Skiers reflect on season that keeps giving

Published: Apr. 23, 2021 at 5:30 PM EDT
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KILLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - Vermont’s ski industry may have taken a $100 million hit because of the pandemic this winter, but those who were able to get to the slopes saw some excellent conditions that keep on coming.

Killington prides itself on being the first mountain to open every year, and with this year’s late-season snowfall, it’s ending the season with an exclamation point. “April 23rd, here we are. It’s winter on the mountain,” said Tim Whille, a New Jersey native who has been staying at his second home in Vermont since January. Friday, he was making spring turns and looking back on the season which he ranks as one of the best. “It’s 10, it ranks right up there.”

Rachel Teneralli is a diehard who got in more than 100 days. “114 today,” she said. The Pennsylvania native also owns a second home in the area and was able to take advantage of the 40 trails still open at Killington. “Constant re-fills making it a good season overall.”

Here’s a shot of my son bouncing through powdered glades at Jay Peak back in January. This mid-winter’s delight was taken at Bolton Valley. “Epic” conditions are what the experts call it, but that doesn’t mean record snowfall.

“The entire winter we have been below average,” said WCAX meteorologist Gary Sadowsky. He says that while we saw less snowfall on average this ski season, we never had any big thaws. “This year was pretty consistent as far as the temperature goes, so we kept a lot of that snow around. It was good for downhill skiing, it was good for cross-country skiing, it was great for snowmobiling.”

And then there’s April, which dumped more than a foot of snow on some parts of the state during one storm. “It’s just a great way to end the season, especially one that came with so many challenges, but we made it,” said Killington Resort’s Courtney DiFiore.

And at Killington, the skiing and riding continue. “You know, it was a great opportunity to make something good out of a bad year. Getting out on the snow is just invigorating,” Teneralli said.

Beginning in May, the mountain will only be open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. The latest Killington has ever been open is June 22nd, back in 1997.

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