Killington Mountain is the second highest peak in the state of Vermont at 4,236 ft. Situated a few hours from Boston, Montréal, and New York City, this mountain makes for a popular weekend trip. Known as the Beast of the East, Killington offers some of the best terrain on the East Coast with 6 peaks and 155 trails. Of the trails, 28% are easier, 33% more difficult and 39% most difficult. With 73 miles of skiable terrain you're bound to find your next favorite trail.
Since Killington gets an average snowfall of 200 inches per season and has an elaborate snowmaking system covering over 600 skiable acres, they tend to have one of the longest ski seasons of the surrounding mountains. In the 15/16 season they closed on May 28th and the 16/17 season made it all the way until June 1st.
The Mountain and the Ski Trails
For beginners, Snowshed and Ramshead Mountain will offer the best trails for that ability level. Both these mountains are mainly green trails with some great blues as well for those who have mastered the greens. On the weekends Snowshed slope will be very crowded so I suggest sticking to the side trail, Yodeler. Snowshed and Ramshead both offer learn to ski areas served by a magic carpet. On Ramshead Easy Street is a great long and winding run for beginners. And once comfortable on Easy Street, Header is a great next step as a moderate blue where one can really pick up some speed.
For those of intermediate ability, Snowdon Mountain, Skye Peak and the top of the Killington Peak will offerma wide variety blue runs. On Snowdon Mountain, both Bunny Buster and Chute offer people the ability to ski straight down and back onto the Snowdon Quad which services this peak. On Skye Peak, Cruise Control is a great run for those who have just graduated from the greens and enjoy a nice wide trail. Once one feels comfortable on Cruise Control and bumps, Needles Eye is a great next step. This run offers steeper terrain and by the afternoon has some nice bumps to practice technical skills. On the Killington Peak, Great Northern is a great blue run that traverses over to Snowdown Mountain and covers a great amount of terrain. For those wanting a great warmup run, Rime, Reason and East Fall are nice short runs serviced by the North Ridge Triple. This area is usual not too crowded and offers people the ability to get their ski legs ready for the day ahead with moderately steep terrain and a more narrow profile.
For advanced and expert skiers, both Bear Mountain and the Canyon offer more challenging terrain. Outer Limits (double black) on Bear Mountain is known as one of the steepest slopes on the East Coast and after a run down this slope ones' quads will be feeling the workout! Wildfire is a great alternate for advanced skiers who aren't quite ready for Outer Limits but want to experience big bumps and steep terrain. The Canyon, accessed by the K1 Gondola or the Snowdon Triple offers the most black diamond terrain. Once in The Canyon, the Canyon Quad will feed everyone back to the top of this area. Escapade, Cascade and Double Dipper all offer challenging, narrow and steep terrain and are usually not too crowded. East Fall is a great warm up run for the Canyon which is relatively wider.
Finally for terrain parks, the Stash on Bear Mountain is where all the best features are. However, these features can be advanced so for those looking for a beginner park, Timerline, Astroland and the Easy Street Progression Park on Ramshead Mountain offer moderate features to train on.
Killington Mountain features 6 lodges which all offer ski services and food. One of the best lodges is the Peak Lodge found at the top of the K-1 Gondola where people can get gourmet burgers, pasta and sandwiches and eat with stunning views of the surrounding mountains. Throughout the mountain one can find small snack shacks to fuel up with Gatorade, small snacks, chips, or hot dogs to power through the end of the day.
At the bottom of the mountain after a day of skiing/snowboarding there is a great après ski scene at the Umbrella Bars located at both the K1 Lodge and Snowshed lodge. For those that make reservations, there is an old ski lift motor room that has been turned into the Motor Room Bar atop Bear Mountain. And for those starving after a long day of skiing/snowboarding, they can make a reservation to be chauffeured to the Ledgewood Yurt off the side of the Snowshed Slope.
Killington has also featured FIS Women's World Cup racing events for two years in a row. They held both a slalom and giant slalom event on the Superstar trail and over 20,000 people showed up to spectate. Mikaela Shiffrin competed in both events both years and came away with wins each time. The atmosphere during the World Cup should not be missed!
Why visit Killington?
Killington is one of the premiere mountains on the East Coast with over 1,500 skiable acres. Not only does the mountain offer great terrain and views of the Green Mountains but it has the whole ski mountain package. Great food, drinks, and a ton of fun spots down the Mountain Road. And the truly passionate skiers/snowboarders will be able to hit the mountain all the way into June! There are also plans to build a massive downtown village which will rival villages found at mountains like Mont Tremblant.