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Aspen for Intermediates - Page 2

post #31 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by UGASkiDawg View Post
 

~~True but the terrain at Aspen is much better than almost all of these resorts without the crowds for a still reasonable drive albeit not for a day skiing trip

 

The Classic 4 pack is pretty good deal but I waited to late to buy one the year and am kicking myself...I should be able to get some sort of discounted race ticket since I'm headed there for my kids races

 

Agree.... but flying into Eagle and catching a shuttle is not much different than flying into DIA and shuttling to Summit......

 

For somebody that doesn't own a season pass, the cost of skiing Aspen is basically a wash compared to skiing Breck/Vail.

 

However, the skiing experience is just superior in every way. No crowds, far superior terrain in every category except perhaps skied out intermediate bowls. The Aspen areas have a lot more 3000+ vert continuous fall line groomer blues for those that seek it. They have way superior expert terrain, whether its tight steep trees, wide open bowls, or cliffs and billy goating stuff.

 

The drive is so totally worth it.

post #32 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by UGASkiDawg View Post
 
Yes but the deep temerity lift really changed the skiing at Highlands getting rid of the long traverse out of skiing that area and making the bowl so much more accessible.  I've only skied Snowmass once and I'm headed back to Aspen in 2 weeks for a race at Highlands so I've only got one day of skiing at other than Highlands so I'm probably headed to Ajax since we are staying town but in the last week I've had 5 people rave at me about Snowmass......hmmmm....decisions

 

Deep Temerity is one of my favorite lifts anywhere.  If I had to pick one lift to ski the rest of my life that would be right up at the top.

 

I am excited to give Snowmass another shot this year with some decent snow.   The last time I was there two years ago it was marginal while Deep Temerity skied great.  It seems the goods at Snowmass need a lot more snow.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by UGASkiDawg View Post
 
~~True but the terrain at Aspen is much better than almost all of these resorts without the crowds for a still reasonable drive albeit not for a day skiing trip

 

The Classic 4 pack is pretty good deal but I waited to late to buy one the year and am kicking myself...I should be able to get some sort of discounted race ticket since I'm headed there for my kids races

 

Agree.... but flying into Eagle and catching a shuttle is not much different than flying into DIA and shuttling to Summit......

 

Totally agree.  Thanks for the reminder about the Classic 4 pack.  I need to do that next year (or maybe a Mountain Collective).  

 

Copper/Mary Jane Pass + Aspen 4 pack + A-basin 4 pack = Way better skiing for me than an Epic Pass for about the same $$.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by anachronism View Post
 

For somebody that doesn't own a season pass, the cost of skiing Aspen is basically a wash compared to skiing Breck/Vail.

 

However, the skiing experience is just superior in every way. No crowds, far superior terrain in every category except perhaps skied out intermediate bowls. The Aspen areas have a lot more 3000+ vert continuous fall line groomer blues for those that seek it. They have way superior expert terrain, whether its tight steep trees, wide open bowls, or cliffs and billy goating stuff.

 

The drive is so totally worth it.

 

Very true.  The cost of a Vail ski with a friend ticket is $100!?!?   

post #33 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by tball View Post
 

 

Deep Temerity is one of my favorite lifts anywhere.  If I had to pick one lift to ski the rest of my life that would be right up at the top.

 

I am excited to give Snowmass another shot this year with some decent snow.   The last time I was there two years ago it was marginal while Deep Temerity skied great.  It seems the goods at Snowmass need a lot more snow.

 

 

Totally agree.  Thanks for the reminder about the Classic 4 pack.  I need to do that next year (or maybe a Mountain Collective).  

 

Copper/Mary Jane Pass + Aspen 4 pack + A-basin 4 pack = Way better skiing for me than an Epic Pass for about the same $$.

 

 

Very true.  The cost of a Vail ski with a friend ticket is $100!?!?   

 

Vail gets more snow than most places in CO (but doesn't hold up to prolonged dry spells very well imho) but that's about it as a selling point .....I've had some great days there in deep snow but I just don't get the  affection many people have for it...I like BC much better than Vail on the Epic Pass....

