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Newbie to Vail - Questions

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
Looks like a group of us will be headed to Vail in February. I know nothing about Vail except that its back bowls are supposed to be bad ass.

How is Vail for terrain? Powder? Crowds? (weekday skiing) Nightlife? etc.

I'm a former ski instructor and will hit the bowls and steeps primarily. Also, I'm used to Utah powder...how does Vail compare?
post #2 of 28
Vail Rates 10+, if you want a current trail map let me know. Yes it can get a crowd. Yes the snow is A++, Yes its better then any Utah area, Copper is 15 mins away worth the stop along with Breck about 30 mins. You will enjoy your stay.Beaver Creek is also worth the stop. Take about 3 full days to just get to know your way around Vail es muy Grande!
post #3 of 28
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the reply.

How are Copper and Breck? Good steeps there??
post #4 of 28
Vail & Beaver Creek are my primary hangouts. Vail is amazing. It's huge and has something for everyone. Parts of Blue Sky Basin remind me of back county skiing that is lift served. You won’t have any problems finding any kind of night life that you want.

If you want truly steep runs, Beaver Creek is a better bet. Grouse Mountain makes me pucker just riding the new Birds of Prey quad.

The upper part of Breckenridge (off lift 6 I believe) is lots of fun. I find that most of Breck is heavily groomed easy blues. The town of Breckenridge is worth the visit, however.

Copper should be fun for you. A naturally "segregated" mtn (blacks to the east, with the terrain moderating the more west you go) really helps the flow down the mountain. Thanks to a fellow Bear, Ski&Golf, I received a fantastic tour that turned me on to Coppers' bowls for the 1st time. Don't miss it.
post #5 of 28
Thread Starter 
Thanks. Looks like Breck has some good bowls as well.

Of the four days of skiing I've got, do you think it's worth going to any of the other resorts besides Vail and Breck? What would your suggestion/ideas be?
post #6 of 28
Quote:
Originally posted by lnester:
I know nothing about Vail except that its back bowls are supposed to be bad ass.

How is Vail for terrain? Powder? Crowds? (weekday skiing) Nightlife? etc.

I'm a former ski instructor and will hit the bowls and steeps primarily. Also, I'm used to Utah powder...how does Vail compare?
Vail opened Blue Sky Basin today and guess who was there?
I personally wouldn't call Vail's back bowls bad ass. They're big... but I wouldn't call them steep. Their size thins the crowds nicely. Personally, I'm partial to the terrain, snow quality (when it's fresh) and overall experience of the skiing in Utah. Having said that, I always have a good time when I go to Vail for an opening or after a big dump.

Vail is pretty good for night life. I like 8150 for live music. The people watching is entertaining but not so much as in Aspen.

Summit County's resorts have decent snow and terrain too. As you know, you'll want to pick and choose your days for snow quality between the lower elevation of the Vail Valley and the higher elevation of Summit resorts. Sometimes the Vail Valley gets the goods and sometimes it's all about Summit.

Have fun. :

[ December 17, 2003, 06:37 PM: Message edited by: PinHed ]
post #7 of 28
Quote:
Originally posted by lnester:
Thanks. Looks like Breck has some good bowls as well.

Of the four days of skiing I've got, do you think it's worth going to any of the other resorts besides Vail and Breck? What would your suggestion/ideas be?
Copper and Arapahoe Basin. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]

I'd skip Breck for skiing and visit their night life instead. I think the best skiing at Breck involves hiking. I like hiking and their steeps can be very good. But you can get the same steeps via lift at Copper and A-Basin. Breck has a night life scene that rivals the night life in Aspen, Telluride and Steamboat.

[ December 17, 2003, 06:42 PM: Message edited by: PinHed ]
post #8 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Summit County's resorts have decent snow and terrain too. As you know, you'll want to pick and choose your days for snow quality between the lower elevation of the Vail Valley and the higher elevation of Summit resorts. Sometimes the Vail Valley gets the goods and sometimes it's all about Summit.
I'm assuming the Summit resorts are A-Basin, Copper and Breck? How do you know who gets the best snow, is it just random or do the storms have a pattern.

All things being equal, if we get a powder day, which resort do you prefer and why? Thanks for the feedback...it's very helpful.
post #9 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by PinHed:

I'd skip Breck for skiing and visit their night life instead. I think the best skiing at Breck involves hiking. I like hiking and their steeps can be very good. But you can get the same steeps via lift at Copper and A-Basin. Breck has a night life scene that rivals the night life in Aspen, Telluride and Steamboat.[/QB]
I like to hike too (keeps out the tourists). So Breck is the place to party, huh?
post #10 of 28
Quote:
Originally posted by lnester:
[QBI like to hike too (keeps out the tourists). So Breck is the place to party, huh?[/QB]
Dude, don't kill the messenger, but I've got bad news...

