Stowe - Upper Liftline

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  1. #1

    Stowe - Upper Liftline

    Upper Liftline was listed as open on the trail report yesterday, but was roped off while I was there. Same thing happened last time I was there. Is the portion of this trail above Haychute ever open? Or is it permanently closed like the upper reaches of Red Line at Magic? IMO this is the only portion of the trail that looks worthy of the double black rating. Coverage looked solid, but there were no tracks, except for a couple at the extreme (chair lift riders) right of the trail. It seemed like the chairlift was getting pretty close to the ground in spots, maybe that is the reason? But then why list it as open?

    Coverage at Stowe is still great by the way, and the snow was soft enough that I summoned the courage to head down all of Goat for the first time. Didn’t seem as steep as I was fearing, and it was a great day to do it, but I would hate to tackle that run when it was icy. Even though the mountain as a whole felt empty, there was a surprising amount of traffic on Goat, which meant frequently pausing at the side so the hotshots could thread the needle and blast by. At one point while I was bent over sucking wind, I suffered the humiliation of being passed by a guy with a trio of little tykes maybe 6-8 years old, all happily power wedging their way down.

    Looking up Goat
    C9172661-EF10-4EC6-970E-AE075F981253.jpg

  2. #2
    Liftline was once part of Stowe's famed "Front Four" double diamonds. Then, (about 25 years ago maybe?) some moron decided to ruin it with dynamite and regrading etc... and now it's no worse than a single black diamond at any point, and I'd argue most of it is an intermediate trail when groomed.

    Yet solely for marketing purposes so they can still say "Front Four", they left the double diamond rating intact after they took all the teeth out of the trail, but the rating is now a total joke.
    President - Bicknell's Thrush Extermination Solutions (BTES), LLC



  3. #3
    I've never skied Stowe, how do the front four compare to trails at SB?


  4. #4
    Friends of mine who have a place there told me when I was there in early March that it was closed due to low clearance to lift caused by snow depth. They indicated it had been opened earlier in the year. When I was there 2 years ago it was opened and I skied it. So unlike the section of Red Line which is always too low, upper lift line depends on snow depth.

    Personally I think that section deserves a double diamond rating.
    2017/18 = 37
    2016/17 = 31
    2015/16 = Depressing
    2014/15 = 28
    2013/14 = 27

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by slatham View Post
    Personally I think that section deserves a double diamond rating.
    Agreed. But not the rest of the trail. Hopefully some day the upper part will be open when I am there. Frustrating that the trail report can’t be trusted though.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by tumbler View Post
    I've never skied Stowe, how do the front four compare to trails at SB?
    The other 3 trails are legitimately double diamonds. Goat & Starr are two of the best sort of trails New England has to offer. In terms of Sugarbush, it's tough to compare terrain, but I guess it would be most similar to stuff off Castlerock, though I'd call the 3 Stowe trails generally a bit harder.
    President - Bicknell's Thrush Extermination Solutions (BTES), LLC



  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by slatham View Post
    I think that section deserves a double diamond rating.
    I think the top is a single black diamond, though it will be interesting to hear what the consensus is.
    President - Bicknell's Thrush Extermination Solutions (BTES), LLC



  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by tumbler View Post
    I've never skied Stowe, how do the front four compare to trails at SB?
    I would say that the Front Four at Stowe and the Castlerock area at Sb are pretty similar difficulty wise. One of benefits of skiing the most challenging runs at Stowe is that you can pretty much hit them all off of the high speed four runner quad whereas at SB you need to move around quite a bit on slow lifts to hit all of their best stuff. With that being said Rumble and most of Liftline at SB are a little more challenging than Goat or Starr at Stowe in my opinion. Black Diamond Rush on Mt Ellen is also right up there with anything at Stowe.

    As stated earlier Liftline at Stowe should not be rated as a double black. I haven't skied Upper Liftline but that portion of the run looks like it would qualify as one.

    Tony

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by urungus View Post
    Agreed. But not the rest of the trail. Hopefully some day the upper part will be open when I am there. Frustrating that the trail report can’t be trusted though.
    I believe you were there when I was there. I was under the impression that upper Liftline was closed due to too much snow...not much room to ski under the chair. I've skied that section years ago and the rocks were much more noticeable.

    However, upper Goat was also closed that day a month ago and I have no idea why.
    2003-2004: 21; 2004-2005: 27; 2005-2006: 31; 2006-2007: 31; 2007-2008: 38; 2008-2009: 43; 2009-2010: 42; 2010-2011: 46; 2011-2012: 33; 2012-2013: 26 2013-14: 18; 2014-15: 17; 2015-16: 7; 2016-17: 14; 2017-18: 23

    2018-19 days - 34
    Sunday River: 11/13, 12/4, 2/18; Killington: 11/20, 3/24, 5/27, 6/2; Loon: 11/27
    Wachusett: 11/18, 11/19, 11/25, 12/20, 12/23
    Solitude: 1/13; Snowbird 1/14, 4/1; Deer Valley: 1/15; Alta: 1/16, 3/29, 4/2; Brighton 3/28; Jackson: 3/30, 3/31
    Sugarbush: 1/21, 2/3, 3/10; MRG 1/22; Jay 2/4; Burke 2/5
    Sugarloaf: 2/24, 2/25; Stratton: 3/5, Stowe 3/11, Smuggs 3/12

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Zand View Post
    upper Goat was also closed that day a month ago and I have no idea why.
    Could this be a Vail problem? I've anecdotally heard Vail is much more strict in trail closings than most.
    President - Bicknell's Thrush Extermination Solutions (BTES), LLC



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