Golf, Yoga or both?


By Myra Foster

Nancy McMahon stopped me this morning to say she had just played her best round of golf. Ever. “I should take yoga before every game.”

We had been in a yoga flow class together at The Living Room on Tuesday. She packed up her mat and was off to meet friends for a little lunch at Tenderloins and their 1:47 tee time.

I don’t know what the scorecard read but her smile told the story.   “I was so relaxed.”  Shoulders, back, hamstrings stretched.  “There was more power in my swing.”

Golf and Yoga. Now there’s a program at Stratton Golf School with a workshop for women August 9-11 and one for all on August 23-24. Now you can take advantage of Stratton’s proven instructional programs – with a twist.

Renowned since 1969 for individualized golf programs and a teaching facility designed specifically for instruction, Stratton Golf School now adds V1 video analysis to the powerful teaching tools. You’ll go home with a swing analysis reminder along with your pro’s comments and even a comparison to tour players.


Along with the technical aspects of the game, Golf and Yoga builds flexibility, focus, core strength.  Be Centered. Balanced.  And remember to Breathe.

I’ve been reminded to slow down my backswing. To relax. “You’ve got a powerful swing, we just need to harness that power,” I’ve been told. So I’m thinking this Golf and Yoga might just be my gateway to a better game.  Then maybe Nancy might just let me join her for a round.

Learn More about the Golf & Yoga at

Let’s Ride


By Sky Foulkes

This past Saturday was a day for a bike ride and so that is just what I did; the 7th annual Tour de Bondville is in the books! On one of the best days so far this summer, about 130 riders took off from the Startingate Ski Shop on one of four rides (50, 50 alternate, 26, or 16 miles).

I rode the original 50 mile route which took me by Bromley, through Londonderry (and a wave to the Saturday farmers market), through Andover, down into Weston, back to Londonderry (this time I wanted to stop at the farmers market :-)) and then a finish through the “hills” on Winhall Hollow Rd. The route was designed to maximize the climbing, and that it does about 4000 ft worth, so let’s just say it is for the strong of heart (legs and lungs too!).


The other rides also have a fair bit of climbing too, this wouldn’t be a ride in VT without that, but are a bit tamer. It was a beautiful day to be out on the roads. And not only did I get some great riding in, the event raised over $28,000 for breast cancer research. How cool is that!? If you missed this year’s Tour, be sure to put it on your calendar for next year. But, in case you can’t wait that long, you’re in luck as there is another great bike event just around the corner (so to speak) the Vermont Challenge is August 14-18, So get out and ride, it is just awesome!

See you on the roads.

Out Of A Western Movie

By Lauren Suriani
DSC_0002One of the great things about living in southern Vermont is that I get to do awesome things all the time (sorry for bragging). This week it was horseback riding. From the start of the day I was stoked that I got to actually wear my cowboy boots for the correct reason. Here I thought they were just a fashion statement. My fellow marketer, Courtney (also in cowboy boots), and I got a chance to check out Horses for Hire over in Peru, VT. It’s a pretty, little place with 8 horses that does all sorts of rides for young, old, inexperienced, groups and anything else. They can accommodate to almost any and all of your needs.

Upon arrival we were greeted by a sea of smiles from our guides and their horses (they can smile too right?). Looking around the property we could see a few kiddies on pony rides through the surrounding trails smiling ear to ear. It seemed like everyone was just having a blast at this place and I couldn’t wait to get on one of these guys! (The horses that is…)


After picking out a helmet that fit my giant melon I mounted up onto Scout, a beautiful horse that really loved to eat. I knew we would be great friends from that point on. Our group consisted of six adults and one little munchkin, for a ride that was about an hour and a half long. We covered some really beautiful trails and it was really nice to just take things slow. We started off down Southern Road before taking a turn uphill and into the woods. The guides were all great and knowledgeable about the pretty Vermont properties we passed and the trails were well maintained. With all the rain we’ve seen this summer, everything was super green! I guess they don’t call it the green mountain state for nothing.

The guides were also very helpful on how to ride your horse properly (obviously). I learned how to start, stop and steer, all the basics you need when riding a horse. Although Scout did take full advantage of my lack of riding skills and stopped to graze wherever he pleased. But that was fine with me. The guides gave me tips on how to keep him moving.


Whether it’s a date night or you’re looking to do something with the whole family, this place should be on your to-do list. It pretty much guarantees a great time. Maybe you’re not a super athlete or maybe you are and just want a nice relaxing evening adventure. Check out Horses for Hire and enjoy Vermont from a different perspective. For rides and more information give them a call at 802.297.1468.


Riding High

By Courtney DiFiore

July has become cycling month here at Stratton and it makes a lot of sense with all the bike racing that happens this month, not only in Southern Vermont, but around the world. In honor of this theme, I’ve compiled a few benefits to cycling.