You're from friggin TEXAS! You are a tourist! :

Just a little reality check, don't bother thanking me. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]

BTW, if conditions are decent, you shouldn't need to jump around so much. You need to spend at least 2 days @ Vail. I'd do 3 days between Vail and Beaver, and travel 1 day to A-Basin or Copper.
Skip Keystone and Breck, based on your stated prefs.
post #11 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by Xdog:

You're from friggin TEXAS! You are a tourist! :

Just a little reality check, don't bother thanking me. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
I may be from Texas, but I'm NO TOURIST!! Actually, I am, but not in THAT sense. I used to be a Utah ski bum, so I know the ropes...

Quote:
BTW, if conditions are decent, you shouldn't need to jump around so much. You need to spend at least 2 days @ Vail. I'd do 3 days between Vail and Beaver, and travel 1 day to A-Basin or Copper.
Skip Keystone and Breck, based on your stated prefs.[/QB]
Ok. I'll probably spend 2-3 days at Vail, then one day at either Copper or Beaver. Thanks for the advice/tips...helping me out a ton.
post #12 of 28
Hey Pinhead- I was just thinking "who was lucky enough to be at Blue Sky for the opener.."

I agree with your comment about the best terrain at Breck. Inester- I like to hike, too, and really enjoy the Peak 7 and 8 bowls. Its about 1000 vert to get to the top via a well defined boot pack from the top of the t-bar (skiers R to 7, follow the cat track; L to 8). If it is really windy it can be a bear,especially the Imperial Bowl on 8, but in good weather after some new snow it is great. The views from the top are great, too. Be forewarned that the peak 8 summit is 12,998ft, so be in shape!
post #13 of 28
don't forget to get one night in at keystone even though they close some nights & too early on the nights they are open, : 8pm closing on friday & saturday night whose lame brain idea is that.

bteddy
post #14 of 28
How about crowds as Inester asked in previous post? Sounds like Vail can be crowded on weekends per Mr.V. Any place better than others on the weekends? I'd guess mid-week is lighter traffic all around -- please correct if wrong.

BTW -- good topic for other newbies to the area like me. Thanks, Inester.
post #15 of 28
Quote:
Originally posted by Inester:
I'm assuming the Summit resorts are A-Basin, Copper and Breck? How do you know who gets the best snow, is it just random or do the storms have a pattern.

All things being equal, if we get a powder day, which resort do you prefer and why? Thanks for the feedback...it's very helpful.
Right! Those are in Summit County. Yep, storms do have a pattern. They also have a certain amount of energy to move over higher peaks or they get stalled and dump some of their weight so they can move over whatever range they're stuck on. IOW, don't try to predict the weather brother. Just get up early enough to get the 6:00 am snow count.

Quote:
by dp: If it is really windy it can be a bear,especially the Imperial Bowl on 8
Hence the name Breckenwind

On another note... are you guys gonna have a car? Getting from Vail to Summit County is an expensive taxi ride. If you have your own wheels then you're set.

Yes... party in Breck. Sherpa and Yeti's for live music, Salt Creek (no longer a country bar) and many, many others.

Are you gonna buy me a beer now? [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
post #16 of 28
Quote:
Originally posted by Mr. Vertical:
Yes its better then any Utah area,
How so? Please be more specific. Steepness (I think NOT)?, Deepness (I think NOT)?, Crowds (I think NOT)?, Full of tourists (I think so)?

Powdr
post #17 of 28
Quote:
Originally posted by Powdr:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by Mr. Vertical:
Yes its better then any Utah area,
How so? Please be more specific. Steepness (I think NOT)?, Deepness (I think NOT)?, Crowds (I think NOT)?, Full of tourists (I think so)?

Powdr
</font>[/quote]powdr, are you gonna hijack this thread to prove what we already know? Mr. Vertical's idea of steep is a parking lot ...while others like a little angle when we dangle. [img]graemlins/evilgrin.gif[/img]

Oh, and the whole thing about A++ snow quality is bunk too. Today's snow is usually a different matter the next day (or week.) Simply put, we all cherish fresh milk and will happily go to the cow that producing.

[ December 18, 2003, 11:22 AM: Message edited by: PinHed ]
post #18 of 28
Just to clarify, if you want steeps Vail is probably the last place you should go. As for snow, the quality is exellent, but Colorado resorts really dont get all that much.
post #19 of 28
Quote:
Originally posted by Damato:
How about crowds as Inester asked in previous post? Sounds like Vail can be crowded on weekends per Mr.V. Any place better than others on the weekends?
Beaver Creek is probably your best bet on the weekends. Always way less crowded than Vail, and there is some nice terrain.

During the week Vail shouldn't be crowded unless it's some kind of holiday week.
post #20 of 28
Hi Inester-
Your plan to visit several areas is a good one. Each area maybe not have everything you are looking for, but none will completely disappoint you either.
Provided the coverage is decent, and you have a bit of adventure in your skis, then you'll have a great time.

