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Another "what resort" thread - Denver for Florida Skiers - March 18-22nd

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 

Hi Everyone,

 

Epicski has guided me on trips to WV, NY UT and now I'm looking for advice on Denver.

 

We will be flying into Denver with Southwest @7:30 pm on a Friday and spending the night with some friends. The plan would be to grab  a rental car and some groceries on Friday and then head to the mountains on Saturday morning. We would ski Sat, Sun, Monday and Tuesday (partial day) and then catch our flight out at 7pm in Denver.

 

The flights are booked and I found a neat little condo in Breckenridge @$~240 a night which has what we need. When we make these trips from Florida our requirements are generally:

 

1.Walkable to slopes

2. Kitchen so we can cook meals (crockpots are clutch here)

3. Hot tub access

4. Fire place a plus

 

We don't generally go out unless its just for a casual drink or maybe a dessert. We're more interested in the skiing, scenery and just relaxing on the mountain. I'm comfortable on blacks while my wife can handle blues (this will be her 3rd time skiing but she is progressing very quickly). 

 

Everyone including our friends who live in Denver seems to recommend Breck but with lift tickets @$140 a day + rentals it's by far the most we've ever paid for a ski trip. I'm also a little worried about the crowds I keep reading about.

 

Any other locations that you think would be a better fit? Recommendations on how to score cheaper lift tickets or rentals?

post #2 of 33

I recommend Winter Park for the criteria you listed above. I've stayed at the Snow Blaze condos the last five years, which while in town, are the last shuttle stop on the way up to the mountain, so pretty close to your "walkable" criterion at a much more affordable rate. Efficiency condos with full, though small, kitchen are easily under $100/night. You'll have a car, so the Safeway run will be easy. I'm actually up there bridging the dates you note above, so we could take a couple of shakedown runs if you'd like. Season pass holders get 10 friends/family coupons for lift tickets at $79. Between myself and my grand daughter's passes, we would have plenty to cover you and your wife. PM me if interested. You can find much on WP around this site, including many posts I've put up. Let me know if I can answer any questions. BTW, I was toting up how many ski areas I've skied in the last 30+ years the other day and lost track at about 30, so I have some background to form an opinion. WP is solidly in my top 5 favorite list.

 

Edit: I got the dates wrong. We leave the morning of the 20th, but could make a couple of runs on the 19th if WP should become your destination.

 

Edit part deux: The rental rate is discounted by 40% when accompanied by a season pass holder.


Edited by cosmoliu - 1/15/16 at 9:46am
post #3 of 33

Copper

post #4 of 33

Winter Park or Copper would get you what you want at a substantial savings.  Breckenridge the town is IMO much better than the "viilage" at Copper or Winter Park/Frazier but based on your requirements that's not a big deal and there's certainly plenty of places to get a nice dessert or drink at Copper or Winter Park.

 

Your dollar will go much further at Winter Park/Copper and maybe take cosmoliu up on his offer and advice.  Good times ahead for you regardless of choice.

post #5 of 33

Winter Park / Mary Jane has been my fave for quite some time.

 

My caveat is Saturday crowds can be a killer there.  Bigger PITA than Copper IME.  Crowds are  gone by noon on Sunday. Monday and Tuesday are usually pretty empty.

post #6 of 33
Thread Starter 

Wow! Great insight everyone!

 

If you think the crowds will be brutal on Saturday that may be a good day to warm up the old ski muscles since they haven't been fired up in a while. 

 

cosmoliu , that sounds like a great offer, I'll send a PM your way shortly.

post #7 of 33
Thread Starter 

So some last minute hesitation over here. We found something at WP that was walkable to the slopes for ~$800 for 3 nights which is decent but up there in our budget.

 

One member in our party has the Epic Pass but I'm not sure how much skiing she actually does. Obviously she would prefer a mountain that is included in her pass. 

 

What do you think, stick with Winter Park?

post #8 of 33
I would reiterate that the Snowblaze condo complex is in town, but is the last shuttle bus stop on all but one route before going up to Winter Park. The walk to the lifts from the bus stop is about 5 minutes, but once you get to know the ropes, you can click out of your skis literally 100 steps from the bus (yellow) stop to go home. That one of your party's members has an Epic Pass muddies the water, but it is inconceivable for any of the Epic resorts to in any way approach the affordability of a ski trip to Winter Park.

Edit: Don't get me wrong, I love Vail, Breckenridge, Keystone, and even Copper. But for the criteria laid out above, my choice would be WP.
Edited by cosmoliu - 1/22/16 at 11:55pm
post #9 of 33

I would also suggest Copper Mountain or Winter Park.  The Iron Horse at Winter Park is a nice ski in/out location with great hot tubs and an indoor to outdoor pool, restaurant/bar.  I stayed at the Zephyr once, great location and walking around in the small village is nice.

