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Schenectady Wintersports Club


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  • 7 Sep 2023 1:18 PM | Brenda Streed (Administrator)

    Our trip to Telluride has met the minimum number of participants but we do have one room left...will not last long.

    Ski resorts want money in the bank.Our planning is now out almost 2 years! is the question....

    As we start to look at trips for 2025, what are your top 3 choices?

    Your help is greatly appreciated!


    Rick Cobello

  • 7 Sep 2023 1:04 PM | Brenda Streed (Administrator)

    Big Sky, Montana

    March 9 - 16, 2024  $1779 plus Air

    Big Sky Resort is truly one of the biggest skiing resorts in America!  Home to 5,850 skiable acres with 4,350 vertical drop, 34 chairlifts and surface lifts, and the Lone Peak Tram to 11,166 feet in elevation.  This resort has something for everyone!

    Book your own air, or take group air.  Air prices beginning to come down!  Expected cost $800 to $1000 for air r/t at this time.

    Package includes:

    • Seven (7) nights at the base of Big Sky Resort
    • QQ Hotel rooms at Huntley Lodge 
    • Daily hot breakfast
    • Slopeside Ski Valet
    • Optional Discounted Group Tickets at Big Sky Resort 
    • Choice of ski days or Ikon Passholders Access 
    • Optional Round-trip airport transfers between Bozeman & Big Sky Lodging

        Trip Leader:  Rick Cobello              

        Info:  Albany Ski Club

      • 22 Aug 2023 12:42 PM | Brenda Streed (Administrator)

        Updates on Summer Bike Rides

        So far this summer, SWC hosted three casual bike rides for members and friends, and all thus far have outsmarted the rainy weather!

        We have explored Zim Smith Trail (Round Lake),  Ashuwillticook Trail (Adams, MA) and on this last weekend the Erie Canal Trail section between Amsterdam and Fultonville, with 23 riders joining in!


        One major challenge in the first mile was a medium-sized tree that completely blocked the trail. We all worked as a team to get all bikes across, one volunteer sat on the tree as everyone pulled their bikes over it!

        We also stopped at the Schoharie Crossing Historic site and did a little exploring.


        These Saturday rides are organized for about a 20 mile route with side stops for snacks and refreshment, for all levels of riders.  This is a great way to make connections with other members, and friends outside the club.

        Our final summer ride is planned for Saturday September 16, 2023, location is TBD, and will be announced in the next week.

      • 4 Aug 2023 5:43 PM | Dorie Valenti (Administrator)

        Tips on Finding Bike Routes

        By Bill Romania

        My second favorite thing to do when I’m at the SWC house, after alpine skiing, is road cycling. In the springtime afternoons when the snow can get almost too dense to ski and the sky stays light until late, I like to head out on my road bike for a short ride. There are so many choices around the house, it really boils down to what route is best for the time available, my fitness level and how hard I’m willing to go. So selecting a route is the first thing. I learned the hard way that just heading up Route 100 is not especially enjoyable: Too much traffic moving too fast and the views leave a lot to be desired. I thought I had escaped those unpleasantries by taking a random turn to the south but managed to get myself and my skinny tires into a dirt road in the middle of mud season. It was not pretty.

        Since I don’t know the Stowe-Waterbury area as well as my home riding turf, I’ve had to seek out other means of identifying routes. Thankfully there are a few tools that help in this process. Google Maps makes finding suitable roads, and making sure they don’t dead end, easy but it isn’t always clear if the road is paved or not. There also is no way to specify and download a route to my phone other than the point-point shortest route. Map My Ride and Ride with GPS both allow you to create routes and download them to your phone and to a GPS-enabled bike computer. I can’t speak to the intricacies of Map My Ride as I use Ride With GPS almost exclusively. What I find even more valuable than creating a route is the ability to search for routes that start near the SWC house. I can then filter those to avoid dirt roads, rides too short or long for my needs and even climbing elevation. Thus I get the benefit of someone else’s experience and knowledge.

        There is another way to find routes via Strava. For those unfamiliar, Strava is a cloud-based social media platform for athletes of all stripes. You can find pros and your friends alike on Strava and see their latest athletic exploits. Strava has a feature that has garnered some infamy in that it tracks fastest time on segments of road. This has led to some pretty intense (some would say insane) competition to be King of The Road with the fastest time, especially on the downhills. But Strava has a feature that anyone can use to find routes. When you follow someone on Strava, you can see the routes they ride. You can copy the route to your account and download it to your phone. I’ve not done this yet but everyone tells me it is easy.

