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Thunder or Mountain Creek?

mykel

closer to Periwinkle
Apr 19, 2013
5,202
3,947
sw ontario canada
We are pretty much locked into the June 3-5 weekend for our roadtrip.

Thunder shows opening hopefully the Memorial day weekend which is only the weekend before.

I contacted them and said a crew of us were planning on coming down from Canada and asked about opening date, rates, camping, what trails would not be open if any and they got back to me with a shoulder shrug and told me to keep checking the website.

So, at only a month out that made a few kinda nervous so Mountain Creek has now been floated as an alternate or possible primary destination as it is already open.

Depending upon how my head is doing and how the tunnel vision is going, I may not spend as much time as I would like on the natural stuff,(Medium difficulty single Blacks and down - my days of hard SB and DB are unfortunately done) So flow trails will be on the menu regardless.

Last caveat - Which park has mellower lips - never learned to dirt jump so big booters with steep lips wig me out. Same for landings, who has the mellower ones with more fade away and less knuckle, as I tend to 50/50 them? At least at first, then sometimes I get lucky and butter the backside. Think what would be better for gaining comfort and progression.

So, does Thunder usually have everything up and going right away or do they stagger things a bit?

Knowing the broken-brain and shit jump trail skills - Which park should I sit in a pickup for 8+ hours for - Thunder or Mountain Creek?

Cheers!
 

StiHacka

Compensating for something
Jan 4, 2013
21,560
12,506
In hell. Welcome!
There's no way Gronk isn't open on the opening day - they'd have to cart all the flow bros to the bottom of the hill if it wasn't. I suck at jumping as well, Gronk is actually very good for progression. It is really well built, very safe, no steep lips and all the jumps can be squashed safely - ask me how I know. :rolleyes:
 

scrublover

Turbo Monkey
Sep 1, 2004
2,994
6,481
Thunder just based on the overall atmosphere/vibe at the place.

I'm closer to Mtn. Creek. I buy a season pass to Thunder.

Of course a game time decesion may need to be made based on weather and them actually being open. Am betting it'll be fine by then. Generally is.
 

mykel

closer to Periwinkle
Apr 19, 2013
5,202
3,947
sw ontario canada
Well, just spent what feels like half the age of the universe watching vids of both.
There is some truly inspired dirt work at MC, bobsleigh looking runs. Flow or not, they look like a hoot. Some of the tech look a cool especially some of the diving board rocks in the gully areas. Some of the MC trails seem to be graded a bit weird. Did read that some have had their ratings changed. I know one on the map was Blue, but on the vid I watched, the trailsign said Black.

As for Thunder, I'm thinking the Jumps like on Gronk, I would be more comfortable on those than the ones at MC. MC is not bad, just seems a bit more lip and knuckle. A couple of the tech trails also looked like they are within my limited ability, Trillium and Billy Badger for sure, but on the other side, there are a few sections that are a no go. I'm not too proud to walk something. Having said that watching riders of various speed, I could get down The Schist, but it would be a slower hence very rough journey, and I think I would just wreck a faster riders run. Still might be worth it just to say I have ridden it.

My vote is for Thunder, and a night of camping, but don't think I would be disappointed in MC. Will have to see how the others vote.

Killington was on the shortlist originally, but they won't have much open. Snowshed only.


Many thanks you have.
 
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Electric_City

Torture wrench
Apr 14, 2007
2,017
745
You made the right decision. Creek has steep lips and landings. I'm like you in the sense that I'm not good at jumping. That said, I have no problem at Whistler. Creek just makes them more like BMX jumps to me.