1. It’s easy on the body.

Cycling puts very little impact on joints making it an easy sport to jump into. “Even if you have pain walking, you can still ride a bike, because it isn’t weight bearing,” says bike fit specialist Andrew Pruitt, EdD, Director of Boulder Center for Sports Medicine, in Colorado (Prevention Magazine).

2. It’s a great lower body toner.

The largest muscles in your body are in your legs and butt, making it easy to burn some major calories as you tone those areas of the body. “Riding 12 to 14 MPH burns more than 500 calories in only 60 minutes, and many people (even novices) can easily bike for an hour or two,” writes Selene Yeager from Prevention Magazine (from Joy Ride).

3. It creates a sense of community

Cycling is great for someone at any age which is why (I think) it’s so popular. “6.9 Million: The number of boomers who own a bicycle,” according to Yeager. That’s a lot of people! And it seems as though all who ride share in the same passion for riding. It’s a great second family to have.

4. It brings out the kid in you.

Who didn’t ride a bike as a kid?! If you claim you didn’t, well, I’m sorry you missed out on one of the best parts of childhood, but luck for you biking can be picked up at any age! So get peddling.

Cycling can be challenging, especially if you’re aiming to become the next Tour De France winner or something like that, but it can also be calming and fun in a casual setting. Grab a bike and get going. There’s still a lot of summer left. If you’re like me and need something to work toward (I can’t seem to just ride, I have to be training for something), you should check out all the upcoming cycling events at Stratton.


July 27 Tour de Bondville – The Seventh Annual Tour de Bondville combines a bike ride, golf outing and after party. Choose the 50, 25 or 18 mile bike ride or to spend the day on the links, all while raising funds for a good cause – breast cancer research.

Aug 14 – 18 The Vermont Challenge – Four day cycling tour through southern Vermont, beginning and ending at Stratton Mountain. The people of Vermont welcome you to tour Vermont’s beautiful landscape, replete with rolling farmlands, bucolic villages, and quiet country roads. The Vermont Challenge is a friendly experience drawing on the qualities of the people of Vermont.

Sept 1 Grizzly Triathlon – Mark your calendars for the inaugural Stratton Mountain Grizzly Triathlon! Compete solo or create a team of three. Swim 600 meters, bike 13 miles and finish with a 5k mountain run.

Stratton invests $6 million in the mountain and resort experience for 2013-14.

By Rob Chrostowski

Reap the rewards of summer projects that focus on enhancing the entire resort experience including snowmaking, lodging, on-mountain dining and Village food, drink and fun.

Glades and trails.  Thirty more acres of glades bringing the total tree skiing and riding (considered by many to be among the best in the East – especially Test Pilot) to 135 acres.  Sunbeam trail is stumped and ready to open with the first good snowfall, additional trail enhancements focus on Black Bear, Sunriser Supertrail, Runaway and Grizzly Access.

Three new snow cats. Corduroy is always in style.

1,500 horsepower electric snowmaking air compressor replaces a diesel model. Purchased in consultation with Efficiency Vermont, the new compressor delivers more cubic feet of air per minute using less, and cleaner,  energy.  With 95 percent snowmaking coverage, 270 million gallons of water in reserve and one of the most powerful systems anywhere, Stratton is known for snow so great it is guaranteed – every day of  the season and any time of the day.

Inn at Stratton Mountain takes on a new look and feel with a total room remodel combining comfort  and  convenience with that classic Vermont lodge vibe.  The Inn continues to offer value in a resort property that’s a short shuttle to the slopes. Guests enjoy hot tub and sauna, complimentary breakfast and Bentley’s Restaurant which also has a new chef and fresh new menu with comfort classics and a French Moroccan flavor – try the lamb burger. The Inn is also home to the Living Room yoga studio.

The Living Room,  a new yoga studio with wood floors, wood-burning fireplace and big windows looking out onto the lawn.  Stratton offers more than 20 yoga classes each week plus special events held in conjunction with the team from Wanderlust, the yoga and music festival that makes Stratton  home each June.  Health and wellness. Real world workouts. It’s all part of an invitation to Be. Active. Adventurous. Relaxed. Inspired. Together.

Investment in on-mountain dining experience with a focus on mid-mountain lodge – a popular gathering place that looks out onto the North American trail and offers quick access to the Ursa Express upper mountain six-passsenger lift.  Kelly McNabb, a classically trained chef who honed her skills in France and Switzerland , takes the helm and designs new menus  with an eye on fresh, local,  healthy fare served up fast to fuel the ski day.

