Tag Archive | "skiing"

The Peak of Alpine Chic in Courchevel

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L'Apogee in Courchevel, France

L’Apogee in Courchevel, France

L’Apogée is the latest rarefied resort to open in Courchevel, that lair of ski-happy oligarchs in the French Alps that’s often dubbed Moscow-on-Snow. It’s situated in Courchevel 1850, the glamour-puss of the resort’s four villages (the number refers to the altitude in meters), an otherworldly locale where the sidewalks seem to sprout Parisian fashion designers and English celebrities, all jostling with those Russian magnates. This is the place, after all, that hired Karl Lagerfeld last year to give one of its cable cars a “makeover.”

Read  more at ForbesLife …

The Billionaire Who Bought Taos Ski Valley

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Hiking up Kachina Peak at Taos Ski Valley

Hiking up Kachina Peak at Taos Ski Valley

By Everett Potter

When hedge fund billionaire Louis Bacon bought northern New Mexico’s Taos Ski Valley (TSV) in December 2013, it baffled many in the ski world. Twenty miles outside the latter-day-hippie redoubt of Taos itself, TSV is arguably the least likely major U.S. ski resort to attract a highflier’s attention. It’s not a posh haven like Deer Valley or Beaver Creek but a none-too-chic outlier with an architectural hodgepodge of aging condos and ersatz alpine chalets. And its visitor base–it’s been drawing the same dedicated families for decades–likes it just the way it is.

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Colorado: The Best Week of Skiing Ever

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Copper Mountain, Colorado

Copper Mountain, Colorado

David McKay Wilson

When you have the best day of skiing, ever, on the first day of a six-day romp through the Colorado Rockies in mid-February, what do you to top that?

You have the best week of skiing ever.

That was my conclusion after skiing Copper Mountain, Arapahoe Basin, Breckenridge and Winter Park over six days. The snow was deep, the air crisp, and it kept snowing, night after night, day after day.

It was a week that tested my 60-year-old legs against the likes of my two sons, 15 and 17, and godson, age 25. I chased them all week – across the back bowls of Copper Mountain, down the steeps at A-Basin, and through the fresh powder fields at Breckenridge, where the northern wind blew a gale.

It was the third consecutive year that the four of us had ventured out West for our Mancation in the mountains – to challenge ourselves on the toughest terrain we could find, endure the brutal weather that can unfold at 12,000 feet, and kick back together after a day on the slopes.

On the sixth day, on a blustery afternoon at Winter Park, with the snow still plentiful on the Mary Jane Chutes, my sons were back at the Olympia Motel, finishing up their homework in recompense for playing hooky for three days. I skied until 4 p.m. and declared victory.

The snow all week was bountiful. It began dumping in Colorado in early December, and hadn’t stopped, setting the stage for spectacular spring skiing.

At the offices of Colorado Ski Country, they had to reconfigure it website to allow three digits in the base-depths because so resorts many had more than 100 inches piled up at their mid-mountain measuring sticks.

“Mother Nature has been very kind this year,” said Jen Rudolph, of Colorado Ski Country. “Now we’re waiting for the next round of announcements, to see who will extend their closing date. I skied last year on Mother’s Day at A-Basin. It was my best Mother’s Day ever.”

Copper Mountain

Our first stop, at Copper Mountain, just off I-70 in Summit County, about two hours west of Denver International Airport,  provided a glimpse at the snowfall bonanza, and the deals to be had this year. Along with discount tickets at Liftopia.com, Copper has a $99 pass Snow Day promotion that provided a ticket on Super Bowl Sunday, Copper’s closing day, and any day in which the mountain had reported at least four inches of powder. By mid-February, there’d been 18.

We felt like heroes on our first runs at Copper. It was one of those bluebird days, with the brilliant sun revealing the majestic Tenmile Range, and three inches of light, luscious powder providing the perfect float for our rockered skies, including the pair of demo Rossi Soul 7’s my son rented from Christy Sports in Copper, and returned five days later in Breckenridge.

