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Whistler- What's the snow coverage typically like Christmas to New Years?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hi,

 

We are debating between going to Whistler from Christmas to New Years, anyone have any idea of what the snow coverage is typically like? How much of the mountain is open? Is the heli-skiing worth it around that time? We are advanced/expert skiers coming from New York, any suggestions of what the skiing is typically like then would be helpful.

 

We initially thought we would go to Chamonix that vacation period, but many people have been telling us Chamonix is more worth it in February, the tickets to Whistler at that time seem to be much cheaper as well, staying in North America for that time period is looking more interesting.

 

Any thoughts?

post #2 of 10

The snow can be good, or bad.  It's one of the best destination resorts for early season coverage but there are no guarantees.  It's usually a madhouse at that time of year.  Crowded as all-get-out.

post #3 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by atomicskigirl View Post
 

Hi,

 

We are debating between going to Whistler from Christmas to New Years, anyone have any idea of what the snow coverage is typically like? How much of the mountain is open? Is the heli-skiing worth it around that time? We are advanced/expert skiers coming from New York, any suggestions of what the skiing is typically like then would be helpful.

 

We initially thought we would go to Chamonix that vacation period, but many people have been telling us Chamonix is more worth it in February, the tickets to Whistler at that time seem to be much cheaper as well, staying in North America for that time period is looking more interesting.

 

Any thoughts?


Have you come across this thread with ideas of where to ski during the Christmas holidays?  OP is also in NY and the group included a couple expert skiers.

 

http://www.epicski.com/t/94746/where-to-go-for-christmas

post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hey marznc, i never came across that thread I'll look at it now thanks. 

post #5 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by atomicskigirl View Post
 

Hey marznc, i never came across that thread I'll look at it now thanks. 


It's one of the threads that is tagged along for Christmas Vacation.  Added the link to this thread (under Topics Discussed.)

post #6 of 10

It terms of coverage it's one of the safest bets in NA. The crowds, though...have you looked at hotels/condos yet? I wonder if there's much left.

post #7 of 10

We spent X'mas 2011 at Whistler-Blackcomb. Tony Crocker lists W-B as one of the best X'mas snow bets

 

https://gator1314.hostgator.com/~bestsnow/fam_ski.htm

 

http://web.archive.org/web/20060527094259/http://www.skiingmag.com/skiing/travel/article/0,12910,328640,00.html

 

The resort is really nicely done up for the holidays. It was a white Christmas. It snowed almost every day we were there and both mountains were pretty much 100% open. It was wet heavy PNW snow at the summit and rain at the base. No sunny days. Because of low elevation and proximity to the ocean, that's the tradeoff. As you come down from the summit, the snow can be more slushy. YMMV. It's very expensive around that time of year for everything and advanced planning is a must. Surprisingly the slopes are busy, but not super jam packed up to and including X'mas day. Then starting Dec 26 the whole world shows up and the place is mobbed through New Years Day. We opted to avoid the New Years crowd and hang out in Vancouver.

 

Don't know anything about heli around W-B, but definitely ask about the cancellation policy if the snow conditions are wet and heavy and low viz. I would guess that on days like that the skiing would be mostly in the trees.

post #8 of 10
What about a cat/heli lodge? No lines.
post #9 of 10

We normally go there every other christmas. Coverage is generally good. At worst - you would have to download on the Gondola. But the best skiing

is above it anyway.

post #10 of 10
Quote:
Tony Crocker lists W-B as one of the best X'mas snow bets

This is true. It averages 73% open mid-December, 86% open by Christmas and is less than half open at Christmas in less than 10% of seasons, impressive for huge areas with considerable steep terrain.

 

However W/B is also know for jacking up lodging prices during that week and I have no reason to doubt Posaune's crowd comments.  I do not see school holidays mentioned by the OP, so I have to ask the usual question why the schedule is constrained to that time frame.  Consider saving some $$$ and going a week earlier or later.

 

And while on the subject of school holidays, February 14-21 in Chamonix will be as bad or worse than Christmas in Whistler with all of the UK and 2/3 of France on school holiday. The Chamonix trip would be better in March or maybe February 1-7. 

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