temperatures.  Smugglers’ Alley, Thomke’s Express, Pipeline Escape, and Lower Bootlegger from Thomke’s are all open now. This morning I got to ski a few runs with my good friends Teo and Pete. We had a blast on Lower Pipeline, Upper Treasure, Thomke’s, and Lower Bootlegger. Pete is the photo at the top of the page; he is finding some nice snow on Lower Bootlegger.  Teo looks like he is getting shot out of a cannon in the middle photo also on Lower Bootlegger. Teo is also the bottom photo where he is demonstrating how to lay them over in the fresh snow. I can’t wait till tomorrow to do it all over again! The forecast for tomorrow is partly sunny skies with temperatures between 25 and 36 degrees.

 

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Trail count just tripled

hugh-bWe received 8 inches of new snow in the past 24 hours and 11 inches in the past 48 hours. Snowmaking continues on Smugglers’ Alley and Thomke’s Express. Our snowmakers plan to work their way down the mountain as temperatures allow tonight.  Today was a rope dropping good day at Smuggs.  We opened Upper Exhibition, Chute, Upper Pipeline, Hangman’s Drop, Hangman’s, Lower Pipeline, Thomke’s, Highlander Glades, Lower Birch Run, and parts of Harvey’s Hideaway.  It was so much fun to play in the new snow. I was still finding some fresh turns here and there at the end of the day. peeweeWe could see a little more natural snowfall tonight. Tomorrow’s forecast is calling for a chance of flurries early then partly sunny skies with temperatures between 19 and 30 degrees.

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Above the clouds

nov-26-2016-003On my way to the mountain this morning it was pretty foggy.  The closer I got to Smuggs the brighter it got. I love being on the mountain and looking out to see the clouds nestled down in the valley.  There was some really cool light today on the snow covered evergreens.  On my first run of the day, I decided to stay on the groomed trails.  I had my new 88’s and I wanted to do some carving. They held great and I was able to lay them over.  It felt good to make a bunch of turns and try to get back into ski shape.  tiny-timTonight weather permitting we plan to make snow on Smugglers’ Alley and Thomke’s Express.  Tomorrow’s forecast is mostly cloudy skies with flurries and a snow shower a dusting to an inch of accumulation possible with temperatures between 21 and 32 degrees.  Tomorrow we plan to have the Sterling Lift operating with 6 intermediate trails open. Tomorrow we have a 32 dollar adult all day lift ticket or a youth 20 dollar all day lift ticket with a donation to the Cambridge Food Shelf. One discount per donation please.

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Smuggs Owner at Town Meeting

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Bill Stritzler says YES to community involvement!

Rockin’ Ron for Hugh. Town Meeting is a great Vermont tradition. On the first Tuesday in March, citizens of the Green Mountain State gather to discuss and vote on local issues. Depending on the year, we also vote for state and national offices. Bill Stritzler, the Owner and Managing Director of Smugglers’ Notch Resort is a regular attendee of Cambridge Town Meeting. In fact, the Resort encourages its employees to attend their respective Town Meetings.

You may have noticed that Bill is sporting facial hair. When snow dances failed us earlier this season, Bill offered to grow a beard until 50% of our trails were open. We hit the 39 trails mark in mid-January, but Bill wanted to maintain the hirsute hoodoo, so he’s keeping the beard until the end of Winter Programming on April 3rd. It looks like it’s going to work tonight, as 1 to 3 inches of the fluffy stuff are in the forecast. I think most of us in these parts are voting for SNOW!

 

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Catching some air off the rail

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Going for the grab

 

It was another beautiful day here at Smuggs. It was warm enough to soften the snow on Smugglers’ Alley.  I really enjoy the neat shapes and contours that are on the Alley. It has not been groomed this season, so it still has the snowmaking whales. There are now moguls on the whales to play on.

 

 

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Check out the Smuggs logo on this new rail.

I stopped by the Birch Run Terrain Park to check out the action.  There were quite a few skiers and riders hitting the features, hiking, and then hitting them again. The soft snow made for nice landings off the rails.