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VT Ice climbing beta
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By maineah
From Maine
Dec 18, 2013

My friend and I are planning a ice climbing trip to VT for the end of February. I was wondering what the best places are to sleep, eat, buy a guide, etc are? Oh, also, where should we climb? I'm planning targeting Smuggs, but am open to suggestions depending on avalanche conditions.


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By scott rourke
Dec 18, 2013

Smugg's is awesome. Lake Willoughby is outrageous. Get away from the ski areas to find cheap motels. Best bets could be Burlington and St. Johnsbury areas? Buy a guide online before you go. Could have valuable beta.


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By Nick Goldsmith
Dec 19, 2013

Depends on what level you climb at. Smuggs has more moderats. The lake has only 2 easy climbs that get pretty packed.


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By Rockbanned
From Plattsburgh, Ny
Dec 19, 2013
Slab...

Keep heading west to the 'daks, heh heh heh... Hundreds of places to ice and many of them you won't see a soul... :)


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By doligo
Dec 19, 2013
Jose Cuervo Fruitcups dirtbag style

You can buy the Smuggs Guide from the outfit in Jeffersonville - I'm blanking on their name. It's a tiny paperback, but worth every penny. If I find my old one, I can sell it to you ;)

I personally would stay in Stowe, it's just a hassle to get on the other side if coming from East. There are many options there and you can sometimes score an inexpensive motel room. Further it is from the ski area and the shuttle route, the cheaper it is. Lots of dining and night time options. If you stay just outside of the Village of Stowe proper, the lodging tax is less too.


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By maineah
From Maine
Dec 19, 2013

I haven't had any luck finding a guidebook online. What's the name of the place in Jeffersonville where guides are sold? Any chance it would be possble to find a hostel?

Whie the Dack's are appealing, it would make my trip from Maine that much longer.

Thanks for the info everyone!


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By doligo
Dec 19, 2013
Jose Cuervo Fruitcups dirtbag style

I tried searching online, but can't find that guiding outfit's info! They must have gone out of business or got absorbed by someone. They used to do conditions reports for the Smuggs at NEIce.com - and now it's run by Petra Cliffs, you may wanna call them to see if they have the guidebooks for sale. You can also call the ski shop in Jeffersonville (I believe there is only one) - they used to sell the guidebooks and the climbing guides used to have an office there.

As for hostels, not sure about Jeffersonville, but there used to be one in Stowe, but it's hard to get to (reservation is by lottery or something like that). You'd be better off trying to find a cheap hotel online. Try Alpenrose, it's pretty cheap plus they have kitchenettes.


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By Zak Munro
From VT, Leadville CO
Dec 20, 2013
Wild Iris, Dynamitic 5.7

www.sunrisemountainguides.com/services trying getting some beta from these guys, there right in Stowe


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By doligo
Dec 20, 2013
Jose Cuervo Fruitcups dirtbag style

^^^ That's them! They wrote the guidebook, I believe...


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By tfarr3
Dec 20, 2013

Smuggs Book
Smuggs Book



You guys talking about Pat's old pamphlet guidebook? This thing is out of print and might be pretty hard to come by.
"An Ice Climbers Guide to N.E., 3rd ed." by Rick Wilcox has a large majority of the routes the smaller smuggs book has. Check Amazon, or give Outdoor Gear Exchange /GEARX.COM a call. They typically have the book in-stock, just lazy about keeping their website up to date perhaps.

Smuggs is great and has lots of fabulous climbs. To get the full flavor of VT, I'd do at least a day at Willoughby too.

Here's some potentially useful links:
www.smuggsicebash.com/
Photos for Condition shots: www.iceclimbingphotos.com/showgallery.php/cat/504
& discussion here: www.iceclimbingforums.com/forumdisplay.php?18-Vermont


Stowe can be pricey, staying closer to Burlington/Williston you'll have cheaper options likely, Jeff side is way more relaxed and a lot less crowded but much fewer options, though a bit closer to Willoughby.

Hope this helps.


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By Kirby1013
From Baltimore Maryland
Dec 20, 2013
Me eating a cliff bar walking back from Frankenstein Amphitheater

maineah wrote:
I haven't had any luck finding a guidebook online. What's the name of the place in Jeffersonville where guides are sold? Any chance it would be possble to find a hostel? Whie the Dack's are appealing, it would make my trip from Maine that much longer. Thanks for the info everyone!



Good call! The Dacks aren't worth the extra two hour drive. If the Dacks weren't so close to Baltimore I wouldn't climb there either. You wouldn't like it anyway. It's like the total opposite of the Whites


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By Rockbanned
From Plattsburgh, Ny
Dec 24, 2013
Slab...

Kirby1013 wrote:
Good call! The Dacks aren't worth the extra two hour drive. If the Dacks weren't so close to Baltimore I wouldn't climb there either. You wouldn't like it anyway. It's like the total opposite of the Whites


And that thought sir is why we have all the areas to ourselves. heh heh heh


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By Barbara Gail Warden
From St Thomas USVI & Smugglers Not
Jan 29, 2014
Climbing at Peterborg point in St. Thomas, US via

hey, i need to rent women's climbing boots for this weekend (have everything else) near smuggs / stowe / burlington. EMS & petracliffs say they don't rent and climb high is closed???

Any ideas?? Thanks to anyone who can help!


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By csproul
From Rancho Cordova, CA
Jan 29, 2014
Summit of Wolf's Head with Pingora in the background

SHould have gone last weekend. The Smug's Ice bash was last weekend and the had free demo gear!!!


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By Barbara Gail Warden
From St Thomas USVI & Smugglers Not
Jan 29, 2014
Climbing at Peterborg point in St. Thomas, US via

I did go to the ice bash last week, and I got hooked and want to go again! It never occurred to me there wouldn't be a place I could rent from!!


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By Rockbanned
From Plattsburgh, Ny
Jan 30, 2014
Slab...

For what you'll pay to rent a couple times, you can probably find a used set downstairs at GearX. They won't be the best ever, but for a few more days this season I'd imagine they'd work for you. What size you wear eh?


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By Barbara Gail Warden
From St Thomas USVI & Smugglers Not
Jan 30, 2014
Climbing at Peterborg point in St. Thomas, US via

wow, you guys are awesome!! I love this! I wear a 6.5-7 women's. In ski or snowboard boots a 24...sometimes a junior boot! do you work there? barb


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By csproul
From Rancho Cordova, CA
Jan 30, 2014
Summit of Wolf's Head with Pingora in the background

Rockbanned wrote:
For what you'll pay to rent a couple times, you can probably find a used set downstairs at GearX. They won't be the best ever, but for a few more days this season I'd imagine they'd work for you. What size you wear eh?

I'll second this. I was just on there last week and there was a pretty good selection of consignment and sale boots downstairs. Definitely worth a look.


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By Barbara Gail Warden
From St Thomas USVI & Smugglers Not
Feb 8, 2014
Climbing at Peterborg point in St. Thomas, US via

Thanks, y'all! You guys are awesome! A perfect pair of used climbing boots was just waiting downstairs at GearX & I hope to get out soon. When I get good maybe we'll all meet up & go climbing!


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