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Telluride at Christmas?

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 

Hi.  I'm planning a Christmas week ski trip for me and my 11 year old son.  We are from NYC, but are annual west coast skiers.  Last xmas we skied JH.  Have been wanting to go to Telluride for many years, but have not had the opportunity for varying reasons.  This year, with El Nino, conditions for that week look promising.

 

Would love some comments from anyone here on the board who has skied Telluride the holiday week that might advise on how the skiing is and is it a zoo?  Town or ski village - I'm inclined to stay in town - seems that's where the restaurants are, etc. and the free gondy makes it look appealing.

 

Thanks,

David

post #2 of 24

I'd stay in the town personally.  Too isolated in the "village".  I can see it getting busier in the holiday season..but I suspect if you're both decent skiers, you can avoid a lot of the crowd by skiing the harder stuff that goes right into town (Bushwhacker, Milk Run etc) or the stuff off the Gold Hill chair, depending on the conditions there.  We were there during what locals called good conditions and the stuff off the Gold Hill chair was somewhat marginal, although still skiable.  Apex chair too.  Most of the holiday crowd will stick to the blues around the village I would guess.

post #3 of 24

We stayed in the village last year and I will stay in town next time.  Free Gondola was great as we went into town almost every evening. I have no idea what the crowds will be like Christmas week though.   

post #4 of 24
Quote:
This year, with El Nino, conditions for that week look promising.

Telluride is neutral to El Nino.  Despite its location it gets the most snow from a NW flow. Its record high season was strong La Nina 2007-08.

 

Like many Colorado and SW areas Telluride is preferred in late to early season due to gradual accumulation of snow but superb preservation at high altitude with a lot of north exposure.

 

The consistently pitched terrain (Chair 9) is usually adequately covered by Christmas. Gold Hill, and especially the steeper portions of it, probably not.  The slowest starting seasons like 2012-13 are extremely restricted at Christmas, maybe 15% or so chance of that. 

 

Telluride is an excellent place to escape crowds, but do your 11 year old a favor and take him there for a spring break before Telluride closes first weekend of April.


Edited by Tony Crocker - 11/8/15 at 11:50pm
post #5 of 24
While currently Telluride is looking good for early season conditions, historically the front side into town isn't open by Christmas leaving the gondola as the sole way down.

Not a big deal if you stay in the village but long waits if you need to get back down after 3:00 p.m. I'd guess that won't be an issue this year.

Even the busiest days when locals complain about lift lines, you'll see 5-10 minutes waits at worst.

Typically the double blacks open on Gold Hill by Christmas but the gems are going to be bony. The Plunge chair will be better.

If the bars and restaurants are a priority staying in town is much better. It can be real noisy with partiers walking home late screaming and yelling, if a nice family time is your intention, stay in the village.

YMMV
post #6 of 24

Yes please:D 

 

 

edit: just a response to the thread title

post #7 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buttinski View Post

While currently Telluride is looking good for early season conditions, historically the front side into town isn't open by Christmas leaving the gondola as the sole way down.


If the bars and restaurants are a priority staying in town is much better. It can be real noisy with partiers walking home late screaming and yelling, if a nice family time is your intention, stay in the village.

YMMV

 

Good points, I didn't consider the kids side of things with respect to the village. 

post #8 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buttinski View Post

While currently Telluride is looking good for early season conditions, historically the front side into town isn't open by Christmas leaving the gondola as the sole way down.

Not a big deal if you stay in the village but long waits if you need to get back down after 3:00 p.m. I'd guess that won't be an issue this year.

 

If the front side is closed, what kind of waits are we talking about for the gondy to town?  We ski until the lifts close so would be heading down around 4.

 

These various thoughts make me wonder if we are better off back at Jackson or just wait and see where the snow is.  We fly on miles so I can book as late as I like.  It's the lodging that gets tricky. 

 

Really, really want to try Telluride and Christmas week this year is likely my only window with my son.  Work schedule prohibits the winter break, etc.  But if it's going to be sketchy, I'd rather go elsewhere. 

 

Anyone stay at The Mountainside Inn in town?

 

decisions, decisions...... 

post #9 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by dwlighting View Post
 

 

If the front side is closed, what kind of waits are we talking about for the gondy to town?  We ski until the lifts close so would be heading down around 4.

 

These various thoughts make me wonder if we are better off back at Jackson or just wait and see where the snow is.  We fly on miles so I can book as late as I like.  It's the lodging that gets tricky. 

 

Really, really want to try Telluride and Christmas week this year is likely my only window with my son.  Work schedule prohibits the winter break, etc.  But if it's going to be sketchy, I'd rather go elsewhere. 

 

Anyone stay at The Mountainside Inn in town?

 

decisions, decisions...... 

 

 

Yes...great location and price...not so great units.  I'd give it a 2 star rating but will stay there again because price is important to me and the location can't be beat.

post #10 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by dwlighting View Post
 

 

If the front side is closed, what kind of waits are we talking about for the gondy to town?  We ski until the lifts close so would be heading down around 4.

 

These various thoughts make me wonder if we are better off back at Jackson or just wait and see where the snow is.  We fly on miles so I can book as late as I like.  It's the lodging that gets tricky. 

 

Really, really want to try Telluride and Christmas week this year is likely my only window with my son.  Work schedule prohibits the winter break, etc.  But if it's going to be sketchy, I'd rather go elsewhere. 

 

Anyone stay at The Mountainside Inn in town?

 

decisions, decisions...... 

The worst case scenario for me was about 50 minutes, I forgot and skied until 4:00.

