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Skiing

Thursday, February 09, 2017

Time to Visit Weston Ski Track

Finally, some decent snowfall in the Boston area today. They’re predicting up to a foot to 14 inches. You know what that means? Time to visit the Weston Ski Track and their 15 kilometers of meticulously groomed trails. Ski rentals are available. Located on the banks of the Charles River, they also have snowshoe trails. Spend an hour or two here and you’ll no doubt feel invigorated from the workout and winter scenery. 

 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 02/09/17 at 06:00 AM
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Thursday, December 22, 2016

Liftopia Offers Lift Ticket Deals This Holiday Season

I know where I’ll be this Christmas Day, skiing with my family on the slopes of Loon. It’s one of my favorite days of the year to ski, because there’s far less people on the trails and no lift lines. New Year’s Day is also universally slow, especially in those early morning hours. Hard to do First Tracks when you’re staying up 2 am the night before. Liftopia is doing their part to get people on the slopes Christmas and New Year’s Day by offering up to a 72% discount off lift tickets. A lift ticket at Jay Peak is only $42, a 42% savings. Bolton Valley, just down the road from Burlington is only $20, a 59% discount. Out West, Oregon’s Mount Hood is $50, 34% off. Check it out before you hit your favorite ski area. 

 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 12/22/16 at 07:00 AM
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Thursday, November 10, 2016

The Latest Changes at Utah Ski Resorts for the Upcoming Season

Utah’s 14 ski resorts had a record-breaking ski season last winter, welcoming 4.5 million visitors. The big news this year is the opening of the ultra-sybaritic Stein Eriksen Residences at Deer Valley. The 39 condos and 15 houses will feature ski-in/ski-out access, panoramas of the mountains, indoor and outdoor pools, fitness center, restaurant and lounge area. An hour north of Salt Lake City, the new Whisper Ridge is billing itself as the largest backcountry ski resort in North America. It features Cat skiing and boarding at over 60,000 acres of private ski terrain. At night, you can crash in one of their ten comfy mountaintop yurts. Over at Snowbird, the newly refurbished Creekside Lodging will now be the home of all ski and snowboard lessons, eliminating the need for a shuttle back and forth to the slopes. 
 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 11/10/16 at 06:00 AM
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Wednesday, November 09, 2016

The Latest Changes at New Hampshire Ski Resorts for the Upcoming Season

The big news out of the Granite State is the opening of the first phase of the RiverWalk Resort at Loon Mountain this past June. The $30 million project is located on the East Branch of the Pemigewasset River at the base of the South Peak of Loon Mountain. Phase One of the ski-in/ski-out resort is now open, featuring 79 1, 2, and 3-bedroom units, a full-service spa, fitness center, restaurant and lounge, game room, heated all-season pool, skating rink, and personal storage lockers. Loon is celebrating its 50th anniversary this winter with events planned throughout the season, including a special anniversary weekend January 28-29. Over at Bretton Woods, their new $110 ZIP & SKI package lets you hit the slopes then soar above them on the Bretton Woods Canopy Tour. Cross-country skiers who always wanted to learn how to skate now have that opportunity at the renowned Jackson X-C. Jackson offers a $65 package that includes an all-day trail pass, skate equipment rental, and a one-hour private lesson.

 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 11/09/16 at 06:00 AM
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Tuesday, November 08, 2016

The Latest Changes at California Ski Slopes for the Upcoming Season

Last year’s El Nino did bring much needed snow to drought-stricken California last season but skiers are still waiting for a serious dumping. Mammoth opens in two days and has added a new hike-in terrain park featuring jumps and platforms built of snow throughout the Hemlock Ridge. They’re also ramping up other activities like high-speed tubing, snowcat tours, and a scenic gondola ride. World Cup ski racing returns to Squaw March 9-12, the first time since 1969. A new Squaw mobile app offers advance purchase of lift tickets and allows skiers to track their friends and other members of the family on the slopes. Legendary Badger Pass has been renamed Yosemite Ski & Snowboard Area. With a vertical drop of only 800 feet, this is still one of the best places in the state to learn how to ski. This being Yosemite, take advantage of your surroundings. A short snowshoe trek into Mariposa Grove and you’ll be making snow angels at the roots of 200-foot sequoia trees. Cross-country skiers will cherish the ten miles of groomed track that leads to 7,000-foot high Glacier Point. Ice skaters can swirl around the Curry Village rink dwarfed by the majestic cliff walls of Half Dome.

 
 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 11/08/16 at 06:00 AM
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Monday, November 07, 2016

The Latest Changes at Vermont Ski Slopes for the Upcoming Season

Thursday is the annual Boston Ski Show, when I meet reps from ski areas around New England, Canada, and the Western US. Last week’s news that 14 ski areas including Jiminy Peak in Massachusetts, Loon Mountain and Mount Sunapee in New Hampshire, Okemo Mountain in Vermont, and Sunday River and Sugarloaf in Maine have been sold to a hedge fund manager in New York will certainly be the hot conversation topic, but there’s a slew of other noteworthy topics at ski resorts around the country that I want to discuss this week. We’ll start with Vermont. 

