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Posts Tagged ‘Ste-Anne’

It’s time to be the Monday Morning Quarterback for the end of the season.

What a crazy end of the season we’ve had. Although it was late March, temperatures remained cold then snow moved in many regions in April. Spring skiing weather didn’t really start until the end of April and early May which turned back to cold then warm rain to finish with snow to close out the season.

It’s a Wrap:

With the rise in AT gear, there is more than ever two parallel ski seasons: the end of one doesn’t mean the end of the other. This weekend marked for most, the end of the Eastern ski season, when it fact it only marked the end of lifts spinning season. Ski Mad World and prior to that, myself, has compiled the evolution of ski areas still in operations in late season. It started in my university days when I was looking at my end-of-semester ski options. Many years later, I started to share my research to the internet. For myself, but also to keep people informed that there is still skiing out there. What I find sad is that many people are so eager to start their season in the Fall in often crowded icy limited slopes (aka WROD : White Ribbon of Death) in dark cold days of late November versus Spring skiing on uncrowded slopes and warm weather. I’ve never kept track of opening days, because I find it is generally more artificial and less fun.

Many people turn off their ski brains after Spring Break and very few make it past Easter. It is a shame, because many ski areas still have most of their terrain open and start shutting down as people stop showing up. I don’t want to use the blog to start pointing fingers at the ski areas that close to soon; they each have their reasons. I want to use this post to congratulate the ski areas that went the extra days and weeks to offer late season skiing.

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I’ll limit my comments to the last 8 ski areas open in the East:

Mont Sutton QC – April 27 : The Eastern Townships ski area had official closed on April 20, but the ski area management decided to give everyone an extra Saturday due to the amount of snow and demand by skiers. The fact that they offered skiing only with the higher altitude Chair IV without any base access is a commitment. People needed to pay $20 cash or drive back to the Chalet at the base.

Mont Ste-Anne QC – April 28 : The Quebec City ski resort has been generally closely followed its calendar, regardless of the snow conditions. This season wasn’t an exception. The fixed closing date used to be at the first weekend of May, but was moved up one weekend a few years ago. The skiing was excellent on this closing weekend with skiing with the Triple running next to the steep South side run and North side being fully open. Could the skiing have been extended into May? Definitely.

Blue Mountain ON – April 28 : The other Eastern Canada Intrawest resort, unlike it’s Quebec partner, the Collingwood resort milked the season adding extra weekends as long as it could lasting an extra two weekends than the fixed date closing at Tremblant.

Jay Peak VT – April 28 : They were hoping to make it to May, but it wasn’t going to happen this year. Jay has made to the last liftserved weekend in the Eastern US in the previous 5 seasons: a few times being the only option. Jay Resort had a lot going this Spring with the demolition of the old Stateside Lodge, hoping they can be back in the game next year.

Sugarbush VT – May 4 : Offering free skiing with a donation for one last weekend is a commitment to itself. The skiing was limited to the old Valley Double serving the steep Stein Run. Sugarbush has often pushed till the snow was done. The season ended on the Saturday when part of the return trail to the lift had melted out.

Sugarloaf ME – May 5 : King of Spring in a remote part of Maine. Always amongst the last to close still offering great skiing and always pushing all long as there is snow and skiers. The problem is always snow on the lower slopes.

THE LAST TWO: MSS and K

Just 8 days ago we still had Mont St-Sauveur and Killington with each a 4-10′ base and it looked that they had enough to offer excellent coverage this weekend and maybe even make it into June, then the rain came. An early week of hard warm rain destroyed the deep base. I was somewhat surprise when MSS announced that they weren’t reopening and that their season was over on Wednesday. Then we heard from Killington… June wasn’t going to happen, but were committed into one more weekend and all cost.

Mont St-Sauveur QC – May 19 :

MSS had given a tentative date of May 12 in the early Spring, but conditions remained excellent until their last day. The ski area had blown an incredible amount of snow on Hill 70 and it could have been enough to make to June with a little further help from the weather. This was the first season that MSS didn’t make it to the last weekend of liftserved skiing in the East since 2007, however this season, Killington was determined to run as late as possible and then some. MSS wasn’t looking at what was happening south of the border, their market is Quebec and where they have no competition for season length or late to close.

