Bolton Valley, VT 23DEC2010
We contemplated heading to Smugglerís Notch today to use some free vouchers, but opted for Bolton Valley instead when they won out with snow accumulations. Bolton reported 7 inches of new snow, and based on my analyses from the house, it was in the 8-9% H2O range for density. This meant that the powder wasnít as fluffy as what we skied over the past couple of weekends, but it definitely put down some substance in the snowpack. We picked up more than a third of an inch of liquid equivalent in our snow down at the house, so Bolton probably had twice that amount.
We joined up with Stephen, Helena, and Johannes and hit our usual favorite areas for powder. With the composition of the group we didnít spend too much time in the trees, but occasional jaunts Iíd make into the woods revealed that there was awesome tree skiing to be had. Since many places were already skiing pretty well over the weekend, the bolus of new denser snow definitely bumped it up another notch. Overall the snow was awesome as usual, and the sides of the lesser used trails were holding enough powder that heading into the trees wasnít really necessary to get great turns.
The dump of fresh snow, combined with $15 tickets and only one main lift running (Vista), meant lift queues. I was reminded of a couple days during trips to Red Mountain and Fernie, and although the queue wasnít quite like those, it will still be nice when Boltonís other lifts open up and the queues disappear. We noted that there were enough people visiting the mountain that they started parking people down at the Timberline area and shuttling them up to the main base. I have to think the mountain continues to do some good business. On a similar note, to alleviate the congestion in the base lodge, they are allowing folks to use the seating area up at Fireside Flatbread as well, and that certainly helped.
It was pretty much business as usual on the mountain and we didnít have to venture too far for good snow, but I added a few shots from the day below: