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Tell me where to go...

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
My first post out here, so be gentle. My husband and I usually do an annual ski trip in March with friends, but everyone's out this year so we're on our own and looking for something different. We usually ski Summit county, but have been to Jackson, Utah, Austria, Banff. Idea of a perfect day is a sunny one in March on the A-lift at Copper Mtn, followed closely by a sunny day on the beach at A-Basin skiing Pali (never had bad conditions at either). Like bumps and steeps and no lift lines (who doesn't). We're considering Whistler, but concerned about crowds ('Best Ski Area in North America' rush abated yet?). Also considering Taos, Sun Valley, or Telluride. Looking to go for a week, so variety is somewhat important, although we also enjoy x-country on off days. Opinions, please?
post #2 of 11
Hi Cindy. Welcome.

I grew up skiing Colorado, and have spent many a day doing laps on A-lift and Pali. I haven't been to Taos or Sun Valley, but I can tell you about Telluride and Whistler.

Telluride is my favorite town. We have good friends that live there, and so we visit every chance we get. It is amazingly beautiful, old/quaint/historic, typically uncrowded, and super-fun. The skiing ranges from super-steep bumps to easy groomers, with everything in between. I always think of it as one of the more challenging mountains in Colorado. I have never seen it crowded (except for the bluegrass festival in June). The town is great, with wonderful food, great shops, cool bars..etc. I love it. You can't go wrong there (if you go, I would say stay in town as opposed to the Mountain Village).

Whistler is much more of a modern ski village. Since it was all built according to a master plan, it was done well. There are lots of condos, and lots of people, but the mountains are big so it isn't always that crowded. The village is fun, with all the good amenities. Whistler and Blackconb are each bigger than Telluride -- together they are much bigger. Both mountains have incredible terrain - much of it above treeline. I lived in Seattle for three years, so I skied Whistler a bunch. The only problem I have is with the weather. FOG!!! As a Colorado boy, I had never skied in fog. It can be sketchy. On a couple of occassions, the fog was so thick we literally couldn't see my skis. The resort downloaded everyone off the mountain because of it. To facilitate that, the had lifties line the slopes with bells -- as long as you skied down between the ringing bells you reached the lift for the download. Now, I am sure this fog thing isn't that common, but we did encounter it twice out of a dozen or so days over three years (at all times of the year). The other problem was that of all those times, I think there was only enough snow so we could ski to the base two or three times. I loved Whistler, but if you go do some research on the weather.

I am sure someone else can relate different experiences (and tell you about Taos and SV), but if it was up to me I would go to Telluride.

I hope this helps. Have a great trip!

post #3 of 11
Alyeska is the place to be in the spring. Longer days than in the lower 48. Base of 15-20 feet for the top half of the mountain and 3-5 feet down low. Chugach Powder Guides for heli and cat skiing. AAA Five Diamond Westin Resort or great B&Bs. Small town atmosphere away from the hotel. And it's in Alaska which is a trip in itself.
post #4 of 11
What about Steamboat, Been there?
It is a great place. Old Co. western town, Fun bars , good food & the prettiest tree runs around. Hot spring & much to do. One of my favorites. Great ski resort for all.
& for Taos, It's great. Bring your best legs.
Steeps, big bumps not wrecked by those you know who's.
The food is fab around town & you can stay cheaply in town. The Sun God Lodge is a cheap family/couples motel [where film Twin's was filmed]
We love Taos, empty & magical. Don't forget breakfast at Michael's Kitchen. Yum..
Also Santa Fe ski bowl is a smaller area that is really pretty fun & lotsa snow this year.
Taos is not ALL super steep but that's what it's known for.
Have fun.

Sail and Ski!
Look for crud, it makes u better.
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks, all! Great feedback - lots to ponder. Jc-Co, I should've mentioned Steamboat. It's where I learned, so I have very fond memories, albeit somewhat distant ones. We did do a day trip there a couple of years ago, but ran into icy conditions. Sounds like it might be worth another try. Alaska's definitely on my list, although I'd like to go when we have more time to explore. Taos and Telluride sound great!

Keep those cards and letters coming...really appreciate your opinions.
post #6 of 11
If your idea of a perfect day is sunny and no lift lines, scratch Whistler from your list. You're description fits Sun Valley to a tee. Always sunny, kind of isolated and hard to get to, but that's why there's no lift lines. A little more expensive too, but worth it. Especially in March. I'll be there March 10 to 17.
post #7 of 11
I agree with your assessment and every dedicated skier has to visit Sun Valley once in their ski life. There's a lot of ski history associated with it and you've got to experience the great outdoor hot tub apres ski (if it's still there, I haven't been there since the 80's. Supurb skiing too.


"Do not go gentle into that good night!
Rage, Rage, against the dying of the light!"
Dylan Thomas
post #8 of 11
As of now, Whistler seems to be the only area in western Canada that has any worthwhile snow. The BC interior and Rockies are hurting. From Americans that I've talked to in the last while, since the early season dumps in the west, not much new snow has fallen on your side of the 49th. Tahoe got dumped on recently, but I haven't heard how the temperatures have held. Alyeska has lots of snow above the 800 foot level, but that leaves 300 feet of grass. If I were in your shoes, I would go where the most snow was, and take the weather as it came.
post #9 of 11
Cindy, see Ott's post under 'Ott is back' for current conditions at Taos and Santa Fe. If you're looking to stay in CO, then I would second the recommendations for Telluride and Steamboat. My guess is that the snow might be a little better at Steamboat this year, given the current storm tracks this seeason, but that's just a guess.
post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks all. Just found out some friends are heading to Park City, so now we're thinking this: fly to Salt Lake City, stay in Park City Sat-Tues and ski PC, Alta, Snowbasin(?). Tuesday, bid farewell to friends, then drive to Sun Valley to ski Weds - Fri. Saturday, drive back to SLC and fly home. My question is - are we crazy? Distance according to Yahoo maps is 328 miles, but I'm not sure this is accurate - closed passes in the winter, etc. are my concern. Anyone done this drive and have words of wisdom to share? Thanks!
post #11 of 11
We did a similar trip last year, however we headed up to Jackson Hole. The trip to JH was no big deal at all. I don't think Sun Valley is much different.
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