A skier’s checklist for maximum adventure
by Tony Crespi
Feb 14, 2013 | 1654 views | 0 0 comments | 16 16 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Tony Crespi
Tony Crespi
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What’s on your skier’s check list? Cold smoke powder? A Western escape?

Does your list include a special Eastern adventure? It should!

Year to year my list includes adventures in New England as well as outside New England. A dear friend’s daughter, who married a year ago, spent her honeymoon skiing in South America. Check! That’s one mark off their bucket list. But, their short list includes ongoing weekend escapes to the family’s second home in Vermont.

What’s on your check list?

Years ago, living in the high alpine in Colorado, and often hiking to 13,000 or 14,000 feet for untracked powder, my list included regular weekend ski hikes in my ongoing search for powder. Occasionally folks trained for the Powder 8 contests and several ventured to Alaska or Canada for helicopter forays. Still, not all our lists are as spectacular.

In the East my annual list includes certain ski escapes with friends and it includes certain job responsibilities in my role writing for multiple magazines and mountain newspapers. A few days ago, after a day skiing at Stratton Mountain, sitting in the lodge, two folks asked if Bromley Mountain would be worth a day escape. Imagine, they had never skied the mountain! I gasped explaining that not only are the trails delightful but they are often quite uncrowded. One fellow commented that he’d have to plan a day escape.

Too often folks miss out on easily accessible adventures.

Here in southern Vermont you can easily fashion an exciting Eastern list. You can. Here’s the thing, Eastern skiing and riding escapes can offer unrivaled diversity. Whether planning to enjoy weekend bump skiing on the North Face at Mount Snow, or planning a flying lesson through Green Mountain Flight Training in Bennington in order to see the local resorts from the air, the Deerfield Valley region can offer a long list of adventures. In fact, as most of us know, when the snow is right, area resorts can offer a remarkable array of winter fun. The area has steep slots, bumps, wide-open cruisers, and snowmobile rides. The list is long.

Powder? Powder days are excellent.

Sure, we all know that fresh powder is the stuff of dreams. And most skiers dream of powder days. In truth, though, you are not always guaranteed powder even in – dare we say this – the West. It’s true! On the other hand, at least once a season, and typically on several days, a massive nor’easter will pummel the region.

You have to love those days.

Still, snow can vary, week to week, month to month, and year to year. A few years ago I was working in New Hampshire. The snow was really hard. Then it started to rain. Rather then sitting idle, we trekked to Vermont. And, while it was actually raining in New Hampshire it was, for some reason, snowing in Vermont.

We grinned that day.

Incidently, we just gasped as the snow was actually light. We were lucky. Then, a month later, after enduring the continuing frustration of several January rainstorms, I hit the lifts again as we began to test skis for a magazine story, only to discover great machine groomed packed powder. Fortunately, Vermont resorts had made snow all week!

I praise snowmaking.

The take-home? The next time you are considering a mountain escape do not be completely led by local weather stations. For those of us at The Deerfield Valley News we know that we’ll catch more powder this winter. And between those days, we’ll smile on the corduroy, on the hard-pack, and yes, even on ice.

Think about your adventure list. Powder? Check. Snowmobile ride? Check? Flight lesson over area resorts? Not yet! What’s on your list? Take a chance. Sure, with a little luck, you might catch great powder. But, in the meantime, enjoy the hard pack. Enjoy the corduroy. Enjoy the region. Meanwhile, savor each adventure, from your first run to your last run.
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