Family, Friends, and Fun Come First at Smugglers’ Notch
A week tucked away on a snowy mountain is high on the list of dream winter vacations for any family. For those in the know, Smugglers’ Notch, the quintessential Vermont ski resort, is the perfect choice. Not only is it consistently rated as having some of the best snow and runs in the country, SKI Magazine just named it the number one kid-friendly resort and number one overall resort in the eastern United States and Canada. The fun keeps families coming back, so that parents can pass on their love of snow sports to their children. The skiing and riding instructors at Smugglers’ Notch help make that love tangible through their age-appropriate lessons and programs.
- TREASURES Child Care (Ages 6 weeks to 3 years)
- Little Rascals on Snow (Ages 2.5 to 3)
- Discovery Dynamos (Ages 3 to 4)
- Trail Blazers (Ages 5 to 6)
- Adventure Rangers (Ages 7 to 10)
- Notch Squad (Ages 11 to 15)
- Mountain Explorers (Ages 16 to 20)
- Adult Programs (Ages 18+)
- Women’s Programs (Ages 18+)
- Private Lessons (All ages)
Snow Sport University, the resort’s skiing and snowboarding school, is for people of all ages and levels of experience. It doesn’t matter if you’re two years old or eighty: the instructors will find something to keep you moving on the mountain at a pace that suits you.
With so many different options for so many different types of visitors, you’ll need at least a week to take in everything Smugglers’ Notch has to offer. One thing you can’t miss: the friendly “Smugglers” you’ll meet along the way.
1. The Snow Sport Newbies
The 20 minutes it took to get your little one ready for Smugglers’ Snow Sport University felt like forever. Now, it’s taking forever to get him to let you leave! You can reassure him (and yourself) that he’ll be fine, since each kid is equipped with a Flaik GPS and a resident “Smuggler” to guide the fun.
Smugglers’ Notch ski and snowboard guides know how to get kids comfortable with their new, snowy surroundings. Kids as young as 2½ can start out at TREASURES, the child care center, where they will become familiar with the sport’s equipment. They will try on ski boots, hop on mini snowboards, and tackle the snow playground of Riglet Park—all while getting accustomed to the movements needed to conquer the slopes or the so-called “magic carpet,” a conveyer belt lift leading to the ultimate private beginner hill.
But what’s next? The Director of Snow Sport University says, “The Mogul Mouse lift to the Magic Learning trail is the perfect next step for new skiers and riders.” Smugglers’ Notch has designed themed beginner trails to help kids feel more at ease on their way down the mountain. Colorful characters such as Mogul Mouse, Sam the Snow Snake, and Billy Bob Bear cheer on new skiers and riders as they learn how to gently round out their turns.
They’ll top it all off with a visit to Father Winter, who inhabits an authentic tipi near the beginner trails. The kids will warm up with a pot of hot cider around the campfire and he’ll give them a crash course on the natural world surrounding them: the animals, the trees, and the history of the mountain itself.
By the end of the vacation, your little one will have started to love skiing or riding as much as you do.
2. The Too Cool for School Crowd
It’s sad but true: when you blow out 16 candles on a birthday cake, you start wanting to blow off your parents, too. Mountain Explorers lets those on the edge of adulthood (aged 16–20) rip up the mountain and shred all the way down with people their own age. They can sharpen their skills with the help of a Smugglers’ guide and feel the joy of flexing their independence muscles. But just because they get to be independent doesn’t mean they’ll be alone. Mountain Explorers offers a wonderful chance for these young men and women to build a strong comradery with each other. Whether they’re commiserating about their parents or gossiping about the cuties they meet, they’ll build lasting bonds and friendships together.
On the lift up the mountain, they may learn things about the mountain that even teenagers will find interesting—like the fact that Smugglers’ got its name from a narrow mountain pass where runners used to smuggle illicit goods into Canada! They’ll also love the freedom they’ll experience while roaming the three mountains and exploring the terrain. Maybe they’ll even find that narrow mountain pass.
3. The Wonder Woman Who Does It All, but Wants a Little Help
Lessons are not just for beginners, nor are they just for kids. And if you’re a woman wanting to push the envelope, Smugglers’ Notch is perfect for you. The women’s programs are taught by expert coaches who focus on fun and confidence-boosting sessions with tips and tactics that address how women move on snow. These tutorials for small groups of fabulous females are designed to be playful and supportive, and take full advantage of all three mountains. You’ll meet other like-minded women to laugh and learn with on the slopes, and beyond: après ski is the perfect time to get to know the other new acquaintances in your group. It’s a chance to make lasting friendships, as well as meet new pals to ski or ride with for years to come.
4. The Snowshoe Adventurist
Maybe Alpine skiing or snowboarding don’t speak to you. They’re too intense, too risky—just too much. If you’d prefer a leisurely or even brisk walk outside, consider snowshoeing. At Smugglers’ Notch Snowshoe Adventures, you’ll find over 30 kilometers of Nordic trails and dedicated snowshoe terrain. The staff there will help you experience the beauty of the mountain at your own pace. Whether you want to take your family on a stroll along the frozen No-Name Brook, or hike deep into the forest to enjoy the gorgeous natural setting of the Vermont woods, Smugglers’ Atlas Snowshoes can get you there. If you’re feeling bold, you can even map your own trail with the help of the instructors by using the Choose Your Own Adventure Program.
5. The Ski or Snowboard Guide Who Makes Everything Awesome
All the Smuggs guides tailor the experience to make it the best for you. Take advantage of their expertise and learn how to become a better skier or rider. The instructors’ deep knowledge about skiing, snowboarding, and the mountain itself will be invaluable to you and your family. They know the best classes for kids, the best runs with a view, the best terrain for your style of skiing or riding: whatever it is you’re looking for, their priceless expertise will help you have the best stay. The staff can also tell you how to enjoy the amenities that Smugglers’ Notch resort offers, like indoor pools, hot tubs, or kids’ programs. By the end of your vacation, they’ll feel like a member of your extended family. It’ll be a tough goodbye.
To choose one of the affordable five-night and seven-night packages or for more information, go to www.smuggs.com or call 888-476-4193.