Another snow-filled December ski today!

Saturday, December 10, 2016 at 05:04 PM

December 2016 Vermont backcountry skiing
Skinning up in the snowy woods.
Really looking like winter at nearly 3,000 feet.
Powder found, and enjoyed!

Knowing that the higher elevations in northern Vermont had continued to get snow this week, the Skimeister and I headed out to investigate. We stuffed our packs and grabbed our Nordic season's passes to ski on the backcountry trail network at Bolton Valley. The Nordic center is now open, as are a couple of lower-mountain lifts at Bolton Valley.

It's definitely still early-season, with wet spots, hidden obstacles and stream crossings to avoid, but when you steered clear of these the snow was soft and rather deep! We were surrounded by increasingly snowy trees while climbing up to about 3,000 feet. It was chilly today (in the teens at this elevation) so we only stopped briefly to drink water, and then kept moving.

We took off our skins, put on our helmets and enjoyed powdery turns in a gladed area. Then we meandered down a couple of trails where we made turns in the light powder to the side of the trail. Very fun!

We were cautious today because the base of snow is still not very deep and we definitely hit some things under the snow. Also, while it is now starting to freeze up, we needed to carefully navigate open water bars and wet areas. Eventually we hit the World Cup trail, which had been packed down by a groomer, and headed back to the Nordic center.

We had a wonderful time earning our turns today in the quiet woods! And to think, it's only December 10th and more snow is expected Sunday night into Monday!

Filed in: Backcountry skiing, Fall & Early season

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