Good skiing and bright sun at Smugglers' Notch, Vermont, today

Thursday, March 5, 2009 at 04:13 PM

Bright sun, warmer temps and good snow at Smugglers' Notch, Vermont.
The view over to Stowe from top of Drifter.
Snow still clung to trees and branches in the shade.
Snow did not cling to Liftline, Robin's Run and other steep, rocky terrain.
Trees cast shadows on Chilcoot.
Good snow coverage and groomed runs.
Looking south at the Green Mountains.
Smugglers' Notch as seen from the Sunrise Café.

Today was a gorgeous day to be on the slopes in Vermont. The Skimeister and I bought the Bash Badge Plus at Smugglers' Notch this season, which gives you free early- and late-season skiing (and $25 tickets in between), so we rearranged our work to hit the mountain for part of the day—sans credit card.

There is still a lot of snow up there. The snowfall from a couple of days ago still clung to the shady side of trees, and the snow was still rather soft to ski through in glades that do not get baked by sunlight. Those would include Three Mountain Glades, Red Fox and Norwegian glades.

Our first run, however, over on Bermuda glades was a bit tough for me because the sun had previously hit that snow, making some chunky crust under a little bit of snow.

The groomed ski runs were terrific. I just hit a couple of ice patches on Lower Drifter. Chilcoot, Drifter and McPherson's were all firm but fun to carve turns on. And the views, well, the photos give you an idea of what a gorgeous, bluebird day it was.

When it was time to leave, we stopped into the Sunrise Café in between the ski resort and Jeffersonville. It's a little café in a bright yellow building. They have good Vermont-roasted coffee (they can also make espresso drinks) and we shared a turkey, cheddar and apple panino that was very tasty.

They also have a nice view of Smuggs, some basic natural foods, and natural personal care products (Tom's of Maine and such) for folks who might be in a pinch while on vacation, I suppose. And with your coffee you have plenty of reading materials, including Backcountry magazine (based in Jeffersonville, believe it or not). I noticed that if you get there before 9 a.m., you get a free coffee with the purchase of a $4 breakfast sandwich. Sounds like a good deal.

Let's hope tomorrow's "mixed precipitation" is mostly snow or sleet in the mountains. Saturday will be another sunny day on which to ski in spring-like temperatures.


Mad River Glen holds the 34th Annual NATO Telemark Festival this weekend. The cost is $60 per day or $116 for the weekend. Price includes lift ticket, demo equipment, skills clinics, contests and a dance Party. Free your heels, free your mind, man.

Filed in: Alpine / downhill skiing, Food, coffee & après ski, Mad River Glen, Smugglers' Notch, Ticket discounts

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