<< October 2015 >>
        1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30 31

Birch Ridge Inn
Fall Foliage Picture
of the Day
Birch Ridge Inn foliage
Tuesday, September 29, 2015
Damp day. Rain expected tonight.

Killingtonvillage.com All About Killington.....in one place KillingtonLinks.com - The World Wide Web\'s link to Killington Killington Concierge Services - Vacation Time is precious! We do the work so you can play!

Birch Ridge Inn, Killington Vermont killingtoncountryinns.com Killington Select Properties at killingtonlodging.com

Contribute Information

Become a Sponsor

Contact killingtonblog.com

Honey bee on Dahlia in front of the Birch Ridge Inn - busy collecting the last pollen of the season.

Honey bee on Dahlia in front of the Birch Ridge Inn - busy collecting the last pollen of the season. 

They say April showers bring May flowers.... what do September showers bring?

Today is moist at Killington. While rain is not currently falling, the atmosphere is saturated with moisture. Gray, lead colored clouds, hang over the mountain tops. The saving grace is that fall colors are brightening up an otherwise dreary landscape. Mother Nature is trying to put on a show to alleviate the feeling of dread that exists if you look straight up to the sky. She is trying. Her humble observers need to follow her lead and not get caught up in the day to day stew of the changing weather in the mountains.

Mother Natures minions will not be detered in their preparation for the season of white. Wooly caterpillars are crawling hither and yon, searching for the perfect spot to cacoon for the winter. Honey bees are really active in the flower bed in front of the inn. Each flower, and there are still many, has its own little bee busily collecting the last bits of pollen to bring back to the hive to make honey. If you think you work hard, take a break and watch the bees for a few minutes. Their safety net is in the honey they produce, and they are working it hard to maximize their output.

So what do September showers bring?

Full snow making ponds of course!

The Killington Resort covers a lot of its terrain with snow making. When they turn the system on later in October, they use a lot of water to cover the trails with beautiful white snow. And full snowmaking ponds due to September showers is a great situation to have when the temperatures turn favorable for making snow.

Tonights rain will depart from the scene soon enough. As it does, the tree canopy will continue to develop more color each day. We hope to see you at the Birch Ridge Inn during your fall visit.

In the mean time....Wherever you may be... hit them straight... keep it in the fairway... and don't forget your sunscreen.

Blood Moon - Lunar Eclispe seen from Birch Ridge Inn last night

Blood Moon - Lunar Eclispe seen from Birch Ridge Inn last night 

If the changing colors, colder temperatures, and last nights Blood Moon are not enough evidence for you that change is in the air, then todays announcement by the Killington Resort of ski ticket prices for the 2015-2016 ski season should be a reality check. Summer has come to an end. Fall is all around us. Winter is just a short time away.

The Killington Resort announced today, via an article in the local Rutland Herald, that they will be opting for a single price lift ticket at the ticket window this winter. People who walk up to the ticket window and purchase a day ticket will pay the same price mid-week as on weekends...$94 per day. ($96 during holidays).

While this might seem like a large number, it is important to understand that less than 10% of lift tickets are purchased at the ticket window.

Most lift tickets today are purchased online associated with lodging packages or advanced reservations. Killington in fact sells lift tickets online for people who plan their trips at a significant discount versus window pricing. This year, Killington has adopted an "Airline" pricing model to their advance ticket sales. The price of a lift ticket online for a future day will vary based upon a number of factors. As a result, Killington could actually change their online lift ticket price for future dates EVERY DAY! Bottom line... if you are planning ahead, when you see what looks like a deal....Grab It! because it might not be there tomorrow.

As an innkeeper, this has made life interesting. But coming out of an engineering background, I viewed this change on Killington's part as a challenge.

On our website, birchridge.com, and on it's mobile companion m.birchridge.com, the inn has always allowed guests to determine the total cost of a ski/ride package, including lodging, lift tickets, rental equipment, lessons, etc. In the past, the software would examine static tables with lift ticket price information to compute the overall package cost. Easy Peasy.... like adding 2 or more numbers together.

