Okemo Mountain Resort
Okemo is a destination ski resort located in Ludlow, Vermont on the eastern side of Okemo and Jackson Gore Peaks. The resort is fairly big for an East Coast ski area, coming in at 667 acres of inbounds skiing. Okemo’s peak sits at 3344 feet with a base at 1144 feet for a vert drop of 2200 feet, the highest in Southern Vermont. Annual snowfall averages out (based on a ten-year average) to 200 inches (5.1 meters). Okemo also has snow coverage over 605 of the 644 acres.
The Lifts and Trails
Across the 667 acres of terrain, there are 121 named trails and glades. The difficulty split is 32 percent beginner, 37 percent advanced, and 31 percent advanced. There are five primary areas to the mountain: Jackson Gore, Solitude, Glades, and the South Face and South Ridge.
The lift system has 20 total lifts in it, capable of taking 35,500 skiers per hour up the mountain. The lifts include a high-speed six-pack with heated seats(!), a high-speed bubble quad, four standard high-speed quads, four regular quads, three triples, and seven surface lifts. Even though it sounds complicated, it really isn’t difficult to move around the mountain.
Remember these few tips. Jackson Gore is primarily expert terrain. There are two easier ways down from Jackson Gore Peak. Tuckered Out is an intermediate winding groomer that skirts the outside of the park. From the Summit Lodge on top of the Sunburst Six and Green Ridge Triple, there are a series of intermediate and novice trails on the Jackson side and expert trails on the Okemo side. Take the South Face Express quad up to the peak and you can take one of numerous advanced trails down the South Face.
There is a dedicated learner’s area near the Mountain Lodge with a series of smaller novice runs. Two quad lifts and one surface lift move beginning skiers around. The ski school is one of the best in the state and offers classes for children as well as adults.
For a great last run, hit Tuckered Out off Jackson Gore. This long and winding groomer is wide enough for you to make some great turns and end up right at the Jackson Gore Inn, ready for a hot drink to finish the night.
Okemo is a family friendly destination resort, with everything in the resort area that you could want. Apres-ski activities abound, from the shopping in Okemo Village to the dedicated fitness center (as if skiing wasn’t enough of a workout), and even an ice-skating rink. Tom’s Loft Tavern is the place where locals, instructors, and ski patrol go to unwind at the end of the day. Alternately, for something a little rowdier, Christopher’s Sports has a wide selection of draft beers, great pizzas, and a game on the television. There was a time when Okemo was a quiet secret that was only known to locals. Now, however, the word is out, and people come from all over to play. While you may encounter crowds, you’re going to have a great time.