Family ski vacation guide with the best ski resorts for family skiing

Month: October 2015

Killington, Sunday River Open for Skiing October 19

1sunday-river-jordanSunday River and Killington vie for – and tie for – first to open for skiing once again. Killington opened Sunday October 18 for pass-holders only and Monday for the skiing public. Sunday River opens  upper T2 on Locke Mountain Monday October 19, with $29 tickets. Cool temps and avid snowmaking crews allowed the Beast of the East and Maine’s Sunday River to make snow, and even get a boots from Mother Nature after an unseasonably mild September and early October.

This is a super early opening for these eastern ski resorts, ahead of Loveland and Arapahoe Basin – opening October 29 out west even. Sunday River and Killington opened November 3, 2014. Both snowmaking power houses race to be the first to open for skiing in the East, often in time for Halloween skiing. Dress in a costume Halloween and ski for free at Sunday River, a fun tradition.

More ski dates I am stoked about this season:
Saddleback Maine’s announcement about their opening status is due soon. In August, the Maine ski resort near Rangeley Lake announced they would not open without a significant investor.

whitefish-inspirationNovember 2, Bravo TV reveals a new “reality” ski series, “Après Ski” filmed at Whistler Blackcomb Resort. The premise: a ski resort concierge service caters to the ridiculous demands of rich skiers whether their whim is heli-skiing in deep powder or decadent dining in Whistler’s Peak to Peak Gondola at the Canadian ski resort. Could be trashy like the not-so-real housewives, with lots of bickering like the crew of “Below Deck” only in the high alpine, but I will be tuning in just to see if there is any actual skiing.

boston-ski-show-glen-plakeNovember 12-15 is the 33rd Annual Ski and Snowboard Expo. I love the ski show – seeing what’s new in ski gear, at ski resorts, watching the ski fashion show, and reconnecting with ski friends and ski industry peeps.

I’m grabbing my gear out of the basement, making sure everything is tuned up and ready to go at first snow. See my review of the latest new skis, Top Men’s Skis Review 2016 and Top Women’s Skis Review 2016 if you are in the market for new gear this year.

That’s today’s ski news. Stay tuned to Family Ski Trips and Luxury Ski Trips  ski friends…winter is coming!

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Heather Burke, 2015 Copyright & Photography property of Family Ski Trips


This year’s best new ski gear…

stratton_village_nightChristmas comes early for skiers, as new gear arrives in ski shops in the Fall. As passionate skiers, we all fall for the annual ski gear guide that arrives in our mailbox in October too. Its like the Christmas Wish Book for downhillers.

While we can’t necessarily buy new gear every year, who can afford that?, it’s fun to read the reviews, see what’s new and if the graphics on your favorite skis from the previous ski season have changed for better or worse.

We also love the opportunity to demo skis on snow, and as ski journalists we get that cool chance each season. So while we don’t get new skis, at least we get to try and report on our top okemo-skiing-scenepicks, and favorite new skis.

So here is our review of the Top Men’s Skis for 2015-16 winter and the Top New Women’s Skis and our Favorite Skis of All Time. Also our guide to Kids Ski Gear, and whether you need new gear every year for your skiing children.

Winter is coming. A snowy El Nino is predicted. So get ready for ski season, grab you gear out of the basement, make sure everything is tuned up and ready to go at first snow, and see what needs upgrading so you aren’t caught not ready on that first snow day.

Top Men’s Skis Review 2016
Top Women’s Skis Review 2016
Top Kids Skis Review
Top Skis Review 2015

That’s today’s ski news. Stay tuned to Family Ski Trips and Luxury Ski Trips  ski friends…winter is coming!

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Heather Burke, 2015 Copyright & Photography property of Family Ski Trips

Columbus weekend in ski country – beer, ski gear, wife carrying…

Columbus Day weekend in New England means two things to skiers:

1. Peak Foliage  2. Countdown to Skiing

chairrideDie hard skiers start to get amped mid-October, knowing their favorite time of year is drawing near. The three-day weekend including Columbus Day Monday is an ideal time to head to the mountains , get that season pass picture updated and drink beer..its apres ski – pre game before the first snowflakes.

Columbus Weekend at Sugarloaf and Sunday River in Maine a wonderful fall traditions, with peak foliage,  Sugarloaf host Homecoming and Sunday River Wife Carrying Competition.

3wife_carrying3Saturday October 11 at Sunday River Resort is your chance to witness the 16th Annual North American Wife Carrying Championship, this wildly popular event draws thousands of spectators to watch 50 couples crash, dash and splash through an obstacle course, over log hurdles and through a mud pit. Wives get wet and muddy, guys get hurt and the winner gets their wife’s weight in beer. Sound fun? You must see this event in person. For additional entertainment at Sunday River, the Chondola will be operating for scenic chairlifts rides, live bands will play at the South Ridge Base Lodge by the beer and wine tents, and the 32st Annual Blue Mountain Arts & Crafts Fair takes place too. Sunday at the River is a new event, the New England Corn Hole Championship where some lucky duo will take home $500 in this classic Yankee toss. It’s also “Sunday Bloody Sunday” with Bloody Marys. For family fun, Sunday River’s Fall Festival weekend includes wagon and pony rides, chainsaw carving demonstrations, and a ski sale at Sunday River Sports.
See the full Fall Festival at Sunday River Schedule

6sugarloaf-summitSugarloaf’s annual Homecoming Weekend is always Columbus Weekend. Loafers come out of summer hibernation to pay homage to prime foliage, and hike 2,400′ vertical ‘to the summit – three miles, all smiles in the Uphill Climb Race, with a big finish of beer and lunch at Bullwinkle’s. Other fun fall activities at the Loaf include the CVA Used Ski Equipment Sale, the Upcountry Artist Show, Sugarloaf’s Annual Meeting, free scenic chairlift rides, The Jay Moody Memorial Golf Tourney, and the Maine Outdoor Film Festival at Sugarloaf’s Beach Saturday at 7pm.
See Sugarloaf’s Homecoiming Weekend Schedule

Enjoy the three-day weekend, get your ski gear out of the basement and ready to go. It’s only a few weeks till we have snow, skiing and snowboard season.

Keep your skis tuned and tune back in to Family Ski Trips and Luxury Ski Trips for news and ski resort reviews.

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Heather Burke, 2016 Copyright & Photography property of Family Ski Trips

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