By Evan Johnson
Deep cold couldn’t stop the action in Killington over New Year’s weekend, as a blast of arctic weather that stretched from the Northeast to as far west as Texas, settled in to stay.
At Killington Resort, guests bundled up for skiing and riding on 147 trails and 1,200 acres of skiing and riding.
“Because of the great conditions we’ve been having for this time of year, the weather didn’t get our guests down,” said Kristel Fillmore, Killington’s communications manager. “Conditions have been better than they’ve been in year’s past and they seemed to respond to that.” The resort reported lower traffic than previous New Year’s weekends due to the cold.
Fillmore said there were no medical events for hypothermia or frostbite at the resort over the weekend.
Lift attendants and ambassadors, all trained in recognizing the symptoms of frost bite, checked guests around the resort and the lifts. Killington also published a blog post with recommendations on how to dress to avoid the cold.
“Hand warmers and toe warmers always help, too,” Killington’s Ben Colona said in the blog post. “It’s the best $3 you’ll spend all day.”
At Darkside Snowboards, general manager Tucker Zink said goggles, facemasks, handwarmers and “anything to keep your skin covered” were selling fast.
While the weekend showed the usual holiday traffic up and down the Killington Road, Zink said the cold “definitely kept people away this year.”
“I definitely discouraged some people from going out because they weren’t prepared for this kind of cold,” he said. “Some people would rent equipment and then come back 30 minutes later because they couldn’t hack it.”
And in the evenings, revelers threw on an extra sweater for ringing in the new year. D.J. Prime played to a sold-out crowd at the Wobbly Barn. Charity’s Tavern & Restaurant was also sold out.
Liquid Art’s Beth Sarandrea said cold temperatures had visitors coming in for hot drinks all day, but traffic dropped off during the evening hours, making it the quietest New Year’s Eve in six years.
“We had great reservations for dinner but it was quiet for the New Year’s Eve and I think that was the consensus up and down the road,” she said.