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Where can I find a guide for expert terrain at Breckenridge

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 

Going to Keystone with the kids, but have a day at Breck alone. Never been there, but want to find challenge, without falling off a cliff, and I don't think it's safe to ski the tough runs alone.  Is there a way to hire a guide to ski with me without having to pay $800 for a private lesson?  I guess private instructors are illegal there (crazy world), but what about a private guide? 

Thanks. 

post #2 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by SlowSteady View Post
 

Going to Keystone with the kids, but have a day at Breck alone. Never been there, but want to find challenge, without falling off a cliff, and I don't think it's safe to ski the tough runs alone.  Is there a way to hire a guide to ski with me without having to pay $800 for a private lesson?  I guess private instructors are illegal there (crazy world), but what about a private guide?

Thanks.

 

It is pretty hard to get into trouble at Breck, at least no more so than other mountains- the only real expert stuff is hike-to and out where you can see it. The rest is quite mild by most standards.

 

I can appreciate not wanting to ski alone, but I wouldn't be too worried about getting in over your head.

post #3 of 29
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the info. i want to try the hike/skin-to terrain, and i need help with powder, so maybe some instruction also. any thoughts?
post #4 of 29

Don't get stuck in a rut - take your skiing to the next level! Refine your skills and technique in a small group atmosphere with a maximum of 4 students per class. If you're looking to crush those black diamond groomers, improve your approach to bumps, or stay confident in the

Read More

post #5 of 29

See http://www.breckenridge.com/plan-a-trip/book-ski-and-ride-lessons/products/breck-guides?cmpid=PPC302109818

 

~~Explore the best trails at Breck with your own private guide, plus get on the mountain earlier by loading the chairlift before the public. Create your own experience by choosing the skills and terrain you'll learn that day; from the basics of avalanche awareness, to the high alpine travel and avalanche rescue, your Breck Guide will train you to enjoy the mountain safely. Each participant will carry his/her own pack with a beacon, shovel, and probe and your private guide will cater to the needs of your group. Group sizes are limited to a maximum of 6 participants per guide.

 

The minimum skiing/riding level is a PSIA/AASI Level 8 (can ski or ride black diamond terrain confidently)

 

Call 800.356.3972 to book your lesson now!

 

Cost ????

post #6 of 29

I know the level 8/9 classes go up into the upper bowls, but don't think they go into the hiking terrain.  That said, the stuff off the T-bar, Chair 6 and the Imperial quad are plenty challenging for all but "real" experts.   

post #7 of 29

steep tight trees: Doors, Windows, Needles Eye, The Burn

steep: Tom's Baby

steep with exposed rocks and drops: Lake Chutes, the entire ridge from Peak 6 toward Peak 7

post #8 of 29

Depending on your age, you could do a free 50+ Guided Tour. Meet in the T-Bar at the base of Peak Tuesday mornings at 8:30. They have double-black guides. I've never been on one, so I can't say where they'll take you, but I'd assume anywhere that was open and double-black, including what I listed above.

post #9 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by JimH View Post
 

I know the level 8/9 classes go up into the upper bowls, but don't think they go into the hiking terrain.  That said, the stuff off the T-bar, Chair 6 and the Imperial quad are plenty challenging for all but "real" experts.   

 

The Level 9 classes do go to hiking terrain depending on the group.   The Level 9 groups are usually small so there is a good chance you be in a group with no more than 4 people.  If you want to experience the best of Breck, I think a group lesson would be great.

post #10 of 29
I did the "mountain experience" (or some name like that) --a half day group lesson with 3 students -- a few years ago. Terrain included one
Lake Chutes run (tough hike at altitude), the windows/back nine (you'd never find it on your own), as well as the more obvious bowls.

It was a great day.
post #11 of 29
Thread Starter 

Wow! great info. I love this site! Thanks everyone. 

post #12 of 29

I've found that while some of the level nine groups at Breck will do hiking, they don't tend to. I suppose you could ask the morning of, but you'd have to pay for a lesson on the chance that you might not be hiking. I spent most of one season as a ski bum and lots of time with the nines, and was surprised at home much antipathy there was for even the shortest hike. For most, the consensus was 'I'm at a resort, why would I want to hike?'. It was a little frustrating, but I just saved my hikes for the days when i wasn't taking group lessons.

