Mount Snow: A Quick Escape from City Madness

Posted By: Zeke Piestrup on September 11, 2009 1:11 pm

I was once a displaced mountain boy living in the swallowing chaos of the biggest, baddest city of them all, New York City.  The sun in Manhattan never meets the horizon, just buildings.  I had never pondered that where I lived could have such a profound effect on my mental serenity.  Even as a skeptic of New Age pseudo-science, I will say the “energy” of New York City was often times way too much for me.  Thankfully, as an escape, I discovered Mount Snow in Vermont.

An early morning city exit brought a soul-replenishing afternoon among the mountains of southern Vermont.  I needed Mount Snow more than Mount Snow needed me.  Ski the East, indeed.

It’s Vermont’s closest big mountain to the city prisoner.  An escape to a greener pastures.

Next page: Carinthia & Mount Snow’s Terrain Park Awesomeness

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The inaugural Winter Dew Tour made its second stop in Mount Snow.  The most prestigious winter sports tour chose Mount Snow to be the last and deciding spot of the tour this upcoming season.  Why? 

This past ski season Mount Snow debuted Carinthia, an entire mountain converted to terrain parks. It’s 100 acres with 12 terrain parks in all.  Mount Snow actually debuted the region’s first terrain park in 1992.  Before the X Games built a home in Aspen, Mount Snow hosted the freestyle signature event in 2000 and 2001.  Carinthia was simply building on Mount Snow’s legacy as a leader in terrain park greatness.  Props for sure go to Parks and Pipes Manager Ken Gaitor.  Build it and they will come.  Mr. Gaitor builds it world class style, and indeed they have come.

Next page: Winter Olympians raised on Mount Snow

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The Mount Snow Academy is a training ground for winter sports competitors grades 7 through 12.  It’s most famous graduate is Kelly Clark (pictured above), gold medalist in women’s halfpipe at the 2002 Winter Olympics and TTR (Ticket to Ride World Snowboard Tour) overall champ in 2008-2009.  Chasing gates or huckin’ hits, the Mount Snow Academy is building its legacy slopeside at Mount Snow.

Next page: Summertime beauty in the Green Mountains


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It’s a huge exhale, riding a chairlift during the summer surrounded by incredible views of southern New England and New York State.  Check Mount Snow’s website for dates and lifts that will ferry you up into the Green Mountains.  Mountain bikers and hikers have extensive trail systems from which to choose.  The Ridge Trail is a favorite among hikers, a two mile journey from the peaks of Mount Snow and Haystack.

Next page: You go, there’s snow

photo by m@agic wands

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Mount Snow was birthed in 1954 by an ex-Marine, Walter Schoenknecht.  Mr. Schoenknecht was a huge part of New England ski history.  He opened the first ski area in Connecticut, Mowhawk Mountain, and was an early pioneer in snow making.  In the early 1950s most folks thought Mr. Schoenknecht was off his rocker for trying to manufacture snow…

Yeah, well who’s laughing now?  In 2008, Mount Snow continued to build on its snowmaking history, investing a cool 5 mil in energy-efficient snowmaking. 

I grew up next to a ski area and remember fondly the peaceful shhhh of snow guns while dozing off to sleep at night.  But, for all its wonderfulness, snowmaking can be a dirty operation.  But, the fan guns that Mount Snow installed run on electricity, eliminating the typical diesel compressors of yesteryear.  Head to Mount Snow with a clear conscience.  The new guns eliminate the use of 200-thousand gallons of diesel fuel per year.  And with 251 fan guns, the most in North America, Mount Snow ensures great coverage once you arrive.

Often first to open and last to close, with Mount Snow, rhyme it out, “You go, there’s snow.”

Escape is a short 200 miles from the big bad city, only 120 miles from Boston.  Check Mount Snows calendar of events, as there’s always something going down to pick your city spirits up.

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Zeke Piestrup ( More Posts)

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