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  1. #1
    30 something dad
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    From Utah to Vermont?

    So this is semi-mtn bike related. I've been living in Utah, from the Northeast, for the past few years and now some family needs may make it so we have to head back. If this happens, I'm targeting Vermont as the place to land as it seems to have similar access to outdoor recreation as Utah. I'm not looking for comparisons, I know that the trails are vastly different and the western pow is diffent then eastern snow, but I'm curious if anyone on this board has made a similar move and what their thoughts are. I do love the small towns in New England and wouldn't mind going back to that day to day lifestyle, but the access to high quality trails, crags, and mountains here in the west is pretty amazing. I also like the more laid back attitude of the west, and in all my times in Vermont, it seemed the most similar in mindset over any other state in the east. Am I right in thinking this way? Looking forward to hearing your opinions. Thanks in advance.

    Cheers....

  2. #2
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    Ya, we moved from Park City to Lebanon,NH. I am from Maine originally and was in PC for 12 years.The mtbing can be really fun here [not nearly as fun or as vast as out west] and the hiking is awesome. We definitely miss Utah and will probably move back out in a couple years, Meanwhile VT and NH have lot's of great recreation.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by truepatriot09 View Post
    .... I also like the more laid back attitude of the west, and in all my times in Vermont, it seemed the most similar in mindset over any other state in the east. Am I right in thinking this way? Looking forward to hearing your opinions. Thanks in advance.

    Cheers....
    OK, an over-generalization, but here are my various answers to your question
    • the native NY'r in me : :"you-tah's by tribeca, right? "
    • the former Mainer in me: "ayuh"
    • the NH recreate-or in me/state plate motto "Live freeze & die!"
    • the VT'r in me: as Ben & Jerry said, "if it's not fun, why do it?"

  4. #4
    SP Singletrack rocks
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    I lived in Utah for 3 years skied and worked at Snowbird and lived In Sandy, and I now ski,work, and live in Stowe for my third year. I am from a small town south of pittsburgh, pa originally.

    I think Vermont, especially northern vermont is a really nice place to live. There are pluses to stowe over Sandy, and some negatives.

    Trails

    Sandy - had to drive to most trail heads, best riding was 40 to 60 minute drive away in Park City or American Fork. Once there the inconnected trail systems were amazing fast well designed trails.

    Stowe - 60+ miles of varied trails within in riding distance from my house. An hour drive got me even more much of it that isnt well know yet.

    slight edge to stowe because I hate driving my car to ride.

    Weather

    Sandy - almost never rains, trails are dusty when it does rain trails would just get better can be very hot

    Stowe - pleasant temps almost all the time, rains alot more. Local riding club does not condone riding in the rain

    edge to Sandy

    Road Riding

    Sandy - is an uncharming suburb riding to the canyon is nice but has tons of car traffic.

    Stowe - is in northern Vermont, and alot of cooler temps. the scenery is epically awesome, and my lungs do not get filled with smog

    huge edge to stowe

    Skiing/riding I am going to get tons of flac for this

    Terrain

    Stowe - lame mountain when measured by its marked runs. Tons of tight trees, steep chutes, open bowls, and small to medium drop all over the place.

    Snowbird - best inbounds terrain in Utah. Top 5 in the country.

    edge to Snowbird but Stowe is the best in the east when the BC becomes part of the equation.

    Snow

    Stowe - 300-350 inches with frost freezes, groomers almost an icey mess

    Snowbird - 500 plus inches of the lightest driest snow ever, no frost/freeze cycles

    Huge edge to Snowbird

    Finding Untracked

    Stowe - tons of woods all around the places that people just do not know, can take weeks to fully track out sometimes

    Snowbird - tracked out in hours, when the BC is safe basically gets hit as if a resort, welcome to the Wasangles

    Edge to stowe

  5. #5
    30 something dad
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    Thanks for the replies. If this happens we're looking at Montpelier as our landing place so the northern trail/snow beta is helpful. Part of me is excited about moving back east, and part of me thinks we'd be crazy to leave SLC. Agreed, Sandy blows, and if we stay in UT, we're moving to Park City.