        If you don’t want to deal with technology and just want to go out and ride, I’ve accumulated a few basic tricks of the trade to avoid unpleasant surprises.           

        -If the road has hill in the name, believe them. It will be hilly.

        -Rivers carve out valleys which if not flat tend to be less hilly than the valley walls. Roads that follow the valley almost always are flat or near-flat with the additional pleasure of seeing and hearing i t running water. 

        -Railroad tracks also tend to be flat or on gentle inclines because the trains simply can’t climb well with a string of heavy cars attached. Thus roads that follow the tracks tend to be flat.

        -Bike paths are a mixed bag. When they are sparsely populated, they can be a delight. When crowded with pedestrians, dogs and children, they can be downright dangerous. I’ve been taken out by a rollerblader, a kid with training wheels and my own wife (ok, that one was really my fault) on bike paths so I avoid them.

        -If you end up on a very steep climb, intentionally or not, there is no embarrassment in turning around or getting off and walking up. Just be sure to make that decision before you are going so slow that you fall over. That is embarrassing. 

      • 4 Aug 2023 5:40 PM | Dorie Valenti (Administrator)

        Back from the Rough 

        By John Bidell 

        Ellen and I are enjoying our new found golf opportunities. Funny, with more play you would expect a more consistent and better round. Well, sometimes yes, and sometimes no. Golf season is like my snowboard season, by the last day I have finally figured out what I want to do and of course, have moved on to the next season. 

        We are up in Chestertown every weekend and I wanted to share some nice reasonable hikes that we think are great. Stewart mountain is a nice easy climb and is located off of White Schoolhouse road in Chestertown. Great view of Gore from the top as you look down on Loon Lake. When you get back to the car, you are ready for the next short hike. Kipp mountain is another great little hike and is about 1.5 miles north, taking the first right back on White Schoolhouse. 

        Now you have two mountains of the Chester challenge down. If you plan these hikes on a Friday afternoon, at 5, you can head to the food trucks at Brant Lake. Try the double cheeseburger on french toast. If the ride down the Northway doesn’t suit you, check out the camping on one of Schroon Lakes three state campgrounds.  

        Schroon Lake has some great spots for breakfast, and after homemade corned beef hash at Pitkins, head to the day use area over at Paradox State Campground for some kayaking. 

        Wow, all this activity has made you thirsty, so a stop at Paradox Brewery is in order. As I write this article a pop up oyster bar is taking place. Check the website, but the pizza is always good.

        One of my favorite beers in addition to Beaver Bite is, Get Off My Lawn. 

        Ok, time for an early night back at the campsite or if you are a day tripper, back down 87. 

        The last hike I like is the Hoffmans Wilderness Area accessed off of route 9, south of exit 29. 

        Nice walk not to steep, and easy to get back to Schroon Lake to stop at Flannigans for a beverage. 

      • 2 May 2023 9:09 PM | Dorie Valenti (Administrator)

        Share the River
        by Ed Greiner, President NNYP

        The stretch of the Mohawk River/ Erie Canal between Lock 7 and Lock 8 is used by many groups and individuals both for training and recreation. There are recreational canoers and kayakers out for a leisurely paddle. Fishermen go out in craft ranging from tubby little kayaks to gigantic powerboats of 200 horsepower or more. There are, perhaps, half a dozen rowing organizations between Rexford and Schenectady, and let’s not forget the power boat crowd that tend to buzz up and down the channel any time the weather is nice. Small groups of NNYP racers do training runs from various access points usually starting in March. This can sometimes make for a very crowded waterway.

        The crew teams will go out in shells ranging from 1 person, to 8 person shells with a coxswain. Sometimes they go out in small groups and sometimes they qualify as a fleet. The middle and high school teams often contain inexperienced rowers. The launches, the powerboats that escort the rowers, often have inexperienced students at the helm. They are instructed to keep their launch between the shells they are tasked to protect and any other boat that may pose a threat. This can lead to misunderstandings and conflict. Some years ago, I chewed out a young launch driver for the excessive wake he was  making while zig-zagging back and forth to stay between his charges and us. I didn’t get to apologize at a later date because he never came back. 

