Scenic, awe inspiring drives to Ski Resorts

ADKskierADKskier advanced
in NELSAP Forum Posts: 268
What are some memorable drives to Ski resorts you have had, could be weather related, scenery etc..

Back when I was a young lad (I still am to most of you  ;)) ) My father took me and my brother to Bromley. Now growing up in the Syracuse Metro it was a good 3 1/2 hour drive and the weather was quite different. It poured all the way there, I remember Equinox mountain being in the clouds at about 1600(I'm guessing). Once we got on Rt 30 I remember climbing up out of Manchester, and climbing and climbing and whats that? Snowflakes on the windshield! Two inches three inches six inches. By the time we were at the base of Bromley, there was at least 15 inches of snow! It was still coming down. It was the most epic elevation snow I have ever witnessed on the East coast still do this day. I remember driving through Bromely village, and the snowbanks were huge. Snow was piled up on top of parked cars! It was quite a sight as a twelve year old skier; who had only skied places like Toggenburg, Snow Ridge and Song Mountain. Bromley was my first big mountain experience even though it pales in comparison to other Vermont Resorts. 
~Rich~
«1

Comments

  • newmannewman advanced
    Posts: 227
    Rt 23a up the mountain to Hunter has always been impressive.
  • JonniJonni intermediate
    Posts: 35
    Pretty much any drive to a mountain after a fresh snow for me is both nostalgic and awe inspiring to me. Seeing all the trees covered in white and nice tall snowbanks on the sides of the road gets me that much more excited for the day to come. Naming specific mountains, a few that come to mind are Pico and Killington, Cranmore, Burke, and Stowe. Driving through the small towns on the way to these places has always gotten me excited.
  • DrJeffDrJeff advanced
    Posts: 314
    I always loved driving up the Killington Access Rd on a clear day and you round the corner near the Pickle Barrel and all of the sudden "BAM!" there's from Skye Peak all the way over to Ramshead filling up the view out of your windshield!
  • mapnutmapnut expert
    edited November 29 Posts: 850
    In my youth I loved the drive up to Sugarloaf. After getting off I-95 in Waterville, it was all 2-lane roads. The first glimpse of the distant mountains happened in Norridgewock, and there was a straightaway in Madison where the white peak of Sugarloaf was straight ahead on the horizon for a mile or more. There were some wider views of Mts. Abraham, Spaulding and Sugarloaf as we approached Kingfield, then it was down into the Carrabasset River valley. 4,150-foot Mt. Bigelow loomed over the snow-covered and birch-lined river and the snow got deeper and deeper as we climbed. Finally we came around the corner where the whole of Sugarloaf and its trails suddenly appeared. The mountain just looked steeper and steeper as we went up the access road. 
  • ciscokidciscokid expert
    Posts: 1,582
    Way too many to list but choosing one to start

    Trans Canadian highway with Lake Louise from Golden, also Kicking Horse.
    Big Mtn from umpteen miles away going north
    Snowmass access rd.Snowbasun access
    Big Sky just a few

    Lake Placid to Whiteface, Stowe
    Too many to list east
    Lutsen , Bohemia Midwest
  • rickbolgerrickbolger expert
    Posts: 1,146
    one negative -- early morning approach to Magic Mountain in drizzle and fog on New Years Day 2003 (not 100% sure of the year) and everything looked grey and crappy.  Across the valley, Stratton looked great, beautiful ribbons of white.  Still we went to Magic and it was as dreadful as it looked.  It was a troubled and turbulent period in Magic's history.

    one positive -- first approach to Timberline Lodge from Portland was quite memorable.  If you don't know where Palmer snowfield is when you're looking at it, the mountain is rather intimidating!   I was second guessing if I'd be able to ski it.  It's an awesome mountain.    

    will concur with the Sugarloaf approach, probably biggest wow factor in the east

  • TreillyTreilly advanced
    Posts: 141
    The road leading into Caberfae Peaks is very scenic. image
    86B94E16-A10E-4D14-BC8B-113340DEFC8B.jpeg
    640 x 480 - 167K
  • Bill29Bill29 advanced
    Posts: 253
    Mapnut, Rick, I'm with you on that Sugarloaf approach. When you make that turn toward the mountain and get the full view of the trails , it's a "WOW" moment.
    I have to mention that when I turn off Route 140 toward Mt. Wachusett and get the full view of the trails it reminds me a bit of that Sugarloaf view. it's not a WOW moment. Maybe a "Looks pretty good" moment. It's no Sugarloaf but it's not bad, And it's a lot easier for me to get to.