Killington VT – May 26 :

In the recent past, in a normal year or in a normal ski area; ski areas with the amount of coverage on the Superstar trail with the rain and snow wouldn’t have opened for one last weekend. Killington did regardless if skiers required to walk at several places. If that wasn’t enough, they didn’t charge for lift tickets. Some would say that Killington was on a mission in 2012-13: it wanted to regain some goodwill after many years of letting its diehard public down. We had seen trace of the new attitude last Spring with a more definite sign with the October 13 opening on a difficult tiny snowmaking window. As we got into Spring, Killington mentioned it was willing to do as far as it could and eventually set up a bold June 2 closing date. That was a bold statement for a ski area that hadn’t close in June since 2002 and hadn’t even made beyond the 1st weekend of May since 2005.

What Killington did this season was take bold steps to return to one of the important elements of what made their reputation in the 1980s and 1990s: get started as soon as possible and kept spinning lifts until they isn’t any snow left. Welcome back Killington, you’ve been missed. I’m always cautious before making a statement like that: I surely hope that it wasn’t a one-year trial and that the mighty K is back to the attitude it once had.

It’s Snow

As I mentioned at the start of this post, skiing isn’t limited to lifts or to the East either. Ski Season is never over, it just become harder, goes further and moved to where the snow is. MadPat has lived that motto in recent years with endless ski season. There is still going to be skiing in June in the East, you just need to work a bit harder to get at it.

That being said, this past weekend gave an extremely rare May powder day, areas across the northern Greens at places like Jay and Stowe and spilled into Quebec’s Mont Sutton, but it was New York’s Whiteface got hit by the most snow in this freak storm with a reported 34″ of snow. Jay and Stowe got around 18″. I choose a terrible weekend for RnR which I was really needed. Please Kick Me!!!

A few people captured the moment and headed for the higher grounds. I’ve seen some pictures, here are a few:

Snow on the blogs:

This is how the FIS gang captured the moment at Stowe: The Rarest of May Flowers

JSpin give a great insight into the build up anticipation and result in his Stowe, May 26, 2013 Trip Report.

TheRudeness from Montreal posting a video from Whiteface : Party in the Patrol Shack

Snow on the Ski Forums:

Jonathan riding lifts and earning turns all on the same day at Killington
Vt_freeheel also at Killington for the last day
Thin Cover TR from Jay Peak : Late May Storm Skiing in Northern VT
J’hais_le_damé_durcie at Jay (visible only to Zoneski members) : Jay Peak 26 Mai 2013
TBatt at Whiteface today

Like the late October’s 34″+ of snow in West Virginia, this up to 34″ Memorial Day weekend storm is a nice bookmark to the powder season in the East. Or is it???

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Liftserved options for next weekend in North America:

Ski Mad World isn’t limited to the East, where is what’s happening for the coming weekends for liftserved skiing on the continent. 6 ski areas across North America : 5 ski areas for next weekend then probably 3 until late June when Blackcomb reopens for Summer skiing.

Mammoth Mountain CA – June 1*
Arapahoe Basin CO – June 9*
Crystal Mountain WA – June 16
Beartooth Basin MT – July 13
Blackcomb/Whistler BC – June 22 to July 28
Timberline Lodge OR – September 3

*edit: May 29 5PM – Mammoth closing June 1 and A-Basin one week later

And there are many other options the other continents in the coming months.

