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Stowe 1/21 & Loon 1/22

rocojerry

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Part 1:

Original plan was to use some coupons to Bolton Valley, after reading the fine print and looking at open trails -- we decided to head over to Stowe instead. I have not been to Stowe much -- I think 3-4 times before, enough to know the rough layout, but not really the trade secrets like where the best glades are, the best way to avoid crowds, where to park, how the sun hits the mtn..... sorry for lack of trail names, don't know the mtn well enough --


Parked by the Gondola, and walked up to mid-mtn lodge to set camp. I think the time before I was in a lodge closer to the quad which was a bit more central. Started the AM off with a few Gondola runs, it was cold out, so why not start with a warmer lift ride... we used the same strategy post-lunch.

First run was under the Gondola -- nice snow, soft, edgeable, didn't see groomer cord -- guess it could have been the 1" coating... or I was just too late. Did another run on skiers right (Perry Merril)before heading over to the 4runner quad.

Hit some of the trails under the quad(Liftline?), slick upper sections -- but nice big bumps with plenty of snow in the lower sections. Sides of trails ski'd (rode) well all day.... some sections of 5-8". As we worked our way towards the triple chair -- we started to peak into the glades to see what we could find.... I reached my arm into an untouched section of pow, probably about 5-8", then a thin crust, then more pow (12"?) below! With The Stake at 34", time to get after it a bit more... Looking at the GPS track, you can see where I hit some woods.... (between nosedive and goat? tres amigos?) The lower angle glades Lord/Gulch had plenty of untracked -- wasn't very steep though so some speed was required.

Ending the day, tried to stay out of the glades, but the temptation was just too great.... Last run avoided the trees, but otherwise was all in when it looked good! Great day, one of the best in my book this year -- with 3 friends, so that made it a lot of fun too....

looking right towards mt Mansfield


under the quad


glades


 
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rocojerry

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Part II: Loon


Being a prior passholder at Loon, I know the mountain well. Probably a bit too well -- there isn't many turns/features that I'm not familiar with. Not this year-- Couple new trails on south mountain to check out!

Twitcher and Jobber, while at the top they are the same trail, they split about halfway down the mtn. They also held some of the best snow of the day on Sunday. These trails share some similarities to Ripsaw and Cruiser, and if you like those, you'll probably love these new trails. They had some twists and turns, although wide, it added some character to a mountain in need of it. Crowds also seemed to be non-existant -- Pats/Giants effect? I was at Loon. I thought at least the morning would be busy -- ski-on almost all day.

As usual, we started the day off on the Kanc quad, and we hit one of my old favorites -- Blue Ox. A nice winding warmup run. Then off to North Peak quad to find other favorites. Walking Boss, Flying Fox. Lower boss held some nice snow, and I spotted the entrance to the boss woods -- maybe i'll check them out next time. We ended our Flying fox run heading down 7 brothers to check on the freestyle competition my bud was hosting, couldn't find him and moved on to the Gondola.

Singles line, 3 people deep, was on the gondola in a flash. From the top, we went down to South Peak chair and hopped over to South. Checked out Twitcher and Jobber, threw Ripsaw of course in there, which was steep, icy, and fast on top. Also did a run on Cruiser -- I still have dejavu of great powder memories on that trail long before the lift made it easier to get over to south.... The side of cruiser had some small waterbar jumps that at least made the groomer a bit interesting/fun to play around on.... skipped Boom run, I don't like the bottom runnout, yawn. Back over to the main mt.

Headed down Speakeasy to Rumrunner -- good runs. Up the Kanc and over to check out the other side of the freestyle competition... We stopped by the new Airbag they have setup -- basically a pillow of air you can practice inverted flips/360's/whatever without fear of landing on icy hardpack... kinda cool if I was into that...

Ended the day with an Angel St, Walking Boss, and Sunset to Lower Picked rock run.... Angel was nice and steep -- groomed out, fast and firm. Walking Boss was still nice in the afternoon -- and Sunset to Lower Picked was a nice run to end the day with. It was sad to see that Loon removed a small tree island in the middle of sunset.. took away some character and also there was typically a nice little jump there to start the run off with.
 

Johnskiismore

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I was at Loon Sunday as well, I agree it was weird that no one was there! Most of the time I rode the chair alone........ on a Sunday? Usually the exodus for a playoff game starts at noon.

Great outing!
 

WWF-VT

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Thanks for the info on Loon. I have not skied there in years and have a day trip scheduled in February.
 

mlkrgr

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Jan 18, 2010
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All I can say is wow! The lack of crowds you reported even at Loon is a true testament how people are not coming to the resorts as they usually do even with the Pats effect as they usually still have a crowd even on days in which crowds should be tempered due to external effects. Even, the last time I went to Loon (NYD '11) conditions were just marginal and there was still 10 minute line for the gondola; and about 5 for the Kanc quad.
 
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