Sunday, December 24, 2017

Stratton, VT: 12/22/2017

Stratton Mountain, VT, Friday 12/22/2017.

The Saratoga Skier and Hiker, first-hand accounts of adventures in the Adirondacks and beyond, and Gore Mountain ski blog.

Storm day skiing is always fun, and Friday's snow brought us free refills all day long at Stratton. Light snow had started falling overnight, and by the time we got to the mountain 2 to 3 inches were on the ground. 9am conditions may have been a bit shy of "powder day" status, but by late morning things were getting pretty legit.

Stratton's not exactly known as a steep mountain. The pitch on many of their black diamonds approximates the steepness of a Whiteface blue. That turned out to be a real plus as the new snow stacked up, covering the scratchiness left behind by warm weather earlier in the week.




We certainly weren't the only skiers out getting an early start on the Christmas vacation week, but lift lines never really materialized. At most there was about a 5-minute wait for the gondi. Stratton's got a pretty efficient lift system, and upper mountain lifts were ski-on all day. Temps stayed in the low teens all day, so the gondi provided a nice break. It may seem trivial, but I really appreciated the wide ski racks on the gondi. If you're a Gore skier you know what I'm talking about.

Gondi ski racks easily accomodated our skis (Gore take note)

Storm skiing

Skiing down to the Snowbowl lift

Favorite runs included Spruce and Tamarack. Frank's Fall Line had been closed for racing earlier in the day, but opened to the public sometime after lunch and had some of the deepest snow on the mountain. As an added bonus Stratton's glades were in play. Our favorite line was Shredwood Forest, a long tree run that parallels Upper Spruce. We lapped that line three times.

Beth skiing Shredwood

Glades in play

By the end of the day a good 6 to 8 inches of snow had fallen. Regrettably, rain and mixed precip reportedly moved into Vermont and the Adirondacks on Saturday all the way to the Canadian border. With a little luck though Santa will bring a refresher to the region for Christmas Day.

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