Far above timber line, the vast bowls of Copper were in perfect shape. So were the glades, where stashes of powder abounded through openings in the lodge-pole pines in the appropriately named Enchanted Forest.  Over on the Super Bee, where the US Olympic Ski Team did its speed work in December, I did my Ted Ligety imitation as I cranked up my GS turns to see just how fast I could go. It was plenty fast.

While I relaxed after dinner in our fifth-floor two-bedroom unit at the Passage Point lodging, the boys headed over to Woodward at Copper, the indoor facility with jumps, trampolines, and foam pits where you can work on your inverted snowboard and skiing tricks.  A word of warning: a slip-up at the facility can put you on the shelf for a day, as it did to my god son, who turned his ankle on the trampoline and sat out a day to let it heal.

Deep powder in Colorado this winter.

Deep powder in Colorado this winter.

Arapahoe Basin

On Day 3, we headed to Arapahoe Basin, the down-home mountain in Summit County that calls itself “The Legend,” which recalls its early days in the mid-1940s, and its reputation for some of Colorado’s longest lasting alpine conditions. A-Basin typically stays open past Memorial Day, when the tailgating gets serious along The Beach – the front row spots in the parking lot that can be reserved for up to $175 a day. A-Basin maintains a strong audience among the locals who snap up $299 adult season tickets and $99 for kids up to 14. A three-day adult pass was $139.

With no lodging at A-Basin, we stayed five miles down the road at the Keystone Resort, in a spacious two-bedroom  at the Sundance Manor Condos, with a well-equipped kitchen that helped for the Italian dish I whipped up for the young lads. I felt like I was doing the time warp at the Sundance, which featured two cassette boom-boxes, preserved in their 1980s splendor, in a glass cabinet. I need to bring my cassettes next year!

The opening of the Montezuma Bowl in 2007 increased the area’s terrain by 80 percent, and provides groomers for intermediates and steep chutes and cornices from those looking for a launching pad. On our visit, however, the wind was blowing a gale, leaving an unforgiving hard-pack. So we skied the front side, cavorting down the natural half-pipe on Humbug, and discovering the wonders of Pallavincini, the world-renowned run with bumps galore, and a steep pitch that tested my legs.

While making my deliberate turns, an A-Basin hot-shot straight-lined it down the edge, in a blur.

“That’s a whole different game,” remarked a fellow skier.

On a ski vacation, it’s always good to splurge, at least once, for lunch on the mountain. That day came to A-Basin, at 6th Alley, its $1 million addition, where I quaffed my thirst with a Bacon Bloody Mary, and chowed down on a savory pork stew. The boys, meanwhile, devoured mac n’ cheese with roasted tomatoes, a calzone stuffed with exotic cheese, and waffle chicken sandwich that took two hands to eat.

Breckenridge, Colorado

Breckenridge, Colorado

Breckenridge

We arrived under the portico at One Ski Hill Place at Breckenridge before sunset, just as the snow began to swirl again. Open in 2010 by Rock Resorts, the 88-unit condo complex at the base of Breckenridge’s Peak 8 provides a state-of-the-art experience on slope-side skiing. The spiffy kitchen was all Bosch, the master bathroom had steam piped into the shower, and the complex’s two-lane bowling alley reminded me of grand hotel I stayed at 30 years ago in Arosa in the Swiss Alps.

Having a place on the mountain at Peak 8 is the ultimate in luxury. There’s no need for transport, as you walk to the lift, can dine at The Living Room, and even come back on lunch to make sandwiches. There’s a free gondola downtown, where you can walk to groceries at City Market, or procure some over-the-counter medication for your sore legs at the Breckenridge Cannabis Club.

The snow Gods were with us again. We awoke to six inches to a foot of fresh powder, with the snow coming down sideways. It was downright cold – 5 degrees and 40 mile-an-hour gusts. So we layered up, and headed up for the powder day of our dreams. We skied Peak 8 early, finding untouched powder eight inches deep on Cresendo. We hit it straight down the lift line on Spruce, strutting our stuff for the early morning crowd. Then it was up the T-Bar to Horseshoe Bowl, and then Contest Bowl, where the boys found a lip through the trees which they launched.

