From a mile away as you approach the mountain along the access road, you can spot
Stratton's symbol, a 132-foot high clock tower that looks as if it belongs in the
Alps. Not surprising! The biggest single ski mountain in the East has had
an affinity for all things Austrian since the first visitors buckled up their boots
here in 1961. In the three decades plus that skiers have been doing runs down the
nearly 4000-foot elevation, the entire Stratton complex has grown—in trails, in lift
systems, in acreage of skiable terrain, in accommodations and in facilities for other
active pursuits, including swimming, tennis, racquetball and working out. What hasn't
changed is the Alpine ambiance. The Stratton Mountain Boys in their Tyrolean garb
are still yodeling for guests four times a week in the Bear's Den in the base
lodge. The prevailing decor in the early days was chalet-style and new construction
faithfully follows that design. Stratton Village Square is like a tiny, picturesque
European town grown prosperous with the addition of clothing boutiques, crafts shops
and restaurants. The Ski School has a reputation for being among the best
for both serious and Sunday skiers. A recently opened "Ski Learning Park"
affords novices a 45-acre special space all their own.
No matter what your level of skill is– beginner, intermediate or advanced–you
can take the gondola all the way up to the top of the mountain and ski down from
the peak on well-marked trails ranging from "easiest" and "more difficult"
to "most difficult' and "experts only." The longest run is a delightful
three miles. The wait at the lifts, even on holidays, is not too bad. The real challenge
at Stratton comes at lunchtime when the lines in the main cafeteria are endless and
finding a place to sit is often the day's most difficult feat.
Stratton Mountain, VT 05155. Tel.802-297-2200; Stratton Resort Information,