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silverton or crested butte

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
I may have the option of either skiing a few days back to back at crested butte or taking a travel day to get in one day at silverton. Any opinions on if its worth getting down to Silverton for a day of guided skiing....
post #2 of 16

2 days is usually better than one in my book.  CB isn't having a great snow year but it looks like quite a bit is open now.  I'd vote for CB.  Conditions might change for the better or worse at either area so stay flexible if you can.

post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 
I'll have two days for sure at crested with folks who are not as aggressive as me. then i could maybe take an opportunity to get down to Silverton by myself..or ski a few more days by myself at crested....is it worth the drive down to silverton.
post #4 of 16

No base at Crested Butte.  


Your thread was interesting as I just read somewhere about Crested Butte being a snow resort secret.  I have not been to any of them, but I'm surprised Crested Butte is compared to Silverton. 
 

post #5 of 16

Silverton is about a 3 hour drive.  I’ve never been but I’d probably stick to CB unless things get bad there.  The only other ski area near by is Monarch (90 minutes).  Monarch is a smaller area with one expert section that requires a small hike known as Mirkwood.  It’s fun if  you’re looking for something different but it’s certainly no CB.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by awegrzyn View Post

No base at Crested Butte.  


Your thread was interesting as I just read somewhere about Crested Butte being a snow resort secret.  I have not been to any of them, but I'm surprised Crested Butte is compared to Silverton. 
 

 

I’m not sure what “snow resort secret” means but CB is below the Colorado average for snowfall with about 250” per year.  The good news is that CB has low skier traffic so snow does stay fresh longer. 

 

This year they recorded just 140” which has resulted in a 45” base.  (that base sounds high for just 140”)  I haven’t skied there yet this year, but the trail report shows a lot open.

post #6 of 16

It's been very warm, but Silverton could be good next week.   Watch the storms and make your decision a day or two in advance.

You do realize it's still guided till the end of the month and it's only open Thurs-Sunday.  

Silverton's a special place, but you need to be in pretty good shape and fairly proficient to really enjoy it.

post #7 of 16

"CB is below the Colorado average for snowfall with about 250” per year."

That is totally inaccurate.  CB averages roughly 300 inches of snow per year, just like everywhere else in colorado. People bicker about an extra 10-20" on average at some resorts but these are largely worthless comparisons.

The comparisons that makes sense is that CB has inbounds terrain that is steeper and more technical than any other resort in the United States with the exception of "experts only" mountains like Silverton. This steep terrain requires more snow to build a good base but otherwise there's no difference.

 

The only reasonable advice is to see where it's snowing the day or two before you arrive and plan from there. When the conditions are right, I'd ski a day of Silverton over 2 days (or a week!) anywhere else. At the end of the season, I don't remember all the mediocre days of skiing. The only thing that really matters is how many epic powder days you've managed to catch.  Last year was a horrible snow year for Colorado and yet I still had 3 amazing days of "snorkel deep" powder skiing at Crested Butte.  Anyway, it's dumping in CB right now and I'm about to head up. I'm sure wherever the OP decided to go, he'll have a blast. 

post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
Are you saying crested buttes terrain is as good as Silverton but depending on the snow conditions...
post #9 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smushie View Post

"CB is below the Colorado average for snowfall with about 250” per year."

That is totally inaccurate.  CB averages roughly 300 inches of snow per year, just like everywhere else in colorado. People bicker about an extra 10-20" on average at some resorts but these are largely worthless comparisons.

