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Copper Mountain - Spring Break trip

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 

After much debate we booked tixs to Denver and are thinking Copper might be a good fit for family of 4 (two adults, two teens - all black/blue skiers).   We are looking for lodging and insight on lift ticket discount options - weighing staying in Frisco and driving/bus vs onsite lodging + tickets give secret pass option - will we kick ourselves for not going that route?  We are traveling 3/15 - 3/21 - so likely prime spring break season but need to follow the school schedule. 

 

Thanks in advance for your recommendations.

post #2 of 27

Welcome to Epic!

 

Copper will be more crowded that week than say the last week of Feb, but still less crowded than Breck.  Terrain should suit your family well as Copper has something for everyone.

 

Frisco Elementary School is still selling The "E" Book for $10 which has multiple 2 for 1 Copper lift tickets coupons and other discounts.  Purchase now as they do sell out.  There may be other options for 2 for 1s, possibly at Shell gas stations.

 

Frisco is a real town, a bit lower than the base of Copper- more shopping options than at Copper with better access to Breck, Keystone, Loveland and A-Basin.  

 

Staying at Copper will be more convenient if that is the only place you are skiing, especially if you stay slope side or a short walk to one of the lifts.  There are a handful of restaurants in Copper, but the shopping is certainly more limited than in Frisco.

post #3 of 27

I have skied many many days at Copper without ever using the Secret Pass. It works at a few lifts (yes, the busiest ones), not all of them, but it is very possible to avoid lines without it, especially on weekdays. It depends a lot on your style of skiing ... do you roll out at 10:30 am, or get on the mountain closer to opening? When you say "black/blue" skiers, what is your reference point? (ie, where do you ski black runs)

post #4 of 27

I think Copper is perfect for a family at the level yours is.  Staying slope side = more expensive but much more convenient.  The last time I  skied Copper was during March break and every resort we skied that week was crowded, Vail more so than Copper though.  Frisco is close and is a nice little town with good dining, lodging and shopping options.

post #5 of 27
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the info - yes, we are mountain ready black/blue skiers - have skied Steamboat, Big Sky, Big Mountain, and Salt Lake areas (Brighton, Solitude, Alta, Snowbird) - have stayed away from Summit County due to altitude but are not traveling w/ the usual gang this year so thought we'd give Summit a shot.  

post #6 of 27
Thread Starter 

MeFree30 e-book sounds like a good deal and I'm all for supporting local schools.   Is there a contact to get the book in advance of our trip?

post #7 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by johannagal View Post
 

Thanks for the info - yes, we are mountain ready black/blue skiers - have skied Steamboat, Big Sky, Big Mountain, and Salt Lake areas (Brighton, Solitude, Alta, Snowbird) - have stayed away from Summit County due to altitude but are not traveling w/ the usual gang this year so thought we'd give Summit a shot.  

Ok, then you should be just fine without any Secret Passes. If you decide to stay in Frisco, get off the bus at East Village and ride up the Super Bee, very rarely a line there. If you stay on that side of the mountain, generally, and in the back bowls and up top on Sierra lift, you won't have issues with lines. The main lines happen at the two bottom lifts in the Center Village, at the obvious times of day, and then Timberline Express can get crowded, too. 

 

As for where to stay ... obviously staying at the base is convenient for a lot of things, and there are some decent restaurants. But Frisco is awfully cute and has a lot more to do (that's relative... it's still small) and better restaurant selection. It just kinda depends... I wouldn't make the decision on the basis of the Secret Pass, I guess is what I'm saying, overall. 

post #8 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by johannagal View Post
 

MeFree30 e-book sounds like a good deal and I'm all for supporting local schools.   Is there a contact to get the book in advance of our trip?

970-368-1500 or buy online at eduproject.com (but if you go online, I don't think the schools get any $)

post #9 of 27

Hi, just reading the above post, thinking of coming to Vail end Feb/Beginning Mar or end of March,  A bit confused by the spring break dates...being from NZ...what dates should I avoid?

 

Cheers

post #10 of 27
Tough question. Not all spring breaks are the same time. Colleges don't all line up with each other, nor do high schools. Since Copper attracts nationally, I don't know if it's possible to avoid SOMETHING. Our local high school break is the beginning of April. But my daughter's college break is March 17 - 21. On the other hand, you want to avoid Presidents Day/week as well, Feb. 17.

Your best bet might be to call the bookings office at Copper and ask when they are least booked.
post #11 of 27

I was at Copper last year 2nd week of March, If you play it like segbrown says you won't see any real waits. It's a big place just stay out of the main base area for the middle of the day. Starting out at Super Bee works great,

post #12 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by aklfishboy View Post
 

Hi, just reading the above post, thinking of coming to Vail end Feb/Beginning Mar or end of March,  A bit confused by the spring break dates...being from NZ...what dates should I avoid?