When you think you know the dates of your visit out here, drop me a PM. If my schedule allows, I'd be happy to show you the locals way of skiing Vail Mtn.

:
post #21 of 28
Here we go again,
Here are some of the Vail facts for the U-turds or is that Uathans. Vertical rise 3450 (PCMR 3100)
Ridable acres 5289 (anything that big in the BEE Hive State?)
34 lifts
Average snow 347 (gee PCMR beat us by 3inchs)
Pinhead would love to take you to the top of Wolf Creek Pass & Show you the parking lot I spent 12 years @ :
post #22 of 28
Quote:
Originally posted by Mr. Vertical:
Pinhead would love to take you to the top of Wolf Creek Pass & Show you the parking lot I spent 12 years @ :
Kewl, let me know when we're going, Mister Vert. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
post #23 of 28
Quote:
Originally posted by Mr. Vertical:
Here we go again,
Here are some of the Vail facts for the U-turds or is that Uathans. Vertical rise 3450 (PCMR 3100)
Ridable acres 5289 (anything that big in the BEE Hive State?)
34 lifts
Average snow 347 (gee PCMR beat us by 3inchs)
Pinhead would love to take you to the top of Wolf Creek Pass & Show you the parking lot I spent 12 years @ :
Vertical means NOTHING when it is all flat. Alta's 2000' vert is A LOT more exciting than Vail's 3400+. Same for acres. What good is 5000+ acres that are as flat as the parking lot? Again Alta and/or Snowbird's 2500+ acres are A LOT more entertaining than 99.99% of Vail's (even PCMR's 3300+ is more entertaining). Snow: Let's see: Utah Pow being compared to Vail's - BWAHAHAHAHA. As of today's report: Alta - 43" to 63" (still fluffy), Vail - 27" to 35". Yeah, thats about equal. Go ahead and stay there. More real skiing for me.

Powdr
post #24 of 28
Try A Basin when you're out there. Much smaller than vail or Breck, but also much steeper. More real skiers - fewer Texans.. oops, I mean tourists
post #25 of 28
Wail ... mmmm. Big, well connected, beautiful and blue, the runs that is. The vast majority is not steep at all, very cruisey, nice groomers, the back bowls can be fun and Blue Sky is great on a pow day or for just taking in the whole scenery of the place. Wail needs time to find the lines and snow to open them for "just go" type enjoyment. If you are there for 4 days do Vail and Beaver Creek as BC has some nice steeps and some great bump runs after a dump or two. Nothing scary at either Vail or BC for a Texan with Utah ski bum credentials.

Look up Ric he knows the place rather well but he is getting on a bit

Mr. Vertical is on drugs again.
post #26 of 28
One other thing the Bee Hive Gang forgot to mention was all of the lift service above 11,000! NONE! Last count we have 54 peaks over 14,000 Yea! Utah rocks!
post #27 of 28
Quote:
Originally posted by Mr. Vertical:
One other thing the Bee Hive Gang forgot to mention was all of the lift service above 11,000! NONE! Last count we have 54 peaks over 14,000 Yea! Utah rocks!
Ya know, of all the arguments about one area vs. another, this one absolutely takes the cake. Either this idiot is quoting directly from the State's marketing brochure (as he tries to comfort himself with his poor choice of location), or he is trolling me into a response (I hope for his sake, it the former).

Lets see...lift service over 11,000 feet. How is that relevant, given that the latitude of Utah resorts are at least 5 deg further North? The snow & tree lines are lower here, so the RELATIVE snow/tree lines are actually lower for the Utah resorts (see below):

CO Snow Line(average storm) 5000-6000'
UT Snow Line(average storm) 3000-4000'
CO Tree Line 12,000'
UT Tree Line 10,000'

Now, given that CO's highest lift serviced terrain tops out at 12,500', that’s only 500 vert of above treeline skiing. Ut's highest is 11,000', which gives 1000 vert of above treeline. Same for argument for snow (I’ll spare you the details). This is why Tahoe resorts, which actually have a lower latitude than UT, AND lower base elevations can be so warm and slushy.

If you really want to make an argument about relative height of lift service, talk to the Big Sky folks. Their lifts top out at 11,150', but is much further north than UT or CO (talk about cold).

The 14,000' statement, I just don't get. What relevance does that have (since NO lift service goes that high) to his argument. The more I think about it, the more I'm convinced this guy is a total idiot. He has yet to even debate/refute/argue my earlier responses to his first post (which were also completely off base).

Mr. Vertical: looking forward to a LOGICAL response. I'll even give you a little something to work with: try discussions on the night life.

Powdr
post #28 of 28
Mr. Vertical suffers from the common complaint that bigger is better and that Ski Mag poll results are more important than actually having the experience.
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