Mount Snow added 150 new snow guns, in a continuation of Peak Resorts' strategy to focus on the basics of skiing. The resort also dedicated the entire 95-acre face of Carinthia to freestyle, with jumps, rails, and halfpipes, a revamped base lodge, a skateboard ramp, a hikeable park and indoor lounge area.
Smugglers' Notch has added Attitude to the 22 percent of its terrain dedicated to tree skiing. The new glade on Madonna Mountain is accessed through the balsam firs on Lower Drifter just before the mid-station on skier's left. Looking for something green? The Hibernator Trail on Morse Highlands now offers beginners a direct line top to bottom.
Spruce Peak at Stowe offers is a very high-end complex that includes a new slopeside luxury hotel and spa, a new base area, an inter-mountain transfer gondola, new trails, a new beginner area, two new high-speed detachable quads, fully-automated snowmaking, and exclusive mountainside residences.
Stratton offers six new glades and trails in the Sunbowl for intermediates and experts. The resort has new Prinoth Sherpa Winch Cat for steep pitches, and a new Prinoth BR350 terrain park cat will spend its time building rails and terrain features at the Tyrolienne Slopestyle course, venue for the Stratton Saturday night terrain park events. The competitions are under the lights and open to all. Stratton also is investing a half million dollars in energy efficiency programs including snowmaking. Last year, Stratton invested $4 million, increasing snowmaking coverage to 95 percent.
Killington celebrates its 50th birthday on Dec. 13 with more than $8.4 million in on-mountain improvements, including the new Skye Peak Express, ski trails, efficiency upgrades to its snowmaking system, and expanded environmental programs. Killington debuts The Burton Stash, an all natural terrain park with 34 features located off the shoulder of Skye Peak. The area added a 500-foot Magic Carpet at Snowshed for beginner skiers and riders in the Killington Ski and Snowboard School and Burton Learn to Ride Programs. A new beginner and more advanced trail off Skye Peak also debut for the 2008-09 season.
Sugarbush spent half a million dollars to expand its Gate House lodge. (Wait a minute, didn't they just build that two years ago? Yes they did.) The lodge's Castlerock Pub is now 1,200-square-feet larger, with a slopeside deck complete with barbecue and fire pit. An addition also is going onto the top floor of the Gate House for more food-court seating. Sugarbush also is using a new Pisten Bully cat cab to carry diners up to Allyn's Lodge at Lincoln Peak for specialty dinners and full moon skiing and snowshoeing, and for late-season cat skiing on Mt. Ellen.
Okemo has its two new trails totaling eight acres over 850 vertical feet at Jackson Gore, the final stage of the trail work at this area of the resort. Okemo has added 80 new snowguns to its arsenal, brining coverage to 96 percent of its terrain. The resort also has claims the first Prinoth BR500 grooming machine in the East, affectionately referred to as "The Beast" by resort operations staff. The 500-horsepower dual turbocharged behemoth is eight feet wider and ten feet longer than the next largest model, the BR350. The Beast sports a 24-foot-wide tiller and a 20-foot-wide blade. It has laser technology for precise grooming of terrain features.
Bolton Valley installed new snowmaking lines on the main mountain and will be installing new energy efficient snow guns and fan guns. A new Prinoth Bison snowcat/groomer will join the three groomers already in the Bolton Valley fleet. Bolton also has an entirely new inventory of rental skis, boots, and poles from Rossignol, and the latest Burton Snowboard equipment in the Bolton Valley-Burton Learn To Ride Center.
Burke Mountain features a new intermediate terrain park located on Lower Foxes Folly that offers modified terrain and a variety of features. Burke Mountain also is proud to be the latest Burton Learn To Ride Resort in Vermont.
Bromley has invested $1 million in capital improvements for the 2008-09 season, the bulk in an arsenal of HKD sv10 tower snow guns. These guns will increase Bromley's snowmaking capacity by 30 percent and will allow for more manmade snow at moderate temperatures; that translates into more open early-season terrain and fast recovery after poor weather. Bromley also added a new Prinoth BR350 groomer.