by: skigenome57 - 2nd March 2011

  • 5
  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Expert
  • 4All-Mtn. Terrain
  • 5Family Friendly
  • 5Nightlife
  • 5Terrain Park
  • Value
Great skiing for early Nov
small area open=high skier density

Full review

I have never been to Killington before, but this season, the urge to get back out was especially powerful. Sunday River opened on October 22 but sure enough, they closed again. Killington opened on November 2, but they stayed open. I had November 11 (Veterans' day) off, so I made a 2.5 hour day trip to K. It was a clear day, and one could not imagine my excitement seeing Killington peak covered in white appear. In fact, the whole mountain looked white, even though only north ridge was open; It would not be long before more opened. I was able to park right at the gondola and boot up at the car. Looking back, the ticket prices were very steep for the amount of terrain open, at $50. My ski deprived brain didn't care, however, and I soon found myself alone on the k1 gondola zooming up to Killington peak. The snow started about halfway up, with more and more cover higher up. The gondola ride was filled with anticipation, almost as much as the first ride up on a pow day. At the top, it felt so good to click into my skis and set off down Great Eastern. Being early November, I was expecting ice, but I was pleasantly surprised with the snow; it was soft corn! The coverage was excellent; no brown or rocks anywhere. Temps were in the high 30s/low 40s, so it was like spring skiing, but the sadness that comes at the end of the season was replaced with anticipation for a great season-even better! The lines got pretty long at the North Ridge triple, but the singles line was never more than 5 minutes. When lunch rolled around, I headed up the peak walkway; what made skiing now possible. One could not ski to the bottom, so a stair way was built from the top of the NRidge triple, to the peak lodge and gondola. Many were complaining about the stairs, but it was really no problem. One could ride the gondola back down for lunch, or eat at the peak restaurant. The peak lodge was dead and the food was good. Back to skiing: by this time, the sun had sunk behind K peak, so the skiing was completely flat light. The crowds left with the sun, so though the snow refroze and became icy, the lift was ski on for the rest of the day! At the end, I hiked up the stairs again. I might add that the trees still had color, so the views were beautiful during the gondola ride down. Overall, even though only 5 runs (with a park) were open with ~600 vert each, it really doesn't matter that early. Looking at the rest of the mountain, it really seems to have great potential and terrain, so I can't wait to make it there for mid season sometime. Killington really has the best early season operation out there. As a side note, NO beginners here early season. All of the open runs were blues, and in the condition they were in, they would be very difficult for beginners or even early intermediates.
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