The changes made by Killington have added several additional layer of complexity to the problem. As prices for lift tickets can change every day, our website needs to be adaptive. Each day we go out and collect pricing information from Killington. While that sounds pretty easy, the total data collected from the resort each day comes in at about 500MBytes... yes you read that right... 1/2 Gigabytes of information related to current lift ticket pricing is collected each day. And this is just for Killington. An equivilent amount of information will be generated for Pico when lift ticket pricing is published for that subset of the resort.

While creating a table with this information is a trivial task, downloading 500MBytes of data down to a clients PC or Cell Phone each time they wanted to compute a lodging package is not nice. Most cell phone plans have data caps of 2 to 10Gbytes... We want our guests to be able to pay for a visit to Killington, not have a larger cell phone bill. As a result, taking advantage of some Web 2.0 technology(Ajax, Json), I developed a series of processes which collect the lift package pricing from the birchridge.com server only for the days that the guest plugs into the Ski/Ride package calculator. This keeps the communications load between the guests device and the server light, eliminating large data charges. While it does introduce a small amount of latency to the process as the clients device communicates with the server, the overall process due making the data transfers light weight is roughly the same as it was using our older methods.

So what does this mean for the potenital guest to the Birch Ridge Inn....

Very simple.... when ever a guest calculates a lift ticket package with a stay at the Birch Ridge Inn, our web site is quoting the best price we can give based upon the current pricing for lift ticket products from the Killington Resort. (Please note... restrictions in our agreement with Killington do not allow us to break out lift ticket prices separately from our lodging packages. Hence we can only show a combined price with lodging and lift ticket products.. But you can look at our lodging only pricing and figure it out.)

If you would like to get a quote for a Ski/Ride and Stay package from the Birch Ridge Inn at Killington, go to our Ski Package Calculator on birchridge.com.

Fall folage colors are continuing to progress nicely around Killington. We hope to see you at the Birch Ridge Inn during your fall visit.

In the mean time....Wherever you may be... hit them straight... keep it in the fairway... and don't forget your sunscreen.

Fall color just starting to appear at K1 base lodge at Killington

Fall color just starting to appear at K1 base lodge at Killington 

What a weekend. Brilliant blue sky. Warm temperatures. Nascent fall color in the tree canopy. It is hard to ask for a nicer weekend in early fall in the Green Mountains.

Fall color in the immediate Killington area is just on the cusp. Hints of color have started to appear across the mountain sides. Cold evening temperatures (it looked like there might have been a light frost last night) have started to set the process in place. Assuming that is the case, we should see an accelleration in color propagation through the mountains over the next 14 days of so. It should become pretty obvious in the next 3-5 days.

Fall color on Killington Peak is just starting to appear. Color in the area of the K1 baselodge at the gondola terminal to Killington Peak is spotty. Some trees have started to turn colors, but green is still predominant in most of the trees.

Widening out the picture to a panorama spanning Pico Peak to Skye Peak shows the same situation. Upper reaches where abundant sunshine has been in play are still mostly green. Mid elevations, which are starting to see less sunshine due to the shadow of the mountains have splotches of color, but for the most part the tree canopy is not fully engaged in the process yet. Over the next few days we will be watching for signs of accelerating color changes; and of course we will report it here on the blog.

The Killington basin area from Pico Peak to Skye Peak.
The Killington basin area from Pico Peak to Skye Peak.

Until the next time, where ever you may be, hit the ball straight.... keep it in the fairway... and don't forget your sunscreen.

Getting Mary\'s Mustang out one more time before winter.

Getting Mary's Mustang out one more time before winter. 

If there are any doubts about summer coming to a close at Killington, one only needs to step outside this morning. Temperatures have struggled to reach 55F under a lead colored overcast sky. Folage colors are continuing to progress. The cool temperatures combined with the absence of sunshine will help move the process along.