 

 

My kids race on Team Summit and have to have the Epic and Copper passes but I only buy the Copper (or RMSP+ some years) pass and just drop them off at Breck or Keyrock and go back to Copper to ski myself due the crowds and to save a little money for our race trips. 

post #34 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by UGASkiDawg View Post
 

Vail gets more snow than most places in CO (but doesn't hold up to prolonged dry spells very well imho)

 

That probably has a slight something to do with well over a million skier visits and a treeless South-facing bowl. But yes, they get a bit more snow.

 

The flipside is that nothing at Aspen has a Southern exposure aside from the Y zones in Highland Bowl.

 

Heh. Reminds me of my first time skiing Highlands Bowl in Mid March. Last snow was 3-4 days prior, B zones and further in the bowl had just opened that morning. Some guy rode the cat, and in looking up at the hike to the summit, got cold feet and starts looking down into the Y zones.

 

He asks me "How do you think the snow looks?"

 

I look down at 9:45 AM ankle breaking rock solid crust with 6" deep ski track cuts everywhere. "Um, I think it looks really, really awful."

 

Him- "I'm gonna drop in here."

 

We hiked to the top (slowly), skied down (still pretty slowly), and this guy was still 1/3 of the way down the Y zones.

post #35 of 48

I flew in late last night on the direct from ORD.  2:12 wheels up to wheels down and the pilot rolled it onto the runway. It's not the greatest airport, but it is the closest one to a hill that has directs from major markets.  The pilot that crashed should have diverted to Eagle or Rifle,  instead of trying an approach with a 30\kt. tail wind.

 

I skied Ajax this morning and Highland this afternoon.   Coverage is good, it got warm earlier this week and it's a little firm in spots.  The bowl still has nice snow, lots of nice north facing chalky lines and the groomers are great.  Some places, you don't want to fall.

 

CB and Tride are great places.  But I think our four hills have just as good of technical terrain and we can get our easier blacks open much sooner.   Aspen had expert terrain open in November this year and Highland's opened 12/14 with most of the bowl.  

 

 

The skiing's good, the OP will have a great time!

post #36 of 48
Quote:
I'm just pointing out that there is a TON of expert terrain on top of Snowmass that gets access much easier than the Highlands hike, and I think any expert skier is selling themselves short if they don't spend some time up there. 

Accessibility to Snowmass' expert terrain is not great.  The Cirque has short interesting stuff up top with long runouts. Hanging Valley has lots to explore but with lift layout you're unlikely to do more than 2-3 runs a day in there.  The poor accessibility has an upside on powder days that it doesn't get tracked out very fast.

 

Temerity is one of the most impressive sustained steep terrain pods anywhere.   Ironmen could get quite a workout in there.  3 runs was good enough for me, or one plus a Highlands Bowl hike.

 

Ajax is a cruising and mogul mountain, sort of like Sun Valley with better snow.  Mogul spacing and quality are excellent.

 

My recent trip was 3 days Snowmass (as noted we were staying there), 2 days Highlands, 2 days Ajax, plus a couple morning hours on Buttermilk the day we left at noon to drive to Utah.

 

The mountains are very different in character.   You're selling yourself short if you don't try all 3 of the larger places and see what appeals to you the most.

post #37 of 48

Tony, what great terrain has great lift access?  I don't know of much.  Part of great terrain is keeping folks off of it so that it holds snow and the skiing is better.  Personally, I think the Cirque and Hanging Valley are great and don't require much more access.  And try to get more laps in Highlands Bowl -- perhaps if you've passed the residence test in Aspen (there is a body fat test after all :D) you can make multiple laps, but for us mere mortals?

 

As for Highlands, sure, the bowl is great.  But there's a ton of fantastic terrain that doesn't require the hike.  Some of it is really low on the mountain as well.  Can anyone say P chutes?

