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2004 Gathering

post #1 of 136
Thread Starter 
Ok here's the first of what i bet will many sub- subjects for the 2004 gathering.
My two votes are for Sun Valley, and Jackson Hole, with sides trips to Targhee, maybe even Big Sky.
Of course if you fly thru Salt Lake, you all now know how close the skiing is from the airport, and maybe you all could catch a day here. [img]smile.gif[/img]
post #2 of 136
Let the nominations (and subsequent wrangling) begin!!!

List pros and cons with your suggestions.
post #3 of 136
The Alps
Pros - Its near to me. The're big.
Cons - Its not near to most other people...
post #4 of 136
From what I hear, SLC/UTAH was such a success, why not go back? It's easy to get to, centrally located, inexpensive, many choices to ski, and I haven't been to Utah in a few years.

Jackson Hole, although an awesome area, is a destination Resort. Expensive and isolated. Great terrain though.

Summit County Colorado, would be my next choice. Much for the same reasons as Utah. There are alot of Bears already there. Might be easier for everyone. Bob Barns could host from Copper for the Academy. Since I have family there, it would be easier for Lars to be there.
post #5 of 136
Like Inspector Gadget, the only way I could attend is if it was in my backyard. In my case Colorado. I have been terribly jealous of those that attended the academy and would love to go next year. Heck if it was in Summit County I could put up a few bears at our place. Hows that for a bribe?
post #6 of 136
For the next academy, we really want to attract some never evers, so I'm not sure that Jackson is the best choice.

Utah? Why not? The place rules!
Europe? Not as expensive as you think. I've mentioned before that 2 years ago, our trip to Bormio Italy cost under $1,000 for airfare, 7 nights hotel, airport transfers, 6 day lift, breakfast and dinner. I know that Mermer Blakeslee runs instructional trips to Bormio from the US, so it is probably not that hard to set up.

I would love to go to Les Trois Vallees, but that's probably pushing the envelope a bit.
post #7 of 136
Lisa Marie,

Loved the picture BTW, i'm sure you looked better in the morning. (only kidding)

Although I would love to ski Europe, i'm not sure it would be a wise thing for us Americans to travel abroad, as the #hit is about to hit the fan, so to say! As a former Marine, I can tell you it's not going to be pretty.
post #8 of 136
Originally posted by Lisamarie:
For the next academy, we really want to attract some never evers, so I'm not sure that Jackson is the best choice.


By never-evers, do you mean never-ever skiers or never-ever Gathering attendees (or both)?

AC and I talked about this last weekend. Jackson, as a "name" mountain, might attract a lot of people who would see it as an opportunity to combine a trip to Jackson with attendance at a Gathering. Jackson is a fabulous mountain with way more intermediate/advanced intermediate skiing than it's typically given credit for. I do have to admit that while it has some incredibly good first-day-beginner terrain, the lower-intermediate areas are somewhat limited.

I would enthusiastically vote for Jackson Hole, but Salt Lake City is hard to beat with its city lodging/restaurants and easy access to a whole bunch of very good ski areas.

It will be interesting to see where this leads for 2004.

post #9 of 136
Please take this poll to help establish venue selection priorities:
post #10 of 136
I was totally impressed with Brighton. Why NOT there again? And there was a range of ski areas to choose from either before or after also, so you could pick your mountain terrain. In SLC we were accomodated quite nicely, and it was cheap to stay there ($29 a day for a room with a kitchen? EXCELLENT!)

I hear that Jackson Hole is mostly expert terrain. That would put me off. It might put off some other new to intermediate skiers as well. I also heard from Bears who went to Snowbird that it would not be a good place for learning. If better skiers than me would not go there, perhaps that says something.

My vote is to keep Utah for a few years, that way not everything must be redone, and we'll get to know lodgers and gather transportation info and make it an easy thing.

Just my thoughts.
post #11 of 136

I agree with you that SLC makes a ton of sense as a site for the Gathering/Academy.

I do, however, want to chime in on comparing Jackson Hole and Snowbird as desitnations for intermediate skiers. Just my own opinion, of course, but I know both mountains pretty well. I also *love* to ski groomed runs work on my meager carving skills, so the same groomed, moderate runs that most intermediates like to ski are ones that I like to visit regularly.

Having said all that, Snowbird and Jackson don't compare *at all* in terms of quantity and variety of groomed runs. Jackson has a much higher acreage of regularly-groomed runs in the pitch that appeals to most intermediate to slightly higher level skiers. Every lift at Jackson (with the exception of the tram), accesses groomed runs that a fairly confident intermediate should be able to ski.