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LIST OF CLOSURE 2012-13 IN THE EAST – LAST 8

Killington VT – May 26
St-Sauveur QC – May 19
Sugarloaf ME – May 5
Sugarbush VT – May 4
Jay VT – April 28
Ste-Anne QC – April 28
Blue ON – April 28
Sutton QC – April 27

Previous years:

2006: May 5 – Bretton Woods
2007: May 6 – MSS, K, Sugarbush, Wildcat
2008: May 11 – MSS
2009: May 4? – Sugarloaf on Monday?, MSS, Jay and Sugarbush
2010: May 3? – Sugarloaf on Monday?, MSS and Jay
2011: May 22 – MSS
2012: May 6 – MSS
2013: May 26 – K

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Latest closing date since I’ve been official keeping track in 2006 – season latest in bold:

Previous Late closing dates

2013 : Killington – May 26
2011 : May 22 – St-Sauveur
2013 : May 19 – St-Sauveur
2011 : May 15 – Jay Peak
2008 : May 11 – St-Sauveur
2011 : May 9 – Sugarloaf
2012 : May 6 – St-Sauveur
2007: May 6 – St-Sauveur, Sugarbush, Wildcat & Killington

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List of Killington Seasons since 1966-67

** Appreciation Day
* 2005/2006 : Open for one weekend after huge October storm, reopen on November 19. K record states season as “October 29-30, Nov 19 – May 1”

Season Open – Close / Ski Days
2012/2013 October 13** – May 26
2011/2012 October 29 – April 22 / 176
2010/2011 November 2 – May 1 / 179
2009/2010 November 7 – April 25 / 153
2008/2009 November 2 – May 2 / 169
2007/2008 November 16 – April 20 / 157
2006/2007 November 23 – May 6 / 165
2005/2006* October 29* – May 1 / 166
2004/2005 November 9 – May 15 / 188
2003/2004 November 10 – May 12 / 184
2002/2003 October 25 – May 26 / 204
2001/2002 November 6 – June 1 / 202
2000/2001 October 29 – May 27 / 202
1999/2000 October 25 – May 29 / 205
1998/1999 October 22 – May 25 / 204
1997/1998 October 1 – May 25 / 205
1996/1997 October 4 – June 22 / 233
1995/1996 October 17 – June 10 / 224
1994/1995 October 3 – June 4 / 214
1993/1994 October 1 – June 9 / 243
1992/1993 October 1 – June 1 / 229
1991/1992 October 21 – June 14 / 226
1990/1991 October 27 – May 28 / 214
1989/1990 October 10 – May 28 / 208
1988/1989 October 13 – May 21 / 211
1987/1988 October 12 – June 1 / 227
1986/1987 October 10 – June 3 / 224
1985/1986 October 1- June 3 / 224
1984/1985 November 3 – June 2 / 212
1983/1984 October 20 – June 21 / 246
1982/1983 October 17 – June 16 / 240
1981/1982 October 20 – June 15 / 225
1980/1981 October 14 – May 27 / 226
1979/1980 October 10 – May 23 / 221
1978/1979 October 16 – May 22 / 219
1977/1978 October 24 – May 23 / 195
1976/1977 October 27 – May 15 / 201
1975/1976 October 30 – May 5 / 173
1974/1975 October 19 – May 12 / 190
1973/1974 November 5 – April 30 / 177
1972/1973 October 20 – April 15 / 184
1971/1972 November 9 – May 18 / 192
1970/1971 November 18 – May 21 / 184
1969/1970 October 24 – May 4 / 178
1968/1969 November 9 – May 10 / 183
1967/1968 November 5 – April 7 / 154
1966/1967 November 4 – May 2 / 180

Source: MadPatSki attic collection

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Previous weeks:

Ski Mad World’s weekly Eastern Closing 2013 posts:
Go skiing this weekend!!! – Eastern Closing Thread 2012-13 – Part 1
Eastern Closing Thread 2012-13 – Part 2
Start of Spring Skiing – Eastern Closing Thread 2012-13 : Part 3
Full Spring – Eastern Closing Thread 2012-13 Part 4
May Five – Eastern Closing Thread 2012-2013 Part 5
Corn Deep in May – Eastern Closing Thread 2012-13 Part 6
Skiing Not Gone Yet – Eastern Closing Thread 2012-2013 Part 7
No Encore at St-Sauveur – Eastern Closing Thread 2012-13 Part 8

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What a beautiful day ❗ ❗ ❗

It didn’t start off that way, unless you’re a duck. Forecast, rain, rain, heavy rain at times, rain. Leaving from Montreal in the pouring rain, raining all the way to MSA (3 hours drive). The parking lot was virtually deserted at 10:30am, 20 cars under the pouring rain.