 

Staying anwhere at Copper is convenient.  Just look for the best price on the nicest condo anywhere there.  I will be staying at Tucker earlier in March.

 

You will enjoy any resort at that time of year, have fun.

post #10 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nevek View Post
 

So some last minute hesitation over here. We found something at WP that was walkable to the slopes for ~$800 for 3 nights which is decent but up there in our budget.

 

One member in our party has the Epic Pass but I'm not sure how much skiing she actually does. Obviously she would prefer a mountain that is included in her pass. 

 

What do you think, stick with Winter Park?


"Walk to lifts" at any destination resort for $266/ night is a pretty good deal.  There is less expensive stuff in the towns of Winter Park and Fraser that is on bus routes.

post #11 of 33
So, I inquired this morning because I didn't previously know: Zephyr Mountain Lodge truly is Ski in-ski out. There are two buildings. The so-called Slopeside building has an exit that takes you about 50 steps to ski down to the Zephyr Lift. The other building is slightly further away.
post #12 of 33
Zephyr Mtn Lodge Slopeside and Ironhorse offer the best ski/in Ski/out at WP... Other than renting a house at Bridgers Cache up by MJ
post #13 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by pdtj View Post


"Walk to lifts" at any destination resort for $266/ night is a pretty good deal.  There is less expensive stuff in the towns of Winter Park and Fraser that is on bus routes.

^^^ this for sure. It is possible to find lodging at Copper cheaper reasonably close to the lifts also. Not sure of pricing for your dates though. Pretty gracious offer from cosmoliu seems hard to pass on.
post #14 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by pdtj View Post

Zephyr Mtn Lodge Slopeside and Ironhorse offer the best ski/in Ski/out at WP... Other than renting a house at Bridgers Cache up by MJ

In a PM I kind of waved the OP off the Ironhorse because it would be kind of a slog to start from a dead stop on the Ironhorse entry to Corridor. Even booking by that point in a tuck, the last couple of hundred yards is poling/skating to Zephyr. Certainly, it's an easy "ski-in" from the Mary Jane base at the end of the day. However, I personally think calling the start of the day's experience "Ski-out" should come with caveats.
post #15 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by cosmoliu View Post


In a PM I kind of waved the OP off the Ironhorse because it would be kind of a slog to start from a dead stop on the Ironhorse entry to Corridor. Even booking by that point in a tuck, the last couple of hundred yards is poling/skating to Zephyr. Certainly, it's an easy "ski-in" from the Mary Jane base at the end of the day. However, I personally think calling the start of the day's experience "Ski-out" should come with caveats.


Yeah- sometimes you luck out with a warm day and a cold night, then the skate to the Zeph is painless and fast.

post #16 of 33

AND it beats riding a bus and walking around the village in ski boots.

post #17 of 33
Thread Starter 

Thanks everyone, we booked at place at Founders Point.

post #18 of 33
Thread Starter 

I wanted to update this. Cosmoliu came through with an awesome hookup and we really appreciated his generosity. 

 

Founders Point was very nice but I wonder if following Cosmoliu's advice would have saved us even more money. The walk across the street to the lodge probably wasn't much more than a walk to the shuttle and the subsequent walk from shuttle to the rental. It was still very nice to hang in the hot tub overlooking the slopes.

 

I'm trying to get the jump on next years trip. We're thinking of trying Copper mountain as recommended here or Steamboat. Any other suggestions?

post #19 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nevek View Post
 

I'm trying to get the jump on next years trip. We're thinking of trying Copper mountain as recommended here or Steamboat. Any other suggestions?

Are you thinking of a March week again for 2017?

post #20 of 33

Based upon your criteria, I would recommend Copper Mountain over Steamboat.  The only thing that Steamboat has that Copper doesn't is a real town, which doesn't seem to fit what you are looking for.  If you are going after March 1st when things start getting a little sloppy at Steamboat, Copper wins hands down!

post #21 of 33

If you re not going back to Winter Park, then ski in / ski out at is a LOT cheaper than Steamboat .  Another plus about either Steamboat or Copper is that if you find out that there's  a huge pow stash at one or the other, they are within 1 1/2 hrs winter drive from each other- unless there is still construction on Hwy 9 this coming season.  AND each of these 3 resorts gives you a discounted lift ticket if you have a lift ticket at one of them. Cheers. 

post #22 of 33

A little bit of wind and rain there have you thinking skiing already?  :D    I recommend Copper, but I'm biased.  If I was smart and wanted to keep the population down, I probably should be saying you definitely need to experience the boat.

