Where is the Outdoor Center located?
The Outdoor Center is located on the Bread Loaf campus of Middlebury College in Ripton. Our Rikert Outdoor Center sign and Open flag mark the entrance into the Outdoor Center parking lot. Our shop is located to the right of the large yellow barn you see when you drive in. Additional signage will direct you to come around to the back (north) side of the building for the shop entrance.
Is there food available at the Center?
Grab and go food and drink items will be available.
What do you offer for Cross Country Ski Equipment?
We are a Rental Shop
- Q: Do you rent Cross Country Ski packages? A: Yes! We have Classic or Skate Skis, as well as Performance Classic and Skate equipment for rent.
- Q: How much does it cost to rent equipment? A: Click the link to see our Rates page.
- Q: Does the rental rate include a trail pass? A: No, you will need to purchase a trail pass.
- Q: Can I rent just boots, poles or skis? A: Yes, you can. We are a Salomon-specific rental shop, and if you have Salomon equipment then we we can provide appropriate gear. If you have NNN or Rotafella boots or bindings, our equipment is not compatible and you will have to rent both boots and skis.
- Q: Are the rental skis wax-less or wax-able? A: Our basic rental skis are wax-less, but we have wax-able performance skis available.
- Q: If I rent wax-able skis, do you have waxes available for the day’s conditions? A: If you are planning on renting wax-able skis, please bring your own wax. Otherwise, we have a variety of waxes for sale in the shop.
Do you offer FatBiking?
Yes! Are you interested in another way to get out in the winter to exercise? Winter biking or FatBiking is a great alternative. We have a fleet of bikes maintained by Green Mountain Bikes available for you to rent. Own your own bike? Great, bring it with you, as long as it has 3.5″ tires.
We offer single track trails of various difficulty levels, which are also shared by SnowShoers. You can also ride your bike on all of the ski trails, we just ask you to stay to the side and please not bike in the tracks that are set for Classic Skiers.
- Q: Do you rent FatBikes? A: Yes!
- Q: How much does it cost to rent a FatBike for an hour or per day? A: Click the link to see our Rates page.
- Q: Does the rental rate include a trail pass? A: No, you will have to purchase a trail pass. You can use your trail pass to go ski or snowshoe if you are up for more after your ride (does not include equipment rental).
- Q: Is it possible to reserve a FatBike ahead of time? A: Yes, as long as you pay a deposit of at least 50% over the phone. It is also possible to pay in full. We will ask that you give us your name and contact information, as well as your height so we can reserve the correct size.
- Q: How far ahead of time should we call to reserve FatBikes? A: It depends on how many bikes you wish to reserve: the more bikes the more lead time we would like. If you are interested in reserving a couple of bikes just call us an hour ahead of time, so we can make sure the bike you wish to ride is here.
- Q: How many FatBikes do you have? A: We have 6 bikes of various sizes.
- Q: What sizes of bikes are available to rent? A: We have 17″- 21″ bike frames.
- Q: Do you have helmets? A: Yes, we have helmets, but if you have your own then bring that along.
- Q: Where can we bike? A: You can bike on all of our trails, additionally we have FatBike- and SnowShoe-specific trails.
- Q: Can we take bikes off campus? A: No, for this we recommend that you contact the bike shops directly. Green Mountain Bikes or Frog Hollow Bikes.
- Q: Is FatBiking condition dependent? A: Yes, below is our FatBiking Conditions report.
Do you offer SnowShoeing?
- Q: Do you rent SnowShoes? A: Yes!
- Q: How much does it cost to rent SnowShoes? A: Click the link to see our Rates page.
- Q: Does the rental rate include a trail pass? A: No, you will have to purchase a trail pass. You can use your pass to go ski or bike if you are up for more after after your SnowShoeing (does not include equipment rental).
- Q: Is it possible to reserve SnowShoes ahead of time? A: Yes.
- Q: How many SnowShoes do you have? A: We have quite a lot, of varying sizes and design.
- Q: Where can we snowshoe? A: You can snowshoe on all of our trails, but we do have SnowShoe- and FatBike-specific trails.
- Q: Can we take SnowShoes off campus? A: No, our snowshoes are for Rikert Outdoor Center use only.
Can I bring my dog?
No. For liability reasons, we no longer allow dogs on our trails.
Do you make snow?
Yes, we make snow! Starting in November when the temperatures permit we start up the snow-making system. Our snow-making has increased our days open from 70 to about 140 seasonally.
Check out our 5 K Ribbon of Snow video showcasing what snow-making can do for us all during a snow-less winter.
When do you groom?
- Q: When do you groom? A: We groom everyday when the weather and temperatures permit.
- Q: Why did you not groom today? A: We look at the long term effect of grooming. If the snow is too wet or the temperatures too warm we may stay off the snow until good grooming conditions return.