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21 Aug 2009
Vermont Moose

Mad River Glen moose population has grown by two this year.

One of the most frequent questions we get here at the inn is "where can we go to see a moose?" There are several areas nearby where the possibility is greater but sighting a moose is a rare occurrence even for people who live and work in the forests.

The moose photo at the top of this Vermont Travel Notes blog is a good example. It was taken by a guest in early November several years ago while he was driving on Route 100 between Warren and Granville VT, a popular place to spot moose because of the swampy areas alongside the road. It's not a particularly good photo because he quickly took the shot through the car windshield. He got some better quality photos after he stopped the car and got out but by then the moose was into the woods and walking away so the angle of the photo does not work well. But he was lucky to see it at all. If he had left here a minute earlier or a minute later he would have missed the moose entirely. That's moose spotting for you (or seeing any unusual wildlife for that matter).

I have seen two moose this year but that is very unusual. Most years I don't see any. We have one walking through our property about once a month but we never see it. He or she comes through late at night and all we see are the footprints the next day.

Last winter, we had a few skier guests tell us of seeing a moose near the trails at Mad River Glen. One of them even hit the moose after coming around a corner and seeing it standing right in front of him. He reacted fast enough to squat down so he only bumped the moose a little bit. It must not have bothered the moose too much because it merely looked at the skier for a moment and then walked slowly into the woods.

The moose above may be the same one and, as you can see, it's a female with two calves it had this year. This moose photo and other Mad River Glen photos can be seen on the Gallery page at the Mad River Glen web site.

So, if you want to go moose spotting, the best area is the most remote part of Vermont, the Northeast Kingdom as it's known. Just try the roads around the town of Island Pond. Even if you don't see a moose, it's a beautiful area to do some sight seeing. Stop in some of the local country stores and ask around about where people have seen moose lately.

(c) 2009 Jeff Connor Grunberg Haus Inn except for the moose photo by Deb Steines and Bob Rogers on the Mad River Glen website
Advice , Nature , Unusual
posted by  grunhaus at  19:26 | permalink

3 May 2009
Northwest Airlines Logo(s)

I've seen Northwest Airlines planes for many years but I never noticed something peculiar about them until it was pointed out to me a couple of weeks ago.

The logo is obviously a compass marker pointing in the northwest direction when you view the plane from the port (left) side. But if you view the airplane from the starboard side, the logo is suddenly pointing northeast!

Northwest is northwest no matter where it is viewed from. And it is so marked on every compass in the world. Why Northwest Airline chooses to do otherwise on one side of their airplanes is a mystery to me. If anyone knows why, I would appreciate hearing from you. The first one to respond gets a $30 discount voucher toward a stay here.

By the way, Northwest (recently acquired by Delta) flies twice a day between Detroit (DTW) and Burlington VT (BTV). You can see flights from all the airlines into Burlington on the BTV website. There are 45 to 50 flights a day into Burlington from 12 airports in 10 cities.

© 2009 Jeff Connor Grunberg Haus Inn
Advice , Unusual
posted by  grunhaus at  20:40 | permalink

30 Apr 2009
Learn How To Make Chocolates Workshops in Stowe VT

Photo courtesy of Laughing Moon Chocolates

Laughing Moon Chocolates is a wonderful little store in Stowe VT which makes and sells an extensive line of chocolates using mostly locally produced ingredients.

Laughing Moon is offering workshops this spring and summer on how to make chocolates. These Chocolate Experience Workshops are intended for recreational users who would like to learn how to make their own candy at home. The cost is $150 per person. For more information and to register, contact owner Leigh Williams at (802) 253-9591.

Friday May 1
Chocolate Dipping Experience Workshop
A two-hour hand-on workshop on how to cook truffles, melt and temper chocolate, and hand-dipping.

Friday, June 26
Marshmallow Making Workshop
A two-hour workshop on how to make homemade marshmallow, prepare them for dipping, and hand-dip them in milk, dark and white chocolate. How to prepare Símores or mix it with caramel or truffle centers.

Friday, July 10
Chocolate Dipping Experience Workshop
Same as the May 1 workshop above.

