No Natural Snow? Visit your local ski mountain!

By Tubbs Backcountry Ambassador, Lyndon

One of the frustrating things about snowshoeing, at least when I lived in California, was that I ended up carrying my snowshoes more than using them. Often the actual snowfall did not live up to the forecast and the snowshoes stayed attached to my pack.

Moving to the New England, I thought that I’d get to use my snowshoes more frequently. With a demanding work schedule, increasing family obligations (we now have two kids) and frankly, still needing to drive some distance to find terrain with a snowpack deep enough to necessitate the use of snowshoes, this has not happened … until now!

Working at a ski resort has some obvious perks, but one that I had not really thought about until recently is using the man-made snow for snowshoeing. Not only is there snow mid-November through mid-April most years, there are nice, wide-open trails to ski and snowboard for the descent, if that’s your thing. Personally, my least favorite part of snowshoeing is the descent, unless there’s at least a couple of feet of fresh powder to tramp through. This does not happen very often in New England. Being able to get a strenuous workout on the ascent and making first tracks on the descent (I typically go before work) is perfect for me!

For my personal use, I’ve compiled some information regarding the uphill policies for some of the ski mountains located in the Upper Valley of New Hampshire and Vermont, roughly ranked based on how I view their uphill policies. I’ve shared this information on my blog (http://www.hikinggeek.com/eyt#policies), hoping others may find it useful. If you don’t’ live in the Upper Valley, you may find an uphill travel policy for your local mountain here: USMMA Resort Uphill Policies