 

Cheers

Feb 24-March 7 is the perfect window (unless you can make it this week as the snow is awesome right now).

 

I'd avoid mid March if you can...the P-T Instructors are asked to be available March 9-29...my guess is that the first 2 weeks of that period will be busiest so avoid March 8-23 if you can, but Vail is a big mountain that can handle a lot of skiers.

post #13 of 27
Quote:
A bit confused by the spring break dates...being from NZ...what dates should I avoid? 

Spring breaks vary by state, school district individual colleges.   So they are spread out over March and through Easter in some cases.  Therefore it's nothing like the crowd and especially air/lodging price issues at Christmas.  Colorado may see more of an influx because March tends to be the overall best snow month there, which it's not in many places.

post #14 of 27

FWIW, New York City public has a mid-winter break Feb 17-21 - but most NYC private schools are only off for the Monday 2/17. NYC private schools are off March 17-28, but NYC public is in school. NYC public is OFF April 14-22, but private schools are all in session.

 

The point: Just go... no matter what week you book, there will some families on "break".

 

But a small piece of advice: compare arrival days -- we adjusted our arrival by one-day and saved almost $2000+ simply because a more desirable and less expensive accommodation was available for a Sunday arrival vs. Saturday. And we had better flight options by searching one day later.

 

Have fun!

post #15 of 27

I'm a huge fan of staying slope side at Copper, especially with a family/group.   That way you don't have to all agree when to come and go, and it's easy to take a long break or lunch (nap anyone?) then hit it hard for the last hour or two.

 

One of the great things about Copper is how easily accessible the great terrain is from the base.  All the goods are one or two fairly quick lifts from the base.   Just be aware they start closing some lifts and terrain at 3pm and others at 3:30.  I love the Super Bee from 3-4pm.  I'll often get up there at 3pm after working most the day or go back out after a break if up there for the day.  l'll spin five laps on the Super Bee catching the last lift at 4pm.   That's 2300 vertical feet x 5 = 11,500 vertical feet of world class skiing.  Not bad for an hour.  You can't do that if you are staying in Frisco.

 

Spring Break == March.   My rule of thumb is January is dead, February starts picking up, and March is busy.   But even a very busy day at Copper is very manageable, even without the Secret Pass (See segbrown's post above).   But, I think if you book lodging through Copper they throw in the Secret Pass, which would be nice on the busiest days.

 

Edit for a little 3:30-4:00pm Copper stoke from Thursday.

 

From the Alpine lift at 3:45pm:

 

 

From the Super Bee at 4:00pm:

 

 

Taking a break on my last run about 4:10:

 

post #16 of 27
Thread Starter 

Thanks for all the helpful advice, we are now booked thru Copper lodging for accommodations - looks like the snow keeps coming.   Getting gear tuned up for a great trip!

post #17 of 27
Quote:
huI
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Crocker View Post

Spring breaks vary by state, school district individual colleges.   So they are spread out over March and through Easter in some cases.  Therefore it's nothing like the crowd and especially air/lodging price issues at Christmas.  Colorado may see more of an influx because March tends to be the overall best snow month there, which it's not in many places.

It's much more crowded at Copper during March than Christmas week. I don't know about other Summit resorts because I haven't skied any of them during Xmas except Copper in 10 years but Copper is not particularly crowded at Xmas and it is relatively crowded in March and right now but if you follow the advice above you won't be bothered by crowds.
post #18 of 27

If the OP needs some of the Shell Ski free coupons drop a pm, on a slow week we drive a rig 1000 miles @12/14 mpg. The fleet card is Shell,

every 10 gals gets one. Think I can spare a few!

 

 

http://www.skifreedeals.com/

post #19 of 27

We were at Copper from Feb 14-19

 

The weekend was pretty insane -- but by Monday (President's Day) it was back to normal.

 

We stayed in a Copper Lodging condo and had the Secret Pass. VERY important to have this on the weekends, also by mid-day on weekdays, it was the difference between 10 seconds vs. 10+ minutes.  It starts to add up. And time is the most valuable thing during a vacation...

 

We were close enough to Eagle to go back to the condo for lunch. Very relaxing and great family time. And saved $$$$ too!

 

I know there are people here that say that the Secret Pass is not worth the $$-- ok, if you pay cash for it -- but if you can get it as part of your lodging booking, by all means, you want it. And the 15 minutes every morning of first tracks from Eagle is, well, priceless.

 

Have fun!

post #20 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by carpeperdiem View Post
 

We were at Copper from Feb 14-19

 

The weekend was pretty insane -- but by Monday (President's Day) it was back to normal.

 

We stayed in a Copper Lodging condo and had the Secret Pass. VERY important to have this on the weekends, also by mid-day on weekdays, it was the difference between 10 seconds vs. 10+ minutes.  It starts to add up. And time is the most valuable thing during a vacation...