Skiing the powder at Breckenridge

Skiing the powder at Breckenridge, Colorado

While they did laps on Peak 10 through the glaes called Windows, I explored a run called Devil’s Crotch, where I found my rhythm on the steep, undulating terrain. Later that day we made it out to Peak 6, the new addition to Breckenridge, where the six-pack Kensho Super Chair ensured that the wait wasn’t long. We hiked briefly up to the Beyond Bowl, where peaks jutted up to more than 13,000 feet, and we made fresh tracks with ease down Elysian Fields, and Daydream.

The day ended with a soak in the outdoor hot tub, and a treat my Dad – an inveterate skier who instilled the love of the sport all through my childhood – would have savored: a shot of Breckenridge single barrel Bourbon Whiskey, straight up.

Skiing Winter Park, Colordao

Skiing Winter Park, Colordao

Winter Park

Our last stop was Winter Park, ski area owned by the city of Denver, and operated by Intrawest since 2002, which you reach by crossing the Continental Divide over Berthoud Pass on US Route 40. We stayed at the Olympia Motel, a no-frills economy hostelry popular with Coloradans that had all 40 rooms sold out during our stay.

From the Olympia, you are within walking distance of a dozen restaurants, including the Library Sports Grille and Brewery, where I guzzled the Winter Park Ale, a hoppy salute to the mountain village at 9,800 feet, and the boys devoured hamburger platters brimming with French fries.

If you are staying in town, take the free shuttle to the mountain. You won’t like the walk from the lot to the resort. We skied Winter Park on Sunday, and got a taste of Colorado weekend skiing – it can get mobbed.

We skied the Super Glade Express, down the soft bumps on Sterling Way. There was plenty of snow in the woods, and as I skied alone for the first time all week, ventured into glades far denser than I had in the whole trip. I took it slow, side-slipping through one particularly tight chute. It was quiet in the woods. I drank it in.

There was four inches in the parking lot at the Olympia on Sunday morning. We had a 3:45 flight p.m. flight, and contemplated grabbing a few runs before embarking for DIA. But we’d heard stories about driving back to Denver on I-70 on Sunday. So we enjoyed our continental breakfast of bagels and pastries at the Olympia, and began 65-mile drive to DIA, which took us about two hours, as we crossed the Berthoud Pass. We ogled the back country skiers and their lines down the steep chutes. We crawled along the bumper-to-bumper to traffic I-70 for 20 miles.

And we began planning for another Mancation in 2015.

http://www.breckenridge.com/

http://www.winterparkresort.com/

http://www.arapahoebasin.com/Abasin/Default.aspx

http://www.coppercolorado.com/winter/index.html

http://www.liftopia.com/

 

DW-300x268 (2)   David McKay Wilson has written on travel over the past 30 years as a freelance journalist, with his travel stories appearing in The Boston GlobePhiladelphia InquirerHartford CourantNew Haven Advocate, and Gannett News Service. An avid cyclist and skier, Wilson enjoys vacationing in the mountains and by the sea. His articles on public affairs have appeared regularly in The New York Times. He’s currently the nation’s top freelance writer for university alumni magazines, with his work appearing in publications at 81 colleges and universities, including Harvard, Columbia, Dartmouth, Brown and the University of Chicago.

Steve Jermanok’s Active Travels: Apres-Ski Dining Favorites in New England

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Apres ski dining in New England

Apres ski dining at Solstice Restaurant in Stowe, Vermont

For my latest Liftopia blog, I was asked to divulge my favorite après-ski dining choices in New England. After a day of hitting the slopes, I’m not content with a beer and a hot tub. No, my body craves a good meal. I’ve made it a habit to find the finest places in town to dine. They run the gamut from casual pizza joints to innovative continental cuisine.

