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Where to go in first weeks of February?

post #1 of 45
Thread Starter 

In an interesting turn of events, Continental/United decided to cancel the flight we had booked to Aspen (ASE) for our planned Snowmass trip during the first week of February.  In true big business merger form, they failed to move us to another flight or bother to even inform us that the flight had been cancelled.  I was actually calling the travel agent to let them know they booked us at the wrong hotel, when this error was discovered.  This creates an interesting loophole that I believe can get us out of our reservations without any cancellation fees (booked through Amex travel in November).

 

Now, we have this week off from work and our kids are out of school that week, so we don't really have the option to move the trip.

 

I can probably get the flights squared away to Aspen and continue as planned.  However, with the current snow forecast, is there somewhere else we should be looking?  My kids don't have passports, so Whistler/BC is out of the question (or anywhere outside the US).

 

We'll be flying from Austin and would like to limit the number of stopovers as much as possible.  Snowmass was chosen largely in part by the feedback I received from the following post.

 

Thanks!

post #2 of 45

No snow in CO yet so I'd see if you can get out of the lodging without paying fees.  Check in to the Pacific Northwest maybe?  I ski Aspen regularly and while their snow is almost always in better shape than the front range resorts, I'd bet that other than a few groomers, they don't have much open worth skiing.  For example, I just checked Mt Baker's site and they've had almost 240 inches to date with a 116 inch base.  

post #3 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by jay_p View Post

No snow in CO yet so I'd see if you can get out of the lodging without paying fees.  Check in to the Pacific Northwest maybe?  I ski Aspen regularly and while their snow is almost always in better shape than the front range resorts, I'd bet that other than a few groomers, they don't have much open worth skiing.  For example, I just checked Mt Baker's site and they've had almost 240 inches to date with a 116 inch base.  



Pac NW or the North East.

post #4 of 45
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post



Pac NW or the North East.



I refuse to go to the NE (grew up skiing the rockies)...where in the PNW specifically?

post #5 of 45

Have you ever been to Montana?  Big Sky is 95% open.

post #6 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post

Have you ever been to Montana?  Big Sky is 95% open.



 

Just got back from a few days at big sky this week. It skied well considering the general llack of snow in the west. Coverage is thin, but enough to have everything open. Solid packed powder conditions

post #7 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by elduderino View Post



I refuse to go to the NE (grew up skiing the rockies)...where in the PNW specifically?



well you may just miss out on the best stuff in the country. Your biased has stopped me from helping you.

 

FIS(aka Greg Petrics) latest TR

 

TR: Nickels and Dimes

I guess the EC is getting a wallop of snow this weekend. I hope it doesn't happen. The nickels and dimes have been just fine so far, thank you very much. I hope some of my buds in UT get a pattern change... but hopefully that same pattern change is good for us too. Here's a few pictures from around these parts this last week. No order.

Pow slashes BRO!






SUN AND POW BROSEPH!!!


Shhh!!!!


Then some dancing occured...


...and beers were schussed...


...sunrises were schussed too...




...and whadyaknow: sunsets were schussed...


Then lastly, sunsets were toasted.

 

we are doing better than just about anyone in the country right now. Bring the fat skis.

post #8 of 45

we also just recieved 12+ inches in the past 24 hours.

post #9 of 45

The Cascades are going off in a big way right now.  You would have to get out of the mindset of a resort experience, though.  Crystal Mountain, WA might have accommodations on the mountain available, but don't expect more than a place to sleep and great skiing.  Other than that it's drive to the hill time.

post #10 of 45

You could do Whistler BC.  If you fly into Seattle or Bellingham WA and drive across the border you don't need a passport.  You do need a passport if you enter Canada by air, sea or rail. Check the appropriate online resources to verify what's needed.  From SeaTac airport, the drive to Whistler will be about 5 hours - nice drive, plenty of places to stop and eat, etc along the way.  From Bellingham, drive is approximately 3:15.

 

 

post #11 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by ILOJ View Post

You could do Whistler BC.   If you fly into Seattle or Bellingham WA and drive across the border you don't need a passport.

This is very old and incorrect news.  You are required to show a passport or an "enhanced" driver's license (which I don't think is available from all states and requires a special application process) at all crossings no matter how you go.  This has been the case for several years now.  Haven't been to Canada lately, eh?

 


Edited by Posaune - 1/14/12 at 8:24am
post #12 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Posaune View Post

This is very old and incorrect news.  You are required to show a passport at all crossings no matter how you go.  This has been the case for several years now.  Haven't been to Canada lately, eh?

 



^^^^this is correct. No passport, no in or out. Kanukistan be a furrin country.

post #13 of 45

It is possible to get a passport quickly, you would have to go to the office in Houston to do it. 

 

post #14 of 45

The PNW includes not only the day ski areas in accessible from Seattle (Mt Baker, Stevens, Snoqualmie/Alpental and Crystal) or from Portland (Mt Hood Meadows, Timberline, Ski Bowl).   Mt Bachelor near Bend, Oregon (fly into Redmond, OR) also has good snow coverage right now, usually drier to its higher elevation  (base 6000', summit 9000'). Or fly into Spokane and there's 5 ski areas within a 2 hour drive.  Schweitzer in particular makes a nice destination resort.

 

I like Bachelor so much I'm planing a couple of days there on the way to the Gathering.  I posted a TR about my trip to Schweitzer over Christmas, also really enjoyed it.

 

Also, sibhusky has written a great guide to Whitefish, MT, easy to get to from Kallispell.   That's another resort on my to-do list.  

 

So there are your choices:  Bachelor, Schweitzer, or Whitefish.

 
post #15 of 45
The OP stated that "kids dont have passports". Children 15 and under dont need passports if traveling by land - birth cert will do.

