In The Spotlight
After harvesting the spring corn snow that’s still abundant this spring at many resorts around the country, you could just sit back and enjoy a frosty one on the deck. Or, you could kick up your outdoor game a notch with an afternoon bike ride that will make that end-of-day refreshment all the more rewarding.
As weather can vary a lot this time of year, be sure to check local road and trail reports to see what’s open.
Bend, Oregon is known as being an outdoor adventure town, and for good reason. Open for skiing through May 26, 2019, Mt. Bachelor is the perfect basecamp to chase the sun and revel in the freedom of a quintessential Bend adventure. “Bend has some great mountain biking that makes it easy to ski in the morning and ride in the afternoon,” Mt. Bachelor’s Justin Yax tells SnoCountry.com. “The most popular trail system, which is also riding great right now, is an area called Phil’s Trail Complex. My personal favorites within the system are Ben’s Trail and C.O.D.”
Arapahoe Basin is located on Loveland Pass, and the climb up and over is a classic road bike ride, and the 6th Alley Bar and Grill at A-Basin is a great place to start and finish if you don’t want to crank all the way from Keystone. The dirt roads near A-Basin are perfect for anyone partaking in the “gravel grinding” craze, Araphoe Basin’s Katherine Fuller tells SnoCountry.com. “East of Keystone, if you head up to Montezuma and keep going past town, the main road turns to dirt and offers access to multiple unpaved Forest Service roads good for mountain bikes and gravel bikes.” Fuller says she’s done this as early as late May, but you may encounter snow due to the elevation. Or, Fuller suggests, after skiing and snowboarding A-Basin, drive down to Keystone and pick up the Snake River Recpath, which connects into the entire Summit County Recpath system, with 55 miles of paved bike that connect Keystone, Dillon, Frisco, Silverthorne and Breckenridge.
Near Michigan’s Boyne Mountain is the Little Traverse Wheelway that goes along Lake Michigan from Charlevoix through Petoskey up to Harbor Springs. “It's paved, so riding would be good, beautiful views of the lake, and the Mountain isn't far from either Charlevoix or Petoskey,” says SnoCountry Midwest Editor Mike Terrell.
Killington may be open into June, which means there’s plenty of time to enjoy the best of both worlds, with skiing and riding on the Superstar glacier and pedaling the woods and back roads of Vermont. After a morning on the slopes, hit nearby Sherburne trails for 4.5 miles of beginner and intermediate terrain that the kids will want to lap again and again. Or drive into Rutland for 16 miles of single track spread over 325 acres of terrain at Pine Hill Park.
With an epic snow year at Mammoth, there will be awesome spring conditions and shredding through the 4th of July weekend – or maybe even longer. Once the corn snow turns to slush, turn in your boards for wheels on the Mammoth Lakes Trail System. Locals'-favorite Knolls Loop alternates between singletrack, sandy OHV trails and dirt fire roads, climbing through old-growth Jeffrey pine forest into hills and domes formed by volcanic eruptions as recently as 100,000 years ago and affording broad views to the Inyo Craters and back across to the Sherwins.
As you’re reflecting on another amazing winter, consider all the green you can save by purchasing next year’s pass now. If Vermont is on your list, check out all of the Green Mountain state 2019-20 season pass options.
The Ski Bum All Access Pass at Bolton Valley is for anyone ages 18-25. Full time college students outside of this age range are also eligible. Through Oct. 31, the Ski Bum Pass goes for $189.
When you purchase a Bromley 2019-20 season pass before May 15 you can save up to $155. Purchase one Full Adult, Teen or Junior 2019-20 Season Pass at full price, and receive $50 off each additional Adult, Teen or Junior Full Season pass for your immediate family members.
You can’t gripe about season pass prices at Cochran’s – an individual 2019-20 season pass is $195, or get one for the entire family (of any size) for $295.
Get your NOR'BEASTER Spring Season Pass ($229) for unlimited access to Killington through the very last day of the season, which with any luck could be into June. Visit Killington during the summer too? Consider the Beast 365 Pass ($1,224) for year-round access, only available to buy through June 13, 2019.