  • Posts: 2,056
    Bill29 said:

    Mapnut, Rick, I'm with you on that Sugarloaf approach. When you make that turn toward the mountain and get the full view of the trails , it's a "WOW" moment.
    I have to mention that when I turn off Route 140 toward Mt. Wachusett and get the full view of the trails it reminds me a bit of that Sugarloaf view. it's not a WOW moment. Maybe a "Looks pretty good" moment. It's no Sugarloaf but it's not bad, And it's a lot easier for me to get to.


    There's a similar moment driving up the access road to Mount Abram. It's not as big as Sugarloaf, but far more impressive than Wachusett, and looks very steep.

    The drive up to Pinkham Notch and Wildcat is always impressive and so is getting to Bretton Woods via Crawford Notch or any area through Franconia Notch.
    - Sam
  • ski_itski_it expert
    edited November 29 Posts: 1,795

    Those are all great. I still feel the in trepidation and excitement when I get that first view of any slope I'm headed for. Especially the big boys, like when you get that quick view of K Peak from rt 4 headed west. I especially love the view in the spring headed for Jay Peak with the greening grass in the fields contrasting with the white peak in the morning sun. And this is not a good pic I know, doesn't do it justice.

    Of course the Rockies, Alaska, the Alps, et al drive views are hard to compete with.

    I'm trying to think of one truly memorable drive but I mostly recall trips with bad driving conditions. Alyeska or Lake Louise I suppose have to be at the top. The ones where I'm headed to these small ski areas that have no phones & I'm just praying they are open, like Stratford, Prospect, etc.. I recall fondly.

    image
    ISNE-I Skied New England | NESAP-the New England Ski Area Project | SOSA-Saving Our Ski Areas - Location SW of Boston MA
    Copy of Jay 04_13_2009 (1).JPG
    2918 x 2189 - 923K
  • newmannewman advanced
    Posts: 227
    Turning the corner and seeing Cannons Front Five for the first time. My friend looked at me and muttered holly s#!+.
  • lotsoskiinglotsoskiing expert
    Posts: 823
    Coming over Roxbury Gap into the Mad River Valley- three in a row laid out in front of you.
  • RemskiRemski advanced
    Posts: 369
    Heading West out of Newport NH on Rt.103 heading to Claremont NH spectacular view of Okemo rising out in front of you. Really cool at this time of year when it’s the only snow to be seen.
  • NELSBEERNELSBEER advanced
    Posts: 272
    newman said:

    Turning the corner and seeing Cannons Front Five for the first time. My friend looked at me and muttered holly s#!+.

    Even better is a nighttime approach up the parkway...  You are aware of looming hills and an airplane overhead... then you realize that's not a plane it is a groomer's lights seemingly directly overhead.
  • lotsoskiinglotsoskiing expert
    Posts: 823
    mapnut said:

    In my youth I loved the drive up to Sugarloaf. After getting off I-95 in Waterville, it was all 2-lane roads. The first glimpse of the distant mountains happened in Norridgewock, and there was a straightaway in Madison where the white peak of Sugarloaf was straight ahead on the horizon for a mile or more. There were some wider views of Mts. Abraham, Spaulding and Sugarloaf as we approached Kingfield, then it was down into the Carrabasset River valley. 4,150-foot Mt. Bigelow loomed over the snow-covered and birch-lined river and the snow got deeper and deeper as we climbed. Finally we came around the corner where the whole of Sugarloaf and its trails suddenly appeared. The mountain just looked steeper and steeper as we went up the access road. 

    "OMG Corner" I have heard it called. Well-deserved moniker.
  • xlr8rxlr8r intermediate
    Posts: 37
    In addition to Sugarloaf and Killington, Stratton has a pretty nice reveal coming round one of the corners of its access road.  

    Sunapee to me has weird reveal as you first see North Peak, but for some reason North Peak looks really small when coming up the access road.  Makes Sunapee look really small when you arrive.
  • ski_itski_it expert
    edited November 30 Posts: 1,795
    NELSBEER said:

    newman said:

    Turning the corner and seeing Cannons Front Five for the first time. My friend looked at me and muttered holly s#!+.

    Even better is a nighttime approach up the parkway...  You are aware of looming hills and an airplane overhead... then you realize that's not a plane it is a groomer's lights seemingly directly overhead.

    Um, Barney..oops I mean Nelsbeer, you sure that wasn't a UFO?

    Ok, seriously I think I've thought the same thing on the way to points north on a Friday night or maybe it was more like, where the heck am I? There shouldn't be highway way up there....    

    ISNE-I Skied New England | NESAP-the New England Ski Area Project | SOSA-Saving Our Ski Areas - Location SW of Boston MA
  • rickbolgerrickbolger expert
    Posts: 1,146
    xlr8r said:

    Stratton has a pretty nice reveal coming round one of the corners of its access road.  