    I think the bottom line is that both places are pretty sweet for their own reasons...but I do not miss humidity or ticks!

  6. #6
    SP Singletrack rocks
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    compared to Pittsburgh. Vermont summertime air is way more pleasant!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by truepatriot09 View Post
    ...

    I think the bottom line is that both places are pretty sweet for their own reasons...but I do not miss humidity or ticks!
    I don't know why, but central VT has very few ticks compared to Maine, where my dog would pick up like 30 in a half day ride, and after an hour in the field for work, you would have to toss them out the window on the way back to the office. But it was sunnier there....I thought it was my imagination, but I checked the stats.

  8. #8
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    Long time central VT. resident here who skis Little Cottonwood Canyon most winters. A good day skiing in Vt. is as good as it gets, and they happen fairly frequently. What you need is the flexibility in your lifestyle to catch those days. My opinion, based on a little travel, is that we also have epic Mt. biking options that seem to get better every year.

  9. #9
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    Lived in central vermont for 8 years before moving west (washington). Yeah, the eastern attitudes are still there. vermont winters are long, snowy, cold & dreary. I was lucky to have V.A.S.T. trails to x-country ski on out my front door however the snowmachine'rs rule them on the weekends and it is like a superhighway of two cycle smog with fatty's dressed in neon Polaris jackets tossing beer cans on the trail behind them.
    Kingdom trails in Burke is great riding but you have to pay for it & they can't touch anything like the endless buttery single track in washington & Oregon. Fall in Vermont is as good as it gets, but the green Mtn. forest needs some serious consideration to develop some great trails. Also, Unless you live in Burlington, cell coverage in Vermont is nearly non-existant.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by plumbitup View Post
    long time central vt. Resident here who skis little cottonwood canyon most winters. A good day skiing in vt. Is as good as it gets, and they happen fairly frequently. What you need is the flexibility in your lifestyle to catch those days. My opinion, based on a little travel, is that we also have epic mt. Biking options that seem to get better every year.
    qft.

  11. #11
    Vermonter to the Core
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    If you have children that are school age you should check into the school systems.. some are better than others..

    I lived out west for 10 years.. If I did not have a child that was school age I would back out there skiing chest deep pow daily!! other than that family is more important so I sit idle... I do get out west yearly!!
    VT is expensive to live in also... if you buy, taxes are much higher than UT.. Fuel in the winter can run into the thousands of dollars a year.... just some more info someone would have reminded me of when I moved back..
    JEM
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  12. #12
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    VT > UT.
    We actually have trees! We don't have the silly alcohol rules that Utah has. No temperature inversion smog trap in the winter. Our state isn't run by Mormons (not that there's anything wrong with that). Etc...
    I lived in Logan, UT for a year and though I enjoyed it, I couldn't wait to get out of there. I'm one of those people who moved all over growing up, but I think Vermont is where I'll put down roots. Been here 4.5 years now and not planning on moving anytime soon.
    There can be a bit of ski-town snobbery (I live in Stowe), but those folks are easy enough to avoid. If you're looking at Montpelier (aka "mont-peculiar"), that town is really cool. Very liberal, hippie-ish, and not as touristy as other parts of Vermont. I used to live there and my job is based there. The riding around here is pretty sweet and there's plenty of other stuff to do too. The biggest problem for me is that it's expensive to live here, and jobs are few and far between (in my field at least).
    Good luck!