The Mill House on the Commons. Stop in for a cup of the world’s best hot chocolate– Laura Cianci’s secret recipe – espresso, coffee drinks, pastry, salad or sandwich. Pull up a chair in front of the woodstove and watch the skaters glide by along the Mill Pond.

Slopeside Stratton Village offers new dining and shopping experiences. The Firetower Tavern is built with locally milled post and beam timber and Eastern white pine shiplab to set the stage for a Vermont artisan inspired menu, craft beers, signature spirits, comfort dishes, rustica pizza and a lively après scene in the tavern. New deli and grocer follows the post and beam theme with Vermont Fresh sandwiches and salads along with the best in local food purveyors.  First Run ski shop and the Boot Lab also take on a new look and add the Go Pro lounge – one of four to be found in Village shops.

Rentals, new gear and an expanded junior line in the Head fleet. Slopeside convenience, fast service, free overnight storage and a satisfaction guarantee.

This is Insane!

By Courtney DiFiore

Wear this band (that squeezes you so tight you can’t breathe) and instantly look 10lbs! Drink this shake (that tastes like cardboard) and drop two dress sizes in one week! Oh and call within the next 10 minutes and shipping and handling is on us!

insanity_2Sound familiar? We’ve all heard infomercials about products that sound too good to be true and usually they ARE too good to be true. Wearing some cloth around your stomach isn’t going to make you lose weight. I wear one every day…it’s called a shirt -_- and I haven’t seen any change in the scale. And eww, most of the shakes advertised truly do taste like some kind of cardboard, dry and chalky – so no thank you.

I admit, I’ve fallen victim to many of these infomercials that promise minimal to no work for amazing results, but alas, they never work for me.  There is one though that I don’t regret whipping out my credit card for – Insanity.

I’m sure you’ve all seen Shawn T. on TV. He created Insanity, a super, intense workout that’s based off Max Interval Training. With traditional interval training you do short bursts of high intensity training followed by longer periods of rest. With Max Interval Training, you reverse that and do long bursts of high intensity training followed by very short periods of rest. The result is burning more calories during your workout and more calories after your workout.


Alaina Savage has been a certified Insanity instructor for just under a year now and also teaches at the Springfield, Vermont Rec Center. She also started with the at-home DVD version (except she actually completed it) and fell in love with the work out. Some benefits of participating in the class version as opposed to the at-home are the recipe handouts students receive, the motivation you get from your classmates and the fact that it’s only twice a week, giving your body a hard time to adapt. Another BIG plus, in my book anyway, is that as an instructor, Alaina receives new work out routines and music for the classes every month. The DVD’s never changed. I always did the same rotation of the same moves and songs.After completing one month of the two month program, I stopped. I was doing it on my own so I was lacking motivation and it was six days a week which was really pushing it for me. I have a job and a social life, you know! Lucky for me though, and YOU, I get to try it again. The Sports Center at Stratton Mountain is now offering Insanity classes!

There are two series:
Series 1: Starting Monday July 22, every Monday and Wednesday at Noon until Wednesday August 28
Series 2: Starting Tuesday July 23, every Tuesday and Thursday at 4:30pm until Thursday August 29

At the first class you’ll have an initial fit test that will be repeated at the l  ast class as a way of tracking your results. Classes consist of 30 to 50 minutes of constant work. “This allows more results in less time,” says Savage.

Students who took the beta class sort of speak described it as fun, fast passed, intense and full body workout. As you can see by the sheer length of this blog entry I’m very passionate and excited about this new class. J If you decided to join one of the series, feel free to come back to this entry and share your feedback!

Is your safety first…or second?

By Courtney DiFiore

The sun sits high in the sky all by its lonesome filling the air with a dry heat. Beads of sweat drip down my neck. I reach for my canteen only to be disappointed by its light weight. Where has all the water gone?! Perched on the top of Stratton Mountain, I moan about my lack of preparation, forgetfulness and my thirst.


Does this sound familiar? If I’m going to hike, the last thing I want to do is load myself up with heavy bags. I’m the friend that bugs you to put her keys, wallet, phone etc. in YOUR bag that you thoughtfully brought. I can’t help it. I’m Italian, I need my arms free to talk…duh :) Okay, so obviously that doesn’t really count as a valid excuse but it is true that I like to have my arms free…and that I’m Italian (must be a coincidence). Anyway, the point is I choose comfort over practicality sometimes and that’s no good when it affects my safety.

“Safety? What does that have to do with having water?” said the interested reader of this blog.

Well interested reader of this blog, I’m glad that you asked that! Dehydration is dangerous and can cause both short and long term negative effects on your health. If hiking is on your agenda this summer, bringing plenty of water with you should be a priority. So take the time to pack the extra water. Let’s Be. knowledgeable this summer when it comes to safety.

