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Snow Quality

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 

Which resort, generally speaking, has higher quality snow....Park City or Breck?

post #2 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michaelfahlund View Post

Which resort, generally speaking, has higher quality snow....Park City or Breck?

Park City wins on quantity, Breck will win on quality.

 

Generally speaking, the western resorts (Cascades, Sierras) have the heavier snow, Utah, Montana, Idaho and Wyoming are in the middle, while Colorado and New Mexico have the lightest and driest. 

post #3 of 26

When?  Park City gets a little more, but it's much lower.   Brecks base is almost the top of PC resorts, so I'd give the quality to Breck from March till the end of season?

 

Early season - too close to call

January-Feb    Park City

March-April     Breck?

post #4 of 26

I skied PC a lot as a teenager and live close to Breck now...I would say there are pretty close in both quantity and quality.  PC does not get as much snow as the little Cottonwood Canyon resorts like Alta or Snowbird.  Some say CO powder is a bit lighter, but if you can`t ski PC powder, you need to take lessons.

post #5 of 26

I think SH is right although I am not sure if I ever skied PC in April...Breck can be very good that time of year, but not last season.

 

Very early season snow making is more reliable at Breck because of the altitude, but they mostly make snow on pretty flat runs.

post #6 of 26
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MEfree30 View Post

I think SH is right although I am not sure if I ever skied PC in April...Breck can be very good that time of year, but not last season.

 

Very early season snow making is more reliable at Breck because of the altitude, but they mostly make snow on pretty flat runs.

 

But speaking of Breck what is the altitude of these flat runs? I ask because I enjoy the flatter (blues) runs, and I may prefer the slightly lower altitude too (I'm debating PC vs. Breck in terms of the altitude, and if there are sufficient blues at lower altitudes in Breck I would like that because I've skied PC before).  Thanks again.

post #7 of 26

All of Breck is high...the lowest runs go down to about 9600, but most of the lower mountain blues are probably in the 10-11,500 range from top to bottom.  It is a good resort for flat blues...most of peak 7, which is all marked blue, is really good green runs with one steeper section that justifies the blue rating.

 

If you are looking for Colorado alternatives with less elevation than Breck, you could consider Steamboat, Aspen (Snowmass/Buttermilk), Beaver Creek or Vail, but Breck likely has some of the flatter blues around.

post #8 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michaelfahlund View Post

 

But speaking of Breck what is the altitude of these flat runs? I ask because I enjoy the flatter (blues) runs, and I may prefer the slightly lower altitude too (I'm debating PC vs. Breck in terms of the altitude, and if there are sufficient blues at lower altitudes in Breck I would like that because I've skied PC before).  Thanks again.

 

I believe Breck has the highest base village in the US (except maybe Silverton) - it's all high altitude.

post #9 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayT View Post

 

I believe Breck has the highest base village in the US (except maybe Silverton) - it's all high altitude.

Actually, I think Arapahoe Basin has the highest base elevation at 10,780' and a top elevation of 13,050'.  Silverton may be higher but it would be the only one.  Edit:  Silverton base at 10,400' and top at 12,300'.  A Basin wins.

post #10 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldMember View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by JayT View Post

 

I believe Breck has the highest base village in the US (except maybe Silverton) - it's all high altitude.

Actually, I think Arapahoe Basin has the highest base elevation at 10,780' and a top elevation of 13,050'.  Silverton may be higher but it would be the only one.  Edit:  Silverton base at 10,400' and top at 12,300'.  A Basin wins.

Silverton/A-Basin do not have villages are are not resorts.

 

I do believe Breckenridge is the highest base area that is both.

post #11 of 26

Not sure if 'base' or 'base village' is all that material.  Having a village doesn't add to snow texture or weight qualities.

post #12 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldMember View Post

Not sure if 'base' or 'base village' is all that material.  Having a village doesn't add to snow texture or weight qualities.

Of course it doesn't, just confirming JayTs point from earlier. Breck certainly gets high quality snow, and decent quantity. The issue is the high winds can strip the summit real fast. 

post #13 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by COBillsFan View Post

Of course it doesn't, just confirming JayTs point from earlier. Breck certainly gets high quality snow, and decent quantity. The issue is the high winds can strip the summit real fast. 

Breck can get high winds...last year was particularly bad in terms of stripping snow, but it can work the other way also...parts of the top often benefit from snow being blown in more often than they are hurt by it being blown away.

post #14 of 26
Copper's base is 9,712' -- Breck's is 9,600'.
post #15 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by habacomike View Post

Copper's base is 9,712' -- Breck's is 9,600'.

I think it depends where you measure Breck`s base from...the bottom of 7 & 8 (which do have lodging) are both pretty close to 10 K...regardless, all of Summit County is very high, but that didn`t stop us from getting some rain (that eventually turned into snow) last night

post #16 of 26

Think the point on wind is a good one. Snow quality is about more than just height. Aspect, too. Tree cover. Maybe temperature fluctuations one place vs. another. Lot of factors. 

post #17 of 26
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MEfree30 View Post

All of Breck is high...the lowest runs go down to about 9600, but most of the lower mountain blues are probably in the 10-11,500 range from top to bottom.  It is a good resort for flat blues...most of peak 7, which is all marked blue, is really good green runs with one steeper section that justifies the blue rating.

 

If you are looking for Colorado alternatives with less elevation than Breck, you could consider Steamboat, Aspen (Snowmass/Buttermilk), Beaver Creek or Vail, but Breck likely has some of the flatter blues around.

Thanks, MEfree!