  13. #13
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    If you live for any one thing, like Skiing Powder, or riding your bike year round, Vermont is not for you. If your interests are diverse and your mind is open, there is plenty of top-quality recreational opportunities year round. Thanks to VMBA, MTBing in VT is exploding. In-roads have been made and many state forrests, town forrests, and yes, even the green mountain national forrest have become partners in building out some trail networks that will connect and suppliment existing networks all around CVT. Our riding is becoming a great mix of old school, hard to find and follow rake and ride single track, and new school, buffed, bermed BMX inspried trail. Tons of opportunity to enjoy and contribute to the cause. Other reasons to like Montpelier, you are on 89 and can get around really easy. Along with the local singletracks, you are 15 minutes from Waterbury, Millstone in Barre, and Northfield where norwich is building out a 9 mile touring center as we speak. 30 minutes to Stowe, Morrisville, and waitsfield. A little farther drive gets you to Hinesburg, rochester, a great DJ park in Johnson. If you want to drive an hour you are at the kingdom trails or the STAB in Brownsville, Pine Hill park. You are an easy drive to NH and Mt. Washington, at the beach or Boston in 3 hours, in montreal in 1.5 hours. So many quality rivers within an hour, when it's too wet to ride, the whitewater boating is in. Good trout waters, some fairly quality climbing, be it rock or ice in Stowe, Bolton, Marshfield. Skiing can be good, and then it can also suck. The resorts are expensive and crowded, but there is plenty of self powered skiing to do and if you diversify you can always have fun between nordic, xc/lite bc gear, and full on DH skiing. Also in monpelier there is a great school system. The one thing that sucks about Montelier is the restaurant scene. Alot of "almosts". During the summer, however there is GREAT thai from the street vendor at State and Elm. What did I miss?

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveVt View Post
    ... like Skiing Powder,... Vermont is not for you....

    What did I miss?
    Coming from you that's kinda funny

    Not much really, summed it up pretty well

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by gravitylover View Post
    Coming from you that's kinda funny

    Not much really, summed it up pretty well
    Now don't get me all wrongly quoted....when there is pow to harvest, I will be harvesting. But when there's not, there's not and you better have some other **** on tap cause you can wait a while for it.

  16. #16
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    One more factor to consider. If you're a beer drinker, VT. offers a wealth of outstanding local and regional creations. Utah, not so much.

  17. #17
    icanseeformiles(andmiles)
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    Quote Originally Posted by truepatriot09 View Post
    Thanks for the replies. If this happens we're looking at Montpelier as our landing place so the northern trail/snow beta is helpful. Part of me is excited about moving back east, and part of me thinks we'd be crazy to leave SLC. Agreed, Sandy blows, and if we stay in UT, we're moving to Park City.

    I think the bottom line is that both places are pretty sweet for their own reasons...but I do not miss humidity or ticks!
    kinda late to the party, living in southern vt for the winter. made the move from colorado to nh/vt this year. Great coffee at Capitol Grounds in Montpelier.
    Quote Originally Posted by MB1
    To differentiate riders by the type of surface frequented is IMO the height of foolishness.

  18. #18
    30 something dad
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    All great responses, thank you! Pretty sure the move is going to happen, either this coming fall or potentially in spring 2013. The plan may change from Montpelier to Manchester, however, due to a job opportunity for my wife. Any opinions on the Manchester/So. Vermont outdoor scene? I know there is lower snowfall there but otherwise what are the major differences or advantages? I like that the state is small enough that you can live south with skiing and riding nearby but it's only a 2 hour drive to hit Stowe or the Kingdom Trails, but would love the locals take on this.

    Also, I agree that VT has an overall better brew scene, but we have some good ones here in SLC also. Epic Brewing is amazing!

    Thanks again!

  19. #19
    Paste eater
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    hmmmm, Brattleboro is a little weird and somewhat boring IMO. Totally left, like crazy naked people left.

    Can't really speak to Manchester. Had a roommate from there once. Seems like a nice enough place. If I could live anywhere in VT I think I'd prefer Montpeculiar, anywhere along 100 from Waitsfield>Stowe or Burlington. Not enough going on up in East Burke and cold as fark.

    TO calibrate my my opinions, I live in UT now and lived in Portland ME for 7 years. Spent a lot of time in VT mountain biking and during my college years. I like VT, but prefer the ME. Certainly things I miss about it.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by truepatriot09 View Post
    All great responses, thank you! Pretty sure the move is going to happen, either this coming fall or potentially in spring 2013. The plan may change from Montpelier to Manchester, however, due to a job opportunity for my wife. Any opinions on the Manchester/So. Vermont outdoor scene? I know there is lower snowfall there but otherwise what are the major differences or advantages? I like that the state is small enough that you can live south with skiing and riding nearby but it's only a 2 hour drive to hit Stowe or the Kingdom Trails, but would love the locals take on this.