    Agreed, yes -- I recall rounding one of those corners when my daughters were young and they both gasped and said "Dad! we can't ski a mountain that big!" which made me chuckle.

    Looking forward to returning to Stratton with my max pass, a week from today is the plan
  • ciscokidciscokid expert
    Posts: 1,582

    xlr8r said:

    Stratton has a pretty nice reveal coming round one of the corners of its access road.  


    Agreed, yes -- I recall rounding one of those corners when my daughters were young and they both gasped and said "Dad! we can't ski a mountain that big!" which made me chuckle.

    Looking forward to returning to Stratton with my max pass, a week from today is the plan

    xlr8r said:

    Stratton has a pretty nice reveal coming round one of the corners of its access road.  


    Agreed, yes -- I recall rounding one of those corners when my daughters were young and they both gasped and said "Dad! we can't ski a mountain that big!" which made me chuckle.

    Looking forward to returning to Stratton with my max pass, a week from today is the plan
    Ok we'll look forward to yours, trackbiker, JMaul, or the jersey boys pictures.
  • SpruceSpruce intermediate
    edited December 1 Posts: 30
    Driving up to Cannon approaching the Notch gets me every time without fail.
    Great thread.
  • ciscokidciscokid expert
    Posts: 1,582
    This wasn't badimage
    IMG_3018.JPG
    320 x 240 - 44K
  • ciscokidciscokid expert
    Posts: 1,582
    image
    IMG_3020.JPG
    320 x 240 - 41K
  • ski_itski_it expert
    Posts: 1,795
    Yes it is bad. There's NO snow on it!!!
    ISNE-I Skied New England | NESAP-the New England Ski Area Project | SOSA-Saving Our Ski Areas - Location SW of Boston MA
  • mapnutmapnut expert
    Posts: 850
    Funny thing about Stratton, you can't get the smallest glimpse of it from anywhere on the main road. Correct me if I'm wrong.
  • JimKJimK advanced
    edited December 1 Posts: 232
    When you live at a couple hundred feet above sea level like many of us easterners EVERY drive to a ski area is awesome :D
    Bunch of good ones mentioned already.  I will dig up some photos and post of some of my favs later today.
  • DrJeffDrJeff advanced
    Posts: 314
    mapnut said:

    Funny thing about Stratton, you can't get the smallest glimpse of it from anywhere on the main road. Correct me if I'm wrong.

    Driving up the Stratton Access Rd,, as you round the corner by where the golf course is, the entire mountain dominates your windshield view for a few moments. Other than that, you basically don't see it from the Access Rd.  A few glimpses coming in on Route 30, and if you're heading South down 100 to get to Stratton from the North, you get some more views of the mountain there as well
  • bmwskierbmwskier advanced
    Posts: 357
    My first visit to Norwich the person we were staying with took my father and I to a Mexican bistro at the base of Lincoln Peak. We crossed the Roxbury Gap and I remember the view from up there of the Sugarbush Valley-- it was awe inspiring for someone who had just come from WNY. Then, taking the Sugarbush Access Road, the first view of the mountain on that drive was even more impressive. The mountain just seemed to tower over us and seemed so close. 

    Wish I had the cash in college to afford a car to ski there when I was at Norwich. Instead, I did work study at the NU ski area as a patroller 
    "Making ski films is being irresponsible with other people's money, in a responsible sort of way..." 
    Greg Stump
  • JimKJimK advanced
    edited December 1 Posts: 232
    xlr8r used the word reveal, I love that term in this context.

    In the East 

    I agree with Newman that approach to Hunter can be impressive:
    image


    In the West, Rt 6 over Loveland Pass to Arapahoe Basin, CO; very common for locals, but spectacular for us visitors:
    image

    imageMt Bachelor, OR; the access road is really tame, but some times I can be a danger at the wheel when it's time for the big ski area reveal.  I was freaking out when I took this photo while driving our first day ever going there in late Dec 2012.  My son was next to me and I screamed "the summit chair is running", which only happens about 50% of the time in Jan.
    image

    Alps

    I went on a ski trip to Austria in 2003 with a buddy.  We were based in neat city of Salzburg and took a bus each day for a week to neighboring ski areas.  The scenery in the Alps blows away everything in the lower 48 and riding in the bus allowed me to enjoy the views since normally I'm often the driver on ski trips.
    Bad Hofgastein, Austria, we took a about a 4000' vertical run right after I took this pic of my buddy.
    image
  • JimKJimK advanced
    Posts: 232
    I'll post more later. Wifey has chores for me.  This is a fun topic.
  • ciscokidciscokid expert
    Posts: 1,582
    JimK said:

    I'll post more later. Wifey has chores for me.  This is a fun topic.

    Of course the wife never worried about you on your solo western trip
Sign In or Register to comment.