 

Just a quick clarification.  If you purchase a Rocky Mountain + pass you can ski Copper, WP/MJ, and Steamboat. 

post #23 of 33
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post
 

Are you thinking of a March week again for 2017?

 

Nope. That was mostly a fluke because of work. This year we're going to aim for a non holiday weekend in January or February.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lofcaudio View Post
 

Based upon your criteria, I would recommend Copper Mountain over Steamboat.  The only thing that Steamboat has that Copper doesn't is a real town, which doesn't seem to fit what you are looking for.  If you are going after March 1st when things start getting a little sloppy at Steamboat, Copper wins hands down!

 

Thanks! 

Quote:
Originally Posted by pdtj View Post
 

If you re not going back to Winter Park, then ski in / ski out at is a LOT cheaper than Steamboat .  Another plus about either Steamboat or Copper is that if you find out that there's  a huge pow stash at one or the other, they are within 1 1/2 hrs winter drive from each other- unless there is still construction on Hwy 9 this coming season.  AND each of these 3 resorts gives you a discounted lift ticket if you have a lift ticket at one of them. Cheers. 

 

Don't get me wrong, we really loved Winter Park. I messed up by trying to stick with the group too much the first day when I should have been exploring MJ more often. Left some terrain to be explored the next time I go. I also reconfirmed that I am NOT a fan of moguls. A couple of the black mogul runs really really really kicked my ass. Mostly because I probably don't know the proper technique but I also don't plan on learning. Moguls seem to be for the type of person that enjoys punishing themselves.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike78 View Post
 

A little bit of wind and rain there have you thinking skiing already?  :D    I recommend Copper, but I'm biased.  If I was smart and wanted to keep the population down, I probably should be saying you definitely need to experience the boat.

 

Just a quick clarification.  If you purchase a Rocky Mountain + pass you can ski Copper, WP/MJ, and Steamboat. 

 

Thanks! We probably wouldn't hop around. We're quite content skiing all day, eating well and then thawing in the hot tub. Hit repeat 2 more times and I'm satisfied. My wife and I both skiied 4 days last trip and although it was awesome, I think I need to bump that down to 3 total. 

post #24 of 33
Quote:

Originally Posted by Nevek View Post

 

Moguls seem to be for the type of person that enjoys punishing themselves.

 

That's a particular perspective on skiers that frequent bumps.

 

I rather like the bump at MJ. Some of the best in CO and I'm not really into pain ..., much.  :cool 

post #25 of 33

Not sure if anyone mentioned this yet, but try to buy a 4 pack for lift tickets this summer or fall if you go to Copper ($169) or Winter Park ($179)- it looks like Copper might be currently restricting new purchases to in person, but sometimes you can find coupons/deals or find someone to purchase an employee friend/family 5 pack for you. 

 

While Copper doesn't typically have big mid-week crowds, you are coming during Spring Break...Texas Spring Break week is the busiest from a ski school standpoint and it looks like that is the week before you come for Dallas, but most CO resorts still gets a decent amount of Spring Break business the time you will be here, so don't expect it to be empty anywhere.

post #26 of 33

Where can I purchase the 4 pack for Copper Mountain?  That's a great price and I usually ski there for 4 days at a time.

post #27 of 33

Copper's website but only if you have previously purchased a 4 pack or season pass.  If it's your 1st time then you have to do the in person thing.

 

http://www.coppercolorado.com/winter/plan_and_buy/season_passes/fourpack

post #28 of 33
Thread Starter 

This might be a better question for a new topic but let's say I buy the 4 day pass. Is there anyway to use that 4th day for someone else? For instance if 4 of us are skiing 3 days, could i buy 3 passes and then each person gives that 4th person one of their days to ski? 

post #29 of 33

If you are speaking to the Copper pass, nope.  They are non- transferable.  WP is the same.  Loveland and A Basin had transferable 4 packs but not sure about the upcoming season.  I can't speak to the Epic products.

post #30 of 33
If the Copper 4 day pass is like the WP 4 day pass, there will be a picture involved. With RFID, the pass will be in a pocket, but the rare liftie might ask to see it. Not likely, but it could happen. A couple of months ago I watched a couple of guys get busted at Mammoth finishing out the day on their wives' day tickets. The gender mismatch might have tipped off the liftie. They had some story about alternating child care responsibilities with the wives. Mammoth takes such things very seriously and I have heard that they pay a bounty for such captures. The two were given a choice between ponying up the cash for a full day ticket or a meeting with local law enforcement.
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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Mountain/Resort Related Forums › Resorts, Conditions & Travel › Another "what resort" thread - Denver for Florida Skiers - March 18-22nd