 

The nines (or some of them anyway, at least the ones with most of the locals) did spend a fair bit of time in the Windows and other inbounds steeper areas. These groups weren't so much 'lessons' as they were guided groups of harder charging skiers with the occasional tip thrown in there to work on.

post #13 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kimmyt View Post
 

For most, the consensus was 'I'm at a resort, why would I want to hike?'.

 

I think some of that comes from people wanting to get the most runs out of their paid experience with a guide/instructor.

 

But I'm not complaining. It is amazing how many people get deterred from terrain that has just a 5 minute hike. Or at Wolf Creek, a 5 minute skate that doesn't even require clicking out of skis keeps 98% of people off the snow, even in prolonged dry spells where those hikes/skates STILL keep the goods.

post #14 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by anachronism View Post
 

 

 Or at Wolf Creek, a 5 minute skate that doesn't even require clicking out of skis keeps 98% of people off the snow, even in prolonged dry spells where those hikes/skates STILL keep the goods.

 

Ha ha, glad to hear some things don't change at Wolf Creek. I used to love skiing there, but haven't been there since before there was a lift on Alberta and they would send a cat to drag you back to the base area after you skied the Waterfall area. Anyway, I remember one day still getting fresh tracks at 3pm after a minimal traverse, and there was a fairly healthy crowd making laps under the lift.

post #15 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by anachronism View Post
 

 

I think some of that comes from people wanting to get the most runs out of their paid experience with a guide/instructor.

 

But I'm not complaining. It is amazing how many people get deterred from terrain that has just a 5 minute hike. Or at Wolf Creek, a 5 minute skate that doesn't even require clicking out of skis keeps 98% of people off the snow, even in prolonged dry spells where those hikes/skates STILL keep the goods.


You're probably right, but most of these people were 80-90 day a year skiers and local to the area. It's alright though, I hit plenty of it by myself, and honestly it was more conducive to get a guide through the tight and/or hidden tree areas like Windows, Doors and Needle's Eye and such that I wouldn't have hit on my own and save the open chute and bowl skiing for when I didn't have someone with me.

post #16 of 29

I strongly recommend taking a group lesson.  There is an incredible amount of terrain at Breckenridge, but you are not going to find the best spots on your own.  An instructor will be able to assess your skills, tune you up, and find the mix of terrain and snow to maximize your experience.  Don't believe the Breck haters.  There is real terrain at Breck and the opening of Peak 6 increases the terrain considerably.  

 

Like most things, you get what you pay for.

 

Mike

post #17 of 29
Thread Starter 

Yes. a Group lesson sounds like a wonderful option. I don't know why I had it set that I needed a 1:1. Probably got that idea before I looked at the price list! For starters, I've worked out a connection to get me started, thanks to this site :)

post #18 of 29

I'm gunna have to agree with the others and say definitely get a group lesson or guide. Like Mike said Breck has some great terrain but you have to know where it is. Most of the peak 6 terrain was closed when I was there of new years but there was some great looking terrain. I would also highly recommend trying the traverse around Whale's Tail to Sadie's and Magic Carpet. If you enjoy steeps Lulu's in the Horseshoe bowl is another great line to check out.       

post #19 of 29


This photo from their group lesson tells me it would be reasonable to call the ski school and ask if lessons are going up there. The full day group lessons are a good deal. The program I took was basically the same thing with different advertising.
post #20 of 29

Peak 6 Terrain is opening up. I was among the first (if not the first) from the public to ski Serenity Bowl yesterday. Beyond Bowl has some of the softest snow left after our days of sun and wind. The long cat walk back from Beyond is going to be a snowboarder's nightmare.

post #21 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdf View Post


This photo from their group lesson tells me it would be reasonable to call the ski school and ask if lessons are going up there. 

The instructors decide day to day where they will take the group. Conditions change wildly at Breck and some days are better in other areas, and some instructors go up to the hike-to areas more than others. That said, definitely tell your instructor that's what you want to do. If the conditions and the group are up for it you will definitely go.

post #22 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by MastersRacer View Post
 

Peak 6 Terrain is opening up. I was among the first (if not the first) from the public to ski Serenity Bowl yesterday. Beyond Bowl has some of the softest snow left after our days of sun and wind. The long cat walk back from Beyond is going to be a snowboarder's nightmare.

There's enough  snow up there? When I was up there over new years it looked like some of the triggered slides had run pretty much to ground.

post #23 of 29

I think Breckenridge now has the greatest quantity of expert terrain in Summit County.  The opening of Peak 6 is a quantum leap for Breck.  There's still the issue of too many people, and if you don't know what or where to ski, you can find yourself chasing terrain with lousy snow due to wind, sun, traffic, etc.  So a guide is really going to help you find the best stuff.

