From new chairlifts to wind turbines, from routine trail mowing to new cooperative ownership structures, Vermont ski areas have been busy these last few months preparing for the exciting winter sports season ahead. Here’s a look at what’s new for the 2009-2010 season.
ASCUTNEY MOUNTAIN RESORT
Look for more snow this season, with the addition of two new snowmaking air compressors and additions to the grooming fleet to smooth it all out. The resort is now affiliated with the InterContintental Hotel Group and its Holiday Inn Club Vacations subsidiary, which has the potential of drawing more destination skiers.
Talk about going green, this place will be generating approximately one-eighth of their electrical power needs this winter with a new wind turbine ข่าวกีฬา electrical generator-the first one for a Vermont ski area! If that wasn’t enough, two new SMI Polecat snowmaking fan guns will be churning out the white stuff in the terrain park; 5,500 feet of snowmaking pipeline was upgraded for increased water flow; and a Prinoth Bison grooming machine was added to the fleet. Last, but not least, look for new tables and chairs in the cafeteria.
After a busy summer entertaining visitors in their adventure park, with its new Zip Line, the mountain’s staff has been mowing the trails, checking the snowmaking lines, and greasing the lifts in preparation for the skiing and riding season.
JAY PEAK RESORT
The big news here is the debut of the Tram House Lodge in the base area. Open to overnight guests and day skiers and riders alike, this new facility sports an indoor fitness club, rental equipment center, restaurant, coffee shop, and the Golden Eagle Bar, featuring front row seat views of the slopes.
The resort added more low-energy snowguns to its existing arsenal, upgraded the operational software on the Skyeship Gondola, and reseeded sections of the popular Great Eastern novice trail. Over at Pico, the Upper Pike trail has new snowmaking pipelines and hydrants to insure more efficient coverage.
MAD RIVER GLEN
Trail maintenance crews have been working over the summer on trail bridges and drainage systems. The Sunnyside Double chairlift’s bullwheel had new bearings installed to keep it spinning smoothly along this winter.
“Save Magic Mountain” signs are back up around the town of Londonderry, as the current owners make the partial transition to a cooperative ownership arrangement, a la Mad River Glen. Three hundred and thirty-three shares at $3,000 a pop are being offered to the public in exchange for 60-percent ownership of the ski area and voting rights. To slash costs, the area will only operate Fridays through Mondays and holiday weeks. However, after a big dump, management may open the area if six inches or more falls and 50 percent or more of the terrain is skiable.