skier climbing art based on image by Joris Meier

Mad River Valley Back Country, in collaboration with the Catamount Trail Association and Sugarbush Resort, will host the fourth annual Mad River Valley Earn-Your-Turns Roundtable. Organizers are anticipating an interesting and lively discussion this year, with a deep-dive into a range of topics.


The event takes place this Friday, December 9, 2022, from 6 to 9 p.m. in the Castlerock Pub at Sugarbush’s Lincoln Peak in Warren.

Interest in backcountry skiing and riding continues to increase in Vermont. Backcountry organizations have established managed backcountry ski zones throughout the state.

“Opportunities are beginning to emerge for the creation of managed backcountry zones in and around The Valley; however, many in our community have concerns about possible ecological and neighborly impacts. With this and other recreational uses in mind, a new group (Mad River Valley Conservation and Recreation Steering Committee) has come together to define a "gold standard" that balances state-of-the-art outdoor recreation with protection of our natural resources,” explained MRVBC president Steve Sharp

He explained that this Friday’s event will bring together a roundtable of experts and members of the community to explore questions including:

  • What would gold standard backcountry zones look like in The Valley?
  • How can enthusiasts support this type of recreation while balancing environmental and neighborly concerns?
  • What can backcountry skiers do to foster inclusion in the sport, and how do they fold it into their definition of a gold standard?

Other topics to be explored are backcountry safety and the latest uphill policies at local resorts.

The schedule is as follows: 6 p.m., doors open; 6:15, Uphill Policy Update (Sugarbush and MRG); 6:30 – Roundtable presentations begin; 7 p.m. – Questions from the moderator; 7:20 – Q&A from the audience; 8 p.m. - End of roundtable discussion; 8-9 p.m., social hour.