The Ski Mountain
Stratton Mountain Resort, nestled in Vermont’s Southern Green Mountains, is all about delivering a high-end ski experience from its well-groomed runs, newer lift systems and pristine base village. Its 670 acres and 2,003 vertical feet of skiable terrain is divided fairly equally over 97 trails and 38 miles of beginner, intermediate and advanced runs, all available from its summit which is the highest point in Windham County. Stratton’s Summit Gondola delivers skiers to the top to cut the chill factor on the ride while 10 other high speed chairs fan out around the mountain. Distinguishing its snow cover, 1,116 snowguns cover 93 percent of Stratton’s trails with man-made flakes to ensure a long ski season and prime conditions even when Mother Nature doesn’t deliver, making here the best snowmaking operation in the East.
The Mountain Experience
A European flair in the heart of the Green Mountains, Stratton Village, a self-contained walkable village complete with a clock tower and carefully planned design emits a classic European ambience. High-end shops, a variety of dining options, and live music at numerous venues complete the experience. Sun Bowl, the quieter of the two base areas, is for those looking to maximize their vertical feet and on-snow time. The main base area is home to the ski school village center and a handful of good après options. Stratton is known for its wide-open, well-maintained runs (read lots of snow making and impeccable grooming). Corduroy is the main menu item at Stratton. As one of the nearest major resorts to New York City, Stratton’s attracts an urban crowd looking to jettison city life if even for a weekend. Stratton skiers appreciate well manicured groomed runs, impeccable customer service and a well trimmed resort experience.
Stratton Mountain Resort’s Ski Terrain
• Beginner: The Snowsports School, located in the Village, is ready to teach beginners of all ages. Stratton’s beginner packages “guarantee success” and mastery of the sport in their beginner learning area. Complete a “learn to ski/board” lesson and get a free X2 discount card to receive discounted tickets to continue challenging yourself on more difficult terrain. Once the learning area is mastered, ride the Tamarack Lift to ski down your choice of multiple green circles – no surprise black diamonds here.
Current Snow Conditions
• Intermediate: Cruise the Sunriser Supertrail off of Sunrise Express and make wide arcing turns all the way back down to the Sun Bowl Lodge. Looking for wide open glade skiing? Ski the trees on Eclipse and bail out onto Lower Downeaster for a groomed cruiser back to the bottom.
• Advanced: The tight, steep trees off the summit on Test Pilot can challenge seasoned experts. From the Shooting Star and Ursa Express lifts you can take your pick from six black or double black diamonds runs including sinuous narrow trails and glades.
Around the Mountain
• Terrain Park: Five terrain parks and one halfpipe – it’s no wonder Stratton was host of the U.S. Snowboarding Open for 27 years. Jibbers of all abilities can try out new skills in the Progression Park or go big off of large features in the Suntanner Slopestyle Course.
If you’re looking to keep the day low key, leave your car in the heated garage and take the shuttle over to the Sun Bowl side. Four high-speed lifts get you quickly to the top where there’s no shortage of terrain. Sit back and relax at the end of the day, send the kids to the tubing park, and enjoy a local beer and live music at the Loft Bar.
The heart of the après scene is Mulligans (and the Green Door Pub downstairs). Located in the Village, the bar serves up over 20 craft beers, house-infused bloody mary’s, and traditional pub food. Send the kids to get an after ski slice at Village Pie, while adults nosh on Lobster Croissant Sliders and Ahi Nachos at the Fire Tower Restaurant and Tavern. As more of a family resort, Stratton isn’t famous for nightlife like it neighbor to the north Killington, but those seeking nightlife will find options.
With Stratton Village at the mountain’s base, and other Vermont ski towns hours away, no need to look further.
Stay within walking distance to the Village and slopes at the the Long Trail House or Stratton’s newest property – Founders Lodge, which offers well-appointed one- and two-bedroom condominiums. The Lift Line and recently renovated Black Bear Lodge are economical options for those looking to stay close to the slopes, but save some cash for a night out in the Village.
Use the “Explore Stratton’s Best Ski Lodging Deals” box above and right to find your best Lodging choices.
Skiing with Kids
Stratton has reared more than its fair share of world class skiers, including Olympic medalists Ross Powers and Lindsay Jacobellis, both alumni of the Stratton Mountain School. But not all the little ones are Olympics bound. Families with children that visit regularly often opt for Stratton’s Seasonal programs for kids interested in racing and freestyle skiing. Additionally, the Resort offers Kids Lessons for every age and ability. Those families wishing to spend time together and learn on their own will appreciate Stratton’s extensive beginner terrain and the kid-friendly Tamarack lift.
Lift Tickets and Season Pass Cost
Stratton offers a number of lift tickets and season pass options. Stratton’s snow guarantee makes sure you’re satisfied with the conditions or you receive a voucher for another day of skiing.
By Patrick Brown