Weekend Escape to Vermont

This past Canada Day long weekend, the family (wife, and two kids aged 12 and 14) joined the Life With A Baby group for a weekend getaway to the Green Mountain State, Vermont, where we got the opportunity to enjoy two of Vermont’s Resorts, Jay Peak Resort & Burke Mountain Resort. I know what you may be thinking…isn’t Vermont a winter destination ideal for Skiing, Snowboarding and Luge (which you only ever see people doing during the Winter Olympics)? Yes and No….wait and see.

Burke Mountain, our first Destination and Jay Peak, our Second Destination, are primarily set up as winter Ski Destinations but during the off Season, which this was considering we visited in July were pretty spectacular in their own right.

We arrived at the Burke Mountain Hotel and Conference Centre; after a mere 7-hour drive from Vaughan, ON and were blown away by the Magnificent mountain views. We checked into our two Bedroom suite overlooking the mountain. The accommodations themselves were Incredible and offered everything we needed. Both Nicola & I and the kids had their own room….Score! 

What I appreciated most was the full-sized kitchen (fridge, stove, dishwasher, microwave, toaster & coffee maker).  This allowed us to prepare our own meals with the food we brought with us. I can’t tell you enough how much of a cost savings this is.. travelling and not having to spend money at the restaurants all the time, BONUS. Speaking of Restaurants, we did venture into town (East Burke) where we imbibed and ate at two of East Burke’s finest… Mike’s Tiki Bar, renowned for its wide selection of beer on tap (great atmosphere) and The Orange Rind on the banks of the Passumpsic River.  We ate an authentic Tomassoni Wood Fired Pizza and enjoyed the musical stylings of Shrimptunes, a genuine one-man band playing everything from Bob Marley to Bob Dylan and everything in between.

Anyway, back to the resort… Burke Mountain has some of the Best Mountain Biking trails in North America. Bike enthusiasts from all over travel with their bicycles and their gear just to experience them.  We did not travel with our bikes or gear…. no worries, rentals are available, as is a lift or shuttle to bring you to the top of the mountain where you can brave the Bear Tail.  Nope!… not our speed, we chose to walk the Scenic Toll Road to the Summit and caught a ride back down the mountain to the resort to spend the rest of the day in/by the pool and in the Hot tub.

Our stay at Burke Mountain was at an end.. on to Jay Peak Resort in Jay, VT. Wow… this place has everything!  After checking in and settling into our two-bedroom townhome (again with a full kitchen), we made our way to The Pump House, which is the Indoor waterpark located on the property.

What an incredible experience. The Lazy River was closed at the time, but everything else was operational, including the Double Barrel Flow Rider where, before I tried it, I imagined myself as a young Keanu Reaves from the movie “Point Break” where he played a surfer… those images and dreams were dashed when the best I could do to stay afloat is to lay on my belly after several (er, many failed attempts) to ride the board standing up….I’m told there is video evidence, Yikes!   Better success on the rock wall at the activity pool.  Then, with the tubes took several trips down the waterslide before building up the courage to tackle “La Chute”.   Yes, the description was right… I did scream my face off as that drop was Intense. Thankfully, I made it out alive and can safely check that off my bucket list…phew!

At Jay peak, It’s not only about the mountains, the waterpark, the Restaurants… It’s about the Golf which we got a chance to experience on their Championship level course and what can I say.. 18 holes of magnificence.  What a way to spend the day out in nature on beautifully manicured grounds, or at least they were until I got there (just kidding)… I did replace any divots and managed to shave two strokes from any score, so to me, it’s a win.

We ended the trip with a tram ride to the top of Jay Peak Mountain to see the majestic panoramic views from 4000 feet before heading back down and preparing for dinner. Our weekend getaway ended with the family and I wanting more, but alas, we did what we set off to do, which was to spend some quality time together and have an amazing experience in a new (new to us) destination.   We’ll be back… especially now that we learned that Canadian cash is accepted at par….Whoo Hoo.

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