Geez 😕 , my stuff was barely dry from the last time I skied in the rain (MRG on April 2th). The snow report called for 29 trails open (most of the sleeper – bump south side runs were on hold). Skiing the south side would’ve brought a more or less long walk in the rain back to the gondola. I am not sure they ever soften up to be opened. Hard to see, the top of the mountain was covered in a dark cloud.

Surprise, Surprise. It was snowing on top, not wet snow, winter snow. 😛 Most of the runs on the North side are shorter and groomers. The skiing was typical great early december skiing. Slightly below freezing temps, dark, frozen base covered with 2 or 3 inches of fluff. As the day went by, the snow started falling harder. It’s was fresh tracks every runs.

Unfortunately 😥 , they advanced the lift closure to 3pm (instead of 3:30). No use running a lift for a few of us diehards. The last run of the day was done on the south side, I tried to find my way to see what was opened, however it was a total white-out on top. Once I got in mid-mountain, it’s was pouring rain and you can tell by the wet snow on the trail that it didn’t snow here all day. Back to the car, I was very wet, but very happy.

I have had a similar trip in desert fresh tracks days when it’s raining all over. Among the most memorable, I would included some April visit to Sugarbush (late), Cannon (early) or Sunday River (May 1st?).

Ste.Anne is closed midweek, but will open for a last Hourrah next weekend. 8)

Originally posted on Mon Apr 25, 2005 11:57 am on firsttracksonline

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MT-STE-ANNE – 23 avril 2005 – plutôt décembre???

Pluie battante de Montréal à Québec, rien de très encourageant. Il me semble que j’ai skié souvent dans une pluie battante cette hiver, mon stock de ski avait à peine sècher de ma journée mémorable 😕 du 2 avril à MRG.

Arrivée à la station, le stationnement était desert, une vingtaine d’auto maximum sous la pluie. Le rapport de ski parlait de 29 pistes, mais plusieurs devaient ouvrir graduellement (La Crête, la Super S…). On devait marcher pour se rendre à la gondole.

Au sommet, White-out, hiver et tout blanc. Au lieu de la pluie, c’était de la neige, de la neige pour les plus téméraires. Les conditions de neige étaient fresh tracks à chaque descentes sur un fond dur. Il va sans dire que le fond n’a pas ramolie de la journée, la neige a également pas arrêter de la journée, au contraire, il neigeait de plus en plus fort. 😀

J’ai skié la plupart des pistes du côté nord, sublîme. 8) Je n’ai pas voulu voir ce que le sud avait l’air (je n’aurais pas vu dans le brouillard de toute façon). Malheusement la station ont devancé la fermeture à 15heures (faute de monde, j’imagine 😕 et allait fermer pour dimanche étant donné que les conditions météorologiques allait amener des températures plus chaudes avec précipitations).

La dernière descente (ce que j’ai pû voir 😆 ) fut par la Pichard. Au milieu de celle-ci, la limite pluie-neige a eu l’effet d’une douche. 😮

Belle journée dans l’ensemble. Est-ce ma dernier journée de ski de l’année ❓ ❓ ❓ (je ne peux pas skier la semaine prochaine et mon employeur va décider mon sort ensuite). Si c’est le cas, ça sera ma fin de saison la plus hâtive depuis que je comptabilise mes journées (1981-82, exception de la saison 1983 qui fut écourtée par une blessure en 1983). On est très loin des fins de saison à la fête de reine ou en juin. 😥

En tout cas, ça aussi été ma saison avec le plus de sorties. 😕 Je me croise les doigts pour continuer encore quelques fois.

Initialement affiché le lundi 25 avril 2005 – 11:27 sur zoneski

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Monday Monday… a nice drive up from Montreal.

