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Stratton 11/22/17

ss20

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Jan 13, 2013
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Time Skied- 9:15-3:45
Conditions- "spring" soft snow with some hardpack (ice) in the afternoon
Weather- Rain to snow to rain to sleet/freezing fog to snow...yeah...one of "those" days

Day 2 for me, opening day at Stratton. My first run was certainly the best- soft spring snow that my edges dug into effortlessly. After that it rained on the lower half of the mountain with "variable" precipitation on the upper half above Ursa for essentially the rest of the day. Snow, fog, rain, ice- everything. Stratton had excellent snow and coverage on a somewhat limited selection of trails. Spruce, Polar Bear, Black Bear, and Frank's provided a lot of variety on the top part of the mountain but it was a long, flat, slushy run-out back to the base of the gondola. Frank's was my ROTD. Best snow on the hill, especially on the lower portion. Super carvable.

Stratton had something I always look for in the early season...consistency. Snow surface was similar trail-to-trail and gun-to-gun. No random spots where there was a grooming error. No wet guns that blew an ice patch. No choke points on trails. So I was impressed. I had wanted to go to Okemo but my buddy convinced me to go to Stratton and I'm glad we did.

Weather was not ideal but I never got my base layers wet.

I have a MAX pass this year and this was my third day at Stratton in 5+ years, so I'm still learning my way around the hill a bit. While the posh base lodge and mega-crowds on the weekends are a bit of a turn-off...I'm looking forward to making it my go-to VT daytrip option this year.
 

ss20

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Looking up the "double black diamond" Spruce...quite cute...
P_20171122_145404_1_vHDR_Auto.jpg

Interstate
P_20171122_145404_vHDR_Auto.jpg

Runout to the base at the end of the day...
P_20171122_154540_vHDR_Auto.jpg
 

deadheadskier

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Yeah, Spruce is pretty laughable as a Double Black (even by Stratton standards), but I do dig that trail a lot. The run-out that side of the hill is pretty bad, but when the Snowbowl quad is open, the pitch for the trails to that chair is pretty consistent. Once that chair goes HSQ, the experience there will be so much better.

Conditions being equal, I'd say you made the right call with Stratton over Okemo. I grew up skiing Okemo and have several hundred days skiing there. I've only gotten to know Stratton in the last decade or so and IMO it's the better hill. If they replaced the Snowbowl with a HSQ and realigned the Shooting Star lift over to old Kidderbrook chair lift line, the place would ski much better and I'd imagine the crowds would be less of an issue

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NY DirtBag

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Jan 13, 2016
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Unfortunately the kidderbrook re route will never happen. It should have never been moved in the first place, but whatever.

I go back and forth on the Snowbowl HSQ. (I think its supposed to happen here soon) I would love it, but it would exascerbate Strattons main problem. Too many skiers on the trails.

Snowbowl is my main place to hide if I have to be there on a saturday.
 

deadheadskier

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I definitely don't disagree with that. I'm just over spending 15 minutes on a chair. I even get annoyed at MRG and Smuggs despite the awesome terrain their slow lifts service. Wildcat has spoiled me

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skimagic

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Jan 13, 2012
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I picked up a cheap Stratton pass for this season, Ive only been there a few times before but never saw snowbowl lift running. Does it normally operate on weekends?

Having only ursa and gondola serve the upper mtn is nuts.
 

mriceyman

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Jan 4, 2012
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I picked up a cheap Stratton pass for this season, Ive only been there a few times before but never saw snowbowl lift running. Does it normally operate on weekends?

Having only ursa and gondola serve the upper mtn is nuts.

It usually runs on most weekends and peak days. While slow it is definitely nice to avoid the ursa line. Since they cut the test pilot glades the kidderbrook lift would be amazing. Could spend hours on that edge alone


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Glenn

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Oct 1, 2008
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CT & VT
Great TR! Was there Thursday and Friday. I'll do a TR.


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