Killington is not just for wintertime fun, their summer MTB Downhill Park is on point. Being an avid XC rider, this was the first exposure to Downhill….lots of speed and despite a wicked crash we’re hooked.
Resort Overview: Whether you are a fully committed downhill rider or a weekend warrior that Killington MTB park has something for everyone. From Boston, I made the trip twice this past summer, once in June and again in July. At just about 3 hours it makes for a great weekend getaway. With 29 trails with 30+ miles running from 3 lifts there was plenty to ride during the 2017 season for all skill levels.
The size of the mountain is daunting and in my two trips, I only covered runs fed from the Snowshed and Ramshead lifts. Being new to the DH scene I stayed to the green and blue runs with my season favorite being Side Show Bob. My wife, also an XC rider new to DH enjoyed Wiggle. She actually liked it so much, she bought a namesake T-Shift at the gift shop.
If your new to the sport like we are, renting is your best option. We were riding with a more seasoned rider visiting from Utah. He had his own ride, so his full days were only a ~$50 lift ticket. For my wife and I with rental and lift ticket we were closer to ~$150 a rider, which is a bit steep.
With that said, once she is out of grad school we both said our first big purchase will be DH rigs!
The rental rigs were a strong showing of Scott with my rental being a Voltage the first trip and Gambler the second. Personally, I preferred the Gambler. It felt more stable at high speeds and was more predictable on both turns and jumps.
Money Saving Beta: Book your lift ticket and rental in advance on Killington’s website to get savings on the day of prices and guarantee your rental. Holiday weekends will sell out, so it’s worth the time and savings to book early.
The weekend we were riding in July was the same weekend that the Beast of the East Pro GRT was held. If you are around that weekend it is definitely worth checking out. You can get up close and personal with the teams and watch the runs trailside as the pro riders rip through the course.
Lodging and Beers: After a long day of riding be sure to head down the mountain to the Long Trail Brewing. Throughout the summer they host events on their large property which sits right off of the Ottaquechee River. If it’s especially hot, ask for your pints to be served in a plastic cup so you can walk down to the river and cool off while enjoying some of Vermont’s best brews. The food is also worth checking out, I personally recommend the shrimp tacos.
If you are “DTC”, Down To Camp, then you should really stay at Gifford Woods State Park. The location can’t beat due to the ridiculous proximity to both the mountain and local restaurants / breweries. You will also be in the good company of dirt bag riders and granola weekend explorers.