From New York City (4 hours): Take I-95 north to New Haven, Conn.; then I-91 north to Vermont Exit 2; then Route 9 west 20 miles to Wilmington and Route 100 north 9 miles through West Dover. From Boston (2 hours): Take Route 2 west to I-91 north; then same as above. Amtrak serves nearby Rutland; call 800-786-5366 for shuttle information. Free “MOO-ver” buses (painted Holstein black-and-white) ply Route 100 between Wilmington and West Dover.
Summit elevation: 3,600 feet; vertical drop: 1,700 feet; skiable acres: 749; average annual snowfall: 169 inches; lifts: 23, including four quads (three high-speed), 10 triples, four doubles, two surface lifts, three Magic Carpets.
The Deerfield Valley has been a breeding ground of New American culinary artistry since the 1968 opening of the rustic/elegant Inn at Sawmill Farm (802-464-8131)-now a member of the prestigious Relais & Chateaux association-and the 1971 addition of The Hermitage (802-464-3759), noted for its home-raised game birds. Both have outstanding wine cellars and continue to dazzle. Among the newer contenders are two charmers: the Deerhill Inn (802-464-3100), offering creative continental cuisine, and the North Italian-influenced Doveberry Inn (802-464-5652).
The optimal on-slope option is the 200-room Grand Summit Resort Hotel (800-451-4211), built in ’98 and comparable to others in the American Skiing Company empire. The resort also operates the nearby Snow Lake Lodge (90 rooms) and a quartet of condo complexes clustered around the base area. A lodging guide is viewable at mountsnow.com; reservations can be made online or at 800-245-7669. (Be sure to inquire about the “Ski Free” package: midweek lodging and lifts starting at $59 per night). Delightful inns abound in the area, including those noted for their dining, above: the Inn at Sawmill Farm (theinnatsawmillfarm.com), the Deer Hill Inn (deerhill.com) and the Doveberry Inn (doveberryinn.com). The Snow Goose Inn (snowgooseinn.com) is especially festive and luxurious, and Trail’s End (trailsendvt.com), a few miles south in Wilmington, is a cozily updated ’50s ski lodge with requisite fieldstone hearth.
Kelly Clark’s Olympic gold is proof positive that Mt. Snow knows boarding. There are two halfpipes and four terrain parks.
The Hermitage (see Dining Out, above) has 50 km of nordic trails, which access the trans-Vermont Catamount Trail; it also rents snowshoes. Families will enjoy Wilmington’s Adams Farm (802-464-3762), a fifth-generation enterprise with petting barn, sleigh rides and bonfires. Take the chill off with a craft ale at Maple Leaf Malt & Brewing in Wilmington (802-464-9900) or a glass of maple-sweetened apple wine from North River Winery farther south in Jacksonville (802-368-7557). For live music, dancing and general carousing, you need go no farther than the resort’s own Snow Barn nightclub (802-464-1100, ext. 4693).
mountsnow.com; 800-824-7669; snow report: 802-464-2151.