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Beaver Creek vs. A-Basin and a few other Colorado questions

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

OK, you guys were a great help on some other questions so I am trying to finalize my Presidents Week-end plans. I am staying in Frisco and skiing on Thursday - Sunday of Presidents Week-end.

 

I have narrowed it down to 5 resorts for the 4 days and need to eliminate one more resort. My son and I are pretty good skiers and like to spend our time messing around in the trees. We can get down most anything that doesn't require me to jump and don't require any style points.

 

We are renting skis early Thursday morning so plan to ski Copper Mountain since it is closest. We also want to ski Winter Park and Vail. We are torn between Beaver Creek and A-Basin. The only place we have already skied of these is Vail.

 

Two questions:

1) Thoughts on Beaver Creek and A-Basin

 

 

2) With this being a holiday week-end would any of them be better on Saturday and Sunday since they are more crowded. We were thinking Vail on Sunday since it is so huge and we could do the Bowls and Blue Sky Basin.

post #2 of 12

The trees on the parsenn at Winter Park are so much fun. I take laps on the panorama lift until my legs burn.

post #3 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by ultracoach View Post

OK, you guys were a great help on some other questions so I am trying to finalize my Presidents Week-end plans. I am staying in Frisco and skiing on Thursday - Sunday of Presidents Week-end.

 

I have narrowed it down to 5 resorts for the 4 days and need to eliminate one more resort. My son and I are pretty good skiers and like to spend our time messing around in the trees. We can get down most anything that doesn't require me to jump and don't require any style points.

 

We are renting skis early Thursday morning so plan to ski Copper Mountain since it is closest. We also want to ski Winter Park and Vail. We are torn between Beaver Creek and A-Basin. The only place we have already skied of these is Vail.

 

Two questions:

1) Thoughts on Beaver Creek and A-Basin

 

 

2) With this being a holiday week-end would any of them be better on Saturday and Sunday since they are more crowded. We were thinking Vail on Sunday since it is so huge and we could do the Bowls and Blue Sky Basin.

 

 

Not that Winter Park isn't worth skiing but it is 60-90 minute drive to Winter Park from Frisco.....some great tree skiing and bumps but I would base there if I was going to ski there.

post #4 of 12

Beaver Creek should be less crowded than Abasin on the weekend and has more tree skiing to offer.  But if the east wall and zuma bowl are open at Abasin I personally would hit Abasin.

post #5 of 12
Th best part of using Frisco as a base is having great options.. You can visit 4 different resorts very easily (Breck, Keystone, Copper, A-Basin). From Frisco Winter Park, Vail & Beaver Creek require a drive that can be somewhat tricky based on road conditions.

Comparing Beaver Creek to A-Basin is not a comparison many will make based on the two totally different ski experiences provided. I truly like them both myself, but A-Basin is a no frills/authentic/purist mountain experience while Beaver Creek is a pampering/high end resort experience. Overall for your entire stay, I'd suggest letting the snow conditions and weather be the determining factor in your decision. If Montezuma Bowl (back side of A-Basin) is still closed, then I'd shy away from A-Basin. If the winds are high then also stay away from A-Bsin as it really howls up there (very high altitude). A-Basin is best enjoyed on a blue bird day with calm winds as most of the terrain is above the tree line and visibility can be difficult. You stated you enjoy tree skiing, I'm not aware of any intermediate tree runs at A-Basin while Beaver Creek has some excellent tree ski runs through the aspens. If tree skiing is a priority, then I'd say Beaver Creek is for sure the better choice. Don't forget debit/credit card as Beaver Creek can be noticeably more expensive than a day at other resorts.

While staying in Frisco, I find it entertaining to awake and see the snow report then decide where to go, as you have so many options nearby. Don't be afraid of Keystone, as it is quite close and I feel is overlooked by many people. In my experience due to being overlooked, it's sometimes less crowded than Breck and Vail on traditionally busy days. Keystone has a great variety of terrain, including many trails through the trees.