 

We were close enough to Eagle to go back to the condo for lunch. Very relaxing and great family time. And saved $$$$ too!

 

I know there are people here that say that the Secret Pass is not worth the $$-- ok, if you pay cash for it -- but if you can get it as part of your lodging booking, by all means, you want it. And the 15 minutes every morning of first tracks from Eagle is, well, priceless.

 

Have fun!

 

I would say that President's Day weekend is the most crowded single time on the mountain all season. I normally stay away, as I did this season, but I've been up a few times then, and there are always lines where there usually are no  lines at all. 

post #21 of 27

PS -- we also considered staying off-property vs. booking with Copper Lodging....

 

Our Copper Lodging booking included:

 

Free 3-hr ticket (with Secret Pass) for day of arrival or departure per person. (we used this on day of departure!)

Buy 2 day, get 3rd day free for lifts AND ski school (instead of 20% discount for pre-booking)

Secret Pass. No lines. First tracks. Enough said.

Depending on the unit you book, 3 minute walk or less home for lunch. With 4 people, we saved ~$50 per day for lunch. AND we didn't have to fight the crowds. AND we ate much healthier.

 

Shuttling from off-site lodging costs ~30 minutes each way with waiting time- that is an hour a day of your vacation. That is more than 10% of your priceless vacation daylight hours getting from here to there. What's that worth?

 

And as I said before, the flexibility of walking home for lunch. We also took advantage of the "Village" and did the s'mores thing with our kids, watched the ice skating show and fireworks, etc... of course, we could have done all of this staying off-site, but that would come at a price (time + convenience of not having to lug all kinds of stuff/deal with bag check, etc). Another benefit booking with Copper (this is sounding like a paid gush, but I'm just a customer who has had 3 good experiences over 5 years) - they will handle all bookings in one-shot, including all ski school, lift tickets, anything that can be booked with guest services (tubing), and it's all waiting for you. Vacation time = priceless?

 

When  we compared apples for apples, the cost savings staying off property (or even renting from a vrbo owner on-property) did not beat the deal offered by Copper Lodging.

 

Have fun!

post #22 of 27

HI, is there anywhere I can get discount classes and/or lift tickets for copper? If we are beginners will Copper be ok?

 

Thanks

 

Jess

post #23 of 27
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the review and input - feeling good about our decision to stay on property.   We'll have less space but will be more convenient + secret passes to fend off any crowd concerns.   Yeah!   

 

We will have a car so can still head to Frisco for dinners - any favorite dining spot suggestions welcome.   Will be renting skis for kids - Copper deal seems decent - but since this forum has such good info - feel free to course correct if you think we ought to look elsewhere.  Know that we need to get a reservation since the 20+% discount is worth it!

post #24 of 27
Copper skied great today and with most upper mountain lifts on wind hold most of the day tomorrow gonna kick butt as well lots of terrain never opened and it should
Snowed all day
post #25 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by sojess27 View Post
 

HI, is there anywhere I can get discount classes and/or lift tickets for copper? If we are beginners will Copper be ok?

 

Thanks

 

Jess

Shell & e Book- see above

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by johannagal View Post
 

Thanks for the review and input - feeling good about our decision to stay on property.   We'll have less space but will be more convenient + secret passes to fend off any crowd concerns.   Yeah!   

 

We will have a car so can still head to Frisco for dinners - any favorite dining spot suggestions welcome.   Will be renting skis for kids - Copper deal seems decent - but since this forum has such good info - feel free to course correct if you think we ought to look elsewhere.  Know that we need to get a reservation since the 20+% discount is worth it!

Vinny's is my favorite- there is a bar menu that is moderately priced (and you can order off the dining room menu from the bar side as well).  I think the quality of sushi has improved at Kimosabe based on my last two visits- try the spicy tuna stack.

post #26 of 27
Thread Starter 

Trip report time - we had a great time at Copper - skied 5 days - a couple of inches of fresh snow for three of them.   Glad we decided to stay at Copper and used the secret pass more than I expected.  While the lift lines weren't horrible - we were able to ski up and get right on the lifts on Sunday and Monday when it was a bit busier.  On Tuesday and Wednesday - when we had more new snow, we hit the bowls so the secret pass did't matter.   Most days by afternoon and on SuperBee it didn't make a difference.   

 

We stayed in the Telemark condos - definitely a bit tired but worked.  The studio condo was the only place that we could ensure we would have three beds and no one would need to sleep onteh sofa sleeper.   It had a surprising amount of room for the four of us and the kids appreciated the bunk beds in a "separate" area - even if it really was the entry way of the condo.  

 

Dined on mountain most of the time - no spectacular dining experiences to note.   We did check out Peppinos in Frisco - really delicious deep dish pizza - fun "local feel" dining. 

post #27 of 27

Thanks for reporting back...glad you had a nice time.

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