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Essentials: Okemo

Essentials: Okemo

Travel East
By the SKI Magazine Editors
posted: 08/27/2002

GETTING THERE From New York City (4 1/2 hours): TakeI-95 north to New Haven, Conn.; then I-91 north to Vermont Exit 6; then Route 103 north 24 miles to Ludlow. From Boston (2 3/4 hours): Take Route 2 west to I-91 north; then same as above. Amtrak trains service nearby Rutland; call 800-786-5366 for shuttle information.
VITAL STATS Summit elevation: 3,344 feet; vertical drop: 2,150 feet; skiable acres: 520; average annual snowfall: 200 inches; lifts: 14, including seven quads (three high-speed),three triples and four surface lifts.
DINING OUT It's not as popular around here as dining in, but there are still some good choices, including: Nikki's (802-228-7797) for eclectic American fare; DJ's (802-228-5374) for a wide variety of family dining choices and the best salad bar in town; Sam's Steakhouse (802-228-2087) for steaks, chops and ribs; Harry's (802-259-2996), five miles away on Route 103 in Mt. Holly, for an international potpourri, including good Thai dishes and kid-friendly selections.
SLEEPING IN There are hundreds of slopeside condos under Okemo management (www.okemo.com/lodging-winter; 800-786-5366), as well as independent choices. Solitude Village, Winterplace and Ledgewood are the most upscale; Kettle Brook is more affordable. For a printed lodging guide send a request to info@okemo.com or visit www.okemo.com. There are also many small inns and B&Bs, including top-rated Andrie Rose Inn (www.andrieroseinn.com) and The Governor's Inn (www.thegovernorsinn.com); Combes Family Inn (www.combesfamilyinn.com) is homey and casual, good for families. Cavendish Pointe is the area's top full-service hotel (www.okemo-cavendishpointe.com).
SNOWBOARDING Okemo is one of only a handful of resorts in the nation with two "super pipes" (higher and longer than traditional designs). One is in The Zone (which features a very cool buried-bus hit); the other, on Nor'easter, is the only 500-footer in the U.S., Okemo says. Both are groomed by a new Super Pipe Dragon. Even if pipe riding isn't in your skill set, it's entertaining to watch the jaw-dropping tricks kids perform on the 17-foot walls.
DIVERSIONS Superb cross-country skiing and snowshoeing on 28 kilometers of trails atOkemo Valley Golf Club (802-228-1396); skating and sledding at West Hill Recreation Area in Ludlow; sleigh rides and horseback riding at Cavendish Trail Horse Rides (802-226-7821); antique shopping at Stone House Antiques Center in Chester (802-875-4477).
INFORMATION www.okemo.com; 802-228-4041; snowphone: 802-228-5222.

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