At the base of Stowe, Stowe Mountain Lodge went overboard to use as much indigenous wares as possible, so there’s real Vermont birch twisting around the columns and the marble on stairs leading to the bar comes from Lake Champlain. The resort also prides itself on using local produce. At Solstice Restaurant, expect Vermont-based artisanal cheeses, microbrewed ales, and locally farmed vegetables and meats.
For skiers heading to Okemo, a favorite in Ludlow is DJ’s. You have to love a place that still features a salad bar in this day and age, included in the price of an entrée. Grab a booth and get ready to dig into the chicken marsala, salmon, and ravioli dishes. Best yet, they have my favorite Vermont ale on tap, Switchback.
For a town with a year-round population hovering around 1300, there are a surprising number of good dinner options at Loon. Start at the mother and son run Gypsy Café on Main Street. The eclectic menu features Indian-style chicken samosas, Middle Eastern lamb loin dipped in the best hummus this side of Tel Aviv, Mexican fajitas, and a spicy Thai red curry duck. Wash it down with one of their strong margaritas and you’ll understand why the place feels so festive.
Started in 1998, the Flatbread Company now owns ten pizzerias from Maui to Whistler. Yet, it’s their locale in North Conway, near Cranmore Ski Area, that has the Granite State all abuzz. Maybe it’s the Zen-like ambiance with all those Tibetan designs and the massive wood-fired clay oven plopped down in the center of the room. But I happen to think it’s the Coevolution, topped with roasted red peppers, red onions, olives, goat cheese, garlic, and mozzarella. Much of the produce is from local organic farms and you can taste the difference.
In Bethel, Maine, you can usually find me at Sud’s Pub after a day of skiing Sunday River, downing one of the 29 beers on tap. Located inside the Sudbury Inn, start with the hot Sudbury wings or a cup of tasty clam chowder. Then choose between the burgers, pizzas, or entrees like grilled sirloin tips or blackened salmon. Happy dining!
steve  Steve Jermanok As a columnist for National Geographic Adventure, adventure travel expert at Budget Travel, and regular contributor on outdoor recreation for OutsideMen’s JournalHealth, and Sierra, Steve Jermanok has written more than 1,000 articles on the outdoors.He’s also authored or co-authored 11 books, including Outside Magazine’s Adventure Guide to New England and Men’s Journal’s The Great Life. His latest book is Go Now! Put Your Life on Pause and See the World. He’s currently an adventure travel expert at Away.com and blogs daily at  Active Travels.

Tuckerman Ravine by Appalachian Mountain Club

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Why the Best Skiing Equals the Best Rafting

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Steamboat, CO

Steamboat, CO

By Everett Potter

The next time you’re standing in your K2’s atop Aspen Mountain, ready to make a descent down Copper Bowl, temper the adrenalin for a minute. Instead, mentally transport yourself into the future, many months ahead, to a rafting trip down the Colorado River through Cataract Canyon.

The reason for the mental exercise is that much of the fresh snow under your skis will become foaming whitewater in Class III-V rapids on the Colorado. It begins its journey as snow melt from Aspen Mountain, as well as from neighboring Aspen Highlands, Buttermilk and Snowmass Mountains, making its way down to the legendary Roaring Fork River, which got its name from the formidable sound of rushing whitewater that it can barely contain every spring.

Read more at O.A.R.S…

Telluride, Silverton & Durango

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Telluride, CO.

Telluride, CO.

Story and photos by David McKay Wilson

On the eve of my 60th birthday, I headed to the San Juan Mountains in southwest Colorado with my two sons and nephew to test a series of hypotheses:  Would my legs hold up for six days of skiing down some of the world’s greatest ski terrain at Telluride, Silverton and Durango?

Did dear old Dad still have it?

Was 60 the new 49?

We gloried in the luxury of Telluride’s Hotel Madeline, skied its luscious groomers and harrowing chutes, and dined on fine cuisine in one of the West’s finest resorts. At Silverton, we experienced the steeps with a guide who led us down terrain we’d hiked to at 13,000 feet and chilled in a sleepy Colorado mining town making a go of it, catering to a winter clientele that likes its powder deep, and its terrain largely untouched by other skiers. We ended our journey in Purgatory – in a netherworld between winter and spring – all cozy in a fully-equipped condo, with groomed runs softened to perfection by the bright spring sun.

