• Welcome to AlpineZone, the largest online community of skiers and snowboarders in the Northeast!

    You may have to REGISTER before you can post. Registering is FREE, gets rid of the majority of advertisements, and lets you participate in giveaways and other AlpineZone events!

Where to go during week of January 7th in the Northeast?

Wavewheeler

New member
Joined
Feb 25, 2012
Messages
495
Points
0
Location
The Jersey Shore
Usually my daughter and I take our ski vacation during a midweek the last week of January/first week of February and it's a great time to go because it's usually plenty cold and there's been ample time for a nice base to build up, either naturally or through snowmaking.

However she's in college now and we want to go during her winter break, which starts 12/21 and ends on 1/21. We need to get away from Christmas-New Years time frame and I don't want to bump up against the MLK holiday so we are looking at the week of January 7th-11. We don't do the weekends..only midweek.

Problem is, where will the skiing be good? Usually we go to Killington but I'd like to try something different. I'm thinking Gore or up in northern New England. I'm a bit concerned about it being too early for good skiing, especially since today I was working in a T-shirts and shorts and it was freakin' 65 degrees out! I hope this winter's ski season won't be a rerun of last winter.

Would love to go west but the budget won't allow. Thanks for any input.

Praying for some :snow:
 

bdfreetuna

New member
Joined
Jan 12, 2012
Messages
4,300
Points
0
Location
keep the faith
Jay Peak by that point should have enough snow even if nobody else does. But don't take for granted that you will be able to ski the Ridge or the Tucks/Face chutes or even Valhalla & Green Beret at that time of year. You probably will be able to but it's still the luck of the draw. If you don't care about skiing the semi-extreme terrain than the rest of the place will probably be open including most trees.

Other than that Stowe is off to a good start and I see no reason they won't be fully operational in a month.

If you had a few more weeks to spare I would start to consider more options, but hey Stowe and Jay are both pretty sweet.

Gore is rolling the dice, IMO. They aren't gonna get nearly as much natty snow as Jay or Stowe (or Smuggs, but Smuggs relies even more heavily on natural).

Maybe you can wait a few weeks to see how things are shaping up before you book it?
 

Wavewheeler

New member
Joined
Feb 25, 2012
Messages
495
Points
0
Location
The Jersey Shore
While I like the advanced trails my daughter leans more to intermediate so we a bit limited when it comes to terrain. More than once I've talked into going down something she wasn't comfortable with and had her glaring at me the rest of the day. ;)

I probably will wait a few weeks to book it. I'm hoping that right after Christmas week most people will be heading home from the slopes, not going out there. I often wait 'til spur of the moment and then head out to ski. It's one of the nice things about having Thurs-Sunday off. That week I'm taking all week off instead of Christmas week.

We have the time so driving to northern Northern NE isn't out of the question, even if it takes 8-10 hours to get there, it'll be worth it if the conditions are good.

I'm hoping for a nice big storm (or several!) in the next month. If the weather is like today though...Well, I'm not going to worry about it just now.
 

deadheadskier

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Mar 6, 2005
Messages
25,815
Points
63
Location
Southeast NH
Stowe

Best combination of terrain and natural snow in the East IMO. It would appear they are no in the discussion of having one of the best snowmaking systems.

Plenty of great cruising terrain for those not interested in advanced skiing options; though it has plenty of the latter too.
 

thetrailboss

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Jun 4, 2004
Messages
28,598
Points
63
Location
NEK by Birth; Alta/Snowbird by Choice
I second going further north. Consider the Mad River Valley. Sugarbush usually is pretty good then...and you have MRG as an option if the snow is good. Plus this is less coin than Stowe.

Jay will be the coldest and maybe the windiest. Consider that. And Jay is not a great place for intermediates.

Others to try: Sunday River maybe. Actually, after reading your last post, I'd say consider Sugarbush or Sunday River since your daughter is an intermediate and you want to ski together as much as possible. At both of these places you can hit different runs off the same lift and meet back up so you will both be happy. Sunday River is going to be the least expensive of the two I imagine. And IIRC that week they usually run a college deal.
 

thetrailboss

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Jun 4, 2004
Messages
28,598
Points
63
Location
NEK by Birth; Alta/Snowbird by Choice
Re: Stowe

A great place. But will be the most expensive if you are on a budget. Real classy place though and like Sunday River and Sugarbush you can find good intermediate and expert terrain off the same lifts.
 

riverc0il

New member
Joined
Jul 10, 2001
Messages
13,039
Points
0
Location
Ashland, NH
Website
www.thesnowway.com
Jay Peak by that point should have enough snow even if nobody else does. But don't take for granted that you will be able to ski the Ridge or the Tucks/Face chutes or even Valhalla & Green Beret at that time of year. You probably will be able to but it's still the luck of the draw. If you don't care about skiing the semi-extreme terrain than the rest of the place will probably be open including most trees.
Having skied this time of year at Jay Peak for the last seven or so years, it is a very good year (or recent freak massive dump) when most of the trees are good to go by the first or second week of January.

