So just an update to this thread from last year. I will have my 1st powder chasing experience in February and have been doing a ton of research and thinking. These will be quick 2 day excursions so there is a lot to consider when choosing the right destination. I need a few places in a variety of locations ie. south mid and north to give myself a better chance of catching the storm track. I need lower key places that wont get tracked out quickly but also have a decent amt of terrain. I don't need GNAR but some pitch would be nice. I need easy access from airports and shuttle service because I don't want to mess with chains. Or I need to be able to stay in a lower elevation town and shuttle up to the resort. I need quick flights from LAX with good times and not crazy expensive for last minute airfare (within 3 days).
So my choices Ive scouted already include Taos for the south, Solitude and Copper for the mid, and Bridger for the north. Ive kept my schedule free on thursdays and fridays for the months of Feb and March so my options would be fly out wed eve ski thurs/fri (preferred) or fly out thurs eve and ski fri/sat or fly out fri eve and ski sat/sun (least preferred for powder preservation but at the resorts mentioned still doable I think if that's when the storm hits)
Taos would be really really sweet on a powder day. The shorter and direct flights make up for the longer drive to the town of taos and there is a shuttle to the mtn from there so pretty easy to navigate. Lots of terrain that holds powder for days so Id be skiing powder both days for sure.
Solitude would be a little trickier. The lodging at the mtn is quite expensive as is shuttling up and back from the valley. So I would stay the first night at the airport hotel for $60 and take the bus from the airport in the early am (need to check on how early the 1st shuttle to solitude is). Prob would need to take a cab to and from the airport to the hotel unless they offer a free shuttle. Then I'd have to spend the $260 for a night at the Inn at Solitude and shuttle back to the airport after skiing.
Copper would be pretty easy midweek but wouldn't try it on the weekend. Lots of direct flights to Den. Shuttle to Frisco and stay near bus stop to Copper. Need to figure this out a bit more. Couldn't find hotels near bus stops on main st/6th and couldn't find the town hall(bus stop) on google maps. Ramada is an option but ive heard its better to be on main st for dinner options ect.
Bridger is actually pretty straightforward. Fly to Bozeman and take free shuttle to Days inn. Walk across street to Kmart in the am and catch a bus to Bridger. Flights are longer but its so close to the town that it balances out.
So by my calculations, including everything but food and looking at airfare within 3 days, each of these trips is less than $1000. (i may hire a guide for Bridger for my 1st time there so extra $) Not bad for 2 days of assured powder skiing. I wouldn't go for 3" dustings. And I realize this is still a gamble but a gamble Im willing to take. The good thing is I have some flexibility in terms of locations and dates. Ill keep you posted.