Monday, October 12, 2015

Navigating October

I hope you are as excited for the upcoming season as I am. The month of October always brings with it an interesting mix of emotions for me. As much as I would love to pause time and enjoy the beautiful scenery that comes with the fall foliage, I would just as soon time travel to December and ski season. Until then I'll continue to daydream of hot chocolate, waffles, Power days and rewarding myself after a long day with a beverage in the James Moore Tavern. As they say, patience is a virtue.

If you're worried you missed out on foliage this year, think again. It is just beginning to peak at Bolton Valley, plus Bailey's Restaurant is open on Fridays and Saturdays. Take advantage of our Foliage Lodging Specials and come stay in the heart of the changing seasons. Want to catch first chair on opening day? Pick up your pass ahead of time, we are printing passes in the Burlington area throughout the month of October. Come see us at one of these convenient locations and skip a stop at guest services so you can head straight to the lift.

Off-Site Season Pass Printing and Sale Dates:

Fri. Oct. 16: UVM Davis Center in Burlington. 10am - 3pm

Sat. Oct. 17: Alpine Shop in South Burlington. 10am - 5pm

Sun. Oct. 18: Ski Rack in Burlington. 11am - 4pm

Mon. Oct. 19: UVM Davis Center in Burlington. 10am - 3pm

Sat. Oct. 31: Ski Rack in Burlington. 10am - 6pm

Friday, September 18, 2015

Seasons Change

It's a beautiful time of the year around Bolton Valley.  When the awkward temperatures mean sweatshirt weather in the morning and nearly succumbing to heat stroke by early afternoon.  Looking around at some of the fall foliage beginning to appear throughout the trees you can feel something is coming....WINTER!
Photo taken 9/17

As much as I enjoy this peaceful time of the year here at Bolton, we are all anxiously awaiting the return of all you skiers and riders.  So when your mind begins to drift off, daydreaming about that epic powder day last season in Devils Playground.  Just know we're here, waiting.

Don't forget the season pass deadline is just a few days away.  Set yourself up for the season with a Bolton Valley All Access Season Pass.  Passes are currently selling at a discounted rate, but after Monday, September 21, those rates will increase.  Get your pass today.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Hop Jam Weekend

Welcome to Hop Jam Weekend.
We trust you are just as excited as we are for this weekend. The Hop Jam line up of beers and bands looks tremendous and the weather forecast is simply stunning with partly sunny skies and highs in the 70s. This has all the right ingredients for a spectacular event. Enjoy.

Weekend Event Schedule

Friday - Mash Bash: The Hop Jam Pre-Party
The Mash Bash will be held at the James Moore Tavern and there will be beers from 15 breweries at the event. Doors open at 5pm, dinner will be served until 9pm and the Tavern will stay open until 2am with a DJ spinning tunes to give you time to socialize and try out a few more beers.

Saturday Morning - 5K Trail Run
Jump into the Bolton Valley 5K to benefit Vermont Adaptive Ski and Sports. This 5K trail run will be on Bolton Valley's Nordic trails and all the proceeds benefit Vermont Adaptive Ski and Sports.
•    7 - 8am: registration at the Nordic Center for $30
•    9am: 5K race start

Saturday – Hop Jam
Hop Jam doors open at 11am for BIP ticket holders and noon for general admission. The event runs until 10pm.

Sunday Morning - Hangover Brunch
Fuel up at the Hangover Brunch on Sunday Morning. The Hangover Brunch will be held in the James Moore Tavern from 8-11am.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Closing Time

So, once again we find ourselves here. 
But, that "here" is an ambiguous location, one that can mean any number of places for any number of people. Maybe it's closing weekend on your last runs of the winter. Maybe it was the rental shop where you tried on your first pair of ski boots and winced in agony as they vacuum sealed around your foot. Maybe it was Devil's Playground with your youngest daughter for another round of steep, adrenaline-pumping euphoria on the deepest day of the season. Maybe it was alone by the fire in the Tavern as you enjoyed a drink or three during a warm and well-deserved vacation. Maybe it was all of these places. Or somewhere else entirely.
Regardless of where "here" is for you, it's special. It's a unique moment of realization when everything fades away and all that's left is a sense of being. Of respite. Of comfort. It's what living in the moment really means, and it's something we strive to provide here at the resort every day. We set out this fall to make you feel at home. With any luck, by the end of the spring, we succeeded.
Hopefully you've found yourself this winter. And hopefully you continue to do so in the coming years. Thanks for reading, watching, clicking and sharing this season. Enjoy the final day on the slopes and we'll see you in December.

Friday, April 10, 2015

This Is It

Welcome to closing weekend! $19 night skiing tickets starting at 4pm, $10 off the rack rate when you purchase tickets in person at the resort and even more savings found buy ordering tickets online!

That's a bittersweet statement for oh so many of us. Despite the warming temperatures, more frequent sunshine, rotting snow and impending summer, few of us are truly prepared to hang up our boots and jackets for another eight months. But, that's precisely why we must.

