Slopeside with Nick Borelli: Bromley Mountain - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Slopeside with Nick Borelli: Bromley Mountain

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PERU, Vt. -

For many winter enthusiasts Bromley is a mountain that stirs up memories.

"I've been riding at Bromley since I was about 7 years old. My mom's worked here. I've just been coming here ever since I was little," said Luke Hahn, Granville, New York.

These days Luke Hahn is 21 and still riding at Bromley.

Luke, like many skiers, was disappointed by last weekend's rain.

But now that colder temperatures have returned and the rain has had time to drain out of the base, snow surfaces have become firm and fast so it's best to stick to the groomers.

On this day Bromley had 19 of 47 trails open and that number will increase.

A lot of ski areas are blowing snow right now and creating their own natural snowstorm. But finally Mother Nature is lending a helping hand. Through the middle of the week a lot of places will see a few to several inches of snow. But as an added bonus, by this holiday weekend, for Martin Luther King Weekend, more snow is in the forecast.

Coming off a weak start to the season, that's just what Bromley and other local ski areas need.

"It means everything right now...when you lose one out of the three big holidays like we did at Christmas, quite often that's money that won't be recovered," said Doug Zecher, Bromley Ski Patrol director.

Doug is also focused on the conditions for safety. He's one of more than a dozen patrollers at Bromley.

And when someone gets injured and can't ski down, he comes to the rescue with a sled.

"This slides down between the bottom of the sled and the snow. It's a really, really effective brake. In snow conditions like this it would stop in a split second," said Doug.

In mock sled ride down the mountain Doug frequently used his skis to brake the sled.

Doug says on an average weekend ski patrol will receive about 10 calls for a sled. About 75 percent of the time those injured skiers will walk out of the first-aid room.

The majority of ski injuries are pretty minor and don't require a sled ride down. Doug sees a lot of twisted knee and wrist injuries, especially with boarders.

But there are some things you can do to minimize the risk.

"Take some lessons. Practice. Don't get in over your head up on the hill. Know where you're going to ski and the trails that are your level," said Doug.

And it doesn't hurt to be in good shape, strong legs mean more control on the mountain.

Even with being careful, accidents will happen and people like Doug are ready to lend a hand.

"I like helping people," said Doug.

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