March 8, 2001 goes down in the books as one of the best days of skiing I have ever had in my life. Two days after a foot of snow got dumped on New England, I left home at 5:30AM for Wildcat Mountain in Pinkham Notch of the White Mountain National Forest. I picked up a pair of Volkl P40 Platinum demo skis on the way through North Conway due to my pair of Rossy 9.9 9x recently breaking at Magic Mountain and hit the slopes around 9:15AM.
February 5th brought three feet of snow to parts of Western Massachusetts and Southern Vermont. I had been planning a trip to Magic Mountain in Southern Vermont for some time now; the big dump made the decision on where to ski that weekend rather easy. Magic Mountain is most well known for its challenging terrain, lack of snow making, and lack of grooming. It is a Skiers Mountain without any Resort atmosphere or amenities. Some may consider these reasons to avoid the Magic Mountain. But for me, they only add to the appeal.
The alarm clock went off at 4:30AM and I jumped out of bed. Two and a half feet of snow fell during the previous 24 hours and my back still hurt from shoveling the previous evening. After a shower and breakfast, I went out to finish cleaning up the drive way. I was ready to roll at 6:30AM, but was hesitant to go because of the road conditions. I watched the news for an hour and a half before I was satisfied that the drive would be safe. I left home around 7:30AM; I had originally planned to leave two hours earlier so I could get first tracks.
Marginal conditions at Cannon Mountain on this January day. Nothing to write home about. This would be my last day of skiing while being employed during the 2000-2001 ski season, so I was to miss all the great skiing that would place the 2000-2001 in the annals of New England’s best seasons.
On a stormy weekend during a lack luster beginning to one of the Northeast’s biggest seasons, two friends and I packed up the car for a ski trip to Wildcat Mountain in New Hampshire. Despite taking a wrong exit off the highway, trying a “short cut” that made for a long drive, and several white knuckle moments due to poor road conditions, we finally made it up through Pinkham Notch to Wildcat. Due to high winds, only the Bobcat Triple was running without access to the Summit. We lapped the Bobcat slopes many times working on our early season technique on our first day out of the season. Due to a variety of circumstances including leaving a job and being unemployed, I was only to ski four days during the fabled epic season of 2000-2001.