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Plan of attack: Aspen Mountain/Snowmass/Buttermilk/Aspen Highland

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

Will be heading to Aspen 1st time next week to use our 3 Mountain Collective days.  Should be mid to end of

week, but it is spring break for us, likely others.

 

We have 3 days, and want to tour all 4 mountains, and looking for best plan of attack to tour all

4 mountains.

 

All can ski blacks/double blacks without issues, but also want to see all the mountains have so fine mixing in blues, and

do want to see all the mountains on this trip vs. just going to 1 mountain.  Not really interested in spending

much time in any particular park per se, but son will probably want to do a quick run through on some of

their parks.  Any definitive runs/tree runs that should be done, best bump runs to hit up (also where is competitive bump course for future comps for son).  With current conditions/conditions predicted next week, any areas that should be good/any bad?

 

Not familiar with town/town set up, but will be staying at a condo in town.

 

Appreciate advice on everything from best inexpensive parking/free parking, shuttle bus options between mountains(?),  which 2 mountains could be done on 1 day?   Advice for particular mountain route to get most out of the mountain for just 1 day?

Any particular lodge(s)  to avoid, better ones for taking breaks.

 

Where to pick up some groceries in town?  Any must eat local (lower income locals) quick eats?  Not really worried

about any bars as have minor child.

 

Feedback can be for all mountains, or specific for a particular mountain is fine.

 

Thanks.

post #2 of 8

For getting around Aspen there is pretty good info the thread from the recent Aspen gathering.

 

http://www.epicski.com/t/142240/getting-around-aspen-snowmass-basalt-carbondale-glenwood-springs

 

Suggest you use the link I just added under Topics Discussed (right hand column) for Aspen/Snowmass to find related threads.  Have you looked at the trail maps online?  Buttermilk is small, Snowmass is huge, and the other two are plenty big enough to take more than one day to explore completely.

 

For what it's worth, what I and my ski buddy did a year ago with 3 MCP days was ski at Snowmass the first day, Ajax the second, and Highlands the third.  For Snowmass, there was no way to ski the entire mountain in a day even just sampling.  Long Shot is worth the little hike.  We skipped Buttermilk.  I had a chance to ski at Buttermilk in Feb.  Fun place to warm up, but not worth the travel time for advanced skiers when you only have three days.

post #3 of 8

Yup, skip Buttermilk.  I agree with MarzNC on all other points too.  You gotta hit the Highland Bowl while fresh, so I'd go there first.

 

Cheap parking - I don't know.  I paid $24 at both Highlands and Snowmass last month.  Cheap parking must involve a shuttle.  I stayed in Carbondale and drove both days.

 

Check if they have Glenwood Canyon (I-70) fixed yet; there was a rockslide this winter that I had to detour through Steamboat around.  Not a problem if you're coming in from the west.

post #4 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpikeDog View Post
 

Yup, skip Buttermilk.  I agree with MarzNC on all other points too.  You gotta hit the Highland Bowl while fresh, so I'd go there first.

 

Cheap parking - I don't know.  I paid $24 at both Highlands and Snowmass last month.  Cheap parking must involve a shuttle.  I stayed in Carbondale and drove both days.

 

Check if they have Glenwood Canyon (I-70) fixed yet; there was a rockslide this winter that I had to detour through Steamboat around.  Not a problem if you're coming in from the west.


Helps to have a crew for cheap parking.  Can park for free at Highlands and the Two Creeks base at Snowmass when have 4+ in a car.  We had 5 sharing a house in Carbondale.  At least the traffic is less in late March.  Definitely needed to start pretty early to get ahead of rush hour in the morning in Feb.

 

I liked the Two Creeks base.  Parking lot is close to the building.  Had all the basics (lockers, food, retail, ticket office, ski school) and getting to the lifts did not require a walk on pavement.  Most of the people there seemed like locals or at least regulars who know Snowmass well and stay in the condos on that side.

post #5 of 8
If you are staying in Aspen, no need to drive to the mountain.

Take the bus. Very easy.

There is a City Market and Whole Foods in Basalt if you are driving.

Glenwood Canyon is one lane, both directions. A bit slower but not a problem.
post #6 of 8
I'll echo using the bus system if you're staying in Aspen or Snowmass Village. I stayed in Aspen and took the bus to the other mountains earlier this season. It was easy and worked out great. Never waited more than a few mins for a bus.
post #7 of 8

On powder days most of the better skiers head to Aspen or Highlands leaving Snowmass uncrowded. A couple of seasons ago the Campground lift at Snowmass served up untracked powder turns until noon on a weekend.

 

Apparently Buttermilk, has even less competition on a powder day as the beginners and low intermediates who normally ski there avoid the pow and stick to the groomers, leaving the ungroomed runs untouched all day.

 

For lunch on the mountain, Elk Camp Lodge at  Snowmass has good food and a very good but not cheap salad bar.

post #8 of 8
What days exactly?
3/30-4/1 is suppose to be stormy.
I'll be there all next week and can point you in the right direction.

Tiehack has slope side free parking, it's groomed to perfection everyday and it's empty. You could do a lot worse, your first day or a 4" powder day. Then it's easy to do Highlands in the afternoon, when parking is also free.
No seeded bump runs right now, but Upper Stein was the Pro Mogel venue.

Clarks market is closing for a remodel. Everything is 50%, but will probably be closed by your arrival. City Market will be mobbed after skiing. I'd stop in Glenwood on the way up if possible or shop at 6am.

First Tracks is free at Aspen & Snowmass, sign up the day before.
https://www.aspensnowmass.com/plan-your-stay/winter-activities/first-tracks

Walk around town in the evening and get a cookie at Paradise.

What condo?
Edited by SHREDHEAD - 3/24/16 at 8:48am
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