    Also, I agree that VT has an overall better brew scene, but we have some good ones here in SLC also. Epic Brewing is amazing!

    Thanks again!
    If you must make the move back east, I'd suggest getting into whitewater paddling. If there's one thing that makes this place bearable it's the wealth of rivers. Granted, we're not blessed with long, multi-day runs, but you'll be in a prime location for creeking when it's too wet to ride.

  21. #21
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    So the move is definitely on for later this summer/early fall. However the destination has changed, we're going back to our old stomping ground of seacoast NH. Probably Exeter. There were multiple factors that brought us to this conclusion but now that it's on I'm a little more excited as we spent 11 years in that area. Not looking forward to longer drives to get to the ski resorts, but I know that if we land in Exeter that I'll have Fort Rock in my backyard and P-tuck up the street.

    Seeing as I was not as big of a mountain biker when I lived there before, and NH'ers have some suggestions? Also, what is the best seacoast trail network for trail running?

    As always, thanks you all for your responses...and k1creeker, I have always had an interest in whitewater. I've been a big sea kayaker in the past but the whitewater is definitely intriguing. I'll probably get a new boat once we have feet on the ground in NH.

  22. #22
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    Welcome, in advance, back to the seacoast. Lots of regulars (posters and lurkers) on this board live in or near Exeter so let us know when you get here.

    Best trail network for trail running? That depends how hilly and technical you want for your run but Ft. Rock is pretty damn good. There are a couple trail races at the Rock each year, including a snowshoe run. That isn't looking too good for this year though! College Woods at UNH is pretty good too, as is the Sweet Trail in Newmarket and Durham. Kingman Farm near UNH is also fun. The Urban Forestry Center in Portsmouth is a gem for a mellower trail run. Not a lot of miles, pretty flat and not very technical but just a nice piece of land. For something mellower, and very flat, I like the trails on the Philips Exeter Academy property. I can run to these from my house so that's great but I'm not sure I'd drive to hit these.

    There are a bunch of us that XC ski Ft. Rock and elsewhere around Exeter when it's on.

    By the way, did you see this thread re: Exeter?
    Exeter Area?

  23. #23
    30 something dad
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    Thanks, DireWolf. I'll definitely hit you up when we land back in NH. I rode at Fort Rock once when I didn't know how to ride and remember it being pretty tough, so I'm pumped to get back there with some more experience under my belt. I've also ridden at P-Tuck and Kingman Farm, I've done the EFTA race at Bear Brook so I know that are too. But I'm psyched to try out some of the trails you mentioned for running for sure. Hopefully next winter will be snowier than this winter so I can break out the ski's with you guys.

    Thanks also for the other Exeter thread. Some good stuff in there for sure. Well, if anyone is SLC/PC bound between now and August feel free to PM me so we can hook up and ride or ski! Otherwise I'll see you back in the Granite State!

    Cheers!

  24. #24
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    I live in Candia, NH, right by Manchester, NH. Had a friend from Candia move out to Utah. Oerall he loves it there more, the vast-ness of the trails, epic mountains, plus he loves the going down part. He does miss NH riding though. Rocky, rooty, some really nice hidden little trails(systems) all over the state.

    Im still riding Bear Brook in the winter, Fomba sometimes. Have rode in Fort Rock, the seacoast isn't too far from Candia, 30-40min.I usually stay around southern NH, i would drive to other trails to ride with people, definitely.

  25. #25
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    Shp

    I forgot to mention Stratham Hill Park.....GREAT trail running. The riding there is fun too and is getting better and better with more trails added.

    I was supposed to attend a conference in SLC next month but had to pull out. I'm pretty bummed that it didn't work out.

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