A beautiful blue sky day. A beautiful cold and windy day.

I took advantage of skiing Ste. Anne when almost all the trails (55/62) were opened. I generally ski this place late in the season. Most of the closed trails on Monday were in the new south side glades area called la Forêt Noire. Snow coverage was great, however some natural snow trails definitely needed more snow.

Skied only on the South side (which is generally closed late in the season). The ski area was making snow like crazy on La Crête and Grand Vallon. La “S” and Beaupré was great fun to ski.

The sleep S trail was hard (some would call it ice), but it’s was very edgeable. I skied mostly groomers, the exception was La pionière which had rock hard bumps and a few rocks. Bare spots were also noticed on some of the sleeper south side runs near the “Trip” triple. Snowmaking runs were in great shape.

Generally a great day. Super, didn’t have any frostbite 😀 . The Maximum for that day probably didn’t get above -20c.

Originally posted on Fri Jan 28, 2005 3:42 pm on firsttracksonline

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Posted 03 May 2004 – 10:49 AM
Ayant obtenu le feu vert du chiro pour skier cette fin de semaine, nous avons débatu le choix de notre destination: Sunday River ou Ste-Anne?

Initialement, cette fin de semaine devait être un combo Sunday River/Tuckerman Ravine, mais on ne peut pas prévoir ce qui va se passer dans notre vie comme se faire rentrer de plein fouet en attendant un feu rouge en quittant d’Ottawa (3km de la maison) en route vers Tremblant.

Après avoir parler à la madame de Sunday River vendredi matin (pas sûre sur le nombre de pistes (entre 2 et 7), la décision allait se faire samedi matin), nous avons finalement opté pour MSA.

Du monde de Montréal, Laval, Bromont et d’Ottawa tous en route vers Ste-Anne. Les conditions étaient bonnes, mais pas comparable aux deux dernières FDS de fermetures, beaucoup moins de neige. Je crois qu’il y avait 18 pistes ouvertes au lieu de 6.

Rapport de l’an dernier sur FTO.

Photo par Éric B. 1 mai 2004: Mont ste-Anne - versant sud
Photo par Éric B: Versant sud sous la gondole

Photo par Lucky Luke: 1 mai 2004. Sommet vue du côte nord.
Photo par Lucky Luke: Sommet vue du côte nord.

Contrairement à Paraski, nous (du moins le duo Montréal-Ottawa) avons skié le Nord, meilleure piste: la Surprenante (oups, Mélanie Turgeon). Je n’ai pas regretté ma journée, malgré le fait que j’ai eu mal toute la journée (mon chiro connait bien mon niveau de tolérance à la douleur- le pire était le mal de tête). La Pichard était bien aussi, mais mon corps n’avait pas le goût de marcher.

Wolverine, je me rappelle bien d’avoir vu ta gang, à un moment donné, nous avons regardé le gars frisé en télémark qq’secondes à qq’reprise, il ressemblait étrangement à notre ancien ami JF avec qui nous avons skié avec à l’université. Moi, j’étais le gars avec la longue barbichette blanche et des long FELS 202cm attachés aux pieds.

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Posted 03 May 2004 – 04:20 PM
ParaSki dit :

Je me doutais bien que nous n’allions pas rencontrer d’autres Zoneskieurs car il y avait pas mal de monde et Ste-Anne c’est une grosse place…

Merci pour les compliments, des fois je me demandes si j’écris pour rien.

Oui, je sais ce que tu veux dire à propos de rencontrer qq’un. Nous, on ne s’étaient pas donnés rendez-vous entre mon duo MTL-Ottawa et ceux de Bromont-Laval. On s’est vu au sommet autour 1h30-2h. Nos deux groupes pensaient que l’autre avait chocké 😆 . Nous avons bouffé en bas, eux au sommet. Finalement, j’ai reconnu le fils de 8ans de Lucky Luke. Il faut dire qu’on ne portent pas le même linge lorsque nous avons la chance de skier ensemble à -20c.