I just returned from Winter Park last week. It offers a lot of really fun runs, but what seemed about 20% of terrain was still closed due to only a 38" base. I look forward to a return trip so I can further explore Parsenn bowl and some other areas. Mary Jane has incredible bump skiing, of varying degrees for different levels of ability. There are some glade/tree runs at WP that were enjoyable as well. If you want tree skiing, the best definitely lies in Steamboat Springs.

Have fun and hopefully it begins to snow a lot very soon.
post #6 of 12

A basin has nothing good open, unfortunately. Beaver Creek has almost everything open. Beaver creek has some good bump runs open, but the elk glades are closed frown.gif

 

Go to Beaver. Weekends are laid back, unlike other resorts nearby. Free cookies after 3. Saturday they groom out the golden eagle run, which is impossible for even the best local experts to be bored on. its been set up over the years for ripping down it at 50mph even mid week with small bumps. Check out Grouse MTN if you like moguls, one of the best chairs in the west for bumps. 

 

Theres no snow this year though. so be careful. sneaky logs/branches and fallen trees are everywhere.  I would stick to the bumps if i were you.  injuries are common in the trees this year. 

post #7 of 12

Regarding crowds, the farther you get from Denver the better.  There are usually blackout dates for the local Epic pass for BC and Vail.  If those are in effect the weekend you're there, I'd go to them.  All the ski areas you are considering are a lot of fun, enjoy.

post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 

Thanks a lot for some great responses. I am starting to get excited about the trip. Hopefully there are some good storms between now and February 14th. My son is leaning towards Beaver Creek just for the free cookies.

post #9 of 12

Beaver Creek is actually a great resort that often gets overlooked because you pretty much have to be rich to stay there. If you're driving there, no biggie.

post #10 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by nathanvg View Post

Regarding crowds, the farther you get from Denver the better.  There are usually blackout dates for the local Epic pass for BC and Vail.  If those are in effect the weekend you're there, I'd go to them.  All the ski areas you are considering are a lot of fun, enjoy.

 

 

This is not true.....Vail will be MUCH more crowded than Loveland, WP/MJ or Copper all of which are closer to Denver.

post #11 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by UGASkiDawg View Post

 

 

This is not true.....Vail will be MUCH more crowded than Loveland, WP/MJ or Copper all of which are closer to Denver.

 

But Beaver Creek is typically less crowded than the above areas, because it is on the ragged edge of driving range for day trips from Denver.

 

Arapahoe Basin can get very crowded on Holiday weekends. Loveland tends to fare a bit better due to being able to spread skiers out a bit more than Abay.

 

I would not ski Vail on a holiday weekend. Or any other weekend. Or any other weekday. 

post #12 of 12

You picked a good area to stay in if you dont mind driving to a resort each morning. Parking on A-Basin, Keystone and specially Breck is a breeze. You only need to walk a little bit to the lifts and no need to take a bus (like in Beaver Creek). 

 

All of those ski areas have their pros and cons it all depends on what you want to ski and obviously the amount and quality of snow at the moment. 

 

Right now Summit County resorts have the least snow in the rockies/west. So skiing is not that good. Its decent on groomers but thats about it. A lot of areas are closed or should be closed. A-Basin is hurting which is a shame because it has some of the best skiing when mot of the terrain is open. East Wall has not opened in about 2 years and doesnt look like it will be open any time soon. If Montezuma bowl is open during your visit do not miss it. Its awesome. 

 

Breck has some good groomers but the bowls are hurting. 

 

Keystone is well, Keystone. Lots of groomers and some bowls but also needs snow.

 

Beaver Creek is not worth the visit unless it snows.

 

Most resorts were skied to oblivion during the holidays and it has not snowed to help in the recovery so most areas are skied out and just difficult to ski unless groomed. 

 

That is the current situation. If it snows 2-3 feet by your visit then everything should be great. 

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