Posaune, read much, eh ?

As always, dont take anyone here's word for it - check with the proper authorities for the latest information.
post #16 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by ILOJ View Post

The OP stated that "kids dont have passports". Children 15 and under dont need passports if traveling by land - birth cert will do.

Posaune, read much, eh ?

As always, dont take anyone here's word for it - check with the proper authorities for the latest information.


Oh, I read it alright.  I just don't have kids under 16 and have never heard that they don't need passports.  Thanks for the education, and my apologies for the snideness of my remark.

 

post #17 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by elduderino View Post



I refuse to go to the NE (grew up skiing the rockies)...where in the PNW specifically?


You sir, have a closed mind...might I suggest you go to TGR and check out the pics on the East Coast Roll Call thread (page 164).  There is no place in the western continental US that is getting snow like Stowe/Smuggler's/Jay at the moment.  If snow and terrain are not your primary focus, may I suggest you go to Snowbasin and visit the bathrooms?  They're spectacular.  The terrain there is also quite good, but unfortunately, the snow there sucks at the moment.  I've heard the spa at Snowbird is also tres chic, but once again, their snow is bad.

 

post #18 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by bjohansson View Post


You sir, have a closed mind...might I suggest you go to TGR and check out the pics on the East Coast Roll Call thread (page 164).  There is no place in the western continental US that is getting snow like Stowe/Smuggler's/Jay at the moment.  If snow and terrain are not your primary focus, may I suggest you go to Snowbasin and visit the bathrooms?  They're spectacular.  The terrain there is also quite good, but unfortunately, the snow there sucks at the moment.  I've heard the spa at Snowbird is also tres chic, but once again, their snow is bad.

 



do not forget MRG/sugarbush

 

make sure you bring your SL carvers for all that ICE

 

Brian Mohr photo from MRG

 

408366_1778704285329_1771063923_859590_806803291_n.jpg

post #19 of 45

Rockies are much better than that, don't ya know...

post #20 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by bjohansson View Post


 There is no place in the western continental US that is getting snow like Stowe/Smuggler's/Jay at the moment. 



I guess we don't count...

post #21 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by iWill View Post



I guess we don't count...



When your world is small, it's easy to overlook reality.

post #22 of 45



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by snofun3 View Post



When your world is small, it's easy to overlook reality.



I don't know if it's that, but it is interesting to me to see how many ECers think the west consists of Colorado AND Utah.

 

post #23 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by iWill View Post

 

I don't know if it's that, but it is interesting to me to see how many ECers think the west consists of Colorado AND Utah.

 


I'm happy they do.  Don't stir them up.

 

post #24 of 45

I'm with you there. Ten minute liftlines today...after lunch! What is this world coming to.

post #25 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by iWill View Post

I don't know if it's that, but it is interesting to me to see how many ECers think the west consists of Colorado AND Utah.

 


 

Wait - they might think that there's something in CA too.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maybe.

post #26 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post



Pac NW or the North East.



 



Quote:
Originally Posted by iWill View Post



 



I don't know if it's that, but it is interesting to me to see how many ECers think the west consists of Colorado AND Utah.

 




just wanted to point out that I was including you guys. but anyone who hates will get no help from me ever.

post #27 of 45
Thread Starter 

I meant no offense to the EC'ers.  I am ignorant, as I have never experienced the East Coast.  I guess I give too much credit to all the reports of ice, carving, etc.  Obviously, this year changes things.

 

Going to the East Coast does seem like more of a hassle, partly because I've never been and don't really know the best locations, options, etc.

 

I admit, I may be a bit closed minded when it comes to these things.  I grew up in NM and have skiied pretty much every Western State (CO, UT, NM, MT, WY, NV, AZ).  Haven't experienced the PNW or the EC, so I'm totally ignorant when it comes to those places.

 

My investigation of the PNW didn't uncover too much ski-in/ski-out opportunity, and I haven't had a chance to look much at the EC.

post #28 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by elduderino View Post

 I guess I give too much credit to all the reports of ice, carving, etc.



No you're not (said with >40 seasons of least coast experience).

post #29 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by elduderino View Post

 

I grew up in NM and have skiied pretty much every Western State (CO, UT, NM, MT, WY, NV, AZ). 

There you go iWill, exactly as you said.

post #30 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by elduderino View Post

I meant no offense to the EC'ers.  I am ignorant, as I have never experienced the East Coast.  I guess I give too much credit to all the reports of ice, carving, etc.  Obviously, this year changes things.

 

Going to the East Coast does seem like more of a hassle, partly because I've never been and don't really know the best locations, options, etc.

 

I admit, I may be a bit closed minded when it comes to these things.  I grew up in NM and have skiied pretty much every Western State (CO, UT, NM, MT, WY, NV, AZ).  Haven't experienced the PNW or the EC, so I'm totally ignorant when it comes to those places.

 

My investigation of the PNW didn't uncover too much ski-in/ski-out opportunity, and I haven't had a chance to look much at the EC.


I learned to ski in the East in 60s and still spend a good part of each winter in Vermont.  Yes its (usually) a bit icy, but I've had more powder days in New England than I've had in the Rockies.  And the eastern areas have long ago learned to survive in lean snow years and are light years ahead of the Western resorts in terms of snowmaking and grooming.  I am constantly amazed about how quickly an Eastern resort can recover from a rain/thaw event and produce a decent skiable surface, yet out west they can turn fresh snowfall into hardpack in a single day.  Yes I love my annual trips to the Rockies.  I have been going out there since the mid-70s and and probably have several hundred ski days in Colorado, Utah and Idaho, but I would never consider giving up skiing in New England.  Would I consider getting on a plane to fly thousands of miles to get here?  Maybe not.  But I love that all this great skiing is a few hours drive of my house.
 

 

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