Both daredevils and peace-seekers in search of a trail less traveled should head toward Sugarloaf’s backcountry-style glades, where trees, cliffs, and solitude make for exciting—and tranquil—skiing and snowboarding. Just make sure to comply with safety guidelines before adventuring.
Previously only accessible by hiking or skinning, Sugarloaf Mountain Resort recently expanded access to Burnt Mountain with New England’s first true cat-skiing operation, which will transport skiers up the mountain in 12-passenger snowcats. Androscoggin Glade on the eastern flank of Burnt offers more than 1,200 vertical feet and 68 acres of powder.
The entrance to Broccoli Garden, named for the squat trees along the trail, is marked by a short stick on Buckboard trail. Broccoli Garden is less steep than other tree-skiing trails, so it’s more appropriate for less confident or younger skiers and snowboarders.
Barber Chair Glade
On top of Sugarloaf Mountain, Barber Chair Glade lies west of Timberline trail and runs down the mountain. At its summit, the glade provides the only above-treeline skiing on the East Coast. Barber Chair Glade is especially popular with little Loafers.
Brackett Basin holds more than a dozen backcountry-style glades featuring steeps, chutes, and cliff bands, and is accessed by King Pine or Whiffletree lifts. Only expert skiers should attempt to navigate through the maze of glades.
Located off Lombard Crosscut, Rookie River is a fun, mid-mountain glade that crisscrosses along a frozen riverbed. Those brave enough to attempt the steep drop-in entrance are rewarded with an easygoing schuss through the trees—the high tree-lined riverbanks lend a natural half-pipe feel to the run.
On Sugarloaf ’s westernmost developed terrain, Greenhorn Glade
is a bit of a hike from the base of the mountain, but well worth the expedition; the glade is often coated in fresh powder, even several days after a snowstorm.