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True Expert Mountains - Page 2

post #31 of 57

Killington has legit expert terrain especially woods like Julio, and trails like Ovation and some stuff in the Canyon.

 

Add Smuggler's Notch to the list. Add Sugarloaf to the list. Add Magic Mountain to the list.

 

East:

 

MRG

Stowe (plus Mansfield)

Smuggler's

Whiteface

Sugarloaf

Killington

Magic

 

There are other areas that have some difficult terrain but mostly depending on conditions I think those are the ones that stand out.

 

IDK how EpicSki is saying these East areas don't belong on the list. I've skied a bit out west and IMO tight steep eastern trees with variable conditions make for some of the most challenging stuff to ski.

post #32 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joshua Tree View Post

Killington has legit expert terrain especially woods like Julio, and trails like Ovation and some stuff in the Canyon.

 

Add Smuggler's Notch to the list. Add Sugarloaf to the list. Add Magic Mountain to the list.

 

East:

 

MRG

Stowe (plus Mansfield)

Smuggler's

Whiteface

Sugarloaf

Killington

Magic

 

There are other areas that have some difficult terrain but mostly depending on conditions I think those are the ones that stand out.

 

IDK how EpicSki is saying these East areas don't belong on the list. I've skied a bit out west and IMO tight steep eastern trees with variable conditions make for some of the most challenging stuff to ski.

 

Honestly imo, if you add all these areas, than you gotta add Sunday River (simply because of Spruce Cliffs and other cliffy areas) or Sugarbush (huge sidecountry, the Church) or Cannon (Tramline, some glade shots, side&backcountry).

My bad for not adding Stowe.

But really I think it's these 4 resorts for a smaller and more simple list:

Jay, MRG, & Stowe for it's excellent sidecountry & backcountry with some supersteep and tight inbounds skiing.

And Whiteface for its inbounds skiing in (mostly) The Slides, & some of it's other runs/glades

post #33 of 57

I feel like Eastern resorts are way easier to discuss here. There's too many western resorts that all offer vast amounts of expert terrain... Taos in New Mexico, Mammoth Mountain in California, Whistler in B.C. Canada, Snowbird in Utah, Jackson Hole in Wyoming, Crested Butte in Colorado, Big Sky in Montana, Alyeska in Alaska, Heavenly in Nevada's gambling land, Steven's Pass in Washington, and I didn't even mention Squaw or Silverton or way too many other places. My point is, you can find so much expert terrain at so many different resorts in pretty much every single "skiing" state.

post #34 of 57

When I think about the absolute Premier Expert's Resorts in the USA, places that if you are an expert and you can go anywhere you wanted you would choose over others (in-bounds resort skiing) the list is short:

 

Squaw Valley, Alta/Snowbird and Jackson Hole Wy. They have a great combination of terrain and snow quality/quantity plus very nice lifts and facilities/services.

 

There are plenty of other places obviously but those 3 have the best combination of the factors mentioned.

post #35 of 57

Places I've skied that I would add my +1 to for expert:

 

Alta, Snowbird, Big Sky, Alyeska, Kirkwood, Squaw.

 

Heavenly, I strenuously object to being called an expert mountain.

 

Killington, not so sure.  I wasn't that good a skier then.  Maybe the trees?

 

Aspen, I've skied, but have no real opinion on.

 

I'm hitting Jackson Hole in two weeks and I'm sure will being to concur on that shortly.  

post #36 of 57

Retallack, British Columbia

 

Any questions?

post #37 of 57

I am a spoiled westerner (Pacific Northwest - skis Tahoe biannually, Whistler annually) who is intrigued with the eastern mystique.  If I were to travel to the east to get the real deal, where would I go and what would I do?  Say 4-5 day trip including travel time from Seattle....

post #38 of 57

Berthoud pass, when or its open, or better yet when it's not.  

post #39 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by molesaver View Post

I am a spoiled westerner (Pacific Northwest - skis Tahoe biannually, Whistler annually) who is intrigued with the eastern mystique.  If I were to travel to the east to get the real deal, where would I go and what would I do?  Say 4-5 day trip including travel time from Seattle....