 

Here's my take on some of the expert terrain:

 

Peak 8

 

The Lake Chutes are a great place.  I skied Zoot Chute today and it was soft and buff.  The entrance can be a bit tricky with rocks and a significant cornice, but it is easier than Crazy Ivans (which is not ready now -- needs more snow because of the huge cornice and consequences of the exposed rock bands if something goes wrong).  These lines are in the upper 40 degree range yet relatively short.

 

Horseshoe bowl is one of my favorites.  Lots of steeps in here --my favorite is Lulu which is skier's left.  You also have good lines that you can navigate too, but it takes some direction to find them, like outlaw.

 

Contest bowl is short and sweet.  I particularly like King, the steepest line, with the tough line between the two trees that is narrow and  a deep trough.  Also the Boundary Chutes...

 

 

Peak 9

 

This is all about E Chair.  The windows (there are numerous lines here, but watch the exit through the creek bottom -- it is full of holes, creeks, and rocks -- best to have a guide), Inferno, Minecrotch, Eye of the Needle, and Mineshaft.  A good thing about E Chair is that it is usually out of the wind.

 

Peak 7

 

Whales tale, Magic Carpet, CJ''s, Y Chutes, Art's Bowle, the Dunes.  Can be incredible.  Steep.  And sometimes very wind affected with significant wind slab.  

 

Peak 6

 

Some incredible terrain in here, but I've not had enough time to ski it to isolate the good from the bad.  Hike to the ridge and head North or South.  Lots of stuff below you...

 

Peak 10

 

The Burn.

 

A good guide will help you find the goods and provide some tips as well.  I can give you some ideas of good instructors at Breck...

 

Mike

post #24 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by lonewolf210 View Post
 

There's enough  snow up there? When I was up there over new years it looked like some of the triggered slides had run pretty much to ground.

 

Remember, we got 7 feet of snow in the first 2 weeks of January. It wasn't glorious in Serenity, but it was covered. Beyond was delicious on Thursday, not so much on Friday after some lousy wind.

post #25 of 29

If you take a group lesson on a weekday you're much more likely to have a small group.  Consider getting some names of instructors.  Try to contact them if possible, especially if they're active on EpicSki, to see if they're planning or scheduled to be instructing on the day you're going to take the lesson.  Make your reservation for your lesson in advance and specifically request an instructor or two by name when making the reservation.  They should be able to put that information in the reservation notes.  While they can't guarantee that you'll get that instructor, it can't hurt to ask.  I did the above at Keystone and it worked.  Since there are a number of different ski school locations at Breck make sure you book at the location where the instructor works.  I hope it works out for you.

post #26 of 29
It sounds like you should take a lesson. Also, given your concerns and needing help with powder the "hike" from the parking lot to the lifts is likely enough for you.
post #27 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfelot View Post

It sounds like you should take a lesson. Also, given your concerns and needing help with powder the "hike" from the parking lot to the lifts is likely enough for you.

Well the free parking lot is literally 3.5 miles from the lifts, so that would be enough hiking for many. He should probably take the bus.

post #28 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by MEfree30 View Post
 

Don't get stuck in a rut - take your skiing to the next level! Refine your skills and technique in a small group atmosphere with a maximum of 4 students per class. If you're looking to crush those black diamond groomers, improve your approach to bumps, or stay confident in the

Read More

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Prosper View Post
 

If you take a group lesson on a weekday you're much more likely to have a small group.  Consider getting some names of instructors.  Try to contact them if possible, especially if they're active on EpicSki, to see if they're planning or scheduled to be instructing on the day you're going to take the lesson.  Make your reservation for your lesson in advance and specifically request an instructor or two by name when making the reservation.  They should be able to put that information in the reservation notes.  While they can't guarantee that you'll get that instructor, it can't hurt to ask.  I did the above at Keystone and it worked.  Since there are a number of different ski school locations at Breck make sure you book at the location where the instructor works.  I hope it works out for you.

Good advice- I might be wrong, but I think that Breck has gone exclusively to the small group format for their upper level group lessons, so no more than 4 even on weekends.

post #29 of 29

Hike to skiing on Peak 6 is (reportedly) pretty good. My buddy called me up to tell me he made it there yesterday and at about 2:30 pm, I could easily make out his tracks from my office. Late opening, few hikers = powder day today!

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