Check out The Zone.
Even if you don't ride - it's totally cool, with tunes in the tent (they call
it a yurt). Wanna bump ski? Sneak over to the mini-bump field on Ledges, or, for
some cool natural and nasty stuff, the South Face has Double Diamond, Outrage
and Forest Bump.
Sanity's Sake: Okemo's a deceptively large place - set up meeting sites with your kids and review the trail map. Arriving for a day trip, drop everyone off at the base lodge, then go park - it can be a long walk. Make life easy and use the complimentary Okemo Resort Shuttle Service, accessing the condo complexes, base lodge area, Jackson Gore, and the Okemo Valley Golf Club & Nordic Center. The Shuttle System also makes frequent stops at locations throughout the Ludlow/Proctorsville region on weekends and holiday periods, excluding Christmas Day. Utilize the basket check in the main base lodge - you get unlimited access to your stored stuff between 7:30 am and 4:30 pm, or leave your "gear " overnight.
Few places handle families as well as Okemo. There are miles of intermediate cruising trails that everyone can enjoy together. The day care and kids ski school are top notch, and you can even work out a family-together lesson program if you want. Take advantage of the Kids' Night Out during selected holiday periods.
to Ski: Okemo is one
of the great cruising mountains - anywhere. It stretches in three distinct directions,
each area offering wide, well-groomed carving opportunities. On the front face,
Jolly Green Giant supplies full force intermediate cruising, as do Timberline
and Sapphire. Dream Weaver, on the south face, is a bit more narrow, but still
easy-going, while Upper Wild Thing and Punch Line combine for some nice black
diamond challenge. Okemo's also the perfect place to build your bump skiing confidence;
nearly all the bump trails are dotted with machine-made moguls, so the spacing
and size make it easy to establish rhythm and build technique. Find them on Sel's
Choice and Plunge, among others. The Jackson Gore area, new this season, has seven trails (mainly intermediate and advanced) and a new highspeed detachable quad chairlift. Trails like Quantum Leap and Vortex are sure to challenge the advanced skiers and riders.
to Board: Where to Board:
The "Super Pipe" - a full 400 feet long is located in the Snowboard Zone. The Zone, which is serviced by its own surface lift - The Pull,
is a rider's paradise. The Yurt at the bottom of The Zone, is an alpine tent and
deck for hanging out, warming up, checking out video playback of yourself, listening
to the latest sounds or snacking. Nor'Easter, a kickin' intermediate run,
features a new Terrain Park for skiers and riders. Want to cruise? Go just about
anywhere on the hill.
Programs: The mountain hosts a season-long series of snowboarding events.
Okemo also offers Create-Your-Own Lesson Packages through the ski school - they'll tailor their teaching to go with your sliding.
Care: Okemo Mountain Penguin Playground Day Care Center handles kids from 6 months to 6 years, with supervised indoor and outdoor activities. You can opt for their Introduction-to-Ski program if you've got a 3 or 4 year-old for $25 for a one-hour session. Cost: $72/day; $45/half-day; $60/Sunday Solution (Sundays from 8:00 a.m.-1:30 p.m.). A Kids' Night Out evening care is offered from 6:00-10:00 p.m. at the Jackson Gore Day Care Center on Sat., Dec. 20, Sat., Dec. 27, 2003; Sat., Jan. 17, Sat., Feb. 14, Wed., Feb. 18, 2004. Cost: $40/full session; or $75 for up to 3 siblings. Information: (802) 228-1780.
Groceries: The Jackson Gore base has three new food options: Coleman Brook Tavern, reminiscent of a Vermont country inn, is a full service restaurant in a relaxed atmosphere, open for breakfast, lunch and dinner;
Vermont Pizza at Jackson Gore serves wood-fired pizzas, deli-style sandwiches, and homemade soups, and has a full service bar, open Friday - Sunday; The Roundhouse food court is open daily. If you're go
to to town to eat out: Taco's Tacos!
serves up good, inexpensive Mexican; 802-228-7899; try Wicked Good Pizza for subs,
salads, pasta, calzones and, of course, pizza (they deliver); 802-228-4131; for
a more sit-down occasion, but still family-friendly, DJ's Restaurant is popular
for steak and seafood; 802-228-5374. Or, Cappuccino's, which serves American, international and the best pasta specials in town. 802-228-7566.
On-mountain, try The Sugar House Lodge, mid-way down the novice slope area.
Tight:The resort offers
a plethora of mountainside condos, some ski-in/out, some requiring a short walk
to the slopes, and now Jackson Gore has a full-service hotel. The Okemo Family Value packages range from $75.75-$122.95 per person, and are available from January 25 to February 6 and February 29 to March 14, 2004. The package includes mountainside accommodations, daily lift tickets and the Okemo Freedom Pack. Weekend Mini-Vacation packages range from $99.95- $190.75 for 3-day/3-night Thursday-Sunday or Friday-Monday stays during selected dates of Jan. 22 to Feb. 8, 2004 and Feb. 27 to March 14, 2004.
Spendy:Slopeside condos during holiday season range from $330 to $970 for efficiencies up to three-bedroom condos. Package deals move many condos into the moderate range.
Moderate: Clarion/Cavendish Pointe Hotel is in downtown
Ludlow; 70 rooms, all with telephone, TV, refrigerator and blow dryer, a heated
indoor pool, hot tub/spa room, restaurant and lounge, and direct shuttle service
to and from Okemo; rates from $89-$209; 802-226-7688 or, from outside VT, 800-438-7908.
Thrifty: Farmbrook Motel is located 11 miles north
of the Okemo; 11 rooms; rates $50-$70 double occupancy; 802-672-3621.
The Okemo Express Rental Shop offers skis, boards, boots, poles and snowshoe gear.
Buy: Okemo's full-service on-mountain Ski & Snowboard Shop is found in the base lodge.
Fun Stuff: Try some
Nordic down at the new golf course. Or, if you're into golf, you can play many
major courses from around the country on their simulator. Check the local newspapers
for in-town events, many of which are open to the public and family-friendly;
the holiday parade in early December, for example, is pure small-town fun.
The Okemo Valley Nordic Center offers good cross-country skiing and snowshoeing; 802-228-1396