Snowbird is a fabulous mountain for advanced through expert skiers. It gets more (and better) snow on average than Jackson and it *might* have more seriously difficult terrain than Jackson (which is a very hard statement for a Jackson Hole afficionado to make). But when it comes to quality and quantity of groomed runs in the mid-ability levels, I think Jackson wins hands down.

Not just "hands down" - Snowbird isn't even in the ballpark.

post #12 of 136
Last on my list: Snowbird and Solitude.

First and close second on the list: Copper (Bob Barnes's home turf), or back at Brighton - that place was absolutely perfect for the Academy, the lodging in SLC was cheap and convenient, and there are several ski areas (even including Snowbird and Solitude) nearby. Access from the airport is easy, and SLC is a hub airport.
post #13 of 136
I am putting together a distribution list of interested people for the 2004 Academy. We will use this distribution list for focused communication and to broadcast hopefully useful information (basically, for the same purposes we used it for the 2003 Academy).
If you coached or participated in the 2003 Academy, you are automatically on the list. If you were on the weekly update for the 2003 Academy I've carried you over, too. If any of those people want off, let me know. Otherwise you don't need to contact me.
If you've chimed in on any of the 2004 Academy/Gathering threads, I've probably already PM'ed you and you don't need to respond separately to this message. But if you haven't, and are interested, PM me with an email address and I'll add you.
Best to all,
Sno'more, the Head Sherpa
post #14 of 136
Ummm said it before but...

Canada/Europe is much better on the exchange rate for those travelling from outside USA...

For me there is about $2000 in airfare to get there(unless it is in NZ) & then I can DOUBLE all costs if it is in the USA...

So OUTSIDE the USA please
post #15 of 136
Originally posted by Lars:
Lisa Marie,

Although I would love to ski Europe, i'm not sure it would be a wise thing for us Americans to travel abroad, as the #hit is about to hit the fan, so to say! As a former Marine, I can tell you it's not going to be pretty.
Unfortunately, TR does have a very valid point. We also need to take a serious look at what would be affordable to the MOST members. Keep in mind, it is not feasible for the academy to take place if there are not enough students.
post #16 of 136
For those of us in the US, SLC is hard to beat. Cheap flights, lodging and lift tickets, not to mention the MOST quality, concentrated skiing in the US. And if Brighton would take us back, seems like a no brainer to me. Even though I’ve skied Utah on nearly 10 different occasions, I still like it the most and welcome the opportunity to do it again.

I would also consider Jackson Hole, Whistler/Blackcomb, or maybe Summit County.

I vote for SLC. Please add me to the list.

PS to Oboe- You indicated that Solitude is on the bottom of your list with Snowbird. I find that statement perplexing because the two areas are like night and day, with the ‘Bird being crowded and obnoxious while Solitude is just that: quiet and serene, just like Brighton up the hill. I think you would like Solitude if you like Brighton. There must be some other reason why you dislike Solitude......
post #17 of 136

Solitude was our original choice this year and we were planning on having the Academy there. However, after giving our Academy approval and us doing a lot of work based on that approval, they pulled the rug on us. This created a great deal of anxiety, hassle, and additional effort and was done in neither a nice or logical manner. Thus, I believe that most feel that Solitude is out of the running for either the Academy or Gathering.
post #18 of 136
I'm all about going out of the USA, could be fun. However, I think that it is not necessarly a good idea to up the cost for the entire group for 1 or 2 people that may or may not show up for the gathering.
post #19 of 136
Solitude needs to be boycotted by us. As well as Squatters.

Don't F--- with us.
post #20 of 136
What MilesB said times twenty - well said, Miles.
post #21 of 136
Yes, miles, the Solitude Salute is necessary here (open hand, spread fingers, put thumb to nose with hand perpendicular to face, waggle fingers and say "phhhht").

I'd be interested to know how many Bears are from Outside the US. If there are more of them than us insiders, it would make sense to go international to be fair.

At this gathering, there were 4 from outside the continental US, am I right? If we held this in Europe, would we have the numbers to support this? Just curious.
post #22 of 136
Put my vote in for Summit County. I'd love to attend!!
post #23 of 136
Bonni - Canada is fine with us - the exchange rate is closer to 1 for 1 than to 2 for 1...
It would also not be too far for you guys to travel - but Europe would be good too...

