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I skied a couple of hrs there this morning to satisfy my curiosity. Mad
River Glen is a place where you ski the mountain as it is, whatever
nature throws at you. Mad River Mountain is a moderate size hill, made
into a ski and snowboard park. It is skiing and snowboarding in the
middle of a vast snowsports wasteland of brown fields. Considered in
this light the management of MRM have done an excellent job. They make
a lot of snow, run race programs with coaching and an extensive terrain
park. It reminds me very much of 7 Springs on a smaller scale,
particularly the north face, but the slope is shorter and the pitch is
less. The trails are so wide as to be almost one continuous wide slope.
To do this, very few trees have been left. At 7 Springs this means that
when it snows with wind (as is usually the case with snow) most of it
blows off leaving scoured ice which must be covered with more
snowmaking snow which readily packs down into very firm surfaces. It's
a treadmill that once entered upon means more snowguns, more grooming,
etc, etc, etc. But it does provide snowsport in a place where scant or
none would exist otherwise, an entirely different thing than Mad River
Glen.

I had fun. Today's conditions were loud powder. It rained
hard yesterday and it was groomed too early in the night. It "locked
up" after the groomers went home. Still, all of it was groomed and
there was just enough edgeability to the frozen corduroy. It skied fast
and fun. On my next to last ride a patroller and area ambassador rode
up with me. The latter said he had skied there since 1962 and his
father had been ski school director for years. They were full of
questions and wanted to know where I had learned to telemark like that.
I didn't tell them that many in WV and VT are better, I just smiled and
accepted the praise.  I found the area ambassador again in the cafeteria and gave him a "Mad River Glen - Ski It If You Can" bumper sticker. 

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