Vermont Improvements

This isn’t complete. There’s no mention of Jay’s tram
updates, nor the 2 quads at ‘Bush. However, I didn’t know North Ridge is
getting a new motor. | Home | 2017-09-12

What’s New for the 2017-18 Ski and Snowboard Season in Vermont

Winter will be here before we know it and to prepare for another great season Vermont’s resorts have been hard at work improving and expanding upon their resort offerings like season passes, base lodges, off slope activities and of course, trails, lifts and snowmaking. 

So, what’s new for the 2017-18 season? Find out below and start planning your sick days! 

Snowmaking, Lift and Trail Improvements

Bolton Valley
Bolton Valley is upgrading its snowmaking system prior to the 2017-18 winter season. The pumps at the Timberline pumphouse will be balanced, allowing for more water to be pushed uphill, more quickly. The resort is also expanding its gun and hose inventory. Combined, these two upgrades will allow the resort to blow snow in multiple locations at the same time. The additional guns and hoses will also reduce downtime when the crews need to change locations. The overall benefit will be more snow earlier in the season and more trails getting covered faster than last year. 

Burke Mountain
This year Burke Mountain will install 13,400 feet of new snowmaking pipe which will be in the ground and ready to blow for the upcoming 2017-18 winter season.  This new pipe will increase efficiencies on the lower mountain while adding snowmaking for the first time to two new trails on the upper mountain. These new additions are a part of a larger-scale project currently underway to replace a POMA lift that services the Warren’s Way training hill. A new high speed Leitner POMA T-bar surface lift is being installed and will increase Burke Mountain’s uphill capacity by nearly five times.
Magic Mountain
Magic’s new ownership continues its capital investment in one of Vermont’s throwback ski areas. After winning Liftopia’s award for best ski area in North America, Ski Magic LLC builds on its successful inaugural winter by putting more capital to work expanding the snowmaking system, adding two new lifts and enhancing the classic lodge where the Black Line Tavern is recognized as one of the East’s most spirited après ski scenes. Key to Ski Magic’s efforts is broadening its ski offering to welcome more beginner, novice and intermediate skiers/riders. Magic will now have a new beginner area with a StarLift carpet conveyor lift for its Learning Center. The addition of the new Green Chair Lift servicing base-to-mid mountain intermediate and beginner terrain allows easier access to classic skiing for all ability levels. In combination with expanded snowmaking and grooming capabilities, the new Green Chair area will allow Magic to open earlier than ever by Thanksgiving. 

Mount Snow Resort
Always a pioneer when it comes to snowmaking, Mount Snow has completed $30 million in snowmaking upgrades for the upcoming season, including doubling their ability to make snow and increasing storage capacity six-fold. These upgrades give Mount Snow one of the most powerful snowmaking systems in the East, meaning more trails opening faster to start the season, and better coverage all winter long.

Okemo Mountain Resort
Okemo’s dedication to creating a superior snow surface continues with the addition of two new grooming machines to its fleet of Prinoth Beasts. The Prinoth Bison demonstrates excellent maneuverability and climbing ability - even in adverse conditions - and the Bison X is the ultimate park vehicle. Snowmaking upgrades include a new feeder pipe from Okemo’s Base Pump to mid-mountain Pump Station, and additional pipe upward. Okemo is also adding HKD SV 10 snowguns, bringing its arsenal of HKD snow guns to 1,300 mountain-wide. Okemo continues its rental equipment replacement program with the purchase of more new skis and snowboards, and, to keep all that equipment in top condition, Okemo is upgrading tuning equipment in the shops at both base areas. 

Stratton Mountain Resort
Stratton’s 2017-18 fleet of 11 groomers includes two new Bison X Prinoth cats equipped with state-of-the-art fuel burning technology, decreasing harmful emissions, snow depth technology which guides the team in crafting seamless corduroy and terrain park features and transports guests to mid-mountain for a starlight gourmet dinner held every Saturday this winter. Combined with more than 1,200 efficient (HKD and fan) guns, Stratton’s seasoned operations team creates epic snow with less energy, including a 40% reduction in diesel use with the switch to electric compressors. 

Sugarbush Resort
Sugarbush is also replacing the old ticket scanning system with RFID gates at all base lifts. Other projects to improve the guest experience include purchasing new SnowLogic guns, replacing the motor for the North Ridge Quad, installing a new snowmaking pipe on Which Way, new air compressor for snowmaking and purchasing two new Pisten Bully groomers (one specifically designed for the terrain park).