Just unless the USA dollar drops a LOT we are doubling the money to do anything there(including drink!)
post #24 of 136
Originally posted by Lars:
Lisa Marie,

Loved the picture BTW, i'm sure you looked better in the morning. (only kidding)

Although I would love to ski Europe, i'm not sure it would be a wise thing for us Americans to travel abroad, as the #hit is about to hit the fan, so to say! As a former Marine, I can tell you it's not going to be pretty.
Lars, having being a Marine, you've retained the attitude to think that everyone is a potential enemy. You're now a civilian (are you?). Open up a bit, you'll discover that you've got more friends than you think.
This, of course, does not necessarily means absence of spirited debate or total lack of criticism and total acceptance of a single point of view.
As for an Academy in Europe (and a gathering) probably you'll end up with the same troubles as everywhere (e.g., instructors needing the permission to come to a alien hill and teach) but since most of the German touris are doing that already (here in Italy, at least) with their organized, all inclusive ski trip packages( travel by bus, carry from germany one or more instructors etc. etc.) don't see that as a major problem.
Anyway, since I cannot guarantee that I'll be able to attend any gathering in the USA (or here in Europe for that matters, it's soooo far away in the future that a whole world of things can happen), I will abstain from voting.
Choose well, my friends, and have fun.

[ February 06, 2003, 02:39 AM: Message edited by: Matteo ]
post #25 of 136
Salt Lake was fun, easy to get to, cheap and wide amounts of variety. I skied three resorts there. I could go back, ski at different resorts and not feel as if I have returned to the same place. I even know my way around the city now.
We have two considerations. We need good teaching terrain for the academy and good steep terrain for the Gathering. Utah has both and so does Summit county Colorado.

Another consideration for many is altitude. Utah beats Summit county there. Jackson is great but hard to get to and expensive. Cost and ease of travel is a bigger limiting factor than the draw of the Jackson name. The northern Rockies in late January can be bitterly cold as well. I kinda like sun shine.

Europe for me would be scarry. I would need a dedicated interperator to eat. Even then I would be worried. Too many food allergies.
post #26 of 136
Matteo, What I meant was that I know what is going to happen soon, and how the rest of the free world perceives our involvement in the middle East is not favorable now, nor will it be in the future. Especially in France. What I meant by the #hit hitting the fan? Well, there will be attacks against Americans everywhere, and planes will be the most vulnerable, also any group of americans outside the US will be at risk. So. I and especially my Wife willchoose to ski on this Continent instead of Euorpe. You know, i'm not sure where the French are coming from anyhow. Specially after all our Fathers and Uncles died there giving them back their freedom and their countryside.

Enough of the political crap. For reasons that i've already stated, I would like to have it in Summit County, Copper, or I would be perfectly happy with Utah. Jackson would be nice for my skiing style and likes but not friendly to most of this community or the Wallet! I also think having it where there is already a large Bear populus would make it better for attendance.

And Matteo, If you want to know my true feelings, I think Bush is a Warmongerer riding his daddies pantleg. Saddam should have been ousted many years ago when the time was right. Peace Brother!!!
post #27 of 136
The French are just playing hard to get, Lars - but, as you say, enough of the politics...

Realistically you've got to go with the US (sorry disski) or maybe Canada. I think too many people would be put off by a European venue for various, mostly obvious, reasons - war, terrorism, convenience etc.

Speaking as a European, Utah would be fine by me but I'll try and be there wherever it is.
post #28 of 136
OK - now I know the whole story about Solitude. It was (is) their loss.......Brighton's gain.
post #29 of 136
Lars, my feelings too. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
Peace [img]smile.gif[/img]
Political interval over. Matteo.
I hope that the 2004 gathering will be as successfull as the 2003 one.
I really envyed you all!
post #30 of 136
$1,000 for a ski trip is way too much money for me

SLC is the best & wisest choice. snow quality and terrain are supreme.

Lars is spot-on about JH. Targhee could be good, folks could stay in Driggs ID, at the mountain, or in one of the faux-chateau houses for rent to Yuppies and Yuppie Wannabes -- those houses pretty well line the road from Driggs to Targhee. The faux-chateau choice should please those who want the "I'm in Hollywood" feel of JH. [img]graemlins/evilgrin.gif[/img]

Anyone considering Big Sky MT needs to consider the outrageous ticket price they charge. Big Sky is fake Montana. It's pretentious and expensive. In some ways it's worse than JH.

Big Mountain MT can be fantastic in a good snow year, and its terrain is sufficient for all but the most extreme steeps skier. There are many wide blue groomers, some of them verging on green, others that easily would be black in the Midwest or East Coast. And truly, it is a BIG mountain. Negatives? (1) can be very crowded, but midweek skiing generally avoids that issue; (2) if it's planned too early in the season the snow cover might be thin; and (3) TBM has periodic fog-outs where the fog is so soupy you can get disorientation and vertigo. I usually don't have a problem with the fog, but I know it's a real headache for many folks.

I wouldn't mind Whistler/Blackcomb, but I need to get some fats before skiing that wetter, heavier snow!
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