With COVID-19 in our midst, life seems to have come to an uncertain halt. Championship races were cancelled just as they were about to begin, interstate (let alone international) travel has ceased, and many of our early season prep camps have been put on hold. Yet, Green Mountain Valley School in Waitsfield, VT maintains focus on what lies ahead by embracing change and maintaining momentum on its transformational on-hill improvements. This unprecedented moment in time has been an opportunity to innovate and maintain positivity during an otherwise challenging time.

Progress on their new T-bar on the Inverness Trail at Sugarbush Resort continues unabated through this pandemic. Workers have deconstructed and removed the 62-year-old poma and have started to pour concrete for the new tower foundations. While many ski area projects are on hold this summer, GMVS remains on top of Poma-Leitner’s construction schedule and is on target for completion this fall. Tim Harris, Assistant Head of School notes that “with some of the best infrastructure of any academy, and now a state-of-the-art T-bar that decreases ride time in half, GMVS will give athletes more time on snow, an edge in training, and an unparalleled training environment.”

Installation of the new T-bar is the marque project in a series of transformational improvements to the Kelly Brush Arena on the Inverness trail. Alpine Program Director Steve Utter explains, “The T-bar will robustly expand training options and specificity, both in and out of gates. We can double our number of turns in the same amount of time, and with a mid-station, the full-length T-bar provides a variety of options for GS or SL training on Inverness.”

On March 13th, GMVS students said goodbye to campus as the race season was canceled and ski areas closed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic that came to a head during this year’s championship season. For a school that frequently supports students who travel the world chasing races while taking classes, GMVS shifted to a virtual model without missing a beat. In remote operations, GMVS staff continue to prepare for a bright future. “We are not in a holding pattern,” notes Tracy Keller, Head of School at GMVS. “We continue to look ahead, innovate for the future, and stay positive about the upcoming season.” Planning for the 2020- 2021 academic and race season is well underway. A variety of scenarios are being explored as GMVS forges ahead with positivity and hope for the future, while preparing to engage with athletes in a safe and meaningful way next fall.