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Jay Peak Resort - January 22, 2015 - Peak Experience!


René

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Peak Experience!
Jay Peak, Vermont, U.S.A.

In my 3 years of snowboarding, I finally hit my highest peak. And I really mean both in elevation and in extreme boarding. Standing at 3820 feet, Jay Peak is something to look at!

We got to the resort on Wednesday and took advantage of the waterpark. It’s big enough to spend an hour or 2 there, or half a day if you have kids. But this is not why we went there; it was just included in a groupon special we got. Thursday was the day we were all waiting for…

Getting up at 7:30 so we did not missed a thing, and to be ready and on the slopes at opening. First bunch in the Tram ride, the result? What an excitement to see the summit for the first time and immaculate trails! What else can you ask for! The area received about a foot of snow in the previous days and the slopes were just begging to be explored. We sticked to the main trails in the morning and by the afternoon, going down paths I never even dared doing, namely; Valhalla!

Heaven to Viking Warriors, this powdery grove is for expert only. Valhalla begins with a series of steep chutes that open up and lead to the Northway trail. It is accessible by the Vermonter which is the main trail from the top and the one with the best view. Small tip, try the Bushwacker first. The Bushwacker is a great warm up before exploring steeper glades, it offers the option of cruising a groomed trail running throughout the glade or creating your own path in the trees. This glade begins with a fairly steep pitch, and eventually levels off gently on to Uller's Dream run out.

When the Tram is not at the base, jump on the Flyer Express Quad, it will take you almost to the top and gives access to a majority of the same trails. Going from one side of the mountain to the other is fairly easy with the multitude of slopes available to you, at the same time, turning this crossing into a pleasant long ride.

I’m still under the spell of Jay Peak and already planning to go back in the first week of March, do I need to say more!

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    • By Ocean
      All good things must come to an end, and so it was with Jay Peak, or what was left of it. Apparently there were 26 "trails" open but this is probably the sum of many sections. When I woke up Sunday morning, I decided I'd have enough time to get down and ski for a few hours, which was just fine with me because I was aching from the previous day's hike. A friend had graciously gifted me a ticket at guest services, so all I had to do was show up and I was off and running! Stateside is the only side of Jay open, while it is normal for them to close out their season on Stateside, they'd had to close the Tramside earlier following a vicious windstorm that entangled the tram cables! I am told that there was still plenty of great skiing to be had if you did just a bit of hiking and planned to take the shuttle bus back however. 
      I started out my day on the Bonnie, and given the condition I was in, decided to start out with a blue run. It was definitely worth the drive as conditions were slightly better but not so different from the previous day at Sauveur. Definitely a few slow spots on the blue trail, and a lot of soft bumps. Next I headed over to the Jet and discovered that conditions were slightly better, perhaps because Jet is a bit more shaded and thus cooler. I did a handful of runs and was able to move pretty quickly without getting stuck. At the end of the day, I just made it on to the last chair up the mountain and was greeted at the top with a glass of champagne. Who can say no to that! About 40-50 people were at the top celebrating the last day, ski patrol included. We all lined up for a photo, and then the race began - everyone took off at the same time down the Jet! Not wanting to rush down, I took the Montrealer and enjoyed a slightly more sluggish run. 
      It turns out I hadn't been able to catch up with my friend who was skiing there, but as chance would have it, we caught up for the apres! He was telling me that people will be hiking up Jay for the next few weeks at least, but also that sometimes in the spring runs mysteriously close, and they don't tell anyone why. Well they found out the reason is bears !! If there is a bear spotted, they'll close the area to the public until it can be observed that the bear has moved away. Great way to keep hungry spring bears away from prying eyes! 
      Such a great afternoon in the sun, I'm glad I was able to make the trip!
       

      About halfway up the Bonnie you can see the conditions are looking pretty, well, done. I'm told there were still some glades to ski through though!

      Tram tower 2!

      At the top of the Bonnie, the view of the peak!

      Conditions under the Jet are looking great! Haynes or another run was open as well, but I didn't hit it.

      The view.

      Riding up the Jet!

      Peak party with some new friends. This is right after many of the skiers/riders took off down the Jet. The lady in the dark shirt is from l'Estrie and plans to be at Killington in the coming weeks. Her friend is from New Hampshire. 

      Teaser shuttle tram.
      See you next season Jay!
    • By Ocean
      Woke up Sunday morning and decided I had time to head down to Jay Peak and catch a couple of afternoon runs. This was my first trip to Jay Peak and I loved the drive through winding roads and quaint villages on both sides of the border! I picked up a ticket at the base (when you go to Jay, you can pay in CAD at par for your ticket! Alas, I had forgotten to bring cash, oh well). Although there was a wait for the tram, and it was already going to be a short day for me, I hopped in the line and waited about 10 minutes to get on the next tram. Once at the top, I hiked up to the peak to snap the view before choosing a direction. I hadn't actually looked at a Jay Peak trail map, but figured I was savvy enough to find my way on some blue runs back to the Tramside base. Notably though, there was a ton of accessible glades and black diamond mogul runs that all looked fantastic.  Conditions were great for pre/early spring, with still a lot of coverage and it was a super warm bluebird day. On my last run of the day, I ran into some familiar faces at the top of the lift - I knew two friends were at the mountain but it was a totally random meetup! So we skiied back our last run together. I had heard about the Jay Peak ramen and was totally stoked to try it! It was pretty delicious (although there are some more local ramen shops I prefer). There is also a waffle shack at the base, I guess this is a Vermont thing because these seem to be everywhere. So I grabbed a sugary delicious waffle before heading out to meet up with friends at a the Big Jay Tavern in Montgomery. Altogether a short and sweet trip, but still a good one. I may even make it back before end of the season!

      First ride on the tram!

      View of the other tram

      View from the peak!

      This dude and his buddies are from Connecticut. I really dig his pants!

      View from the peak!

      Guess which run I took!

      I don't know the point of this midhill station but it's pretty badass! I think this run is normally a snow park?

      L to R, Habib from NH, Marc from Pointe-Claire and Denise from NH - met all these guys spring skiing at Sauveur and Killington last season!

      ...and then there were four!

      so many choices.........

      Roasted sesame shoyo ramen!

      the miso tram is totally badass. I was sad they were out of nigiri. I forgot to take a snap of my waffle, but it was delicious!

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