We arrived in Telluride in late March, our legs in shape from a season at Vermont’s Mad River Glen. After a snowless start in December, 2012, the snow finally arrived in the San Juan Mountains in mid-January, and by late March, the base hovered at around 50 inches mid-mountain.

We stayed four days at the Hotel Madeline, just steps from the lift, in adjoining rooms, with one son sleeping on a pull-out bed with a surprisingly comfortable blow-up mattress that the ever-attentive hotel staff inflated upon our request. We passed on the breakfast buffet – at $25 a pop – and opted for peanut-butter and jam sandwiches and Cheerios in the room, which we bought at the Mountain Village market, accessed by a two-minute gondola ride from the resort plaza.

Bluebird day at Telluride.

Bluebird day at Telluride.

Telluride was not immune from the escalating cost of a day on the mountain: three day passes cost $303. But the sticker shock quickly faded once we got up on the mountain. There’s something for everyone, and the beauty of Telluride is the fact that there’s a groomed run from the top of every lift – including down the middle of Revelation Bowl, at 12,500 feet.

The bowl skiing was spectacular. We found tons of good snow off the Prospect Express lift, where we skied Black Iron Bowl. Later, we earned our turns by hiking for 15 minutes up to the double-black diamond Gold Hill Chutes, which we negotiated with care, and amazement as one bowl opened into another as we crossed a ridge.

We stayed up in Mountain Village, the resort’s own municipality, which really is the resort’s mid-station. Down below is the town of Telluride, the former mining town that had it’s heyday between the 1870-s and 1920, which over the past 40 years has become transformed into a winter destination for skiers, and a summer haunt for lovers of the arts, who flock to its weekly festivals – which includes bluegrass, jazz, and blues, as well at the Telluride Film Festival.

It’s a hip scene downtown, with the restored Sheridan Opera House attracting national acts to the its cozy 244-seat theatre, outdoor recreation shops galore, and lunch places like the Butcher and Plate serving tasty avocado, bacon and cheese sandwiches.

On the skinny skis at Telluride.

On the skinny skis at Telluride.

I decided that to make it all week, we needed to pace ourselves. On our third day, we visited the Nordic Skiing Center in Town Park to rent some skinny skis. My kids had never experienced the pleasures that come with feeling the kick-and-glide. After I provided a quick tutorial from what I’d been taught 40 years ago in Norway, they were in the groove, and flying around the 3-kilometers of tracked trail by the summer stage and along the river.

The boys wanted more activity. So we walked downtown to Paragon Bootdoctors, to rent some “fat bikes” for a guided tour” up to Bridal Veil Falls, where Tesla helped design the world’s first hydroelectric plant. The bikes are modified mountain bikes, with huge tires, four inches wide, to give you better grab on the snow, and to provide a great work-out as you climb slowly out of town.

Ashley Boling squired us around downtown on a historic tour.

Ashley Boling squired us around downtown on a historic tour.

Upon our return, Ashley Boling squired us around downtown on a historic tour, which included a stop at the New Sheridan Hotel, with its original bar – and brass foot-rail – from 1895. Boling told us that the Wild West mining town kept the whiskey flowing during Prohibition. He seemed optimistic that the town’s six medical marijuana dispensaries for a town of 2,300 would prepare the town well for the legalized marijuana trade sometime in 2014.

Two-time Olympic gold medal snowboarder Seth Wescott, dining one night at Allred’s at the gondola’s midstation, told me he returns for the terrain, the feel of the place, and its 3,875 feet of elevation from the gondola in town up to the top of Revelation Bowl.

“It has a soul,” he said, sipping a Tempter IPA.  “And the vertical is sick.”

The view from the top of Silverton.

The view from the top of Silverton.

