Bolton Valley, VT 12FEB2011
It hasn’t been an extremely snowy week, but we did have at least a modest storm in the Tuesday timeframe that dropped 3.6 inches of snow at the house and close to a foot of snow on Bolton Valley. Still, that was back on Tuesday, and things would be getting somewhat tracked up by the weekend, so our plan was to head up to Bolton’s backcountry network with the boys to get in some easy access powder. That idea changed quickly though, when we got a call from James, who was planning to head up to Bolton with Tom and Amy. We couldn’t miss the chance to ski with those guys of course, so we immediately set up a meeting time. Soon after I’d hung up the phone, it rang again and I continued to coordinate with Tom. Fortunately, I still had plenty of Bolton Valley ticket vouchers left, so it turned out I would be able to provide day passes for everyone as well.
We met up first with Tom and Amy at the Timberline base, where we took care of their tickets and headed up to the mid station for a run on Twice as Nice. Temperatures were comfortably in the 20s to around 30 F, and we even had some snow falling to freshen up the trails. Twice as Nice had some small moguls, which were good practice for Amy, but as she hadn’t been skiing a lot recently, so she took it slow and steady. E and I eventually headed downhill to catch up with the boys, and at the base I was able to meet up with James and get him his ticket.
For much of the afternoon we found a good combination of terrain that often involved the Hot Shot Woods, with Amy able to stick to the trail itself and work on her turns, while others would play in and out of the trees along the trail. The Hot Shot trail is a bit steep in spots, but since it didn’t have any moguls like Twice as Nice did, it was much easier for Amy and she had a good time. In the trees we found great snow, and still plenty of untracked powder lines that everyone could explore I even ran into Brian, one of my former students, who seemed to be having a lot of fun working the Hot Shots Woods himself.
James, Ty, Dylan, and I eventually worked our way over to the KP Glades area and did some drops off the ledges there into the powder. One of my favorite shots was of Dylan launching off the aptly-named “Dylan’s Drop-off”, which we had discovered together back on an outing in February 2009. I’m not sure exactly where or when it happened, but somehow Dylan got a bend in one of his ski poles, so apparently he was doing some fairly aggressive skiing today. The Hot Shot Woods had been a lot of fun, and since we’d been discovering new lines all day, we naturally found ourselves back there some more to see what else they had to offer. The combination of open and tight spaces with many evergreens holding the snow makes for quite a fun maze of powdery lines, and the boys, both young and old, continued to have their interest piqued.
As the afternoon wore on, the light snow continued to set the mood, and we even had a rather heavy squall at one point that dropped a more substantial coating. Tom and Amy had to get going at some point for other obligations in the evening, but we finished off the day with some Doug’s Woods and the snow continued to be impressive, even if not untracked on the more typical, named off piste runs. It had been so great getting to ski with Tom, James, and Amy again, and we realized that we had to do it more often because our outings were way too infrequent for how much good skiing and good times there are to be had.
In line with some of the snow that we saw during the day today, this evening we’ve been under a cool band of snow that’s been dropping its payload right along the Winooski Valley. We’ve picked up a couple of inches of Champlain Powder™ fluff down here at the house, and I’d say that Bolton and perhaps even Stowe have been getting in on it too: