What’s New at Vermont Ski and Snowboard Resorts for Summer 2016
As the 2015-16 ski and snowboard season comes to a close, Vermont resorts prepare for what was once considered the “off-season.” No longer “off” for the summer month, many resorts prepare for spring, summer and fall activities, camps, upgrades and more. Summer and year round activities have expanded greatly at ski and snowboard resorts in Vermont over the last decade and the growth only continues. New mountain bike trails, ziplines, music events and family-friendly activities are just some of the new things to be found in the Green Mountains this summer season.
What’s New this Summer at Vermont Resorts – North to South:
Smugglers’ Notch Resort
Each summer families choose Smugglers' Notch Resort for their vacation confident they’ll find fun, thrills and special moments together enjoying the resort’s ever evolving mix of seasonal programming. An already expansive selection of outdoor experiences included in Smugglers’ vacation packages will have additional choices for families and teens. New health and wellness programs that appeal to older children and adults alike include creation of natural aromatherapy, skincare products, zesty food flavorings and health preparations under the guidance of a local herbalist. Activities returning after a successful launch last summer include a comprehensive mountain biking program and skills parks for all levels and jet pack propelled Flyboarding at Bootlegger’s Basin, a reservoir with swimming beach and recreation area. www.smuggs.com; 855-581-5906
Stowe Mountain Resort
Stowe Mountain Resort has just opened an $80 million dollar Adventure Center and ‘Stowe Rocks’ climbing gym, the summer gateway to all new experiences on Spruce Peak and Mount Mansfield. Other new activities on the mountain include zip Lines down Vermont’s highest peak and a Tree Top Adventure Course. Visit www.stowe.com
- Stowe ZipTour Adventure - ZipTour is the world’s fastest and most exhilarating zip line experience and the ultimate point-to-point sky adventure. Take Stowe’s Gondola to the top and then Zip down three adrenaline charged spans to the bottom.
- Stowe Tree Top Adventure - Courses themselves entail a series of over 60 aerial tree-to-tree connections with various challenge elements intertwined in the design. The guided activity is ideal for most ages and offers outstanding pre-programmed team-building facilities for groups.
Trapp Family Lodge
Trapp Family Lodge’s mountain bike trail system continues to grow this year. The Upper Growler trail was extended last fall and the final section will continue to the Cabin this summer. Also planned are new routes along Round Top, more single track and multi-use trails, and an expansion of the disc golf course around the completion of the new Bierhalle. With 64 mountain bikes in the rental fleet Trapp continues to grow and offer instruction and guided tours for interested parties.
Trail running events will continue to be a primary focus for summer and fall competitions. Last season Trapp hosted the first middle school running championships and are looking to host a New England or Northeast wide event. Running is a natural fit for their trail network and elevation profile.
This summer Sugarbush plans to open for mountain activities on Saturday, June 25th with mountain biking, disc golf, the bungee trampoline and more. The Sugarbush Resort Golf Club, under new Head Golf Pro Roger King, will open April 30th with new programs including a Boomer Scramble and Kids Saturdays. Gadd Brook, Sugarbush’s new slopeside condominiums are expected to be ready for occupancy this June, with units still available. The resort will also be hosting the Vermont Mountain Bike Festival in July, Vermont’s premiere mountain biking event.
Mad River Glen
Famous for being one of the world’s Best Après-Ski Destinations, General Stark’s Pub is now open during the summer. Take a magnificent hike up Mad River Glen’s legendary trails and watch the sunset on the pub’s deck while enjoying a memorable meal and libations. It’s a tremendous experience for families as youngsters can play outside on the lawn or explore the streams and slopes. The food is best described as down home with the “Best Fish Fry this side of the pond” highlighting the Summer Pub Menu. General Stark’s Pub is open for dinner every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 4:30 to 8:30 PM beginning the first weekend of June.
On the heels of 2015’s $3.5 million summer investment that brought the Beast Mountain Coaster, Skyeride and more to Killington, the resort is spending an additional $850,000 this year on dual ziplines, six more Gravity Logic-designed mountain bike trails, summer tubing lanes, a 40-foot tower jump, food and beverage facility upgrades, kids camps and a new fleet of rental mountain bikes for riders of all ages.
Phase three of the five-year Killington Bike Park build out designed by Gravity Logic calls for a $375,000 investment for six new trails served by the Ramshead Express Quad opening throughout the summer.
Action kicks off this Memorial Day Weekend with the Killington Golf Course and Clubhouse Bar and Grill, Beast Mountain Coaster, SkyeRide and the Bike Park’s Snowshed-area trails opening for the summer, with upper mountain terrain and the K-1 Express Gondola to follow in mid-June.
Okemo Mountain Resort
Okemo introduced lift-served mountain biking last summer and the Evolution Bike Park at Okemo will operate again with a fleet of new Scott bikes and plans for trail expansion to take place. At Okemo’s Adventure Zone, located at Jackson Gore, the newest additions are two bouncy castles and the Coleman Brook Mining Company, where kids can use a screen tray and water flowing through a sluice to reveal sparkling gems, minerals and even fossils – which they get to keep! A new Amp Energy Air Bag, measuring 33 by 33 feet square and 13 feet tall, makes its debut this summer in the Adventure Zone too.
The Quechee Club
The Quechee Club’s Aquatics Complex project approaches completion with the Grand Opening scheduled for Memorial Day Weekend. The indoor pool features include a zero entry ramp with a children’s play area, as well as four regulation lap swimming lanes. It is approximately double the size of the previous pool and there will be ample seating at the shallow end for rest and relaxation. In addition, the indoor complex offers newly constructed bathrooms that will be accessible from both the indoor & outdoor pools.
The outdoor complex features a zero entry ‘beach’ area with water features for the little ones. Adults can watch their children play from an in-pool seating area that is perfect for cooling off while they soak up the sun. The pool also features six full sized lap swimming lanes and a pool deck approximately three times the size of the previous deck. The pool deck is host to updated furnishings, complete with a large shade structure and poolside umbrellas. A full snack bar operation is available to members and guests.
Woodstock Inn & Resort
The Woodstock Inn & Resort has partnered with Orvis© to provide an exciting new guest experience at the resort’s Athletic Club in Woodstock, Vermont. The Orvis© Endorsed Fly Fishing program will allow guests from beginner to expert to cast on some of Central Vermont’s most picturesque streams and lakes while honing fly-fishing skills you can use for a lifetime. For the experienced angler, our guides will take you on exciting excursions to tackle some of the more captivating hot spots. Our expert instructors help you with everything from setting up the rod, to fly selection and knots, to how to safely release your catch all in a fun and friendly environment. www.woodstockinn.com
There is a lot of excitement in the air at Magic as the ski area is in the process of being sold to new owners, Ski Magic LLC. Importantly, the new owners will also be operating the ski area and are committed to significant infrastructure investment in proportion to the business opportunity of a smaller independent ski area surrounded by major resorts. Ski Magic LLC will keep what makes Magic special: unmatched ski terrain in southern Vermont, a “throwback” skiing experience and, most importantly, a laid-back, welcoming ski community vibe. It will do this on top of providing new capital to turnaround what has held it back over the years: reliable snow-making and lifts over a longer season.
It is anticipated that Ski Magic LLC will take over ownership and operations in July and begin improving both snowmaking and lift infrastructure for the upcoming season. While there is always some uncertainty with timing, both parties will do their best to keep Magic customers informed of progress along the way. Stay tuned this summer for information on new, low-priced season passes that hope to make the Magic experience even more affordable.
Stratton Mountain Resort
Coming off the heels of a dance party filled Winter Concert Series, which featured world-renowned acts Deadmau5 and Kaskade as part of Minus Zero Festival, Stratton Mountain Resort will host a series of outdoor concerts at the mountain’s scenic base area with headliners Donavon Frankenreiter, The Wailers, The Machine and more to be announced.
Mount Snow Resort
The riding at Mount Snow just got a lot better for kids ages 7-14 years, with a brand new fleet of rental downhill mountain bikes just for kids. Need a helmet? Ride safe and in style with new full face helmets included with every mountain biking rental this year. Need an excuse to get out and ride? Mount Snow’s Dirt Cheap Bike Package includes downhill mountain biking and lodging starting at just $55 per night.
Teeing-off on #8 will be a little different this summer as well. The Mount Snow Golf Club reshaped the bunkers on hole 8 and refinished the bunkers with new sand, making a successful bunker shot that much more enjoyable.