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Snowmass early February

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Despite the lackluster (so far) snow performance this year, the family will be headed to Snowmass first week of February.  Have never been to the Aspen area, so looking for advice.


We have 5-year-old and 14-year-old boys.  The plan is to put them in ski school for most if not all of the trip (depending on progress).  My wife, a lower-intermediate, will probably take a few 1/2 day lessons as well to allow her the opportunity to ski with some like skiers and help build her confidence.

 

This leaves me solo for some mornings, and would love some pointers on best places to check out.  Due to the limited time alone, I don't want to do too much hiking if it can be avoided.  I"m a solid Level 8/9 skier, but somewhat out of shape so I tire more easily than I used to.

 

Also, are there any good areas that can accommodate an advanced skier and beginner/intermediate family skiing somewhat together?  It's always good to have some short shot mogul runs, ridges, or trees to keep my interest while skiing with the wife/kids.

 

As for après ski, we'll have kids in tow, but would love to hear some recommendations on restaurants, etc.  We'll be there for the Superbowl, so it would be cool to find a fun (and again, kid friendly) location for that.

 

Appreciate the help!

post #2 of 12

I'm not an expert here, but from what I know of the area, you will probably all be just fine staying together at Snowmass every day.

post #3 of 12

I think you will find the snow is good!

 

Officially Snowmass opens at 8:30, but typically they open 10-15 minutes earlier.  Get on the Village Express 6 pack to Sam's Knob early.

Sam's Knob has some nice easy blacks, Slot,Wildcat, Campground that you can lap very quickly.  The further skiers left you go, the more likely you will get some untracked.  Make sure to look for the traverse back to the Sam's Knob chair or you will end up at Campground lift.

Your wife and kid's could hit Banzai Ridge and meet back at the Knob chair.  Definitely hit Powderhorn off the back of the knob at some point.

It's not that hard of a run, but it's long and once your on it, you're going all the way.  Same with Longshot off of Elk Camp. 

 

Big Burn is intermediate cruiser heaven.  They can hit Sneakies, which is groomed everyday and you could hit power line glades.

Or they can meet you at the Sheer Bliss Chair and you can hit the runs in Garret's Gulch. If you ski Freefall 1/2 way down there is a traverse on your right that will take you to the top of Glissade.  Glissage is short, but the bottom pitch is steep and it is often very deep.

 

Snowmass is a great family place.  I think you will really like it!

post #4 of 12
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the advice so far...please keep it coming!

post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 

As our trip gets closer...was curious if anyone can provide some firsthand updates on SM conditions.  Thanks!

post #6 of 12

On your first solo morning you should check out their guided tour.  I think they have it daily (no charge) and a "Ambassador" will take a small group to all of the areas.  I think they gear it towards the blue runs, but I was with a father and 2 racer kids and had a great morning of skiing (while the rest of my family was suffering from the altitude back in the condo).

post #7 of 12

Agree with the above ^^^^ suggestion.  When we went out there, we got a full tour of the mountain and some invaluable tips about when/where to ski and also how to navigate efficiently.  I'd second that SM is a great family place; occasionally you will want to take off, but it suits a variety of abilities pretty well.

 

I found that the runs off the Cirque and Hanging Valley were great for some challenge -- not as sustained or difficult as stuff at Snowbird or Jackson or elsewhere, but good for someone like me (I'm a level 8).  A poma lift takes you almost all the way to the top of the Cirque runs; my memory is no hiking, just some skating/traversing.  If you ski the Cirque, you end up at the Sheer Bliss chair and can meet back up with your family there and either do another hard lap or ski with them. 

 

Only problem I found.... eating in the village was crazy expensive when we were there.  Pizza dinner for 4 was, like, $80.  Yow!!!

post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by tch View Post

 

Only problem I found.... eating in the village was crazy expensive when we were there.  Pizza dinner for 4 was, like, $80.  Yow!!!


We took pizza out one night and it wasn't overpriced.  Believe it or not, if you head down to Aspen for dinner it's pretty easy to find a reasonably priced meal. 


 

 

post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by RatherPlayThanWork View Post


We took pizza out one night and it wasn't overpriced.  Believe it or not, if you head down to Aspen for dinner it's pretty easy to find a reasonably priced meal. 


 

 



If you recall any specific spots, that would be much appreciated!

post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tch View Post

Agree with the above ^^^^ suggestion.  When we went out there, we got a full tour of the mountain and some invaluable tips about when/where to ski and also how to navigate efficiently.  I'd second that SM is a great family place; occasionally you will want to take off, but it suits a variety of abilities pretty well.

 

I found that the runs off the Cirque and Hanging Valley were great for some challenge -- not as sustained or difficult as stuff at Snowbird or Jackson or elsewhere, but good for someone like me (I'm a level 8).  A poma lift takes you almost all the way to the top of the Cirque runs; my memory is no hiking, just some skating/traversing.  If you ski the Cirque, you end up at the Sheer Bliss chair and can meet back up with your family there and either do another hard lap or ski with them. 

 

Only problem I found.... eating in the village was crazy expensive when we were there.  Pizza dinner for 4 was, like, $80.  Yow!!!


Good to know.  I think I saw something somewhere about the "Ambassador" tour.  I'll look into that for sure!

 

post #11 of 12

The skiing is really, really good.  Hardly any bumps, soft almost everywhere.  

 

Highland bowl is skiing really well after a delayed opening this morning.  They must of tossed 25 charges in O B 1 but it didn't go anywhere.  Steeplechase and Deception are still a little boney.  Goldenhorn to Powder Bowl was money.

 

Aspen Mt. expert runs are skiing the best.  Everything but Traynor's is open and skiing great.  Hardly any people keeps the snow soft.

 

Snowmass's moderate terrain has to be good, but the Wall and Cirque will still have some shark fins.

 

I don't know many economy restaurants in Snowmass other than the Stewpot.  In town I'd hit, Little Annie's, Fin Bar, Boogie's or the Hickory House.

post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SHREDHEAD View Post

The skiing is really, really good.  Hardly any bumps, soft almost everywhere.  

 

Highland bowl is skiing really well after a delayed opening this morning.  They must of tossed 25 charges in O B 1 but it didn't go anywhere.  Steeplechase and Deception are still a little boney.  Goldenhorn to Powder Bowl was money.

 

Aspen Mt. expert runs are skiing the best.  Everything but Traynor's is open and skiing great.  Hardly any people keeps the snow soft.

 

Snowmass's moderate terrain has to be good, but the Wall and Cirque will still have some shark fins.

 

I don't know many economy restaurants in Snowmass other than the Stewpot.  In town I'd hit, Little Annie's, Fin Bar, Boogie's or the Hickory House.

Thanks!

 

Looks like the area may get a little snow prior to our arrival but not much.  Hopefully what's there will stick around at the very least!  Doesn't look like any major dumps in the forecast at this point.
 

 

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