 

But that was a warm year and snowmaking was behind.  It is a priority to get the face opened for this reason.  The Mountainside Inn is about a two to one and a half star place.  It is clean with a hot tub and is steps away from Chair 7, a fine lodge for the limited budget skier, there is a top end condo development E52 right next door.  It's only a matter of time before they decide to bulldoze the Mountainside and build a "proper"(more like E52) base lodge.

 

Jackson is a skier's paradise, but you still need to ride a bus to the hill, nothing feels better than finishing your day and strolling to your room.

 

PS the drunks walking home are across the river so it is quieter at the Mountainside.  The Victorian Inn is the other budget minded spot and that is right on the walk of glory(bar close) or shame(morning after) along Pacific Avenue.

post #11 of 24
Quote:
We fly on miles so I can book as late as I like. 

You must be very high on the airline food chain if they will let you book a mileage flight on short notice for Christmas holidays.

 

If you have flexibility, absolutely you should wait as long as possible to see where snow is.  If you are not experts where Gold Hill is a priority, the positives of remote location and reduced crowds make Telluride an attractive choice in an average or better early season snow year for Christmas.

post #12 of 24

While most of my skiing at Telluride has been in March, I have been there twice over New Years' and both times the front side was open all the way down to town.  It would have to be a pretty lean year for Telluride Trail (cat-track traverse) to not be open.

post #13 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by UGASkiDawg View Post
 

 

 

Yes...great location and price...not so great units.  I'd give it a 2 star rating but will stay there again because price is important to me and the location can't be beat.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dwlighting View Post
 

 

 

Anyone stay at The Mountainside Inn in town?

 

decisions, decisions...... 

Stayed there last year and agree with UGASkiDawg - great location. Rooms are very basic and dated. My room was a decent size, with a desk and small frig, although the frog was very loud.  You can't beat the price in Telluride. I'd stay there agin if by myself or with my son. If my wife comes would have to pony up for something nicer.

post #14 of 24

 

Stayed there last year and agree with UGASkiDawg - great location. Rooms are very basic and dated. My room was a decent size, with a desk and small frig, although the frog was very loud.  You can't beat the price in Telluride. I'd stay there agin if by myself or with my son. If my wife comes would have to pony up for something nicer.

 

Loud frogs are terrible for altitude sleeplessness :eek

post #15 of 24
Hugely variable snow conditions from legit powder days to being unable to ski down the run to our ski in/out house due to lack of snow and trails not open. Crowds are low in general but later in the year is almost always better
post #16 of 24

Just figured I would bump this thread since Telluride is having one of the best early seasons of snowfall in some time.  Another foot fell last night giving Telluride a total of 41" on the season thus far.

post #17 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lofcaudio View Post

Just figured I would bump this thread since Telluride is having one of the best early seasons of snowfall in some time.  Another foot fell last night giving Telluride a total of 41" on the season thus far.
Shhhhhhhhh
Telluride has no lift lines because it is a secret.

http://www.tellurideskiresort.com/the-mountain/live-cams/

It appears that they have been updating the webcams and the snow report.
If anyone wants to ride a few laps, holler at me via pm I'd love to meet fellow bears.
post #18 of 24

How do people normally get to Telluride during ski season?  The airport is closed more often than open and the drive is quite a ways and sketchy if flying into Durango and driving from there in anything but ideal conditions. 

post #19 of 24
We flew out into Montrose and took the shuttle. Montrose is down in the flat and its about a 1.5 hr drive.
post #20 of 24

How do people normally get to Telluride during ski season? 

They don't--that's why it's so uncrowded :cool A lot of Telluride's visitors are from Arizona and make the drive, or they drive in on part of a multi-destination Southwest US road trip.

The airport is closed more often than open and the drive is quite a ways and sketchy if flying into Durango and driving from there in anything but ideal conditions. 

The drive from Durango is long, but not particularly sketchy unless you take the long way (up through Silverton). Going through Dolores and over Lizard Head is quicker any time of year, and very aggressively plowed & maintained.

We flew out into Montrose and took the shuttle. Montrose is down in the flat and its about a 1.5 hr drive.

Definitely a better choice of airport than Durango!

post #21 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by New2Utah View Post
 

They don't--that's why it's so uncrowded :cool A lot of Telluride's visitors are from Arizona and make the drive, or they drive in on part of a multi-destination Southwest US road trip.

The drive from Durango is long, but not particularly sketchy unless you take the long way (up through Silverton). Going through Dolores and over Lizard Head is quicker any time of year, and very aggressively plowed & maintained.

Definitely a better choice of airport than Durango!

The drive from Durango through Silverton and Ouray is the route I was thinking of, which I wouldn't want to make in snowy, icy conditions.  I've seen that dropoff!  Had only done that route because it was the scenic way to go in the summer.  Glad there is a safer way.

 

Will definitely have to look at flying into Montrose as a solution.  Thanks, Scott43! 

post #22 of 24

We flew in and out of Montrose.  Easy shuttle bus to Telluride and plenty of flight options.

post #23 of 24
You can also fly in and out of Grand Junction. I think it means an hour more driving than flying to Montrose, but it's an easy extra hour, just through flat desert/ranchland. For us coming from Seattle, this was a much shorter journey then connecting through Denver and flying to Montrose (we connected in SLC, which also has the advantage of less extreme weather than Denver, and less chance of flight interruptions). But if your city has good service to Montrose then that is the obvious choice.
post #24 of 24

Telluride is looking in great shape at the moment.  See for yourself:

 

http://www.tellurideskiresort.com/the-mountain/live-cams/

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