 

In your opinion... which of the resorts you mention (Steamboat, Aspen, Snowmass/Buttermilk, Beaver Creek, or Vail) has the best open, flat blues?  The lower elevation of these, assuming comparable flat blues to Breck, would be a great advantage.

post #18 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michaelfahlund View Post

Thanks, MEfree!

 

In your opinion... which of the resorts you mention (Steamboat, Aspen, Snowmass/Buttermilk, Beaver Creek, or Vail) has the best open, flat blues?  The lower elevation of these, assuming comparable flat blues to Breck, would be a great advantage.

Overall, I think most CO resorts have slightly steeper blues than the easier blues at Breck but that doesn`t mean that there is not some easy terrain to be had.  

 

It has been decades since I skied Steamboat (hope to change that this year) and I have never skied Buttermilk, but they both might have some good options...others will have to chime in to verify.  Snowmass is very big and parts of it definitely have some easier blues.  I think it would be a good choice but I have only skied there a few times so it is probably better to get confirmation from someone who spends more of their time on the blues than I do.

 

Vail, where I`ll be teaching part time this season is also big and has terrain for everyone- the big open bowls make it popular with upper intermediates and advanced skiers but easier blues (and some greens) can be found a number of places including off chairs 2, 3, 4, 6 (lower half), 7 and 14.  

post #19 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michaelfahlund View Post

Thanks, MEfree!

 

In your opinion... which of the resorts you mention (Steamboat, Aspen, Snowmass/Buttermilk, Beaver Creek, or Vail) has the best open, flat blues?  The lower elevation of these, assuming comparable flat blues to Breck, would be a great advantage.

 

 

aren't flat blues, greens? wink.gif

post #20 of 26
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MEfree30 View Post

Overall, I think most CO resorts have slightly steeper blues than the easier blues at Breck but that doesn`t mean that there is not some easy terrain to be had.  

 

It has been decades since I skied Steamboat (hope to change that this year) and I have never skied Buttermilk, but they both might have some good options...others will have to chime in to verify.  Snowmass is very big and parts of it definitely have some easier blues.  I think it would be a good choice but I have only skied there a few times so it is probably better to get confirmation from someone who spends more of their time on the blues than I do.

 

Vail, where I`ll be teaching part time this season is also big and has terrain for everyone- the big open bowls make it popular with upper intermediates and advanced skiers but easier blues (and some greens) can be found a number of places including off chairs 2, 3, 4, 6 (lower half), 7 and 14.  

Thanks again, MEfree!  You have helped me alot.  I think it sounds like we (my son, 18, and I) should go to Vail...and bite the cost.  It's probably a better bet what with the variety of slopes to practice on, the lower elevation, and of course, the range of things to do when not always skiing.  We're planning to go around Feb. 19.  Many thanks for your comments.

post #21 of 26
Thread Starter 

What is your "teaching name"?  We'll look you up for a lesson or two.  I ski but my son snowboards and is always eager to have another lesson.  Any suggestions of names?

post #22 of 26

I skied Park City a lot as a teenager...one nice thing about it is that you will be able to ski from the top of the old gondola (which is gone) all the way to the bottom on greens and blues.  It has been a while since I skied there, so I am not sure how many of the blues you would find easy compared to Breck.

 

Beaver Creek offers you top to bottom skiing like PC with a few more options of flatter terrain at the top but a bit more cat track navigation to get to the bottom than PC.  Overall, I think Beaver Creek would be a very good choice because the Arrowhead and Bachelor Gulch areas of Beaver Creek offers a lot of the type of terrain that I think you are looking for.  This part of the mountain is lower (going down to 7,400) so it is not recommended early in the season or in April (unless conditions justify it)..  If you have the $ or find a deal, the Ritz Carlton at Bachelor Gulch is a beautiful place to stay, but it is also possible to stay down in Avon and catch the gondola up.

post #23 of 26

Out of pure nostalgia for a couple of trips there as a kid with the family around 1970-71'ish, on that list you mentioned, I'd go to Snowmass in a heartbeat.

 

Altitude... unless you have a specific medical condition, most people adjust after a day... avoid alcohol, drink lots of fluids, yada, yada, yada.... 

post #24 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michaelfahlund View Post

Thanks again, MEfree!  You have helped me alot.  I think it sounds like we (my son, 18, and I) should go to Vail...and bite the cost.  It's probably a better bet what with the variety of slopes to practice on, the lower elevation, and of course, the range of things to do when not always skiing.  We're planning to go around Feb. 19.  Many thanks for your comments.

just saw this...I had to take my daughter to school and finished my assessment of PC & Beaver Creek separately.

 

Vail Village definitely has stuff going on with a nice selection of restaurants, etc.

 

Feb 19 is good in that it is after Pres weekend which tends to get slammed everywhere.

 

I think you guys would be happy a number of places but if you are concerned about altitude, then Breck shouldn`t be the top of the list.  

post #25 of 26

MF - the original OP, if you like Blue Runs, best place for them, nice, relatively long and on each different mountain on the resort is Deer Valley, the neighbor of Park City. And Snow Quality is the same basically as Park City. 

 

Altitude makes a difference to some, a lot in some cases, and not to others, that is a factor. Either way, drink lots of water!

 

Another place with very long continuous Blue Runs is Snowbasin, the northern cousin of the Utah 8!

post #26 of 26
Thread Starter 

Yep, I agree, Dustyfog.  I've skied PC, Deer Valley alot and love them both.  But my son is a snowboarder so that rules out the Valley; and, since we're going this year to vacation, Snowbasin comes up a little short on the "accommodations" end of the stick so we're looking mainly in Colorado.  I think we'll go to Vail... it seems to have it all (lower elevation too), including a formidable price... which I guess we'll have to bite!  Thanks alot.

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