With a brand new lift-served mountain bike park and new trails scheduled to be opened this fall, here’s what’s new at Stratton.
It’s been a long time coming but in August, Stratton Mountain Resort cut the ribbon on its first lift-served mountain bike trails. “They’re really fun, flowy and well-built,” says gravel and mountain biking pro Kris Dennan, who has worked on Stratton’s trails and Nordic center.
Morrisville’s Brooke Scatchard of Sinuousity Trails hand-built the trails to minimize environmental impact. You can rent one of a variety of Trek full-suspension bikes (and even an e-bike) at the base. Then take the American Express six-pack chair up. As part of Phase one Scatchard has laid out a half dozen trails that cover 4.6 miles, ranging from the gentle greens following Grizzly Access, to intermediate trails with some switchbacks, to expert trails with banks and berms. To celebrate the opening, the resort is offering a four-pack of tickets (normally $25 apiece) for $75. The park is open Friday-Sunday for the first two weekends of the month and then on October 14.
If uphill running is more your type of thing, run up Stratton mountain (and get some of the best foliage views around), in The North Face Race to the Top on October 13. The course is all up, covering 2.18 miles and climbing 2,003 vertical feet from the base to the summit. There’s a $500 prize for the overall winner with equal prize money for men and women as well as cash and other prizes for the runners up and age group winners. Stick around after for the Indigo Girls concert that evening.
And if you are really, really into running uphill, stay all week and see what it’s like to run up Mt. Everest … sort of. On Thursday, October 17 29029 comes to Stratton. The event, which also takes place in Snowbasin, Utah, challenges athletes to run or hike 29,029 feet of uphill vertical (taking the gondola down) over the space of three days. In 2018, 130 people completed the full distance, doing 17 laps up the mountain, climbing 1,750 vertical feet over 1.3 miles with each lap and then downloading on the gondola. The event organizers set up a “base camp” at the base with glamping tents, catered meals and bands. The 2019 event is sold out but you can sign up now for 2020.
Winter Wondergrass, the traveling ski-town bluegrass festival that came to Stratton last December is back but moved its winter dates to April 10-11, 2020. However, on October 26, the organizers offer a preview concert, “Caravan to Wondergrass” at EarthSkyTime farm, a third-generation family farm and wood-fired bakery in Manchester. Catch Andy Falco of The Infamous Stringdusters, Saints and Liars and Terrible Mountain String Band as you sample the pizzas and breads Earth Ski Time Farm serves up. Tickets are $10 and if you compete in the costume contest, you may win tickets to Winter Wondergrass.
Featured Photo Caption: Zeke Neubauer testing out Stratton’s hand-carved flow trails. Photo by Ali Kaukas