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Little Jay

Northern Green Mountains, Vermont

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Little Jay

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  • The trip begins on a logging road.- Little Jay
  • The logging road climbs gradually.- Little Jay
  • Once in the trees, the skin track begins to climb more steeply.- Little Jay
  • The trees are tightest in the lower elevations, but they quickly separate.- Little Jay
  • Several skin tracks spider web up the mountain.- Little Jay
  • Approaching the low saddle on a short trip.- Little Jay
  • Transitioning into downhill mode.- Little Jay
  • Late afternoon light glows in the snow-covered trees.- Little Jay
  • Descending into the tighter trees.- Little Jay
  • Riding the runout.- Little Jay
  • The upper mountain typically has the best spacing between trees.- Little Jay
  • Looking down into the valley floor.- Little Jay
  • Looking out from near the summit.- Little Jay
  • - Little Jay
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Great views. Less frequently tracked.
Cons: 
Long runout.
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Region:
Northern Green Mountains, VT
Max slope angle: 
15-30 degrees
Parking Pass: 
Not Required
Total Distance: 
3.13 mi (5.04 km)
Trailhead Elevation: 
1,535.00 ft (467.87 m)
Vertical descent: 
1,620.00 ft (493.78 m)
Current Local Weather:
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Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Contributor

Little Jay is a shoulder ridge on Big Jay that sits on the southwest side of Jay Peak Resort, one of Vermont's most famous ski areas. Despite its proximity to a powder-hungry population, Little Jay often hides fresh tracks weeks after a storm, while Jay Peak and even Big Jay get skied off quickly. In addition, the mountain receives above average snow totals due to the weather phenomenon known locally as the "Jay Cloud."

Little Jay is only accessible by skinning up from Route 242, and it includes a long run out section through dense trees. From the parking area, cross the road and follow the old logging road up past the clearing on the left. The skin track will climb very gradually at first, becoming steeper as you enter the densest part of the forest. The pitch will decrease after a steep section, and the forest will open up. If you're looking for a super short run, bear left following skin tracks up a steep hollow to an open saddle. For the full experience, continue straight as the pitch becomes steeper and steeper. Near the top, the forest opens up in a wide swath with very few trees. When you reach the thick layer of spruce, it is time to transition. Bear right as you descend to get the most out of your ride back toward the car. 

Backcountry Safety

Winter backcountry adventures can be dangerous outdoor activities that pose significant risks as conditions affecting safety (i.e. weather, snowpack stability, avalanche hazard) are constantly changing. Prior to engaging in these activities each individual should get the proper training to make safe decisions and be equipped to use avalanche safety resources and tools. Please visit our Backcountry Skiing and Avalanche Safety post to learn more.

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(2 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(17 within a 30 mile radius)

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