Okemo 11-28-14

Made the decision to hit up Okemo on Wednesday. I had initially planned Cannon, but saw Okemo offering $44 tickets on Liftopia and figured that was a great price for 30 trails and 170 acres of terrain.

The Good:

Despite a longer than expected drive today and arriving after 9:30 due to getting caught behind plow trucks a couple of times, we scored very close parking, which isn't always easy at Okemo.

They did have lots of different mountain areas open, which gave good variety and spread the crowds out.

Not a lift line all day

Snow surfaces were a solid B. It skied like decent snowmaking snow. There were only a few areas here and there of scratch. Everything was quite edgeable.

They were hammering out the snowmaking. Chief, Sidewinder and perhaps some South Face trails should all open by the end of the weekend.

The Bad:

Reported they got a foot of fresh. Reality was 6-8" tops and only small areas on trail sides to enjoy the fresh.

Reported 170 acres of terrain open. I don't know how much acreage it was, but most of the trails were only covered to half their width. Seems odd to half blow 30 trails open instead of say focusing on 20 trails and getting it done right. That used to be what they would do when I was a kid growing up skiing there. It just seemed like they were trying to inflate the amount of terrain they had open by taking this strategy. I'm sure in a week, they'll get back to Nor'Easter, Lower World Cup, Saphire etc, and finish the job.

$8 or $10 bag check!!
Or you could rent a small locker for $4. This really rubbed me the wrong way. I'm not sure I've ever paid to have my bag checked at all. It's usually free and then I tip the attendant a buck each time they grab it for me, so maybe $3 for the day. It was free + tip last weekend at Killington. Okemo has a known problem with theft. Growing up skiing there, my parents and I had belongings taken from the lodge on a few occasions. After these incidences we started bringing our bags up to Sugar Shack lodge on the trail and didn't have an issue. They've got cameras in the lodge, signs up encouraging people to lock their belongings, if you've spent time in the area you've read countless police reports of thefts at that mountain, usually by kids from Springfield (VT). So, they know they've got a problem and now use at as a way to profit off their guests in a big way. $3 a bag? okay, I'll live with it. $8-$10 and Okemo are now the thieves. I took my chances with a free cubby instead and lucked out with nothing missing at the end of the day.

.....moving on

Bar at the summit lodge closed, and not opening until mid-December. So, Sitting Bull was the option, which sucks because you have to deal with the base area and transport lifts all over again. I usually try and avoid the base until I leave for the day. Crappiest beer list I've seen at ski area bar in a while too. Food was pretty decent though.

Overall, I did enjoy myself quite well today despite the poor bar scene for lunch and suspect conditions reporting. The snow was good, but it certainly didn't feel like what one might expect 24 hours after a foot dump.

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