With storm after storm, it was a November to remember.


Last fall, the skiing was so good, it was almost spooky. Lifts were running at Killington by Oct. 19 and at Mount Snow, which opened just before Halloween, on Oct. 27. Fourteen Vermont ski areas were running for Thanksgiving, and the results were magical.

Resorts such as Magic Mountain and Mad River Glen had some of their earliest opening days ever, setting up for what would turn into their longest seasons ever as well.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Photo Captions: 1. Kelsey Boleski kicked off her winter big by finding a sweet spot at Sugarbush. 2. Parker Herlihy, top, makes a harvest dinner of freshies on Thanksgiving weekend at Mad River Glen. 3. A few weeks earlier, photographer Brooks Curran and skier Travis Lee hiked Jay Peak (below) for the first big dump of the season. “It felt bottomless,” Curran recalls. “There was none of that hard, scratchy build up yet.”

By Nov. 21, Sugarbush led the state with a reported base depth of 42 inches. Stowe was close behind at 31 inches, with Stratton at 20 inches, Okemo at 14 to 20 and Mount Snow at 6-12. On Nov. 23, Smugglers’ Notch reported a 56-inch base.

And then came Winter Storm Bruce.  The Nov. 28 storm dumped upwards of 36 inches on Vermont ski areas over four days, dropping 20 inches in 48 hours on Stratton, alone. By Nov. 30, the total snow depth at Mt. Mansfield’s summit snow stake was a record 46 inches. According to the National Weather Service, that was the deepest reading in at least 63 years.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Photo Captions: At Mad River Glen, Eric Friedman, above, had one word to describe the conditions: Snowvember. It was the start of what would be the co-op-owned ski area’s longest season ever. 2. Perhaps the only people who weren’t too happy about the snow were those who had to shovel, like Derek Eurich, a third-generation Mad River Glen employee who was stationed at the Single Chair during Winter Storm Bruce. 3. Parker Herlihy, top right, was so happy he could taste it.

It was a November to remember.

Featured Photo Caption: Somewhere in there, Jono Gross is smiling. How can you not when there’s waist-deep powder on Nov. 28 at Mad River Glen? Photo by Brooks Curran

Abagael Giles

Abagael Giles is the Assistant Editor at Vermont Ski + Ride Magazine. She loves free-heel skiing and exploring her home state of Vermont–one ridgetop at a time. Find her on Twitter at @AbagaelGiles.