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No idea where to go in the West, first week of Feb 2016

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 

I've tried to puzzle my way through this one, and I'm throwing up my hands and asking for help!

 

I live in Connecticut and am trying to find some good snow for the first week of February. It's going to be me and my 7 year-old son, we are both low intermediate skiers. The lack of snowfall on the East Coast leaves us in search of whiter pastures in the West.

 

We've been to Park City two years ago and loved it. We skied at PCMR and Deer Valley and would happily go back to either. We have also skied at Sun Valley and enjoyed the skiing, maybe the place as a whole was a little on the posh side for our tastes (somehow it felt ritzier than Deer Valley!). 

 

We're curious about trying something new. Telluride looks interesting, so do Breckenridge, Copper and Snowmass. Lake Tahoe resorts like Kirkwood look interesting and seem to have lots of snow right now. I have no idea how to choose amongst these places, as well as more unusual places like Montana and British Columbia.

 

We're willing to go anywhere, no particular constraints. My main goal is to ski a lot and have private lessons for me and for my son. The kid is great company, but obviously night life doesn't really matter as we wouldn't stay out late. Hotel should be comfortable but not luxurious -- I'm willing to spend money, but money on food and lodging would just be wasted on the two of us (my wife is having to stay home for work!). An easy flight from New York or Hartford would be great, but we have a whole week so some inconvenience wouldn't put us off.

 

Any thoughts from the community?

 

Ash.

 

Moderator note: moved to Resorts, Conditions & Travel

post #2 of 15

As someone who also has little kids (mine are 4, 6, and 8) I would recommend going someplace where skiing isn't the only attraction.  So, for example, you could go to someplace close enough to Glenwood Springs in CO in order to enjoy the hot springs pool there.  Or someplace in Wyoming or Montana to also see Yellowstone in Winter.  Or someplace like Durango, which is on the edge of the desert.  

 

Not sure that's the kind of advice you're looking for but it's a perspective to consider.  

post #3 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by aranpura View Post
 

I've tried to puzzle my way through this one, and I'm throwing up my hands and asking for help!

 

I live in Connecticut and am trying to find some good snow for the first week of February. It's going to be me and my 7 year-old son, we are both low intermediate skiers. The lack of snowfall on the East Coast leaves us in search of whiter pastures in the West.

 

We've been to Park City two years ago and loved it. We skied at PCMR and Deer Valley and would happily go back to either. We have also skied at Sun Valley and enjoyed the skiing, maybe the place as a whole was a little on the posh side for our tastes (somehow it felt ritzier than Deer Valley!). 

 

We're curious about trying something new. Telluride looks interesting, so do Breckenridge, Copper and Snowmass. Lake Tahoe resorts like Kirkwood look interesting and seem to have lots of snow right now. I have no idea how to choose amongst these places, as well as more unusual places like Montana and British Columbia.

 

We're willing to go anywhere, no particular constraints. My main goal is to ski a lot and have private lessons for me and for my son. The kid is great company, but obviously night life doesn't really matter as we wouldn't stay out late. Hotel should be comfortable but not luxurious -- I'm willing to spend money, but money on food and lodging would just be wasted on the two of us (my wife is having to stay home for work!). An easy flight from New York or Hartford would be great, but we have a whole week so some inconvenience wouldn't put us off.

 

Any thoughts from the community?

 

Ash.

 

Moderator note: moved to Resorts, Conditions & Travel

My daughter's first trip out west was to Alta Lodge when she was 7 and skiing blacks in the southeast.  It was in April, so she was free at Alta Lodge and that made the cost a bit lower.  Even so, if I were determined to ski in early Feb with a kid I would still consider going to Alta.  Might mix staying in a motel with a few nights up in the canyon at one of the lodges at Alta.  The Alta Ski School is one of the best IMHO.  Some parents don't like not being able to make a reservation, but I found it useful to be able to make a last minute decision about whether to go for full-day, half-day, or no ski school depending on weather and how my daughter felt in the morning.

 

Other places I thought about when my daughter was a tween included Northstar and Snowmass.  After checking out JH/GT and Bridger/Big Sky, I would also put those on a list to think about.  Lesson prices at Bridger and GT and quite a bit less than destination resorts.  The GT learning area is great fun for any intermediate with glades, half-pipe (kids only), and gullies.

post #4 of 15

Snowmass would be high if not top of my list for you. Lots of slopeside lodging but there are free buses from outside.