It is a total crap shot. I've skied a WROD during the first week of January at Jay. I've skied the trees in October at Jay. There is simply no way to know. If you are going to book long term, I think it is more important to book for man made fire power than the most abundant natural snowfall.

Stowe has the best combo of good man made, good natural, and northern enough with high enough vertical to escape some of the rain/freezes that happen further south. Always a good option if you don't mind paying the price.

Killington has some of the best fire power in Vermont, can't go wrong there mid-week earlier in the year.

For intermediate cruising, you aren't going to get better than Stowe. Okemo and Stratton in SoVT are also of consideration. I don't know how Gore does with snow making, certainly seems like that should be on the table as well considering where you are coming from.
 

mattchuck2

New member
Joined
Oct 20, 2005
Messages
1,341
Points
0
Location
Clifton Park, NY
Website
skiequalsmc2.blogspot.com
I love Gore and I ski there 40+ times a year, but the first week of January is too early to fully experience the whole mountain. Maybe you could combine Gore with Whiteface, staying in Lake Placid (which, if you've never been, is a great little ski town) to get a little more terrain and a lot more dining/off hill opportunities.

That being said, if you're used to the ridiculous amount of man made snow that Killington usually offers, you'll probably be pretty disappointed in the amount of terrain open wherever you go (particularly since you're going earlier than usual). I think your best bet if you want to maximize the amount of open terrain is Northern Vermont - Stowe, Smuggs, MRG, Sugarbush, Jay, etc.
 

Riverskier

New member
Joined
Apr 20, 2009
Messages
1,099
Points
0
Location
New Gloucester, ME
If natural snow/glade skiing is not important, I would recomend Sunday River. Not to say they don't have great glades, they do, but natural snow that early at Sunday river is a real crap shoot. That said, they have the most powerful snowmaking system in the East, and they aren't afraid to use it. You are virtually guarenteed good conditions (on groomers anyway) and a lot of terrain. They are a great intermediate mountain, have an excellent lift system, and the place is empty mid week. If natural snow/glade skiing is important, definitely northern Vermont is the only way to go.
 

uphillklimber

Active member
Joined
Mar 16, 2003
Messages
2,611
Points
38
Location
Bryant Pond, Maine
If natural snow/glade skiing is not important, I would recomend Sunday River. Not to say they don't have great glades, they do, but natural snow that early at Sunday river is a real crap shoot. That said, they have the most powerful snowmaking system in the East, and they aren't afraid to use it. You are virtually guarenteed good conditions (on groomers anyway) and a lot of terrain. They are a great intermediate mountain, have an excellent lift system, and the place is empty mid week. If natural snow/glade skiing is important, definitely northern Vermont is the only way to go.


Echo!!!!!
 

Skier4life

New member
Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Messages
158
Points
0
IMO northern vermont is where you want to go with the likes of Stowe and Jay Peak. Sunday River also sonds like a viable solution given what Riverskier said above.

If travel time is not such a big deal, have you thought of venturing into Canada? Mont Tremblant is great though it is mostly advanced trails [they have a fair amount of intermediate trials too easily accessible from the same lifts as some of the advanced/expert trails]...Montreal last week was 25 degrees and snowing!!!

Le Massiff has more intermediate trails but is way further out there, north of Quebec City - but you cant beat the scenery, terrain and culture/experience of Quebec City towns. A great bonding experience.

Your Canada sojourn, however, will pull on the pocket strings quite heavily!!

Nothing better than a father daughter ski trip...
 

steamboat1

New member
Joined
Aug 15, 2011
Messages
6,613
Points
0
Location
Brooklyn,NY/Pittsford,VT.
Just a suggestion if your worried about spending coin. You could join a ski club for as little as $25 ($8 add on fee to include your daughter). During the time frame you are considering for your trip there are two very good ski areas offering discount lift tickets for ski club members. Okemo is offering $40 lift tickets to ski club members both Mon. & Tues. 1/7-1/8. Okemo is an intermediate skiers paradise & is known for their snow making & grooming. It's located in central VT. After you get your ski legs back after two days of cruising you can then move on up to Stowe. Enough has already been said about Stowe, it offers superior skiing for all ability levels. On Wed., Thurs. & Fri of that week 1/9-1/11 Stowe is offering discount lift tickets to ski club members. You can purchase a 1 day lift ticket for $45, a 2 day ticket for $66 or a 3 day ticket for $98. The cost of joining a ski club would be more than saved after skiing only one day. This is not my club but you could consider joining this club to enjoy the discounts (http://www.aceskiandboardclub.org/membership.html ). Like I said it's only $25 to join & you can add on your daughter for only $8 bucks. Just a suggestion, whatever you do I hope you have fun.

edit: after reading the membership it would cost you $20 to add your daughter so that she could enjoy the discount lift tickets. Considering both these ski areas charge north of $80 for a one day ticket you'd still cover the cost of membership after only one day of skiing.
 
