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Crowds Dec. 20-Jan.6 Telluride vs. Crested Butte?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

Hola again.  Any major difference in lift lines at these mountains?  Planning 5-6  days each.  Durango in-between, Taos Jan. 7-11.

 

Gracias.

post #2 of 11

Both Crested Butte and Telluride are less crowded that other major Colorado areas because they are harder to get to.  CB has a choke point at the Paradise Lift on the upper mountain that can get some lines, but nothing like Summit County areas at X-mas. T-ride is known for its lack of lines and people spread out pretty well.  Surprisingly, Monarch and Wolf Creek tend to be more crowded over the holidays because they are small and get bus loads of church and ski groups from Texas and Oklahoma jamming their few lifts.  The holiday line situation at the Butte is partly dependent on how much early season snow they have. The steeps accessed by the two upper T-bars are all rock and need a lot of snow.  It there is not enough then skiers will be on the other lifts.  Both areas have uncrowded intermediate skiing, and T-ride probably has shorter lines on the expert terrain, but I would not avoid either one because of anticipated holiday crowds if the snow is good.  They both rock and neither will have lines more than 15-20 min, and that's only occasionally and if you are in the wrong place at the wrong time.

post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 

Tks m., valuable input! 

 

How about your place, Purgatory?  Have it penned for dec. 27-30, thereafter telluride.  Actually, this is my game plan (and it will snow early enough.......):

santa fe 12/19

wolf 12/20

cr but 12/21-25, monarch 12/26

purgatory 12/27-30

tride 12/31-1/6

wolf 1/7

taos 1/8,9,10,11

 

what ya think?

 

Gracias.
 

post #4 of 11

Silverton Mountain is supposed to be open 7 days a week in late December (although everything is subject to change at that place) and they should have unguided skiing during that time.  If they have decent snow you should definitely check it out.  The tickets are way cheaper than Purg, and even if you don't climb you can get a great day of great skiing from the chair.  You need a avi beacon, probe and shovel, or else have to rent them.

 

Purgatory will be crowded, but probably not too bad. Unfortunately it is a rather lame mountain considering how many lifts they have and how much they charge for tickets.  Very intermediate with no sustained steep pitches. Lots and lots of traversing.  Compared to T-ride and Crested Butte it will be a bit of a bore.

 

Looking at your schedule my only comments are that 12/19 at Santa Fe is a real crap shoot for good snow (or even being totally open) that early, and 12/26 at Monarch could be a complete clown show.  You will have some good turns, but the bozo factor of tourists on rental equipment in the lift lines may be a bit overwhelming.  The good news is that you can always get away from them for the skiing.

 

Salida motels usually have cheap tickets for Monarch, and some Gunnison motels have cheap tickets for Monarch and Crested Butte.  Most of the other areas you will probably have to pay holiday ticket window prices, but check on line.

post #5 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by mudfoot View Post

...Looking at your schedule my only comments are that 12/19 at Santa Fe is a real crap shoot for good snow (or even being totally open) that early...

I live there and agree with that assessment.

Good write-up, mudfoot.
post #6 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by gpaulski View Post

Tks m., valuable input! 

 

How about your place, Purgatory?  Have it penned for dec. 27-30, thereafter telluride.  Actually, this is my game plan (and it will snow early enough.......):

santa fe 12/19

wolf 12/20

cr but 12/21-25, monarch 12/26

purgatory 12/27-30

tride 12/31-1/6

wolf 1/7

taos 1/8,9,10,11

 

what ya think?

 

Gracias.
 

 

Seems like your bouncing around and covering a lot of ground twice?  I think the only time you would have hard time finding accommodations might be 12/25-30. I would chose were you want to be then and just go with the flow the rest of the time?

post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mudfoot View Post

Silverton Mountain is supposed to be open 7 days a week in late December (although everything is subject to change at that place) and they should have unguided skiing during that time.  If they have decent snow you should definitely check it out.  The tickets are way cheaper than Purg, and even if you don't climb you can get a great day of great skiing from the chair.  You need a avi beacon, probe and shovel, or else have to rent them.