Suicide Six
Suicide Six Trail improvements continue, with widening, stumping and thinning of glades in many areas across the map. Contour and grade changes will allow for faster and better snowmaking coverage, as well as newly constructed load and unload decks at the recently installed summit quad. Snowmaking improvements continue with the addition of new snow producers, as well as pipeline and infrastructure repairs. Look for better coverage and higher quality when you visit this season and expect more to come in the future.   

On and Off Slope Renovations

Bromley Mountain
Over your head and under your feet, that’s what’s new at Bromley this winter season! The cozy base lodge is getting a whole new roof, the Sun Deck has been resurfaced (all the better to support après firepit hangs), and the rental equipment fleet has a superbly restocked quiver. Don’t own your own? Bromley is expanding the high-performance options in the rental shop this season with more new Rossignol Experience 80 skis, plus all new junior boots in the latest comfy model for happy kid feet. 

Jay Peak Resort
Jay Peak is adding reels and rappelling to its list of activities for the coming winter. The resort will open a new 142-seat movie theater and Clip ‘n Climb climbing facility in the 15,000-square foot Clips and Reels recreation center opening at the Stateside area of the resort. And in an expanded focus on employee perks, Jay Peak is opening a new 12-plex of mountain cottages dedicated to employee housing. The cottages, along with Jay Peak’s renovation of its Inglenook Lodge, will provide the resort with the ability to house up to 150 employees. 

Smugglers’ Notch Resort
Smugglers’ Notch Resort continues to build on their award-winning programs and amenities which aim to provide an exceptional experience for fun-lovers of all ages. The completion of the FunZone 2.0 hits that mark and then some. With activities like a multi-course Smugglers’ Warrior Challenge, massive laser tag arena, Smugglers’ themed Mountain Rally Races slot car track, arcade, and transparent climbing tower, everyone in the family is included in the fun. Of course, the elements which made the original FunZone such a hit are still included, in the second floor of the complex, known as the Ozone. Additionally, toddlers can ignite their imaginations in the Littles’ Loft toddler play area. With features such as bouncy castle, pirate ship inflatable obstacle course, and Vermont inspired country store, toddlers can let their energy out while playing like the grown-ups they admire. 


  • Surprised that Killington has nothing to advertise.  The morning news on WBZ radio Boston this AM included Mike Solimano talking about the World Cup Race and that Killington was ready to make snow at the first opportunity.
  • Snowmaking, snowmaking and more snowmaking.  Wise!
  • I think the Sugarbush section got messed up. They don't mention the 2 brand new Quads, and the section starts "Sugarbush is also replacing the old ticket........" I bet the first paragraph was somehow omitted.
  • This is a long article, I eliminated the content under the
    last subjects.

    Some of this is old (even completed) news. Snowdon got “new”
    towers and mid-station last season.

    Killington appears to be committed to keeping this 1973
    Heron-Poma for sometime.  

  | Home | 2017-10-13

    Invests $5.7 Million for 2017-18

    the momentum of a two-year commitment to host the Audi FIS Ski World Cup in
    2017 and 2018, Killington Resort and Pico Mountain are excited to announce a
    number of guest experience upgrades coming this season. Parent company to
    Killington and Pico, POWDR, has invested $5.7 million in capital improvements
    across the two resorts. The investments will enhance snowmaking equipment and
    infrastructure, upgrade and rebuild lifts, expand summer activities at
    Killington and improve the overall experience at both resorts.


    POWDR purchased Killington Resort and Pico Mountain in 2007, infrastructure
    improvements have exceeded more than $50 million, including a new lift, lift
    drives, snowmaking systems and Killington’s signature Peak Lodge. POWDR is
    committed to creating sustainable communities and engaging the next generation
    of action sports enthusiasts and their significant investment at Killington and
    Pico support this mission.


    we prepare to host another Ski World Cup in November, investments are being
    made to further enrich the experience at Killington and Pico,” said Mike
    Solimano, president and general manager of Killington Resort. “The investments
    being made this year will help Killington and Pico preserve leadership in
    resort operations, sustainability and overall guest experience year-round. Last
    year, we hosted the longest winter season in the East, operating 201 days
    between October 22 and June 1, and we’re hopeful that 2018 will be bigger and
    better with these enhancements.”