Other signs that summer has come to an end at the Birch Ridge Inn are also readily apparant. Today is the ceremonial moving day for Mary's Mustang to swich from it's summer garage to a winter resting place. While we do not get a chance to take it for a spin through the Vermont country side as much as we would like, it is always a little bitter sweet to see it get put into the winter garage at the end of the summer. On the plus side, it is a sure sign that winter is approaching. And since we live at a ski resort, that can only be seen as a good thing. On the negative side, it means that summer is coming to a close. We can oly hope that the twig season between the time the fall foliage drops in 3 or so weeks and the time of the first snow is a short one.

Congratulations Deb Butler, Winner of the 2015 Birch Ridge Cup.
Congratulations Deb Butler, Winner of the 2015 Birch Ridge Cup.

Another sign that summer will be coming to an end soon was last nights completion of the Birch Ridge Cup competition at Green Mountain National Golf Course. All summer long, Birch Ridge has been sponsoring a "FedEx Cup" style competition at the Thursday night scramble at the golf course.

Congratulations go out to Deb Butler, the 2015 Birch Ridge Cup Champion. Deb outpaced the field in collection Birch Ridge Cup points. She also has had perfect attendance every Thursday night over the summer season. To celebrate her victory, Deb will be host to 25 of her friends as guests at the Birch Ridge Inn for a Birch Ridge Cup cocktail party. Congratulations Deb.

Congratulations also go out to Joe Havelka who came in second in the Birch Ridge Cup standings, and Bob Butner who came in 3rd. Both Joe and Bob won gift certificates for dinner at Birch Ridge.

This weekend should see the coming out of good fall foliage color just to the north of Killington on the Route 100 corridor. Over the next couple of weeks, the colors will progress thru the area, culminating in peak fall colors in early October. Now is the time to finalize your plans for your 2015 Vermont Foliage trip. We hope you can get away for a few days and come to Vermont to enjoys Mother Nature's fall show.

Wherever you may be this weekend... hit them straight... keep it in the fairway... and don't forget your sunscreen.

The clubhouse at Green Montain National Golf Course starting to show fall colors

The clubhouse at Green Montain National Golf Course starting to show fall colors 

It's starting. The wonder of the change in seasons we call Fall Foliage is happening right now in Vermont.

This week saw the arrival of normal fall weather to the region. Nights are becoming much colder, with overnight temperatures approaching 40. While we have not yet challenged the frost line of 32F, it is only a matter of time.

During the day, we are experiencing stark contrasts. Guests leaving in the morning for their trips around Vermont are experiencing temperatures in the chilly 45-50F territory. When they return to the inn later in the afternoon, they are basking in the glow of Vermont to temperatures in the mid-70's. We have had only a couple of overcast and slightly damp days. Most days have been punctuated with cloudless bright blue skies.

On the fall color front, the colors in Killington have begun their change in earnest, albeit slowly. At the inn colors are starting to appear at the mid-levels of the tree canopy. While much of the forest is still showing green, in the early morning and late afternoon periods when the sun is at a sharp angle, the color contrast is starting to be come more pronounced.

Color on Route 100 north in the area of Green Mountain National Golf Course is farther along. This area is outside of the shadow of Killington Peak. It receives less moisture that what is received in the area immediately around the inn, as a result the color is slightly more advanced.

Guests are reporting the appearance of nice colors on Route 100 north of Killington. The gaps across the Green Mountains between Route 100 and Route 7 are starting to show more definitive color with the increase in altitude. Route 7 north of Rutland is normally behind Route 100 north of Killington, and that observation still is holding true this year.

Over the next couple of weeks we can expect an accelleration of color change through out the state of Vermont. A cold night with general temparatures below freezing will set the process in place. It is only a matter of time at this point, but I would guess that the early weekends of October and the weeks between will show great color throughout Vermont.

We hope to see you at the Birch Ridge Inn when you visit Killington.

In the mean time....Wherever you may be... hit them straight... keep it in the fairway... and don't forget your sunscreen.

Killington Restaurant Week

Killington Restaurant Week 

Killington Restaurant Week is here!

