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Okemo 3/7/08

Zand

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 30, 2003
Messages
3,483
Points
48
Location
Spencer, MA
Date(s) Skied: Friday 3/7/08

Resort or Ski Area: Okemo Mountain, VT

Conditions: Spring, Temps in the upper 40s, bluebird, incredible, amazing, however else you can describe it

Trip Report:

Today at Okemo was easily the best spring day I've ever skied. Tons of snow and warm temps (almost too hot) with the mountain 100% open. Probably my second best day this season with the February vacation day at Mount Snow being the only one that could best it.

After a breakfast at Cafe Delight in the center of Ludlow, I started the day at Jackson Gore right around 9:30. Opened up with a run down Vortex to Quantum Leap. Both were in great shape at that point, already starting to soften up in places although most of it was still fast groomed hardpack.

Decided to check out the main mountain next so I took a nice Sunset Strip to the flat Mountain Road. Most of it has enough pitch to go without poling except for after when it crosses Plunge. Hopped on Lower Arrow which was also nice crusing.

After about a 10 chair wait at Northstar, I took Challenger off the summit. Had some nice small bumps although it was a bit beat up because it must be the most-traveled natural trail on the mountain. Crossed over on Sprint to Flatnap. Almost impossible to carry momentum the whole way on that one.

Took the quick South Face Express with great views of Magic, Stratton (really good view of that... might as well be looking at the trail map) and Mount Snow to the left. Also you have either Ascutney or Suicide Six (can't tell) behind you. Anyway, hit Double Diamond which was a little hit too frozen right at the top, but for the most part was already soft with decent bumps. It's pretty steep for an Okemo trail and lots of fun with its widely spaced trees.

Next run was down an EXCELLENT Punch Line. The pitches on the trail had some awesome soft spring bumps. Nothing like spring bumps at 10:45 in the morning.

Headed down Stump Jumper next which is a nice glade. Even in the woods it was nice and soft. The weird part was that the lines were all covered in small icicles that fell from the tree branches. They weren't a hindrance though as they broke up when you skied over them and you always were feeling the soft snow underneath.

After a repeat run down Punch Line, I took an excellent cruise down Rimrock which was faster and colder with its north face. From there, I cruised down Buckhorn (decent view of Killington) to Sunburst to Escape to Lower Limelight. All of them were great except for a few spots on Limelight which were starting to get minorly scraped.

Next up was the gladed Black Hole. It was pretty soft for the most part. Besdies a rock here and there, the coverage was great too. It gets steep in a few parts and is pretty tight. Pretty short though. Not a big deal though, it dumps out right at the entrance to Eclipse, one of the best bump trails on the mountain. Just about the entire run had great bumps... not incredibly soft due to the face but they were still pretty soft.

Next run was down a bumped Upper Limelight to Supernova. The bumps on Limelight were soft although it was just a short patch. Supernova was a great glade run. While it wasn't as steep as Black Hole or as tight, it was much longer. A few rock poking through but for the most part the coverage is great. It's kind of cool when it heads for Lower Limelight at one point and you think it's over, then it suddenly dives back into the woods and you're really only halfway home.

Tried Big Bang next which was a bit slick and the bumps weren't too great. Doesn't take long to hook up with Eclipse though so you get in good bumps fairly quickly. Cruised to the bottom right at noon from there. Lunch outside in a T-shirt with a 100% open mountain behind you sporting perfect spring conditions... does it get any better?

Headed back out at 12:40 for runs down Big Bang to Eclipse and Limelight to Supernova. Still in great shape. Also took a run down Tuckered Out. It was a green when it opened, but not it's a blue. It goes on forever but has a nice pitch the entire way. Don't understand why it's a blue now because it is up there with Great Eastern as far as good beginner trails go.

Decided to head back to the main mountain to sample what was left for bump runs. First run was down a nice Jolly Green Giant which was a nice cruise. Took that down to Sel's Choice. Sel's Choice was the first bump run I ever skied comfortably back in '05 so it was good to be back. Still just as fun today with perfect seeded bumps the entire way. Also took a run in the pipe which was funky with one wall in the sun and one in the shade.

Next run was down Searle's Way which wasn't in too good of shape and was actually roped after the halfway point or so. Took a part of Jolly Green Giant from that point and then went over to Blackout. Awesome lines down that pitch... not very long though. This is the one 2knees had a ball on about 2 weeks ago... the lines are great but it's just so short.

Next was a beat up Challenger to Flatnap. At the top of South Face, I took a run down the beautiful Outrage. It's basically a less steep and slightly shorter version of Sugarbush's Paradise. It starts off as a narrow trail with sone good bumps, then gets treed in and steeper. This and Double Diamond are the 2 toughest runs on the mountain... they're not incredibly challenging but just a ton of fun. Speaking of Double Diamond, I hit that again before hitting a bumped up Ledges. Nice relatively steep bump trail.

Next up was Tomahawk. Lower Tomahawk was home to "Family Cross" which had a bunch of banked turns and a few rollers. Lots of fun for the kids. From there I took a nicely bumped Plunge. I was pretty tired by that point, but there was one more bump trail to check off on my list, Boomerang. Took a nice groomed Exhibition to ski it and it was nice. Took Southern Crossing to Jackson Gore from there.

Decided to take one more run, however Black Hole was already roped for the day by the time I got up there so I took Quantum Leap to Eclipse to finish it off. Good way to end an amazing day.

Hard to believe I could spend 80% of a day at Okemo sking bumps and trees, but I did. Is it hard? No. Is it big and steep? No. But, it is fun? Yes, and that's all that counts. Greg, if you read this, you have to get up there and check out the bumps. As for me, I'll probably hit Wachusett early in the week and then I'll be at Stowe next weekend.
 

Rushski

New member
Joined
Mar 14, 2005
Messages
890
Points
0
Location
Nashua, NH
Sounds like you had a great day at OK. I only went to Stratton instead beacuse I had a free pass for a buddy.

Though I 'm not complaining as it was also nothing short of excellent. Pretty much perfect spring-like conditions. Only three slight negatives were around midday (before it slightly cooled down) there were a few (but not many) heavier, thicker piles of slush/granular/corn that could grab an unfocused ski and they didn't open their quad to skier's left of the gondi and the glades were pretty much all open but somewhat crusty and littered with branches from frozen trees.

All in all a much better day than was expected or could hope for!

Maybe, if I'm not too lazy later I'll post my own TR...
 
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