    Equipment and Infrastructure


    investments to Killington and Pico’s state-of-the-art snowmaking capabilities
    are currently underway, highlighted by a partnership with Efficiency Vermont to
    add 163 new low energy tower snow guns. This significant increase in low energy
    tower guns, along with a number of other critical system improvements, not only
    pushes the resort closer to a sustainable operation, but allows Killington to
    open ski terrain much more quickly and efficiently.  Best-in-class
    snowmaking is a key reason Killington is able to host the Audi FIS Ski World
    Cup in November.  In total, Killington Resort will earmark $1.7 million in
    snowmaking improvements and upgrades for 2018.


    Mountain is improving its snowmaking capacity too, by increasing water storage
    in two snowmaking ponds with a dredging project completed this past summer.
    Additionally, key pipelines at Pico have been replaced, valve stations upgraded
    and pump houses augmented to improve snowmaking at Pico Mountain. This $200,000
    snowmaking investment will enhance the guest experience and conditions
    throughout the 2017/2018 season and beyond. 


    Grooming Machines 


    has added three new grooming tractors to its already impressive fleet. The new
    state-of-the-art groomers will enhance Killington’s ability to deliver the best
    possible snow surface. One of the machines, from Prinoth, features the latest
    technology for terrain park grooming, providing the ability to creatively shape
    the trending features necessary to maintain world-class terrain parks. Killington
    will invest $965,000 in new snow grooming equipment this year.


    Upgrades and Rebuilds 


    Resort will also make significant upgrades this year to its lift
    infrastructure, totaling $665,000 in improvements. As design and pricing is ongoing
    for a proposed new South Ridge lift for 2018/19, existing ski lifts are being
    upgraded. The Snowdon Triple is undergoing significant upgrades over two years
    with new haul rope, additional towers, a mid-station, new communications
    infrastructure and lift line tower heads while the K-1 Express Gondola, Sunrise
    Village Triple and Superstar Express Quad also receive upgraded equipment.
    These improvements are part of an annual program to upgrade older lift
    technology. The upgrade program, along with the proposed addition of a new ski
    lift, continues to enhance the guest accessibility to ski terrain with the
    resort’s massive 27 lift network.


    Activity Upgrades


    Bike Park 


    Sites and Renewable Energy


    Infrastructure Improvements 

  • I was unaware of a mid-station on the Snowdon Triple. Haven't been to Killington in years.

    How is it used, to unload before hitting the summit, or to serve as an early season lift from summit down to mid-mountain?  

  • NJSki said:

    I was unaware of a mid-station on the Snowdon Triple. Haven't been to Killington in years.

    How is it used, to unload before hitting the summit, or to serve as an early season lift from summit down to mid-mountain?  

    I just went back to give the link to the photos But I didn't find the second page of Snowdon photos (2016) that shows the mid-station.
    It was built for the ski team. They can get more loops on the Highline Race Trail. I wasn't there last year, but it appears that anyone can get off (unload only) at the top of Conclusion.
  • edited October 2017
    IIRC it's an unload so the ski team can train on the bottom of Snowdon.  The midstation opened last year.  This is the first I heard of new towers though.  Any idea if this is for wind or were some failing?
  • I put new in quotes in my reference to the towers. If I recall they got towers from here and there mainly for the mid-station. However, there is one photo on NewEnglandSkiIndustry that should digging at the bottom of Conclusion. 
  • That's interesting as there used to be a mid station originally where the current one is and the towers were very low there too.
  • Hum, I thought there was, you certainly get that impression when riding. So since the mid-station has been built, I was guessing at "new towers". Oh, I looked again, from the photos I attached it looks like at least 3 towers had been removed, and then replaced.

    The midstation construction (2015)
    The midstation construction (2015)

    The lift line (2015)
  • As far as I know, the mid-station on the Triple was done last summer and my understanding is that it was paid for by KMS, not Killington. It is nice, because right above the entrance to the Highline Racing Trail, the ride flattens out for not much additional quality vertical.

    It says that POWDR put in a new lift at Killington since 2007.  While I've seen a lot of good PM on existing lifts, I am drawing a blank on new lifts, unless they are counting magic carpets.
  • Skye Peak Express?
  • "A new high speed Leitner POMA T-bar surface lift is being installed and will increase Burke Mountain’s uphill capacity by nearly five times."

    That's one impressive T-bar. Perhaps they mean it'll have 5 times the capacity of the old Poma?
  • Yes, Powdr put in Skye Peak.
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