 
Killington Resort is bringing Alpine World Cup skiing back to the eastern US for the first time in 25 years when the Audi FIS Ski World Cup takes place November 26-27. Giant Slalom and Slalom races will put the best female technical alpine skiers against one another on the infamous New England steep trail, Superstar. Brand new this winter at Stowe Mountain Resort is the opening of an 80-million-dollar Adventure Center. Located at Spruce Peak and adjacent to Stowe’s new outdoor Ice Skating Rink, Stowe’s Adventure Center is home to all Stowe’s children’s programs. The building will includes a day care facility, an indoor climbing center called Stowe Rocks, and family-friendly dining. Over at Burke, The Burke Mountain Hotel and Conference Center opened its doors on September 1st. The 116-room hotel is situated mid-mountain and provides a true ski-in ski-out experience. Suites range from a standard studio to three bedroom with onsite amenities including a pub, restaurant, heated pool and hot tub, fitness center, and arcade.  
 
 
 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 11/07/16 at 06:00 AM
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Thursday, June 30, 2016

Take the White Glove Tour at the Alexander Graham Bell Museum

It’s a good omen when you spot a bald eagle and a fox within 10 minutes of leaving your hotel after breakfast. An hour later we were paddling the placid waters of St. Ann’s Bay on a guided half-day tour with North River Kayak. We would spot more bald eagles, one distinctive white head peering out from her massive bowl-shaped nest high up the hillside. We stopped for banana bread and chocolate chai, so delicious that owner Angelo Spinazola now sells it as a parting gift. Then we walked to a small waterfall before making the paddle back. 
 
That afternoon, I returned to the Alexander Graham Bell Museum in the lakeside resort town of Baddeck. Graham Bell and his wife Mabel, a former student of his at Boston School for the Deaf, first built their summer home in Baddeck in 1886, a decade after he stated those first fateful words on the telephone to his assistant, “Mr. Watson, come here, I want to see you.” In 1955, Graham Bell’s two daughters donated thousands of original artifacts to the museum, including all of the models that consumed him during his lifetime. There’s a bicycle that he hoped one could pedal on water, his invention of the gramophone, and a hydrofoil he helped build later in life, called HD-4, which reached a speed of 70 miles per hour on water, a record that wouldn’t be broken for another decade. The museum is now offering a “White Glove” tour where you put on gloves and enter a backroom. A guide lets you see and touch his walking cane (rather long since he stood 6 ‘4”), suit jackets, and notebooks where he would scribble any thoughts during the day. He was a meticulous note taker and you’ll find stacks of books lined up detailing all of his studies. I also enjoyed the early photo of his brothers, making silly faces. Unfortunately they both died of TB at an early age. It’s the reason Bell’s family left Scotland to move to Canada. Bell’s 37-room estate across the lake is still used by his descendants. 
 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 06/30/16 at 04:30 AM
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Thursday, March 03, 2016

My Story for Yankee Magazine on New England’s Best Winter Towns

What a difference a year makes. Last winter I was driving around the entirety of New England researching a story on the best winter towns in the region for Yankee Magazine. The deluge of snow created a winter wonderland where I could truly appreciate everything New England has to offer during the cold weather months. This winter, I shoveled twice, saw very little snow, and it’s already March. I was fortunate to be writing about New England’s finest winter towns while they wearing a shiny white dress. That cover story for the Jan/Feb issue of Yankee Magazine is finally out on the web. Please have a look

 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 03/03/16 at 06:00 AM
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Friday, January 15, 2016

MLK Ski Resort Deals at Liftopia

With most regions in the country getting snow this week, MLK Weekend is turning out to be a great time to carve those perfect turns. Don’t be foolish and wait until the last minute to purchase your lift tickets. Check out Liftopia, the largest online marketplace for discounted lift tickets. Some of the many deals on the site this week include a three-day lift ticket at Jay Peak starting at $125, a 42% savings compared to walk-up window rates. In upstate New York, three-day lift tickets at Gore Mountain start at $128, a 45% savings. Out West, at Colorado’s Copper Mountain, three-day lift tickets start at $194. Taos is also offered, with a three-day lift ticket that start at $182 (26% savings). Check it out and have a great weekend! I’ll be back on Tuesday. 

 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 01/15/16 at 06:00 AM
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Thursday, December 10, 2015

Skiing Quebec on a Budget

If you’re looking for a Northeastern ski area with a dose of affordable French flavor, then a visit to Quebec’s Eastern Townships is in order. With a lift ticket at Stowe reaching $115 this winter, you can head another hour north and be skiing at a quarter of the price. This is especially true with the current rate of exchange at US$1 to CAN$1.35. On the shores of Lake Memphremagog, Owl’s Head offers the best of Vermont skiing, but at absurdly low prices. For a measly US$54, you get one night lodging, breakfast, and a lift ticket! And this being Quebec, that breakfast will include freshly baked croissants, patisserie, and café au lait. Not a bad way to celebrate Owl’s Head’s 50th anniversary this ski season. 

 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 12/10/15 at 06:00 AM
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Longtime Boston Globe travel writer, Steve Jermanok, dishes out his favorite travel locales and provides topical travel information that comes across his desk.

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