Smugglers' Notch Resort in Vermont has been winning accolades for the best family ski resort for at least a dozen years and this year they took the big prize - Ski Magazine's #1 Resort in the East . Even before the formal awards, Smuggs had already won the hearts of more than a generation of families going back to the 1950's.
Being so widely acknowledged for its children's programs and family oriented activities and events, sometimes the excellent and challenging skiing at Smuggs gets overshadowed. For instance, did you know the 1800' Black Hole trail is the only Triple Black Diamond run in the East?
Black Hole gets this designation because it is deemed more difficult that its two Double Black neighbors, Freefall and Madonna Lifeline which pitch over 50 degrees!
However, don't fret, there's a lot of friendlier terrain among the 78 trails and over 1,000 acres including gentle cruisers for beginners, several glades and terrain parks and all get covered by an average snowfall of 24 feet every year.
Now that we know Smuggler's Notch has the families and the skiing and riding covered the other important category we don't want to forget is the adults who don't ski or ride. There is a lot do off the slopes up in the Northeast Kingdom starting with:
- Airboarding - sliding down a ski trail on an inflated sled called an airboard - not worry a training a clinic provides the basics.
- Snowmobiling and dogsledding tours are available in daytime and in the evening.
- The zipline canopy tour by ArborTrek Canopy Adventures features eight ziplines, a suspension bridge and two rappels and take in the mountain views from tree platforms positioned high in the canopy, as their guide tells about the ecology and natural history of the area.
- Winter Walking is a low-impact aerobic outing weekdays that explores the Resort Village, the Nordic trail network, and up into the rugged Smugglers' Notch Pass.
- The Nordic Center offers snowshoe treks for all ages with the High Elevation Tour descending through the forest and exploring the terrain in the valley below the Notch.
- Evening snow tubing under the lights and stars.
- Health and wellness offerings include aromatherapy and Swedish relaxation massages, yoga classes, and reflexology.
- The Artists in the Mountains programs allow individuals or families to create a masterpiece to take home with the option of a local artist providing instruction sessions in acrylic painting and sculpting.
Photo Copyright Smugglers Notch Resort