From Telluride we drove 80 miles to Silverton Mountain, where you can access 1,800 of skiable acreage with a back-country guide, in a funky ski area served by a single lift, with nothing groomed, and no trail markings.  We stayed in Silverton at the Teller House Hotel, a Victorian-era bed-and-breakfast in the sleepy town that once thrived during the gold mining days.

Now it serves vacationers, including the skiers who pay $139 a day to be guided on the mountain, in groups of up to eight. The terrain is steep, and you have to hike to much of it.

Our guide, Marc Kloster, met us at the base – at 10,400 elevation. The lift takes you to 12,300, and there’s another 1,000 of vertical you can hike to reach 13,487 – the highest –point for lift-served skiing in North America. We didn’t hike all the way, but we headed up for 45 minutes to reach the steep snowfield called Rope Dee Dope, pointed our skis down, and followed Kloster’s line down through powder, finding our rhythm in big, swooping turns.

On the way up to Rope Dee Dope at Silverton.

On the way up to Rope Dee Dope at Silverton.

At the bottom, an old laundry van, with reggae music throbbing, picked us up, and brought us back to the lift. We kept going all day, with Kloster dialing it back on the hiking, as my legs were starting to feel it. Nevertheless, we skied five runs that day; a bottle of Pin Stripe Red Ale in the tent at the Silverton base ended the day in fine fashion.

We were bushed as we headed south for our final destination 28 miles away at Durango Mountain Resort, once known as Purgatory. We stayed a Cascade Village, a condo development just two miles north of the ski area.  Curious about downtown Durango, we drove 27 miles into town, hoping to grab a dinner and a beer at Steamworks Brewing Co. But there was a line out the door, we were bushed from a day on the slopes, so we discovered the spicy tacos at Nini’s Taqueria.

On our final day, the boys knocked off at noon, needing to address the schoolwork they’d been promising to  do all week, but never seemed to get to.  My legs had become stronger from a week in the Rockies. I still have more turns to make. So I did a slew of top-to-bottom runs – no stopping – as the spring snow softened in the afternoon sun. I quit at 3 p.m., and unwound at the resort’s Creekside Restaurant with a pint of Euphoria ale.

The 2012-13 season was over. Now we had to figure where out West our legs were destined for 2013-2014.

 

 

DW-300x268 (2)  David McKay Wilson has written on travel over the past 30 years as a freelance journalist, with his travel stories appearing in The Boston GlobePhiladelphia InquirerHartford CourantNew Haven Advocate, and Gannett News Service. An avid cyclist and skier, Wilson enjoys vacationing in the mountains and by the sea. His articles on public affairs have appeared regularly in The New York Times. He’s currently the nation’s top freelance writer for university alumni magazines, with his work appearing in publications at 81 colleges and universities, including Harvard, Columbia, Dartmouth, Brown and the University of Chicago.

Steve Jermanok’s Active Travels: What’s “New” in New England Skiing

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Jay Peak Resort

Jay Peak Resort

Here’s the scoop on what’s new at New England ski areas. With an additional $43 million of improvements for the 2013/2014 ski season, Jay Peak once again leads the pack with regards to changes in the region. Over the past three years, the northern Vermont ski resort has spent more than $200 million to build the 176-room Hotel Jay, open the largest indoor waterpark in Vermont, and add an indoor skating rink for ice skating and hockey games. New this year is the Stateside Hotel and base lodge with restaurants and locker rooms, a rental center, 84 new mountain cottages, and a complete revamping of the resort’s entrance.

