Reopening Next Weekend
Monday, April 24, 2017
Written by Win Smith
Sunday marked the 151st consecutive day of skiing here at Sugarbush since last fall’s Thanksgiving Opening Day. It will not be the last, however, as we plan to reopen this Saturday for three final days.
This past Saturday was not the best day, as it was overcast, with mid-mountain fog. While only 400 people turned out to ski and ride, 24 entered the second annual Stein’s Challenge. Brooks Curran was once again crowned the Stein’s Challenge Ski Champion, completing 23 laps in four hours. An impressive performance. Brooks was closely chased by a number of others: the top boarder crown went to Eric Closser, and the top female Skier crown went to Caroline Kessler.
Sunday was a very different day, as the sun shone all day long with bluebird skies and temperatures that reached into the 50’s. Over 1,000 skiers and riders enjoyed terrific spring turns on 20 trails top-to-bottom. Our grooming team did a great job of patching Downspout together to allow access to Heaven’s Gate so that all could enjoy a few final runs on the upper mountain.
Next weekend, we will operate the Valley House chair with skiing on Stein’s, Upper Snowball, Spring Fling and Coffee Run. Unless the forecast changes significantly, we expect some fun, soft turns.
Sunday was bittersweet for me, personally. It was my 125th day on the slopes this winter. I should point out that three employees have scanned totals higher than mine, including John Hammond (our Vice President of Mountain Operations), who was on the slopes for 150 days. (I will provide some more data on skier visits after the final close, which I think you will find interesting.) Since all but two members of our family were here this weekend, we rode the Valley House lift up and skied down to scatter Rumble’s ashes. We found a special tree near the entrance of Eden, and said goodbye to our special friend. Over the past three weeks, I really have been touched by the kind gestures of so many of you--the cards and words of condolence. Many of you spoke to me about a loss of your own and shared your stories. A few days ago, someone put two Sugarbush knit hats filled with flowers in front of Rumble’s home outside of Timbers. And eight-year-old Sydney Hanley wrote a beautiful poem and placed it in his dog house. Thank you all.