Friday, August 14
Local Bounty Workshop
Two-hour workshop highlighting Vermont made specialty foods including Mitziís Fresh Mountain Breakfast, Boyden Valley Winery, Rock Art Brewery, Green Mountain Distillers, The Nutty Vermonter & The Sweet Crunch Bake Shop. Thee will be instruction on how to make peanut butter using fresh Virginia-grown peanuts and work with other locally made foods to create chocolate specialties. Prepare homemade centers and hand-dip them in chocolate. Also, how to use fresh local blueberries and raspberries, and how to make make chocolate at home.

Laughing Moon Chocolates has created a niche by incorporating locally produced foods into their chocolates. They make truffles with Boyden Valley Winery Big Barn Red Wine, Green Mountain Distillers Sunshine Vodka and Maple Liquor, Flag Hill Farm Pear and Apple Brandys, and Rock Art Vermonster Beer. The store offers chocolate covered homemade cookies baked by the Sweet Crunch Bake Shop in Hyde Park, and using Mitziís Fresh Mountain Breakfast and The Nutty Vermonterís Triple Nut Butters.

Even if you don't want to attend the workshops, you should visit the store just to see how good it smells! There is a great selection of chocolates to meet every taste. Online ordering is available on the website too if you can't wait to get here and try them.

(c) 2009 Jeff Connor Grunberg Haus Inn
Events , Food , Shopping , Unusual , VT Products
posted by  grunhaus at  10:45 | permalink

31 Mar 2009
Cheese Making Classes in VT April 3 and 4
Photo courtesy of River Arts

If you're a cheese lover, perhaps you should look into making it yourself. You may have wondered if it's easy to do. Here's your opportunity to find out.

River Arts in Morrisville VT is holding two days of cheese making classes this coming Friday and Saturday.

You will have the rate opportunity to learn how to make Mozzarella, Cheddar and Ricotta. The cost is just $35 for one day or $55 for two days. You can sign up on the River Arts website or call them at (802) 888-1261.

"River Arts is a nonprofit organization that brings the energy, creativity and experience of the arts to all ages. We serve the Lamoille Valley of Vermont from Hardwick to Cambridge, from Eden to Stowe."

(c) 2009 Jeff Connor Grunberg Haus

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Events , Food , Unusual , VT Products
posted by  grunhaus at  22:43 | permalink

29 Jan 2009
Win the Ultimate Ski Vacation

The Mad River Valley Chamber of Commerce (Waitsfield and Warren VT) is sponsoring a drawing for an incredible grand prize.

Some very lucky winner of the Ultimate Ski Vacation will get:

- Cat skiing at Sugarbush- a ride in a luxury cabin Snow Cat to have first tracks in the best terrain before the lifts start running.
- Seven nights lodging in a slope side luxury condo with two outdoor hot tubs, heated outdoor pool, fitness center, game room
- Six day "Ski the Valley" pass good at Mad River Glen and Sugarbush ski areas, plus Ole's Cross Country Ski Center
- Free use of high-end demo equipment
- Four dinners for two people at four of the area's best restaurants
- A lunch for two at the very popular Warren Store Deli
- Fresh flower bouquet from Blue Toad Florist
- 60 minute couples therapeutic massage at Mad River Massage
- Guided naturalist program with your very own experienced environmental educator, taking you on a personalized, guided outing in a unique alpine setting.

I have no idea what a "gold class" vacation like this would cost but I'm sure it's thousands of dollars.

And that is just the Grand Prize Winner. There will also be a First Prize Winner and five Second Prize winners.

Somebody has to win - it might as well be you. It's easy to enter and no purchase is required. Entries must be received by March 8.

(c) 2009 Jeff Connor Grunberg Haus Inn
Advice , Events , Unusual
posted by  grunhaus at  19:01 | permalink

17 Jan 2009
Ice Climbing Lessons

There are all manner of things to do in the winter and if you are looking for something different to try, consider ice climbing. It's basically mountain climbing on large, frozen waterfalls.

Sunrise Adventures Climbing School here in Vermont is offering an ice climbing school at the end of this month at Smuggler's Notch near Jeffersonville.

Sunrise is based at Triple Diamond Ski and Sports on Route 108 a couple of hundred yards from the Smugglers Notch Ski Resort.

There will be equipment demonstrations, classes, slide show, and some apres' climbing socializing. The classes are on Saturday January 31 and Sunday February 1. See the schedule on the Ice Bash 2009 web page (scroll down to see the class listings and prices). You can register online or use their email or phone number to get in touch with them.

(c) 2009 Jeff Connor Grunberg Haus Inn
Events , Unusual
posted by  grunhaus at  22:38 | permalink

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