They definitely built some awesome trails back when it was Diablo. But nowadays they just maintain the 3 jump runs and that's it. A lot of my buddies who live on NYC and Jersey now have passes to Thunder instead.
 

jonKranked

Detective Dookie
Nov 10, 2005
86,451
24,965
media blackout
creek isn't the only ones making steep jumps. blue put in a double black jump line last year. my concern before riding them based on their other jumps was the steepness. i rode them once, my fears were confirmed. i think i've only ridden that jump line twice. what is it with bike parks making jumps that are too steep for DH bikes?

i will add that i've ridden the jumpline at Windham. that is a good jump line.
 

manhattanprjkt83

Rusty Trombone
Jul 10, 2003
9,647
1,219
Nilbog
I really prefer thunder over creek, I really enjoy the natural trails at Thunder. Creek's are pretty good but sometimes can be a bit too much pound your teeth out rock.
 

6thElement

Schrodinger's Immigrant
Jul 29, 2008
16,279
13,550
They definitely built some awesome trails back when it was Diablo. But nowadays they just maintain the 3 jump runs and that's it.
They were barely maintaining most of the trails when I last went there in 2014 or 15. Especially any of the old blacks like US Open, Stigmata, Ripper etc.
 

ebarker9

Monkey
Oct 2, 2007
858
246
I really prefer thunder over creek, I really enjoy the natural trails at Thunder. Creek's are pretty good but sometimes can be a bit too much pound your teeth out rock.
That would be my take as well. Even the easier natural trails at Creek are fairly punishing. The natural trails at Thunder are still challenging/interesting but have a bit more flow and fun to them.

I can't jump to save my life, but I'd agree that the jump trails at Thunder have mellower lips.
 

scrublover

Turbo Monkey
Sep 1, 2004
2,994
6,481
They were barely maintaining most of the trails when I last went there in 2014 or 15. Especially any of the old blacks like US Open, Stigmata, Ripper etc.
they're still not. or not much. was last there in summer 2019. i can't imagine they've done too much in the last couple years...
 

manhattanprjkt83

Rusty Trombone
Jul 10, 2003
9,647
1,219
Nilbog
The last time I went down the Trillium, it felt anything but flowy. So much erosion and mud holes.
Trillium is way overrated IMO. The trails riders right of the lift like wine cup and all all that stuff are really fun. Also thunder cliffs, back of the shack, etc...Short ish but some really fun rock lines through all of those areas. There is a trail which is 'out of bounds' above thunder cliffs which is super cool, steep as hell, reminds me of squamish in ways.
 

manhattanprjkt83

Rusty Trombone
Jul 10, 2003
9,647
1,219
Nilbog
That would be my take as well. Even the easier natural trails at Creek are fairly punishing. The natural trails at Thunder are still challenging/interesting but have a bit more flow and fun to them.

I can't jump to save my life, but I'd agree that the jump trails at Thunder have mellower lips.
Yeah I don't know what the hell it is but that place is brutal, especially all that stuff over by that little start deck thing up in the woods above the pond. This coming from a guy who's local mountain is snowshoe. I do really enjoy creek, don't want to totally knock it, I just prefer thunder.
 

jstuhlman

bagpipe wanker
Dec 3, 2009
16,843
13,280
Cackalacka du Nord
Yeah I don't know what the hell it is but that place is brutal, especially all that stuff over by that little start deck thing up in the woods above the pond. This coming from a guy who's local mountain is snowshoe. I do really enjoy creek, don't want to totally knock it, I just prefer thunder.
you be at the shoe opening weekend?
 

schwaaa31

Turbo Monkey
Jul 30, 2002
1,468
1,067
Clinton Massachusetts
27.5. There are a
Trillium is way overrated IMO. The trails riders right of the lift like wine cup and all all that stuff are really fun. Also thunder cliffs, back of the shack, etc...Short ish but some really fun rock lines through all of those areas. There is a trail which is 'out of bounds' above thunder cliffs which is super cool, steep as hell, reminds me of squamish in ways.
few lines through there that are gnarly. There are also a few if you go left immediately after getting on to Cliff Claven. I guess they were cut when they were filming a video with Richie Rude. Not as steep, but loamy, some natural doubles, drops, rollers. Really fun. The mountain seems to be open to rogue trails like that. Which is awesome. I agree on Trillium. That trail needs some love. Badger is great fast tech IMO. Seems to be holding up good as well.
 