If winter came every day, we wouldn't appreciate it, yearn for it and feel at home in it nearly as much as we do now. And, while I'm sure everyone reading this is just as happy to slide downhill on snow as I am, I think we can all agree it's time for a little warm weather. Regardless, it was a fun year filled with memories.

Friday, March 20, 2015

What Determines a Wind Hold?

In the winter, we get weather. Obviously, we all know this. We operate in Mother Nature's element, battling against her tantrums occasionally and it goes without saying that sometimes, Mother Nature wins.

So, what has to happen for a lift to go on wind hold?

The answer isn't as simple as you might think.

The two primary factors in a wind hold are speed and direction. People don't always think of the latter, but it's arguably more a more important consideration than speed. Wind direction is important because that's what makes the chairs swing side-to-side. We don't want wind to be coming in across the line (perpendicular to the cable itself). That's the situation we want to avoid when its windy and why the lifts go on hold in the first place. If the speed and direction of the wind come together to create a situation where the chairs are swaying too much, that's when a lift gets put on hold.

Speed is still important, as gusts of 40+ are capable of shutting any lift down, but direction is the linchpin so-to-speak. The wind could be blowing 30+ at the top of the mountain, but if it's directly up or down the lift line (in your face or at your back when you're riding up), there's a good chance the lift will still run. If it's coming at an angle across the line versus directly across it, there's a better chance lift mechanics will be able to get the lift running at a speed that minimizes chairs swinging. That's also why we sometimes run chairlifts at slower speeds on windy days.

Additionally, different wind directions affect each lift differently. Think of each lift as its own individual entity. We don't put the whole mountain on wind hold at once. Instead, our lift mechanics will check each lift throughout the day and assess it as an isolated situation from the rest of the mountain. If that needs to be put on wind hold, so be it, but it's not a sweeping declaration. That's why Wilderness and Timberline may be on hold one day while Vista and Snowflake can still operate. It's all about the direction the wind is coming in, combined with the speed of the gusts and how that affects each individual lift.

When a lift does get put on hold, it's not a white flag for the day. Our mechanics monitor the wind speeds and direction every 15 minutes while a lift is on wind hold, while also reading forecasts and weather stations to see what weather is coming in over the next few hours. It's a tedious but essential job to keep checking every lift all day, but that's why we're thankful to have the lift mechanics we do. Give those guys a high five next time you see them.

They're fighting the battle against Mother Nature and they, quite literally, are what keep our lifts running.


Saturday, March 7, 2015

Five Signs That March Is Finally Here

You know, sometimes winter can get a little dark and dingy. For most of the ski season, it gets dark before 4pm, the sun doesn't come up until after 7am, Mother Nature hurls ice and wind at us and Ullr buries life in deep snow. After six months or so, it's enough to give anyone cabin fever. But, then March comes calling and brings with it the best month of skiing all season. 

Why is March so good? Well, Daylight Savings keeps the lights on later, the snow gods give us a truckload of powder, temperatures rise and the snow softens up. Who doesn't love a little mashed potato, goggle-tanning, no jacket skiing under bluebird skies? So, don't forget to set your clocks ahead this weekend. We'll be waiting for you on the sunny side.

  1. Sun - What is this mysterious glowing ball in the sky, and where has it been all our lives? Because March is the start of spring, it means the Earth is moving through its elliptical revolution around the sun and we're getting closer to summer. That means we get more sunlight than the rest of the season. With the cloud cover we typically get here in New England, the sun coming out in March is a pretty great excuse to punch out of work and do outside things again. And it sure makes the everything look purdy.
  2. Snow - Don't kid yourself. There's still at least 3 more weeks of winter coming our way. March has historically been our snowiest month of the season. Last year we got 7 feet of snow from the end of February through the end of March, so don't get too anxious to trade your fat skis for four wheelers just yet.
  3. Wacky Outfits - When it's warm, people dress down. And when you dress down in ski gear, it means trading facemasks and hand warmers for jerseys, retro snow suits and wigs. And it's 100 percent awesome. If you start seeing your favorite TV show characters flying by you and it looks like iParty just exploded in the base area, you know it's time for spring skiing.
  4. Events - What else goes great with warm weather and longer days? More events! We go absolutely stir crazy with events in the spring. Backcountry festivals, demo days, banked slalom courses, pond skimming and parties every weekend. This is the most fun time of the year to come skiing, no matter what the conditions might be.
  5. Night Skiing Gets More Fun - When DST returns, it stays light out later than usual. We already run night skiing four nights a week, but what's cool about it in the spring is that it's still light outside at 7pm. Ski Patrol only ropes off trails when it's too dark that it becomes dangerous, so that means that in late March, you could be skiing Cobrass, Vermont 200 or even Preacher at 7pm as the sun goes down. There's a reason we have the best sunset skiing this side of the Rockies.
Enjoy the spring conditions!