Catamount Trail was conceived of 26 years ago by three back-country skiers who dreamt up the idea of tying all the state’s best cross-country ski areas together, stretching from Quebec to Massachusetts. Completed in 2008, Catamount Trail is now 300 miles of well-groomed, back-country ski trails with stretches of true wilderness in between. What a feat! What a treat!
Category Archives: Winter activities
Perched on the backbone of the Green Mountains, Mad River Glen has been ranked by SKI magazine as the most challenging resort on the East coast, due in no small part to having a 2,000 foot (610 m) vertical drop – this despite the fact that it’s not that large of a resort!
Mad River Glen is a committed “skier’s mountain,” too – meaning it is one of the few ski resorts in the US to enforce a total ban on snowboarding. Now, while this is bad news for snowboarders, it’s great for those skiers out there who have, for what ever reason, formed a, shall we say, “definite opinion” about sharing the slope with snowboarders – or even those who have *no* opinion on snowboarders.
A lot of Mad River Glen’s approach is hand’s off: they don’t groom the slopes much, if at all, preferring to let things lay as they land, as it were. This means the trails can have a decided natural feel to them – and boy do they vary in difficulty!
Our location in Vermont’s Mad River Valley has us near the center of so many things the whole year ’round. Once the snow flies, skiing is one of the first things to come to mind and, when it comes to skiing, Sugarbush Resort is hard to beat.
The largest ski resort in New England, Sugarbush boasts six peaks, two uncrowded mountain areas, and 2,000 acres of backcountry in the Slide Brook Basin – no wonder it was ranked #1 in Terrain Variety by SKI magazine!
Did you know that over 120 ski areas throughout Vermont have closed, from the 1930’s through the 2000’s? From local, town operated rope tows, to major resorts with high speed quads, these areas all played an important role in the development of skiing in the state.
Join ski historian and author Jeremy Davis for his presentation on:
SATURDAY, JANUARY 25
MAD RIVER GLEN, 7 – 9 PM.
A wide variety of ski areas will be discussed, including nearby areas as well as those featured in Davis’ book, Lost Ski Areas of Southern Vermont.
As well as Jeremy’s presentation, the evening will include light fondue refreshments, a special showing of the new T-Bar film, United We Ski, and more. Admission by donation at the door .
Jeremy Davis is the founder of the New England Lost Ski Areas Project, a website dedicated to the history of lost ski areas throughout the region. He is the author of three books: Lost Ski Areas of Southern Vermont, Lost Ski Areas of the White Mountains, and Lost Ski Areas of the Southern Adirondacks, and is currently working on his fourth book, Lost Ski Areas of the Northern Adirondacks. Davis serves on the Board of Directors on the New England Ski Museum in Franconia Notch, NH. He is a 2000 graduate of Lyndon State College, VT, and today works as a Senior Meteorologist at Weather Routing Inc. in Glens Falls, NY.
Plan to be there if you can – you might just find out what happened to that ski hill you skied on as a kid.
Print the poster!
There’s nothing wrong with skiing, sledding, or taking the car out for a literal spin on the ice (okay – maybe there is something wrong with that last, there) but sometimes you may find yourself craving something a little slower and more nature-intimate in your outdoor, wintertime activities – in that instance, may we recommend snowshoeing Mad River Valley?
Our Ski & Stay Passports are a truly great value – they were a great value last year and we haven’t changed the prices since then so the value is greater now than ever!
The spring equinox is only two days away. Soon, the snow will melt and spring will reveal green buds on the trees, blooming flowers and sunny days. But not yet…
Get your fix of your favorite winter sports before its too late!
You don’t have to drive anywhere to nordic ski if you are staying at West Hill House. Our Inn is located across the street from the Sugarbush golf course. If you rise early after a snowfall, you can blaze your own trail. A little later in the day you can undoubtedly follow a trail forged by someone else.
Mad River Valley Cross Country Skiing Centers
Ole’s (2355 Airport Road – 15 minutes from the Bed and Breakfast) As of this posting, there are four inches of fresh snow, a combo of silky packed powder and loose powder, on the ground at Ole’s. It’s 17 degrees and beams of gleaming sunlight are breaking through low clouds, illuminating the fresh snow. At least 20k of trails are groomed and tracked for both for classic and skate skiing.
Blueberry Lake (424 Plunkton Rd – 10 minutes from the Bed and Breakfast) Blueberry Lake received 3 inches of fresh snow last night and the temperature is slightly warmer at 23 degrees. They have 11 trails, totaling 30 km for classic, skate skiing and snowshoeing. There are trails for both beginners and advanced skiers. Many of their trails are wooded, with the occasional overlook to wide open meadows with beautiful views.