 

Lots of skiing to suit. Buttermilk is one resort along and has lots of gentle confidence building slopes and is usually very quiet. It is on the same pass and has a free bus.

post #5 of 15
We're known for our value and, related to that, being good for families, but we're not a single flight from NYC. And it would help to know what your son likes to do when he's not skiing. There's Glacier National Park, but that's best seen on snow shoes. Dog sledding, but I have no experience with that activity here. Cross country skiing, of course, in several locations. Activities are pretty spread out if you're not skiing. Otherwise, it's actually possible to skip a car.

The ski area has lots of intermediate cruising. Visibility can be an issue on occasion. It depends on if/when the lakes freeze over. They're not frozen yet.

Frill free lodging at Hibernation House. http://skiwhitefish.com/lodging/
post #6 of 15

If the OP decided on Snowmass the first week of Feb, could meet some other intermediate EpicSki members who will be there for the EpicSki Aspen Gathering.

post #7 of 15
based on your description, I'd suggest either Aspen/Snowmass as another poster recommended, or Whistler.

Whistler has terrific snow this year, and you should easily be able to get flights to Vancouver. Plus, the Canadian dollar is really low right now, making whistler a relative bargain compared to other top tier destination resorts.

Plenty of other spots out West have good snow, but those would be my two votes

Bob
post #8 of 15

You can't go wrong with Telluride.  El Nino has been very kind to the SouthWest this year.  

 

Plus it has lots of great terrain for intermediates and a great town  for the whole family.  

 

Downside: it is tough to get to.  Upside: it's tough to get to (no lift lines).

post #9 of 15
Thread Starter 
Thanks very much for all of these suggestions! I'm going to look at flights and hotels and will report back with what we book. Very helpful!
post #10 of 15
Thread Starter 

We decided to book Telluride. Mostly because it sounds like a beautiful place and I've wanted to go there for a long time. Snowmass sounded incredible, and I may yet regret not going there -- that's going on the list for next year. I'd like to solicit some advice about ski instruction in Telluride, and maybe skis -- I'll start a new thread for that. Thanks again to everyone.

post #11 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by aranpura View Post
 

We decided to book Telluride. Mostly because it sounds like a beautiful place and I've wanted to go there for a long time. Snowmass sounded incredible, and I may yet regret not going there -- that's going on the list for next year. I'd like to solicit some advice about ski instruction in Telluride, and maybe skis -- I'll start a new thread for that. Thanks again to everyone.

 

As a Telluride fanboy, I'd love to hear how your trip goes.  Are you staying in town or in Mountain Village?  I hope you have the opportunity to ski See Forever from the top.  It's one of my favorite intermediate runs anywhere.

post #12 of 15
Thread Starter 
Just to add to this thread, we did go to Telluride in the end. I wrote a bit more about it in another thread I posted asking for instructors, but for anyone looking for information I wanted to add some here.

Telluride was an easy direct flight, from LGA to Montrose on United. We then rented a car and drove about 1.5 hrs to town. We stayed in an AirBnB place, ski in / ski out and wonderful. If I did it again I think I would seriously consider the New Sheridan hotel, which is a beautiful and cool spot. I didn't get to spend much time in town because it was just myself and my very young son, but when I did get out it was unbeatable -- great food, friendly and open people, couldn't ask for better.

The skiing was nothing short of perfect. We got dumped on with fresh snow and even the open groomers were powder runs on several days. As an intermediate it was the best skiing I've ever had -- had I been an expert, I think I would have been in heaven.

Thanks again to everyone who helped me along in planning this trip. It was one of the best experiences I've had and I look forward to more trips out West.

ps. @Lofcaudio, we stayed in town, not in Mountain Village. Maybe in hindsight Mtn Village would be better for lift access, but I loved being in the real part of the town. Ski Forever was a wonderful view, and lunch at Giuseppe's (black bean sauté) at the top of lift 9 is not to be missed!
post #13 of 15

Aspen, Vale, Steamboat and Breckenridge are all awesome options. Steamboat and Breck are incredible due to their cities and ease of access to the mountain without having to spend a fortune. Flights into steamboat makes the trip a ton easier as well. 

post #14 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by aranpura View Post



ps. @Lofcaudio, we stayed in town, not in Mountain Village. Maybe in hindsight Mtn Village would be better for lift access, but I loved being in the real part of the town. Ski Forever was a wonderful view, and lunch at Giuseppe's (black bean sauté) at the top of lift 9 is not to be missed!

 

Thanks for telling us how your trip went.  Telluride is a special place and I'm glad you were able to get some snow while you were there.

post #15 of 15
Quote:
 If I did it again I think I would seriously consider the New Sheridan hotel, which is a beautiful and cool spot.

I stayed there last year and absolutely loved it. I'm glad you had a great trip!

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