 

#1 would be Stowe.  Also hit Killington, Mad River Glen & Sugarbush.  That would give you the real deal.

post #40 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by SnowbirdDevotee View Post

#1 would be Stowe.  Also hit Killington, Mad River Glen & Sugarbush.  That would give you the real deal.

 

That's probably the easiest solid itinerary for an EC visit, since you can fly into Burlington VT and those areas are all relatively close.  (You could also go north to Jay Peak instead of south to Killington.)

 

Way further east in Maine you've got Sunday River and Sugarloaf.  The problem with Sugarloaf is it is in the middle of freaking nowhere.  If you flew into Portland it might not be so bad.

 

There's some fun and scenic places in NH (Bretton Woods and Cannon, for instance), but they're more isolated.

post #41 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by MuchosPixels View Post

When I think about the absolute Premier Expert's Resorts in the USA, places that if you are an expert and you can go anywhere you wanted you would choose over others (in-bounds resort skiing) the list is short:

 

Squaw Valley, Alta/Snowbird and Jackson Hole Wy. They have a great combination of terrain and snow quality/quantity plus very nice lifts and facilities/services.

 

There are plenty of other places obviously but those 3 have the best combination of the factors mentioned.


In terms of sheer volume of expert terrain, I think this post is on the right track.  I would add Whistler/Blackcomb to the above list.  I think there's a significant drop in total expert terrain per mountain once you go beyond those 4.  Big snow quantity is necessary to keep that type of terrain covered and the above 4 areas usually fit the bill in that department too. There are places that are as proportionately expert or even more (Taos, Crested Butte, Red Mt., Crystal, Aspen Mt.&Highlands, Kicking Horse, Castle Mt., Mt. Baldy) but they are not as big and this don't have as much total expert terrain.  There are some other big places that are lower proportion expert but the total expert terrain might be in the ballpark with the second group though clearly not as much as the first: Mammoth, Big Sky, Lake Louise.  There are terrain pods at some smaller areas (Mt. Rose, A-Basin for example) that measure up to the big and famous places in challenge, but of course not in quantity, which was the original question.

 

Quote:

Retallack, British Columbia

 

Any questions?

You might want to check out White Grizzly if you're in that neighborhood for consistently steep trees.  Of course these places are apples and oranges vs. conventional lift service, the same argument I make about Silverton.


Edited by Tony Crocker - 1/17/13 at 2:25pm
post #42 of 57
Thread Starter 

How about other continents? Europe, Asia, South America...

post #43 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by spe777 View Post

How about other continents? Europe, Asia, South America...

 

In Europe the areas are so big that there's even more choices than perhaps there are in North American ski resorts.

First ones come to mind for me though are Chamonix, Verbier, La Grave, Val D'Isere/Tignes, St Antons. Way too many more however.

post #44 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiking4 View Post

 

Honestly imo, if you add all these areas, than you gotta add Sunday River (simply because of Spruce Cliffs and other cliffy areas)

 

I grew up skiing Sunday River and even though there are a few great spots up there I wouldn't put it on this list. Back when Spruce Cliffs was first opened it seemed as if it was closed 70% of the season, I haven't been there in years though, so I can't really attest to what it's like now. 

post #45 of 57
I'd say that a true expert mountain, is a place where an average first-timer would have very few opportunities to learn or have fun all over the mountain.
Using this criteria, Revelstoke is probably on the top of the list of places I've skied.
post #46 of 57
Gulmarg definitely fits the ticket. You want steep? As steep as you want. Grooming? They run a cat up and down between the base and top of the 1st stage of the gondola -- that's it. There's so little traffic that here I am, 12 days after the last snow, and we were skiing untracked lines in bounds. But most of the action is out of bounds and it is immense. Just realize that you are truly skiing backcountry, with little (if any) skier compaction. I skied untracked lines today, and the slopes were probably averaging in the low 40's. You could find steeper lines. The whole mountain is a collection of avalanche paths and you basically ski ridge faces (steep) for 3k feet to the bottom of the second stage of the gondola. It is high -- over 13,000 feet at the top of the gondola, and if you skin to the top of Mt Apherwat you are over 14k.

