Welcome to the Bolton Backcountry

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In December 2017, Bolton Valley opened the first in-house backcountry-specific guiding and instructional program in North America, complete with top-of-the-line rental and demo equipment featuring Dynafit alpine touring and Weston Splitboards.Adam DesLauriers on Ricker Peak by Mike Colburn

With the most accessible and extensive backcountry terrain in the Northeast, this program makes Bolton Valley the perfect destination for skiers and riders looking to explore beyond lift-service, as well as cross-country skiers looking to access more aggressive terrain.  Visitors will have the opportunity to safely explore thousands of acres of high-mountain wilderness terrain, while learning the ins and outs of alpine touring, backcountry safety, and self-reliance.

With its proximity to the alpine resort and all its amenities, the Bolton Valley Backcountry Program also provides a unique experience for parents, in that childcare and kids ski school programs are all available on-site while they explore pristine Vermont wilderness.

 


 

Unequaled Access to Endless Terrain

Alec on RickerBolton Valley is the highest zip code in New England at elevation 2200 feet, with surrounding peaks ranging from 3200’ to the summit of Bolton Mountain at 3,650’. 

With its expansive view of the Lake Champlain Basin, Bolton faces directly west across the widest part of the lake and lies right in the middle of the front range of the Green Mountains’ highest peaks.  Not only does that provide amazing sunsets over the lake, but it means significant snowfall after storms pick up moisture above Champlain and then empty it on the western flanks to climb over the highest peaks of the Greens.

The lion’s share of Bolton Valley’s premiere backcountry terrain lies on the leeward faces of its highest ridges, providing a northeast-facing snow-accumulating zone that sits 2000 feet above the Champlain Valley floor and keeps snow shaded, light, and fluffy throughout the winter season.  The accessible terrain ranges from mellow stands of old-growth white and yellow birch and maple trees to steep wooded glades to narrow little couloirs and cliff zones that challenge even the most advanced skiers and riders.

 

Backcountry Guiding and Instruction

Kids at Maggies

The wide range of terrain and its ease of access from the alpine ski area and chairlifts make the Bolton Valley backcountry program ideal for anyone interested in learning more about backcountry touring, skiing, and riding.

Backcountry touring can be intimidating if you're not familiar with the area you're skiing or riding in, or if you're just learning how to use the equipment.  Our guides and instructors are availble every day of the season, and our weekly clinics and tours are a great way to get started.

It’s also a great way for families to try it out together.  Our knowledgeable guides and instructors will always tailor routes to ability and fitness levels, so don’t hesitate to ask about bringing the whole family.

For more information on our guiding services and instructional programs, click here.

 

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AD woodwardFor more ambitious backcountry skiers and riders, our Backcountry and Nordic Programs Director, Adam DesLauriers will be available to guide private individual and group tours, as well as regular group backcountry clinics and tours on select weekends throughout the season. 

Adam’s familiarity with the terrain at BV is second to none, having been raised at Bolton Valley and spending his summers cutting trails in high school and college.  He’s worked in the ski industry filming ski expeditions for clients like The North Face and Warren Miller, and guiding and instructing throughout the western US, Canada, Alaska, the Andes in South America, and the Chamonix Valley and beyond in the Alps. 

Adam returned to Vermont just over a decade ago and has been raising his kids here on the mountain – making them the 4th generation of DesLauriers at Bolton Valley.  

You won’t want to miss the opportunity to have him show you around the neighborhood this winter!

For more information or if you just want to say hi, stop by the BV Backcountry and Nordic Center or email Adam and the Backcountry staff at BVBackcountry@gmail.com.