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Current Aspen advice

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Never been to Aspen.  Ski the top of Mammoth Mountain 30 - 40 days a year. Like the less tracked stuff, but too old and fat to hike much.  Will arrive Saturday AM.

Where should I start with the conditions as they are now?

post #2 of 14

one of the mountains at aspen (sorry forget which one) has that hike section at the top (ajax?) but you can also take a snowcat up at least part of the way.  when i lived in LA i boarded at Mammoth 20-30 days per year too...and i had an incredible tiime at aspen, highlands, and ajax (buttermilk not so much)


but i think the issue is how good the conditions are...colorado is having a terrible snow year...and although it's snowing there today who knows whether it will be enough. i spoke to a friend who lives in summit county and she said she knows 3 people who have gotten hurt this year from hitting things due to lack of coverage. so given the poor snowpack, unfortunately it might be best to stick to the groomers if the untracked stuff doesn't have enough coverage.

post #3 of 14

The mountain with the hike is Aspen Highlands and the hike is to Highlands Bowl.  If conditions permit, I would suggest doing it.  There is a Cat that will take you part of the way. 


In general, the Highlands is considered to be more of an expert mountain with great tree and steep runs.  Of course they also have some groomers.  Aspen which is sometimes refrerred to as Ajax has a nice vareity of terrain and a very cool hidden "ski museum" hidden in the trees in an area that I can not remember right now.  Aspen is also smaller than you might expect especially as compared to a Vail. But the terrain delivers the goods.  Ad the town of Aspen is the place to be seen.


Buttermilk is right next door, more mellow with several parks for the those inclined.


Snowmass a bit further down the road is the largest with the most developed base area and again a great variety of terrain.


Of course a lot of this is weather dependent.


Good Luck,


Rick G

post #4 of 14

Skiing is thin, but still very good. About a foot of new in the last few days.

Try all four mountains, they all have something to offer.


You can't really correlate the conditions in Summit County with the conditions in Aspen.  We get 1/10 of the skier days.


It was dumping when I left Aspen yesterday at 2pm.  Snowed hard all the way to the top of Vail pass and then it cleared up.  Copper was full on sun and the approach to the tunnel was dry as a bone.

Started snowing again as soon as we got through the tunnel and continuted all the way to DEN.  The Dillon donut was in full effect yesterday.

post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 

Thanks!, guys, It appears that with the new snow, the steep-ish stuff will have decent coverage at Highlands. Since I have a week, I'll start there unless someone makes a compelling counter suggestion.  I plan to take a few days to acclimatize to the extra altitude and find an accomplice (only checked out for 11,053 ;-) before going up high.

post #6 of 14

Depending on were your staying, Aspen's probably a better bet for an afternoon 1/2 day if you're thinking of going Saturday.

post #7 of 14
Thread Starter 

Thanks again.  Driving from LA - will sleep in Glenwood Springs and drive to Aspen in the AM.  Staying at Snowmass condo... Since check in is Saturday afternoon, may as well ski.

post #8 of 14
Originally Posted by skiAcat View Post

Thanks again.  Driving from LA - will sleep in Glenwood Springs and drive to Aspen in the AM.  Staying at Snowmass condo... Since check in is Saturday afternoon, may as well ski.

Gotcha.  Then Highlands would be good, since you will probably ski Snowmass more,  since your staying there.


Steeplechase is still pretty boney.  If you ski Boomerang(a very easy black), take the cat track back to the right at the bottom to the Deep T lift. Then you can check out the Steeplechase runs before you fully commit.

post #9 of 14

Rock Skis or Not for Snowmass?


I'll be at Snowmass next week for six days and will also ski Aspen and maybe Aspen Highlands for one day each (4 or 5 days at Snowmass).  Wiith the recent snow, is coverage good enough that I do not have to worry about bringing  a new pair of skis?  I know some of the advanced terrain is not open.  I don't want any core shots.  Thanks for your input. 

post #10 of 14

I left snowmass recently.  Although it has snowed, the layer is still a bit thin.  I didn't get any coreshots, but I did hit some hidden rocks.  Some more inches have fallen since I left so maybe there's no need to take rock skis.

post #11 of 14

Depend on how adventurous you are,  you could still hit rocks.   IHMO: The steeper shots at Snowmass, Roberto's, AMF or Gowdies always have the potential to be rocky.

post #12 of 14
Thread Starter 
Been driving, arrive Saturday am
post #13 of 14

i'm going out the first week of march.  how are the aspen resort skiing these days?

post #14 of 14

13" in the last 48 and cold.  Snow showers thru Sunday.  Your in good shape.

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