Ça aurait été difficile que je reconnaisse des zoneskieurs et vous moi, car je ne pourrais pas vous identifiez dans une ligne de suspect au poste de police.

Photo par Lucky Luke: 1 mai 2004. SuperNat, Éric, Lucky, Alex et MadPat au bas du nord.
Photo par Lucky Luke: SuperNat, Éric, Lucky, Alex et MadPat au bas du nord.

Photo par Lucky Luke: 1 mai 2004. SuperNat, MadPat et Éric (versant nord).
Photo par Lucky Luke: SuperNat, MadPat et Éric (versant nord).

Photo par Éric B. 1 mai 2004: Mont Ste-Anne - versant nord
Photo par Éric B: Mont Ste-Anne – versant nord

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Posted 04 May 2004 – 12:30 PM
Frankontour dit :

Par contre, je suis content d’annoncer que l’étendue de ma saison jusqu’à présent est de 197 jours, avec ma sortie d’hier et je vais passer le 200 jours si je vais à la Réserve comme prévu jeudi, le 6 mai ! J’aimerais atteindre 250 jours cette année dans l’est.

Bravo et bonne chance, mon record est de 215… en 1991-92. Oui, c’est uniquement dans l’Est … avec remontées. Ça sera difficile à battre, vue la tendance des saisons de plus en plus courte. J’avais débuté le 9 novembre et terminé ma saison le 11 juin à Killington.

Photo par MadPat: 1 mai 2004. SuperNat et MadPat et la Mazda réparé. En fin de journée au stationnement du Mont Ste-Anne.
Photo par MadPat: SuperNat et MadPat et la Mazda réparée. En fin de journée au stationnement du Mont Ste-Anne.

A propos de reconnaitre des zoneskieurs, il faudrait voir des photos. Paraski et Wolverine, de quoi avez-vous l’air??? On n’aurait pû se croiser sans le savoir. Moi, j’ai reçu des photos de notre petite journée de samedi, j’ai demandé au photographe si je pouvais mettre les photos ici!!!

Fermeture de Ste-Anne en 2002 – journée magique, on avait eu une journée de neige (j’en fait référence sur mon rapport de FTO de l’an dernier).

Photo par MadPat: 1 mai 2004. Mont Ste-Anne, versant sud. Éric, Lucky et SuperNat.
Photo par MadPat: Mont Ste-Anne, versant sud. Éric, Lucky et SuperNat.

Gallerie photo de MadPat: Mont Ste-Anne, mai 2004

Originally posted text on 03 May 2004 – 09:49 AM on zoneski

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Sorry for the late report.

Ste-Anne had great conditions for their last weekend of skiing. More coverage than last year at the same time (actually, last year was below freezing and had fresh snow). 17 trails were opened. Most of the North side was open (9 trails) and 8 trails on the South which required some walking to get back to the lift. What was amazing was that some of the great Southside black runs were skiable and opened (La Crête, L’Espoir and Super S). These trails required some short walks at a few places if you valued your skis + 300ft. to reach the Gondola. Pretty good considering that these runs’ vertical is 2025ft. The other SouthSide runs only required walking to reach the lift. No walking was required on the North side which probably had enough snow to last a few more weeks. Some people would ski only the North side then ski the last run on the Southside (Gros Vallon, Familiale or Pichard) or download on the Gondola.

All in all, a great day of skiing. It is unfortunate that the only areas left to choose from in the East are K at $39US and St-Sauveur next weekend (maybe?). The Ste-Anne cost me $36 CDN, which is a great deal when I compare with the others.

On the other hand, there is always Tuckerman.

edit May 8, 2013 : This was MadPat’s first post on a ski day shared with my old High School buddy Jean-Pierre who got me started in keeping a Ski Diary of my days. It was also my 38th outing and last day of short 4 months ski season which I explored many beautiful places. Hoping to post some nostalgia TRs of my beautiful 2003 ski season.

Originally posted on Thu May 08, 2003 9:22 am on firsttracksonline

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