Last edited:

riverc0il

New member
Joined
Jul 10, 2001
Messages
13,039
Points
0
Location
Ashland, NH
Website
www.thesnowway.com
If natural snow/glade skiing is not important, I would recomend Sunday River. Not to say they don't have great glades, they do, but natural snow that early at Sunday river is a real crap shoot. That said, they have the most powerful snowmaking system in the East, and they aren't afraid to use it. You are virtually guarenteed good conditions (on groomers anyway) and a lot of terrain. They are a great intermediate mountain, have an excellent lift system, and the place is empty mid week. If natural snow/glade skiing is important, definitely northern Vermont is the only way to go.
I don't think someone coming up from NJ would be making good use of their time by driving to Sunday River. If someone from NJ wants to ski Maine, they really should wait until mid-February when it is more likely the mountains will be 100% open and worth the drive. Otherwise, I think someone would have to be mental to drive from NY to ME when VT is significantly closer.
 

WWF-VT

Active member
Joined
Sep 23, 2005
Messages
2,540
Points
38
Location
MA & Fayston, VT
I don't think someone coming up from NJ would be making good use of their time by driving to Sunday River. If someone from NJ wants to ski Maine, they really should wait until mid-February when it is more likely the mountains will be 100% open and worth the drive. Otherwise, I think someone would have to be mental to drive from NY to ME when VT is significantly closer.

+1 The OP is from "The Jersey Shore"
 

Riverskier

New member
Joined
Apr 20, 2009
Messages
1,099
Points
0
Location
New Gloucester, ME
I don't think someone coming up from NJ would be making good use of their time by driving to Sunday River. If someone from NJ wants to ski Maine, they really should wait until mid-February when it is more likely the mountains will be 100% open and worth the drive. Otherwise, I think someone would have to be mental to drive from NY to ME when VT is significantly closer.

The OP is going for a week (a few additional hours of driving is less of an issue for a trip of that duration IMO), they specifically mentioned an 8-10 drive was not an issue, and the drive time from the Jersey Shore to SR is about the same as the drive to Jay Peak. If you want to argue that Vermont is a better option based on the merits of the mountains, that may be valid, but based on the OP's criteria, I still think Sunday River is a viable option.
 

riverc0il

New member
Joined
Jul 10, 2001
Messages
13,039
Points
0
Location
Ashland, NH
Website
www.thesnowway.com
The OP is going for a week (a few additional hours of driving is less of an issue for a trip of that duration IMO), they specifically mentioned an 8-10 drive was not an issue, and the drive time from the Jersey Shore to SR is about the same as the drive to Jay Peak. If you want to argue that Vermont is a better option based on the merits of the mountains, that may be valid, but based on the OP's criteria, I still think Sunday River is a viable option.
SR is a bit further than Jay but an hour or more longer drive from all other parts of VT. Jay isn't the best option any ways. It actually isn't even a good one since he needs good intermediate cruising terrain. Stowe will be the absolute best option which is an hour closer than SR, fewer back roads, WAY more natural snow, and hands down better terrain. Add in more southern options such as Killington, Okemo, Stratton, etc. for a way shorter drive, I just don't see why you would want to drive further for basically a similar product and less chance of natural snow. Maybe SR is a "viable" option based on the OP's criteria, but that doesn't mean it is a good option, I certainly wouldn't put SR in my top five recommendations. Though sister resort Loon would also be worth adding to the short list for mid-week... but again, I think VT is going to have the edge even there.
 

deadheadskier

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Joined
Mar 6, 2005
Messages
25,815
Points
63
Location
Southeast NH
SR is a bit further than Jay but an hour or more longer drive from all other parts of VT. Jay isn't the best option any ways. It actually isn't even a good one since he needs good intermediate cruising terrain. Stowe will be the absolute best option which is an hour closer than SR, fewer back roads, WAY more natural snow, and hands down better terrain. Add in more southern options such as Killington, Okemo, Stratton, etc. for a way shorter drive, I just don't see why you would want to drive further for basically a similar product and less chance of natural snow. Maybe SR is a "viable" option based on the OP's criteria, but that doesn't mean it is a good option, I certainly wouldn't put SR in my top five recommendations. Though sister resort Loon would also be worth adding to the short list for mid-week... but again, I think VT is going to have the edge even there.

I agree with you, but as you know, skiing preferences are highly personal. Remember Loafer89? He lived in CT, but would head to Sugarloaf or Saddleback over VT areas despite often a 2 hour further drive time from VTs best. BobR skis Sunday River. From his home, Sugarbush and Stowe are the same drive as Sunday River, probably a bit easier actually, yet his preference is for the River.

Sunday River might not be for everyone, but it's pretty amazing that they're probably the second most popular ski destination in the East behind Killington and don't have the NY market to draw from. When thinking about that, I wouldn't be surprised if Sunday River was the most popular area in the East if it were more centrally located.
 
Top