Once again, the Killington Pico Area Association, formerly the Killington Chamber of Commerce, has worked with the restaurants of Killington to come up with a fun event before the leaves on the trees around Killington fall to the ground.

As we have since the inception of Restaurant Week, the Birch Ridge Inn is once again participating. As part of the festivities, the restaurant at the Birch Ridge inn will be offering guests 2 different Restaurant Week options.

The first option is a Small Plate Sampler for 2 people for $42.41. The sampler highlights the inn's "Small Plate" menu. The sampler, shared by 2 people, includes 4 different small plates, plus one of the inn's housemade desserts to finish the meal.

The Small Plate Sampler for 2 includes :
     Mushroom and Ricotta Tart
          Oyster Mushrooms, housemade rocotta, leeks, balsamic
     Crab Cakes
          Premium lump crab meat with tartar sauce
     Maple Barbeque Ribs
          Slow roasted baby back ribs, red cabbage slaw, housemade pickles
     PEI mussels
          White wine, garlic and herb sauce

Shared Desserts include:
     Hokey Pokey salted peanut brownie
          Honeycomb ice cream, molten brownie, bourbon caramel
     Maple creme brulee
          Mixed berry garnish
     Housemade ice cream and sorbet
          from our daily menu

The second option is a full 3 course dinner (with a glass of wine) for $42.41 per person. The dinner features selections from our regular restaurant menu and includes a starter, entree, and dessert.

The Restaurant Week Dinner Menu includes:

Starters (Choice of one)
     Roasted squash bisque
          Citrus and herb sour cream
     Roasted beet and spinach salad
          Red onion, fennel, goat cheese, cider viniagrette

Entrees(Choice of one)
     Skillet roasted day boat halibut
          Creamy white corn polenta, braised greens, roasted red pepper-olive tapenade
     Cider glazed pork chop
          Garlic mashed potatoes, horseradish cream
     Delicata squash risotto
          parmesan, dried cranberries, sage

Plus dessert from our evenings Dessert menu

In addition to the Killington Restaurant Week offerings, the normal dinner menu will also be available.

Dinner will be served on our normal restaurant schedule from Tuesday thru Saturday starting at 6:00 PM. Reservations in the dining room are suggested. The Killington Restaurant Week menu will also be served in the Great Room Lounge.

We hope to see you at the Birch Ridge Inn during Killington Restaurant Week.

In the mean time....Wherever you may be... hit them straight... keep it in the fairway... and don't forget your sunscreen.

Trees showing thier seasonal color all around Killington.

Trees showing thier seasonal color all around Killington. 

With the Autumnal Equinox just days away, the fall season in Vermont is getting underway.

In the Killington region, some hints of color are starting to show in the Killington Basin area around Killington Peak. Early "Signal" trees have shown their color, declaring that the fall season has arrived. The majority of the trees are still holding their green canopy, but some tree tops have begun the change. Adequate moisture in the spring and early summer has left the forest in healthy condition. It is still a little too early to determine if color around Killington peak will be early or late this season. We should be able to guess that in the next 5 to 7 days.

Further north of Killingon peak, in the Route 100 valley around Green Mountain National Golf Course, the color seemed more pronounced. Depending upon the angle of the sun at any given time, color is starting to show. While overall forest coloration is still muted, the color development has progressed beyond just the hints of color that are visible around Killington Peak.

This weekend sees the return of the Killington Spartan Beast Race to Killington. Thousands of competitors and spectators will be flocking to the mountain to test thier strength and endurance. The resort will still be operating their facilities at Snowshed at the Adventure Center this weekend. The cost of the Adventure Center for this weekend will be 1/2 price, but guests will be required to pay for parking due to the Spartan Race activites.

We hope to see you at the Birch Ridge Inn when you visit Killington.

In the mean time....Wherever you may be... hit them straight... keep it in the fairway... and don't forget your sunscreen.

Blog - About - Sponsor Links - Killington Facts - Site Friends - Restaurant Menu