The Catamount Trail: This is not a ski center but an unmanned ski trail that runs the length of Vermont. It is 300 miles long and has been in the making since 1984; it was fully linked together in 2008. Thousands of skiers and snowshoers take to the trail every winter season — most only spend a day on a section of the trail. However, some ambitious adventurers ski end-to-end. What you are sure to enjoy about the Catamount Trail is the pristine backcountry, farmland and village surroundings along the way. The Catamount trail passes directly behind our B&B.
One of the aspects of Mad River Glen that makes it so unique: the ski resort is a co-op. Those that love this place are committed to seeing it remain in pristine condition. Plus, everyone skiing is happy to be there – they love Mad River! So even on busy weekends, the crowds are personable, not snarly or competitive.
But please note: there is no snowboarding at Mad River Glen.
About Skiing at Mad River Glen
Mad River Glen is famous for its beautiful and varied trails, with routes for both beginners, intermediates and experts. It is also home to the nation’s last surviving single chairlift – which was completely rebuilt a few years ago.
The extensive trail system follows the contours of General Stark mountain to a single base area, making it easy for families and friends to ski together. Located in the “snow corner” of New England, Mad River’s 250 inches of annual snowfall combined with a pristine mountain environment to create a wonderful skiing experience!
West Hill House Bed and Breakfast Ski & Stay Package
For the rest of the 2013 ski season, West Hill House bed and breakfast has a great deal for any skier. Until March 31st (with some blackout periods) we have three and four day ski packages that include lodging and breakfast at West Hill House, along with “passports” for skiing at Mad River Glen, Sugarbush and Ole’s cross-country skiing.
These Ski Passports also include coupons for discounts or freebies at local stores and restaurants.
Come during the week and stay for four days. Come during a weekend and stay for three days. The price for both packages is the same. So, if you can afford to get away during the week, you get rewarded with a better deal and less crowded skiing conditions!
Transport to the Ski Resorts
The Lincoln Peak base at Sugarbush is only two minutes away and there is a free shuttle bus from our front door. You can come back anytime during the day. Mad River Glen is about a 15 minute drive, and Olé’s is about a 10 minute drive.
Sugarbush is famous as home to the most diverse terrain in the North East. In fact, it was ranked #1 in Terrain Variety by SKI Magazine in 2010. Many Olympian skiers and riders fell in love with the sport and perfected their technique on the Sugarbush slopes.
Sugarbush resort is only a couple of minutes from the front door of our B&B in Warren. The ski shuttle will stop here to whisk you from the inn to the slopes in style.
We’ve also found that the Sugarbush riders and skiers are among the friendliest at the top ski resorts in the North East.
First Tracks Tours at Sugarbush Resort
If you are an early riser, than let us book something really special for you: A first-tracks tour. 12 passengers can ride the Lincoln Limo and experience pristine, deep powder as they cruise down the mountain before anyone else. The route taken is determined by the weather and snow conditions on the mountains that day. Tours may go to the top of Heaven’s Gate or North Lynx, into the Slide Brook Wilderness Area or elsewhere, based on the judgment of the guide. The tour includes an en route pastry breakfast from Timbers Restaurant, a movie to get the adrenaline pumping, Sugarbush guides and one or two cat-served runs. (First Tracks-trips are available for advanced skiers and riders only.)
Our Vermont Ski & Stay Package
From now until March 31st (note black-out periods) we are offering you great prices AND flexibility for an inclusive skiing vacation in Vermont. Stay at our Bed and Breakfast and receive two Ski Passports per room. The Ski Passport includes skiing at not only Sugarbush, but also Mad River Glen and Olé’s cross-country. The Passport also provides promotions like freebies and discounts at local stores and restaurants. Visit our Ski & Stay page for prices and further details. We look forward to seeing you this winter!
With early season snowflakes whirling about them, and the temperature sitting at about 28°F, Ryan and Jeff were married in the meadow at West Hill House B&B. Our favorite Justice of the Peace, Greg Trulson officiated at the wedding making it a very meaningful occasion, as he always does. Following the ceremony, the newly married couple asked Peter to continue taking photos as they enjoyed a short stroll around our wintery gardens.
Warming up by the fireplace a few minutes later Ryan and Jeff enjoyed an intimate wedding reception complete with wedding cake, made here at West Hill House, and a bottle of Champagne. They were kind enough to invite Greg and Peter and Susan to join them.
Ryan loves experimenting with recipes. Check out her food blog called Skinny Supper. It’s a fun site with lots of photos to help you along.