For the first time in Mad River Glen’s history they are selling season passes in the spring. Adults who purchase a season pass are eligible to register their dependent children aged 12 and for a Free 12 & Under Season Pass. With the College Student Pass, Ski Mad River Glen or get the whole Mad River Valley with your chance to ski Sugarbush Mt. Ellen, Lincoln Peak and Mad River Glen. The Twixter pass gives ages 19 to 29 a break as they get established in the real world.
Magic Mountain 2019-20 season passes are now on Early Bird Sale through May 15 and the savings versus in-season rates are huge (ex: save $150 now on Adult passes).
Purchase Middlebury Snow Bowl passes before Nov. 30 for serious savings. Adult passes currently $430.
At Mount Snow, $629 gets adults unlimited skiing and riding across all resorts in the Peak Pass family when you buy before April 30, 2019.
Purchase your Pico pass before June 13, 2019 for the best price, $419 for adults, and to take advantage of their payment plan.
Ski or ride all season long at Smugglers' Notch Resort, plus get use of cross-country and snowshoe trails, heated pool and hot tubs, the FunZone 2.0 Ozone, and outdoor skating rink. Adult pass is $559 through May 27, 2019.
The Stratton Select Pass is your pass to ski and ride Stratton all season with only 10 blackout dates. Or get the Ikon Pass for unlimited access to Stratton plus all of Ikon’s partners around the globe.
With Sugarbush's Premium Pass ($849 Adult) get unlimited skiing and riding at Lincoln Peak and Mt. Ellen. 2600’ of vertical, 111 trails, and 28 wooded areas. Plus 50% off lift tickets to all 2019-20 Mountain Collective Resorts except Sugarbush.
Suicide Six 2019-20 adult season passes are offered now at $599, or add on cross country access for $749.
Once again the Spring Challenge between Michigan resorts Boyne Mountain and Mount Bohemia, located in the UP, is on. Which resort will keep the lifts turning longest and skiers and snowboarders on the slopes?
Simple rules are that the ski areas must operate at least one day each week for no less than a minimum of five hours per day open. The losing resort will donate $1,000 to the charity of the winner’s choice, which are Boyne Country Food Pantry for Boyne Mountain and the Copper Humane Society for Mount Bohemia.
Boyne Mountain won last season’s challenge with its final day of skiing occurring on May 6, 2018.
The Mountain is currently operating on weekends, which they plan on doing for as long as the snow holds out. The same goes for Bohemia.
I’m not sure why Ski Brule also doesn’t get in on the competition. They are currently staying open weekends through April, and maybe beyond. All three resorts are located in the Wolverine State.
One other Midwest resort that skied into May last season and routinely stays open weekends through April is Lutsen Mountains, and they are currently planning on the same scenario this year. As of last weekend they were still skiing on all four mountains with 60 runs open and a 20-to-40-inch base. They are currently offering extended weekend packages from $112 per person that includes two days lift and lodging good through May 4. Easter weekend there’s half-price lodging, discounted extended weekend lift tickets and free ski rental for the entire family on three-day packages.
Here comes the warmer weather. We’re highlighting the best days to enjoy comfortable, spring skiing/riding plus where last-minute snow is going to fall!
Western U.S. & Canada
Plenty of snow remains on the ground across western Canada and the U.S. for you to enjoy through the third weekend of April. Go, get out and enjoy the fun festivities some of our resorts host this time of the year.
In terms of new snow, we will be able to squeeze out some. British Columbia and Alberta appear to be in best position for greatest snowfall. This new snow will fall Thursday and Friday. The same storm will cross the U.S. Rockies Saturday-Sunday.
A cold front will bring some colder weather and windier conditions to the Rockies this weekend. If you like warm, spring conditions then Thursday and Friday are your best days to get out. Persistent, cloudier/wetter conditions remain through Tuesday for western Canada. This week we love Lake Louise, Whistler, and Marmot.
Eastern U.S. & Canada
There are still a handful of resorts open across the Midwest, plus a second handful of resorts still open in the Northeast!
You’ll get some snow on the order of 2-4” Thursday, then warmer weather into the weekend.
Frankly, there’s not much new snow left in the gas tank this week. Thus, we’ll highlight Friday and Saturday which will be warm, very windy days.
Until next week! Thanks to Northern Vermont University – Lyndon meteorology students James Mundy and Francis Tarasiewicz for contributions to this article.