schwaaa31

Turbo Monkey
Jul 30, 2002
1,468
1,067
Clinton Massachusetts
Sucks to hear about Mt Creek. I’m headed there the weekend of the 14th with some friends. Haven’t been in probably 8-9 years. I always loved the riding there.
 

manhattanprjkt83

Rusty Trombone
Jul 10, 2003
9,647
1,219
Nilbog
Sucks to hear about Mt Creek. I’m headed there the weekend of the 14th with some friends. Haven’t been in probably 8-9 years. I always loved the riding there.
Wait, what sucks to hear? Creek is the same creek it's always been, just as good as the old days. I was just saying I prefer a little softer dirt and flow to my tech trails if that makes any sense. Don't want to knock the Mt Creek folks, they do an amazing job, they can't do anything about the geology of the area.
 

schwaaa31

Turbo Monkey
Jul 30, 2002
1,468
1,067
Clinton Massachusetts
Wait, what sucks to hear? Creek is the same creek it's always been, just as good as the old days. I was just saying I prefer a little softer dirt and flow to my tech trails if that makes any sense. Don't want to knock the Mt Creek folks, they do an amazing job, they can't do anything about the geology of the area.
I was referring to the reports of not maintaining the trails. I'm psyched to get a weekend there. Always one of my favorite places to race/ride. The tech trails are bone jarring, and they have some of the best features of anywhere I've been in the northeast. Did the cabin drop get taken out? I thought I read that it did. What about the drop to nowhere? Is that still a thing?
 

manhattanprjkt83

Rusty Trombone
Jul 10, 2003
9,647
1,219
Nilbog
27.5. There are a

few lines through there that are gnarly. There are also a few if you go left immediately after getting on to Cliff Claven. I guess they were cut when they were filming a video with Richie Rude. Not as steep, but loamy, some natural doubles, drops, rollers. Really fun. The mountain seems to be open to rogue trails like that. Which is awesome. I agree on Trillium. That trail needs some love. Badger is great fast tech IMO. Seems to be holding up good as well.
Also, while we are talking about Thunder what's up w/ that pedal'y section at the bottom of loam ranger? That shit sucks! I am guessing that is the only way they could make that extra trail work?
 

manhattanprjkt83

Rusty Trombone
Jul 10, 2003
9,647
1,219
Nilbog
I was referring to the reports of not maintaining the trails. I'm psyched to get a weekend there. Always one of my favorite places to race/ride. The tech trails are bone jarring, and they have some of the best features of anywhere I've been in the northeast. Did the cabin drop get taken out? I thought I read that it did. What about the drop to nowhere? Is that still a thing?
I don't think you will be disappointed at all. Do you follow George on instagram? They do a ton of work on the trails. Can't comment on the cabin but drop to nowhere was there last fall, I doubt that thing is gone. Get excited it's the same place you will have a good time.
 

manhattanprjkt83

Rusty Trombone
Jul 10, 2003
9,647
1,219
Nilbog
killington is still open for skiing.
Killington is the easy choice here.
I am not sure what trails you guys ride in Killington but I spent a few days there last fall and really wasn't that happy with it. I love the huge mountain feel and the big vert but the trails just don't seem to link up very well. I remember a few really cool lines but nothing I would travel back for. Am I nuts?
 

manhattanprjkt83

Rusty Trombone
Jul 10, 2003
9,647
1,219
Nilbog
Yeah. That blows. I wish they had another route down. I’m guessing they were locked in to that route for some reason.
I am guessing they put it in for an enduro race and just decided to put it on the map. It's awesome until the last 3/4's then it's a slog on a DH bike.
 

jonKranked

Detective Dookie
Nov 10, 2005
86,451
24,965
media blackout
I am not sure what trails you guys ride in Killington but I spent a few days there last fall and really wasn't that happy with it. I love the huge mountain feel and the big vert but the trails just don't seem to link up very well. I remember a few really cool lines but nothing I would travel back for. Am I nuts?
Full disclosure I have never ridden there. Just shared a piece of info I found from a guy I know that's a ski racer, apparently there's speculation Killington could be open for skiing until June.
 