 

Purgatory will be crowded, but probably not too bad. Unfortunately it is a rather lame mountain considering how many lifts they have and how much they charge for tickets.  Very intermediate with no sustained steep pitches. Lots and lots of traversing.  Compared to T-ride and Crested Butte it will be a bit of a bore.

 

Looking at your schedule my only comments are that 12/19 at Santa Fe is a real crap shoot for good snow (or even being totally open) that early, and 12/26 at Monarch could be a complete clown show.  You will have some good turns, but the bozo factor of tourists on rental equipment in the lift lines may be a bit overwhelming.  The good news is that you can always get away from them for the skiing.

 

Salida motels usually have cheap tickets for Monarch, and some Gunnison motels have cheap tickets for Monarch and Crested Butte.  Most of the other areas you will probably have to pay holiday ticket window prices, but check on line.


Great insight re Durango, Monarch and SSF, GRACIAS all!   Well, did it again, just changed my arrival to Denver (paid, done deal), looking at this new, and hopefully (fat chance) final itinerary:

12/18 ski 1/2 day at Lland or ABasin, and rent all equipment in Silverthorne or thereabouts, depnding on deals available?

12/19,20 Winter Park (last time there was '96)

12/21,22 Steamboat               "

12/23 Lland or ABasin, whichever I skipped before

12/24 Taos (?)

12/25,26 Crested Butte

12/27-12/31 Telluride

1/1-6 Aspen4

1/7,8  ???????  Gotta be at DIA by 10:30pm for flight.

 

Pointers?  Tks.

post #8 of 11

Tres Piedras Pass west of Taos is not plowed in the winter, so it is hard to loop it with other areas, and it is a long way down there from where you are now planning on skiing.  I would definitely scratch Taos from that itinerary.  It would seem to make sense to do a northern loop including Steamboat, or a southern loop  with T-ride and Taos depending on the snow conditions, but trying to cover all that ground in winter mountain driving conditions does not sound like much fun.

post #9 of 11
IMO, Steamboat->Summit Cty->Taos->Crested Butte in four days is nutz. You won't be able to ski much and you'll spend too much time on the road.
post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 

Tweaking the trip, ditched Taos.   General opinion would be Telluride less crowded than Crested Butte???
 

post #11 of 11

CB is much closer to Summit than Tride, by about three hours' drive, but still a long haul. It'd take you five hours easily to drive from Tride to Aspen.

 

IMHO, you should consider EITHER the northern, Steamboat/Summit/WP thing OR the CB/Tride/Taos thing, not both. Since you already booked the Denver flights, the Northern route is the more sensible.

 

If you are too bored and have to have extra mountains to explore, you could add Copper and Vail, or Keystone and Breck....How about tweaking your itinerary thusly as a sort of a loop, rather than zig-zagging around the snowy backroads of Colorado?

 

12/18  rent all equipment in Silverthorne Denver or Idaho Springs or thereabouts, depnding on deals available? (get good equipment; it's not the best thing to bargain hunt)

12/19, 20, 21 Winter Park

12/, 21, 22, 23 Steamboat

12/24-12/25 Aspen (splurge, there can't be any place nicer than Aspen for Xmas. Stay in Snowmass to save a little money if need be)

12/26, 27 Aspen Highlands and Snowmass w/out changing lodging

12/28-29, 30 Vail (you cn to a side trip to Ski Cooper (not Copper) and try out their cat skiing... It's where the 10th Mountain Division trained; very cool.)

12/31, 1/1 Copper (not Cooper) (check out the free cat skiing in the back bowls and it's on-mountain lodging should be (at least more) reasonable than Aspen for new year's celebration and seeing the torch parade etc)

1/2-6 Back to Summit: Abasin/Lland/breck/keystone and day trips to Copper in any combination without moving lodging and then you can return your skis on the way back to the ariport without stressing.

 

Gotta be at DIA by 10:30pm for flight.

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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Mountain/Resort Related Forums › Resorts, Conditions & Travel › Crowds Dec. 20-Jan.6 Telluride vs. Crested Butte?