Mount Snow 11/23/19

11/23 First day of season for me, also first time at Mount Snow in over 10 years back in the ASC days.

Nitro was the clear trail of the day. My first couple runs I was getting untracked man made 2-3" powder on skiers right. Nitro was always my favorite cruiser back when I used to frequently go to Mount Snow in the ASC days, so I made a bunch of runs down it throughout the day knowing that soon it will be covered in terrain park features. Though I did get my first wipeout of the season on my last run of the day when I skied a little to fast under a gun that was blowing sticky snow.

Ridge and Snowdance were also skiing nicely under the guns, and Canyon was nice even without guns going on it. The problem was the only way to get to Snowdance and Canyon was to ski Cascade which quickly turned into a WROD. It would have been nice if they ran Canyon Express to provide better access to Snowdance and Canyon. I understand they might have held back on opening Canyon Express due to concerns of too much lift capacity for the amount of trails open, but they could have left some chairs on Bluebird in the barn to compensate. Bluebird had a full corral at midday but the lines got shorter after 1pm with a lot of people quitting early. It is strange skiing in mid November with the sun so low that the whole mountain is in shadow before 2pm.

Only did one run on North Face down Chute which was still covered in snowmaking whales, but they were all ice after the rain on Friday. Long John and Little John skied ok, but forcing all the park rats to go down the mid section Long John to access the terrain parks created a dangerous situation on that trail. There were a lot of idiots bombing down Long John at full speed with little care or consideration for all the beginners and low intermediates that were on it as well. Deer run was much nicer than Long John.

Visually there was no sign at the mountain that Vail had purchased it. No Epic branding or advertising anywhere. Surprising amount of people were buying day tickets which I think they were charging $99 for. I would have thought almost everyone skiing in November would have a pass. Of the people with passes, I saw significantly more Peak passes than Epic passes. Hopefully this will keep crowds down at Stowe for one more year. They still used the old style of ticket/pass scanners that scan the barcode instead of RFID. This makes it difficult if you have an Epic pass, as mine does not have a hole through it to attach a lanyard to. Luckily in my bag I still had my armband pass holder that I used to use at Wachusett when I used to have a pass there.

Parked at Carinthia to check out the impressive new lodge. The lodge was clearly understaffed as they only had one person to handle ticket sales and the line to buy tickets looked to be about 50+ people long. I already had my Epic pass from last year ready to go, but felt bad for the people that had to wait. The lodge really is beautiful. It is similar to the lodge at Crotched in layout but built with a lot nicer materials and finishes. It seems like the new trend in lodge design is to separate the area to boot up and put clothes on from the area for eating and dining on separate floors. Crotched, Spruce Base Camp at Stowe, and now Carinthia are all like this. It seems to work well to keep the eating area uncrowded and uncluttered. The food at the lodge though was way overpriced for the portions they were serving. The fries were $5 and it looked like all you got were about 15-20 individual french fries.