Five Heartland ski areas are celebrating significant milestones this season. All have been in business at least 65 years and a couple started in 85 and one 75 years ago, according to the National Ski Areas Association.
Pine Mountain, in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, and Wilmot Mountain, just north of Chicago along the Wisconsin border, opened in 1938, and celebrate 85 years this season. They opened just a couple of years after Sun Valley in the west and Bromley Mountain opened in the east, both credited with kicking off the North American ski resort industry. That first chairlift installed at Sun Valley 87 years ago was purchased by Everett Kircher in 1947, moved to Boyne Mountain and introduced the modern era of skiing to the Heartland. It's still in use hauling visitors to the top of Mountain to hike across the world's longest timber towered suspension bridge that was opened last fall. It's available to walk across year round.
Wilmot Mountain, located just north of Chicago along Wisconsin’s border, also turned 85 this season. Its unassuming vertical drop of 230 feet is offset by its stature with the million or so skiers that have skied here since it opened in 1938. It offers 25 trails, seven lifts and two surface tows to accommodate the large weekend crowds.
Pine Mountain is also home to the Kiwanis Ski Club jumping tournament that draws the best jumpers worldwide every year. Jump Weekend is where the US jumping record was set at 140 meters/459 feet and is still held here. The ski area offers a 500-foot vertical, 27 runs, three chairlifts and two surface tows.
Lutsen Mountains, 75 years old, opened in 1948. It's the largest ski resort around the Great Lakes with a nearly 900-foot vertical, the only gondola in the Heartland, and 95 runs scattered across four mountains. It lives up to its namesake “Mountains of the Midwest.” It's located in Minnesota's Arrowhead offering gorgeous views of Lake Superior from most of it's trails.
At last, it’s the Northeast’s turn for snow! A coastal storm will deliver more than a foot of freshies for parts of New England and New York by the weekend, while the West gets a chance to dig out. Let’s dive into this week's SnoCast.
Mountains commonly found around and under Vermont, airports have been known to intimidate pilots flying in from the “flatlands,” but flight instructor and ski industry veteran Charlie Rockwell says the nearby peaks are really no big deal. The terrain, while rugged in places, is certainly no reason to shy away from sampling some of the fine alpine skiing that Rockwell knows even better than the airports in his Green Mountain home.
Encore Renewable Energy and Bromley Mountain Ski Resort announced the completion of a 615kWdc solar project on land owned by Bromley Mountain in Peru, Vermont. The new project, jointly developed by Encore and Tangent Energy Solutions, will generate clean, locally generated solar power and help Bromley reach their sustainability goals. The energized solar array will generate enough electricity to power 70 average households per year and offset the emissions of 120 passenger vehicles annually.
No less than nine Heartland ski areas are celebrating significant milestones this year. All have been in business at least 60 years and one started 85 years ago, according to the National Ski Areas Association.
Autumn in Vermont is hard to beat. Fall foliage, brewfests and flannels make for the quintessential New England experience. Many of Vermont's ski areas will be hosting brewfests and Octoberfests as well as providing scenic chairlift rides for leaf peeping.
Vermont’s ski resorts are posting their anticipated opening dates for the 2021-22 ski and snowboard season.
As you’re reflecting on another amazing winter, consider all the green you can save by purchasing next year’s pass now. If Vermont is on your list, check out all of the Green Mountain state 2019-20 season pass options.
If you make the drive to Vermont every weekend, or several weekends during the winter, you may have thought that just staying in Vermont might have a lot of advantages. The state is now helping to make that decision a lot easier with their Stay to Stay Weekends, including three weekends specifically for skiers and riders.
Mother Nature has brought fresh snow to the mountains for Vermont, which means it's time to start planning your winter getaway. Check out this sampling of deals that Vermont resorts have put together and book a trip that will make your family and your wallet smile.
As baby boomers were building families in the 1970s and 1980s, ski resorts were putting steel and concrete in the ground, expanding both lifts and terrain. The skiers and riders of today are benefiting from those infrastructure improvements. Lifts are faster, ticket-checking is RFID-enabled to speed up lines, and snowmaking and grooming have never been better or more energy-efficient.
Now the focus is on affordability and on-hill experiences.
Those in the market for 2018-19 season passes at Vermont resorts still have time to save big, thanks to fall deadlines on some of the best deals in the business.
It’s just as fun to go up the mountain as it is to go down thanks to Vermont resort’s well maintained and sprawling trail networks. Thousands of acres of wilderness offer both challenging and meandering trails with beautiful views and the ability to choose between half-day hikes complete with summit dining, to overnight hikes and the opportunity to connect with Vermont’s iconic Long Trail system and the longest hiking foot path in the world, the Appalachian Trail.
Cruising on Spruce Peak at Stowe. (Stowe/Facebook)
Vermont resorts are offering 2018-19 season passes at their lowest prices this spring, and some options include access for the rest of this season, too. Several Vermont areas are also included in multi-mountain pass offerings for great travel options.
Sunny spring tele turns at Cranmore. (Cranmore/Facebook)
Nothing like a consecutive string of nor'easters to put a smile on the faces of Northeast skiers and riders. Due to above average snowfall this season, resorts across the region have announced extended ski seasons.
Skier slides down Loon in NH where all eyes are on a coastal storm. (Loon/Twitter)
Snow alert! A huge storm slams the West this week with locally up to five feet of snow. The East could be nice and snowy just in time for the weekend.
Now is a great time to bring the family to Sugarbush. (Sugarbush)
Vermont’s resorts have prepared a slew of deals to get skiers and snowboarders to the hill this December. Start off the holiday season with discounted vacation packages, learn-to-turn programs and more.
Monkeying around at Sugarbush. (Sugarbush)
Adventure seekers can get their thrills in this summer when they visit one of Vermont’s resort adventure parks. Summer is calling and Vermont ski resorts have an adventure for everyone to embark on.
Cooling off at Bromley. (Bromley/Facebook)
Plenty of great skiing at Stratton. (Stratton)
Known as the snowiest month of the season, March brings heaps of snow and warmer temperatures for skiers and riders in Vermont. Add to that a mix of great deals and events at Vermont’s mountains and March is sure to be a month that you don’t want to miss.