Here are a few other tips when hiking Stratton (or other surrounding areas):

Warm up your muscles before your hike and cool down afterwards. Stretch!

Proper footwear is essential. Hiking boots are recommended.

Pack it in, pack it out! Please pack out all trash, leftover food and litter. Leave the mountain as you found it.

Respect the wildlife. Observe wild animals from a distance and do not follow, approach or attempt to feed.

Check the weather forecast before you go. In the event of a sudden storm be sure to lay low and move away from open fields and tall trees or objects (especially lift towers).

Don’t underestimate the mountain’s terrain. Know your limits. Always tell someone your route and destination and expected return time. Don’t hike alone.

Safe travels!

In the Blink of an Eye

By Courtney DiFiore

Most people use their spare time to browse their social networks, read a book or take a walk. I find myself looking up fun facts and ‘did you knows’. After browsing I found that “all the blinking in one day equates to having your eyes closed for 30 minutes.”

Is it true? Well, I guess I’d have to do my own experiment and I’m no scientist. But regardless, whether the exact number is true, it made me pose a question to myself. If I could get back those 30 minutes a day that I loose by blinking (supposably), what would I do with them?

I came up with a top 5 list of things I could/would do with 30 minutes:

1. Play some tennis – because I love it!
2. Exercise – because I love that too :)
3. Learn a new language (or start to anyway) – because I always say I’m going to and then don’t, saying I can’t find the time.
4. Fly a kite – I’ll admit, that crossed my mind as a joke stemming off the saying “oh, go fly a kite!” but after more thought, I realize I actually might enjoy that.
5. Kayak – I like being out on the water and I haven’t been kayaking for some time.

What would you do with your 30 minutes of blinking?!

Stratton Gets Extreme

photo[1]By Courtney DiFiore

The Extreme Wolverine Challenge is exactly what it sounds like…extreme and quite the challenge. In fact, it’s advertised as being “built by man, designed for beast, conquered by extreme athletes.” -_- Yeah, exactly.

The race is a challenging combination of 6miles (on a mountain! – which I’d say is challenging enough of its own) and 15-20 obstacles scattered throughout. Money is raised to support the charitable efforts of local and national charities throughout the U.S. Forever Our Heroes Foundation and the Stratton Foundation were two beneficiaries of this event today.

photo 2Walking into registration I was confident that I would make it out alive; however, shortly after arrival my nerves had gotten the best of me. Off to my right stood a HUGE blow up Marine that overlooked the start line and a pull-up bar where (too much surprise…NOT) big, strong men were lining up to have a go. To the left, I could see the finish line and two sets of obstacles – keg monkey bars and a slip and slide. Luckily the tent that stood directly in front of me was playing a great mix of music. That eased my nerves a tiny bit, that and the fact that right behind me was the kettle corn kart. That would be my motivation to finish…obviously.


My favorite part about the race was the camaraderie. Strangers became friends as they helped each other over walls and through mud and water. The energy was positive and encouraging. In the end, everyone finished with a smile, some high fives and great memories.

First Place Sean McCoy from GearJunkie with finish time of 50 Min. 50sec.
Second place – Stephen Renegold from GearJunkie with finish time of 50 mins. 51 sec.
Third place – Kate Boobar from Stratton Mountain with finish time of 53 mins 36 sec.
Big congrats to you all!


The Extreme Wolverine Challenge comes back to Stratton this October 19th. Get your redemption! Just before that is our Grizzly Triathlon (sprint style) on September 1st. Sign up now to guarantee your spot. It’s a great way to train during the summer so we’re all winter ready!

Drive-In Anyone?

By Courtney DiFiore

TGIF! If you don’t have any big plans to kick-off the weekend, let me be the one to provide you with some ideas.

For those of you out there that don’t know, there are two, yes TWO, Drive-In Movie Theaters located within 1 hour of Stratton Mountain. When I think of old school summer fun, drive-ins definitely come to mind. Grab your sweetie, the family or a group of friends and take a drive back in time tonight for some old fashion fun. This is your change to Be. spontaneous.

The North Field Drive-In located in Hinsdale, NH is showing Despicable Me 2 at 8:35pm and Man of Steel as their second showing. Hathaway’s Drive-In in North Hoosick, NY is playing Despicable Me 2 beginning at dusk (7pm-ish) and a second showing of Monster University.


Despicable Me 2
– Rated PG – Animation/ComedyGru is recruited by the Anti-Villain League to help deal with a powerful new super criminal.


Man of Steel
– Rated PG-13 – SciFiA young itinerant worker is forced to confront his secret extraterrestrial heritage when Earth is invaded by members of his race.


Monster University
– Rated G – Animation/Comedy
A look at the relationship between Mike and Sulley during their days at Monsters University — when they weren’t necessarily the best of friends.

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