 

 

I'm not sure what data you're looking at but most sources show CB below average.  Here's one source that many on this site refer to as the best source on the matter: http://www.bestsnow.net/ (see two Colorado links on left)  That site shows CB at 253".  The top snowfall number on that site for CO is 392" and 655" for all of the US.  While CB may not be blessed with leading snowfall, it still gets enough most years.  I love CB and it has some great skiing.

post #10 of 16

http://www.skicb.com/cbmr/mountain/mountain-stats.aspx

Average snowfall 300 inches/year

 

http://www.onthesnow.com/colorado/crested-butte-mountain-resort/ski-resort.html

Average snowfall 300 inches/year

 

http://www.coloradoski.com/resorts/crested-butte

Average snowfall 300 inches/year

 

http://www.snow-forecast.com/resorts/Crested-Butte-Mountain

Average snowfall 25feet = 300 inches year

 

Also, and likely discussed ad nausea elsewhere, different resorts use different metrics to count snow totals. It's like comparing apples and oranges. Resorts that have exceptionally long seasons like A-basin continue counting snow totals which (in part) is why they have so much higher snow totals. It's still snowing in Crested Butte in late April but, since the forest lease is up and the resort is closed, those numbers don't count. Same is true for opening day. CBMR's lease starts later than some other resorts which is why they can (and have) opened for the season with zero inches of new snow and a 40" base.  It's the same at many other resorts as well. Bottom line, it's a silly comparison to try to make even when you're reporting accurate information.

 

As far as terrain goes or steep vert. ft. per day, it's really up to you. Guided skiing at Silverton has it's pros and cons. The lack of guidance in CB has drawbacks as well. CB was amazing today. Six inches accumulated between 9-11am and the wind was absurd. There were places loaded in with feet deep of powder by mid-morning and other areas that filled in feet deep in the afternoon when the wind shifted direction. 

post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks I'll figure it out Need to weigh out the pros and con's....driving, less ski days, terrain?....
post #12 of 16

I don't think anything I say will change smushie's mind so we'll agree to disagree. 

 

Out of curiosity, I compared Vail and CB in terms of snowfall based on OnTheSnow.com data over the last few years.  I suspect the round number 300" is just a reprint of CB's marketing materials.

Don't get me wrong, I'd choose to ski CB over Vail the vast majority of the time.

 

  Vail CB CB/Vail
2012 214 190 89%
2011 373 182 49%
2010 342 213 62%
2009 316 222 70%
2008 439 414 94%
2007 142 157 111%
2006 316 239 76%
average 306 231 79%
post #13 of 16

There you go again posting more inaccurate information. I'm not sure how or why you're pulling these random numbers out of thin air but the 2007-2008 ski season saw a record 422 inches of snow at Crested Butte (and another 50 or so after the resort closed but before resorts like Vail closed and therefore continued to add to their snow totals for the season). 2008-2009 saw over 300 inches by April 1 and the snow kept coming right on through to back to back foot deep powder days on closing weekend. That brought the total for that season to just shy of 350 inches. I know those numbers because I skied those days so it's not just random junk pulled off the internet and repeated like a parrot with no actual knowledge of what you're saying. That's my point so I guess we'll have to agree to disagree about that.

 

That said, coming up with these random numbers does nothing to obviate the fact that you are trying to do head to head comparisons on numbers that aren't being equally reported for various resorts. You failed yet again to take into account the differing season lengths of these various resorts and so your numbers, in addition to being wrong are totally worthless for the sake of comparisons. You can sit there and say, "agree to disagree" but really what we're saying is that you are ignorant of the fact that different resorts report seasonal snow totals differently and that most differences have to do with the length of the season (usually related to National Forest Service leases) than some average amount of snow over an equivalent period of time.

 

Regardless, none of this has anything to do with the OP's request and so there's no point in debating this any longer. Yesterday was an amazing powder day and there are more to come. The best determinate of snow conditions is how recently it snowed and, when you live here, you get to enjoy those days instead of geeking around looking at numbers on the intraweb.

post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by stomparound85 View Post

Are you saying crested buttes terrain is as good as Silverton but depending on the snow conditions...

 

 

CB has some very difficult terrain.  Silverton has some very difficult terrain.  Silverton's permit area is huge, but you wouldn't ski 99% of it in any given day.

Silverton is typically  four runs a  day, maybe five if your with a fast group.

post #15 of 16

I agree with Shredhead,

It really depends on what kind of experience you're looking for. 

post #16 of 16
Thread Starter 

Gotcha thanks for all the advice and comments..

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