StiHacka

Compensating for something
Jan 4, 2013
21,560
12,506
In hell. Welcome!
Yeah. That blows. I wish they had another route down. I’m guessing they were locked in to that route for some reason.
Was the top section called "Cat and mouse"? It was like a giant pump track, lots of fun. But the smelly mud towards the bottom and the final pedally section just make it a no go on a DH bike.
 

manhattanprjkt83

Rusty Trombone
Jul 10, 2003
9,647
1,219
Nilbog
Full disclosure I have never ridden there. Just shared a piece of info I found from a guy I know that's a ski racer, apparently there's speculation Killington could be open for skiing until June.
I have, they have some great flow trails but the the trails out of the gondola are all fucked up in terms of routes. I didn't understand it.
 

manhattanprjkt83

Rusty Trombone
Jul 10, 2003
9,647
1,219
Nilbog
Was the top section called "Cat and mouse"? It was like a giant pump track, lots of fun. But the smelly mud towards the bottom and the final pedally section just make it a no go on a DH bike.
There are other routes off the top if you don't want to ride that but...

Cat and Mouse is 100% not my kind of trail but that thing was built PERFECTLY, it's incredible if you like that stuff. Then you can branch off into the poo mud if you'd like.
 

schwaaa31

Turbo Monkey
Jul 30, 2002
1,468
1,067
Clinton Massachusetts
I have, they have some great flow trails but the the trails out of the gondola are all fucked up in terms of routes. I didn't understand it.
I agree. It’s not laid out great. And there’s not a ton of trails starting from the top. But my two favorite trails are accessed from there. Cable trail is ridiculously fun. The new drop at the start is a blast and the rest of the trail is great. Short but awesome. The dirt is definitely different than anywhere else on the mountain. You can link up to a few different ways down from there. We usually Hit Shreddy to Snake Bite/Gambler (fun rock drop) down to Step It Up (jump trail) on Snowshed. Makes for a long run with a bit of tech, drops, flow trail. My go to trail at Killington. If you go left off the top, you can take Steel Panther to Lowrider. Lowrider isn’t on their trail map, but it’s on Trailforks. It’s old school steep tech, then a big man made step up thrown in in a high speed section, to an awesome tech finish that spits you out at the gondola.
 

Electric_City

Torture wrench
Apr 14, 2007
2,017
745
I was referring to the reports of not maintaining the trails. I'm psyched to get a weekend there. Always one of my favorite places to race/ride. The tech trails are bone jarring, and they have some of the best features of anywhere I've been in the northeast. Did the cabin drop get taken out? I thought I read that it did. What about the drop to nowhere? Is that still a thing?
The cabin was blocked off last year. As far as RTN, it's sill there. But last time I rode to it about 2 years ago to check it out, it was leaning to one side.
 

Electric_City

Torture wrench
Apr 14, 2007
2,017
745
Diablo was "the place" at the beginning of the millennium. But there were only a handful of places in the east. Now, some have unfortunately closed. But on the other hand there's new ones who have stepped up and gone bigger. For the amount of money rolling in to Creek, they sure don't put much into it.
 

manhattanprjkt83

Rusty Trombone
Jul 10, 2003
9,647
1,219
Nilbog
It'd be wicked if they could add more trail for those sections.

I made the mistake of riding Solitude once, which was an absolute shit show of mud and wet grass. :dead:
What's that trail riders right of the gondola which ends up being super tech w/ all that black dirt/mud and has some cool rock rolls on it as you drop elevation? That trail is great. Is it funny bone? I remember that being pretty cool.