 

Mike

post #38 of 48
After skimming thru this thread, I'm having a second thought about spending only two ski days in Aspen on my upcoming Alta/Aspen trip.
post #39 of 48

I think Aspen has better coverage right now.

post #40 of 48
Quote:
Tony, what great terrain has great lift access? 

Snowbird, Mammoth, Squaw, Whistler, Jackson.  Even some more obscure places like Castle Mt. and Mt. Baldy.

 

Jackson as an example has plenty of places that take some work or insider knowledge to access.  But once you do you have very long runs of consistently exciting skiing.   Aside from Temerity most of the high end skiing at Aspen has long runouts that are tedious or not so exciting. 

 

As noted before this has a positive effect upon snow conditions.  The layout of the Aspen mountains in general leads to better snow conditions than one would expect from the 250-300 inch snowfalls, measured 2/3 of the way up the skiable vertical. 

 

Habacomike commented earlier that he thought Vail's crowds offset its greater snowfall for surface conditions.   When I headed for Aspen New Year's Day, Vail's season snowfall at that time exceeded Aspen's by only 10%, and in that scenario I have little doubt that Aspen had the better snow surfaces.   The "Northwest flow" storms that hit Colorado the first half of January were more generous to Vail than Aspen though.

post #41 of 48
I just skied Kristi's, Jackpot, Norway and into my front door. Not tedious.

You just need a better guide.
post #42 of 48
I just looked at a recent trail map, having never heard of "temerity" before, and it seems this is what I recall being referred to as steeplechase?? M

I've been out of the game for some years but I spent a week at aspen when I was in high school back in 2002 and it was the best skiing I can remember. Managed to get a day at highlands on a powder day (including a few runs on highland bowl) and I can't remember a more pleasing skiing experience. The only downside was my intermediate snowboarder friend who pushed half the powder off one of the runs in steeplechase (temerity?) before I went down!
post #43 of 48

Deep Temerity is actually skier's right of Steeplechase although Steeplechase now empties into the Deep Temerity lift.  It has areas such as the Mushroom Chutes, Hyde Park and Canopy Cruiser as well as the outflow from Highlands Bowl.

 

Mike

post #44 of 48
Got it, thanks. The map I looked at didn't label the different sections of the mountain.

I'm really itching to get back there. The group I've gone with the next two years can't be convinced to leave summit county.
post #45 of 48

I'm going out  to Aspen for the first time on Dec 15.  I'm getting excited and am hoping for  lots of snow ( who doesn't?)  Might want someone to ski  steep blues and some open blacks with on the 17th,18th,19th.  Any takers?  I'm a reasonably personable 66 year old intermediate.

post #46 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by snowalker View Post
 

I'm going out  to Aspen for the first time on Dec 15.  I'm getting excited and am hoping for  lots of snow ( who doesn't?)  Might want someone to ski  steep blues and some open blacks with on the 17th,18th,19th.  Any takers?  I'm a reasonably personable 66 year old intermediate.

Assuming you mean Dec 2014, may be better to start a new thread with your dates in the title.  Although Getting Together might seem like the more appropriate forum, more people seem to read threads in Resorts, Conditions & Travel.  A good idea to bump that type of thread a week or two before your first ski day.

 

I'm headed to Aspen for the first time ever this season to take advantage of the Mountain Collective Pass.  But not until late March.  Have you skied Aspen before?

post #47 of 48

Thanks for the reply and the suggestions.

 

I have never skied Aspen before and am looking forward to it.  i think I'll look into the mountain collective pass.

post #48 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by snowalker View Post
 

Thanks for the reply and the suggestions.

 

I have never skied Aspen before and am looking forward to it.  i think I'll look into the mountain collective pass.

The MCP makes the most sense if you know you will get to two of the destinations to take advantage of at least 4 included days.  Then paying 50% for additional days comes in handy since most of the MCP destinations are places where discounted lift tickets are hard to come by.  I knew I would ski at Alta/Snowbird (7+ days) and Aspen (2+ days) so bought the MCP again in the spring.  Hoping to get to JH as well.  Helps that one of my ski buddies also gets the MCP.

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