Bill Stenger and Ariel Quiros, owners of Jay Peak, purchased nearby Burke Mountain in 2012. Expect to find a flurry of changes at Burke over the next two years. Phase I (a $98 million investment) will see construction of two hotels modeled after the lodgings at Jay Peak, including the 116-suite Hotel Burke.
Killington plans to unveil their $7 million Peak Lodge this December. Sitting atop the highest lift-served peak in Vermont, at 4,100 feet, Peak Lodge will feature exquisite views of the snow-capped Green Mountains. Killington has also teamed up with Okemo, Pico, and Mount Sunapee in New Hampshire to offer a new season pass, “4.0 The College Pass.” Available to all undergraduate and graduate students for $369 plus tax through December 15, 2013, The College Pass will offer unlimited skiing and boarding at all four resorts. If you plan on skiing Okemo, check out their new 2,200-feet long intermediate glade.
The big news in New Hampshire skiing this year comes from Waterville Valley, which was just granted a long-term special use permit by U.S. Forest Service to undergo its first major expansion in more than three decades. Over the next few years the terrain will be developed on Green Peak, and will include construction of about 44 acres of ski trails, glades and a high-speed detachable quad chairlift. This summer in Henniker, Pats Peak installed a new triple chairlift as part of their Cascade Basin Expansion. The new area consists of 4 new ski trails as well as a new glade. Over at Bretton Woods, further expansion was completed at the recently opened Mount Stickney area. Nordic terrain was added offering cross-country skiers early and late season snow at higher elevations.
See you on the slopes!
steve  Steve Jermanok As a columnist for National Geographic Adventure, adventure travel expert at Budget Travel, and regular contributor on outdoor recreation for Outside, Men’s Journal, Health, and Sierra, Steve Jermanok has written more than 1,000 articles on the outdoors.He’s also authored or co-authored 11 books, including Outside Magazine’s Adventure Guide to New England and Men’s Journal’s The Great Life. His latest book is Go Now! Put Your Life on Pause and See the World. He’s currently an adventure travel expert at Away.com and blogs daily at  Active Travels.

48 Hours in Sugarloaf, Maine

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48 Hours in Sugarloaf, Maine

48 Hours in Sugarloaf, Maine. Photo copyright Maine magazine.

By Melissa Coleman

Sugarloaf may claim more lift-serviced vertical than Colorado’s Copper Mountain and Utah’s Alta, but I doubt I’m hurting anyone’s feelings when I say it’s not a mascara ski resort. Yes, Glenn Close has a slopeside condo, but the truly famous people here are the ones who can say they’ve been a “Sugarloafer since 1950,” when the first trail, Winter’s Way, was cut by Amos Winter. The 1971 FIS Alpine World Cup put Sugarloaf on the map, and in 1976 Lloyd Cuttler, now the owner of Gepetto’s, a slopeside restaurant, moved the base village buildings eight miles up from town to the bottom of the lifts. The rest is history. Today, the mountain’s iconic triangle sticker shows up in unlikely places the world over. And while Carrabassett Valley has only 500 year-round residents, many “locals” are weekenders, most of whom ski or ride in some fashion. Herein, a guide to joining the fun…

There are few traditions more sacred to a Loafer than the weekend routine. It generally begins on Friday afternoon: packing up the car, picking up groceries, and hitting the road. Continue reading in Maine magazine …

 

ColemanMelissa  Melissa Coleman is the author of This Life Is in Your Hands: One Dream, Sixty Acres, and a Family’s Heartbreak, a New York Times bestseller and Indie Next Pick for May 2011. It was a People’s Pick in People Magazine, excerpted in O, The Oprah Magazine, and a nonfiction finalist for the New England Book Award and Maine Literary Award. Melissa is a columnist for Maine Home + Design magazine and organizes the Super Famous Writers Series at The Telling Room, a Portland writing center for children and young adults. She lives in Maine with her husband and twin daughters and can be found at www.melissacoleman.com.

Travels with Larry Olmsted: Best Holiday Gifts For Skiers And Snowboarders 2013

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SPY-Goggle

What are the best holiday gifts for skiers and snowboarders? Skiing has been one of the main focuses of my work for nearly 20 years, and I’ve skied all over the world in all sorts of conditions, in and out of bounds, and gotten to know gear pretty well, so these recommendations all come from experience.

There’s something for every budget here, from $12 to $3,000. Read more …

 

larry  Award-winning travel journalist Larry Olmsted is a Contributing Editor to US Airways Magazine and Cigar Aficionado Magazine and “The Great Life” columnist for Forbes.com.

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