Amazing place. Few people. And tons of snow. We are expecting at least 45 inches out of the next storm starting Sunday...

Mike (in Gulmarg currently)
post #47 of 57

I'm not sure how you guys missed it, but Delivium Dive at Sunshine V. is one of the most if not the most challenging places in North America.  It's for sure more difficult than the crazy stuff I was trying in Alta, which btw is not as steep as people say it is.  Snowbird comes across more difficult. 

 

Expert terrain is not an absolute term, so everyone will have their own opinion.  On top of that you can make "expert terrain" wherever you go.  For example: Whistler officially is not challenging at all, but hitting Air Jordan is tough even though it's not an official run.  We would have to establish the rules for the expert terrain first, because skiing where you're not suppose to has a chance of making it expert.  More, putting on downhill (216) skis on a nice green run on the East cost can make a hell out of challenge for a lot of people including me.  Don't forget terrain parks, they are nothing more than a fake representation of cliffs, rocks, and etc.

 

Also, I'm in the group of skiers who do East and West, and let me tell you some of the bumps in the tight small trees is much more difficult than any cliff dropping on the West coast. 
 

For pictures check this out: http://www.firsttracksonline.com/boards/viewtopic.php?t=3216


Edited by awegrzyn - 1/31/13 at 6:17am
post #48 of 57

Fernie . . .

post #49 of 57

how about saddleback with its kennebago steeps and casablanca glades for another east coast entry? 

post #50 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by Envy View Post

Snowbird, Jackson Hole, Squaw, Whistler, Aspen.

+ Silverton

post #51 of 57

Just returned from Kicking Horse.  What a great mountain!  Steeps, you want steeps?  Got it in spades.

 

Mike

post #52 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by habacomike View Post

Just returned from Kicking Horse.  What a great mountain!  Steeps, you want steeps?  Got it in spades.

 

Mike

I knew you would like it!

 

JF

post #53 of 57

my favorite, and even better with a bit more fresh. Pretty dry in B.C. at the moment - Feb is often a low snow month here.   

post #54 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by molesaver View Post

I am a spoiled westerner (Pacific Northwest - skis Tahoe biannually, Whistler annually) who is intrigued with the eastern mystique.  If I were to travel to the east to get the real deal, where would I go and what would I do?  Say 4-5 day trip including travel time from Seattle....

I'm curious if you ever pulled the trigger, or if you're just asking for future reference?

 

And I would agree with what has been suggested, Stowe, Jay, Sugarbush, MRG.  I love NH.  I'm from there, am extremely biased, and I'd love for you to come spend your money there, but you'd be doing yourself a disservice to travel 3,000 miles and not ski northern VT.

 

My only real suggestion is to try and wait as long as possible to book, < 1 week would be ideal.  Conditions change so quickly, and are too variable to count on anything.

post #55 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4ster View Post

I knew you would like it!

 

JF

Yea, Jim, it was pretty incredible.  Too bad the snow is not fantastic at the moment.  Still, it is better than what I was skiing in CO 3 weeks ago.  I had three fantastic days there.  I think you could easily put 4-7 days there and not get bored.  The only hike I did was Terminator-1 to Superbowl and there's a ton of backcountry you could do if you had the right crew and knowledge.

 

Mike

post #56 of 57

Any discussion of expert mountains must include Whistler.  I just returned from my 2nd trip there (the last was 20 years ago) and skied some of the hariest, scariest and steepest lines of my life, and every one was accessible by chair and maybe a traverse and very short boot pack.  Incredible inbounds terrain.  And yes, it is expensive and crowded and sometimes foggy but when Whistler is on nothing is better.

 

I make that statement after having amazing trips over the last 5 years to Big Sky, Mammoth, Vail / BC, Crested Butte, Whitefish  and  Mt. Bachelor.  They all had some awesome terrain, but the giant twins of Whistler and Blackomb are King!

 

Rick G

post #57 of 57

pbpic4788.jpg

 

99208-Argentina-Lance-copy.jpg

 

Las Lenas   icon14.gif

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