        As paddlers, we tend to hug the shore going upstream, often choosing which bank in order to minimize the effect of the wind on our boats. In moderate to high current situations, it is fun, as well as good practice, to see how much advantage we can get from the many eddies along the shore. Paddling downstream, we like to get out into the current to maximize speed and minimize effort. Not all of the river users think the same way we do.

        Rowing shells, on the other hand, ply the river as if they were in traffic. They try to pass all oncoming craft on the right and overtake other boats by passing on the left. They tend not to go too close to shore as their oars stick out several feet to the side. They do not turn easily and will take up most of the river when reversing direction.

        These differences in maneuverability and intent can create conflict and bad feelings between the groups. Since paddlecraft are much more maneuverable than the rowing shells, I suggest we should be the ones to give way in encountering situations. If we see shells coming toward us, we should pass on the right as if we were on a road. I would hope that the rowers will show us the same courtesy during our time trials, and they generally do.

        We paddlers have all had encounters with power boats. Some operators are courteous and knowledgeable. They will give small paddlecraft a wide berth and either stay on a plane or slow to an idle. Some try to be courteous by slowing down a bit. When they are at half throttle, they make more wake than at any other time. The fact that the stern of the boat is low in the water causes much more water displacement and, therefore, a higher wake. Good intentions that create a bad situation.

        Then there are the powerboats that intentionally create a large wake because they think it is funny to see us in distress. Sometimes they even go around us in circles to create a washing machine effect. These are mostly jet skis, but not all. This type of behavior is no different than a person in a canoe intentionally paddling toward rowing shells to interrupt their training run. I have heard of this happening on the Mohawk

        We all need to be courteous so our time on the river is enjoyable and productive. There is enough room for all of us if we cut each other some slack.

      • 11 Apr 2023 11:30 AM | Brenda Streed (Administrator)

        Come join the Schenectady Winter Sports Club, one of the oldest ski clubs in the country, for a ski adventure, January 20 - 27, 2024, at Telluride.

        Escape to the breathtaking mountains of Telluride and experience an unforgettable winter adventure. This ski trip offers everything you need for an incredible vacation, from world-class skiing to great  accommodations. We will stay at the Camel’s Garden, in old town Telluride. This is directly across the street from the mountain gondola. Old Town Telluride combines the essence of old and new in a quaint western town.

        With over 2,000 acres of skiable terrain, Telluride boasts some of the most diverse and challenging slopes in North America. Whether you're a seasoned pro or a beginner, there is a run for everyone here. You can explore the legendary Gold Hill Chutes or take in the stunning views from the top of Palmyra Peak, all while enjoying the pristine snow and sunshine.

         Don't miss out on this amazing opportunity to experience the beauty and excitement of Telluride.

         Any questions, email


        Rick 518.337.6188

      • 31 Mar 2023 10:51 AM | Dorie Valenti (Administrator)

        Who Was E.H. Hull?    

        What we do know is that he was the SWC's second president, there is a building at GE-Schenectady named after him, and he was a meticulous ski trail map maker and an award winning photographer. The SWC inherited a box  of 60+ plus large format Black and White photos. Here are a few of interest that show the 1930's skiers knew a few things about skiing. Most are Rotterdam Hills, Gore Mountain and Tuckerman's Ravine. The full series will be posted to the SWC website. If you find out anything about E.H Hull, please let us know. (Submitted by Bill Schaefer)

        E.H. Hull Ski 1

        E.H. Hull Ski 2

        E.H. Hull Ski 3

        E.H. Hull Ski 4

      • 31 Mar 2023 10:42 AM | Dorie Valenti (Administrator)

        Recent press releases seemed to be saying that the Warren Miller film would not be produced this year. Outside Inc. will be producing the film and SWC has a contract to show it this fall and the followup in 2024. The following is an article in the March Skiing History Magazine.

        Annual Film Fest Not Dead

      • 18 Feb 2023 11:47 AM | Dorie Valenti (Administrator)

        Summertime in Stowe

        The weekly rentals for the late spring/summer are filling up fast. For $750, you can rent the entire house and bring up to 15 other people (all members of course). Contact to check remaining availability and book.

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      "Schenectady Wintersports Club Inc." is a 501(c)4 non-profit organization. P.O. Box 2072, Wilton New York 12831

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