Forty skiers and riders, including my niece Kayla, made the journey to Okemo Ski Resort in Ludlow, Vermont yesterday to enjoy the snow. Yes, it was a busy day on the mountain with President’s Day weekend in full swing. But the condition of the trails made the hustle and bustle fade rapidly.
Clear blue sky all morning topped with abundant sunshine made it as near spring skiing as could be gotten. The snow was soft. What we call “hero” snow…anyone can ski or ride pretty darn good in the stuff. Patches of snow on the lower mountain got a bit soupy, but if you stayed to the shadowy edges as much as possible it was pretty tolerable.
The afternoon shaped up even better. The crowds faded rapidly—as long as you stayed off the Old Mountain Road trail—as did the sun. The temperature dropped, and with the sun tucked behind the clouds the snow firmed up nicely making for some speedier runs as the day got long. But the snow stayed softened, making for some very pleasant conditions to end a very fun day in the Vermont hills. My favorite was a few late day runs down Upper and Lower “Chief,” which for once wasn’t closed for race training.
With all the snow Vermont experienced over the past two weeks, the warming won’t mess up conditions much. And it’s supposed to chill down again for the next few days, allowing ample grooming and perhaps a bit of snow making, keeping conditions topped off at “Great.”
I can always judge how good a ski and ride trip is by level of noise on the way back south. If there is lots of chatter about the day as the bus starts the journey home, followed by near silence for most of the rest of the way (and we all know that’s NOT because of the high quality, engrossing movies we show on the bus!), I know it was a great day. And the ride home yesterday was deafeningly silent. Everyone was blissfully exhausted.
And that’s a really great way to be. Join the Avie’s Ski & Ride crew this coming Sunday, the 26th of February, as they point north once again, into the hills of Vermont to Mount Snow. While conditions will remain excellent, be sure to continue to wish for another giant dump or two of snow, maybe even another blizzard. It can’t hurt.