The second to last trip of sabbatical took Rob and I to Sugarbush in Warren, Vermont. It’s not a short drive at all, but it was well worth it and I’m glad I made Sugarbush a stop on my trip. Now on to all the fun details!
Location: Sugarbush is a solid three hour drive from Manchester, New Hampshire. There’s really no making it shorter, but fortunately it’s an easy drive. Just get on 89 North (from 93 North of course) and keep going and going. Shortly before Waterbury, you’ll be jumping off the highway and taking backroads.
There are gas stations and restaurants and all that other good stuff in Vermont, but it’s rather quirky. Billboards aren’t allowed in Vermont (it’s actually kind of nice to see trees instead of signs), but it means you need to keep a close eye on what’s off an exit as you come up to it if you’re looking for something specific. We must have zoomed past 3 exits looking for gas before I remembered it wasn’t an easy thing.
Parking: Parking at Sugarbush seems to be pretty easy. There’s a bunch of lots all right in front of the village like base area. Just park and walk to the lodge. Ta-da! Actually of all the parking lots I’ve seen this season, this one was one of the most “finished”. No actual pavement, but there was a real sense of aisles and areas to walk. I liked it.
Ticket Counter/ Guest Services: The staff at Sugarbush seemed nice and friendly, so no problems there!
Price: Sugarbush’s ticket prices seemed fairly comparable with other mountains of similar size, but I was glad to see them offer a deal early in the season through a Vermont daily deal website. I believe they offered a few more deals through other websites as well, so there are discounts to be discovered.
Lodge: The award for best base area definitely goes to Sugarbush. It feels like a little ski village that’s very skier and snowboarder friendly. I love the easy access to the main lodge on the Lincoln Peak side from all sides, and the smell of waffles (there’s a Waffle Cabin) and a variety of food hitting your senses from everywhere. I probably could have spent a good portion of the day just hanging out down there… eating waffles. The easily accessible bag room right off the main room also impressed me. Lots of shelves, easy to get to. I just wish Sugarbush had put a more effort into enforcing usage as finding a seat without a bag stuffed underneath was difficult.
Lifts: We rode a few of Sugarbush’s lifts and everything seemed to be in great condition. Very attentive lift operators, and great views from the lifts.
Trails: Sugarbush definitely had some fun trails. Our favorite of the day was Jester coming right off the summit. The view was pretty phenomenal right from the top, and it’s an awesomely curvy trail all the way to the base. There seems to be a little bit of something for everyone here and I just wish we had more time to explore it!
So, this might be a bit of a spoiler alert – but this is the last chicken tender review of the sabbatical adventure. I was chicken tendered out by the next day at Jay Peak, so Sugarbush was it. Wondering how they fared?
$8.75 got hungry visitors 3 medium sized tenders and a huge helping of fries. As we were eating the tenders, I started noticing that after two months of eating and reviewing chicken tenders – I know identical tenders when I taste them. So it seems Sugarbush and Pico are the same! Who knew!
The fries were pretty tasty, but the chicken just had that dry overcooked flavor that Pico had as well. These were slightly better, less expensive, and had a much bigger helping of fries, so I suppose it was a step in the right direction.
Final Score: 3.25 out of 5 Tenders