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Where to go for winter 02/03?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I've been to Copper and Whistler, both were incredible after skiing in NY. I've been thinking about Jackson Hole this winter, but heard some bad things about the tram. Any thoughts? I consider myself an advanced skiier, but not expert. I skied most of the double diamonds at Whistler, but have no back country experience. Any other mountains I should look at?
post #2 of 11
The Tram line at the Hole sucks. But you must ride it if you go to JH, its a right of passage, a rule if you will. JH is a great mountain, probably my favorite terrain anywhere, but I prefer Utah's snow and warmer weather. JH is steep, steep, steep, and it stays steep. But there is some nice intermediate terrain as well.

Have you thought about Snowbird? Tram there is much faster, but slightly less vertical. THere is a thread around here with great postings comparing the two.

Big Sky is another great resort, as is Winter Park. What exactly are you looking for?
post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
I'm looking for somewhere with nice powder filled bowls, trees are nice too. Chutes are good as long as they don't get too steep and narrow. Everything I've seen about Alta and Snowbird seems really nice, but slows lifts and huge lift lines drive me nuts.
post #4 of 11
Ever thought about Vail? The back bowls are great, snow is good, last time I was there, they did a great job keeping the lines short. Some of the Colorado Bears might be able to help you out on that one.
post #5 of 11
Head up to the Banff area. 7500 acres on the tri-area pass, and what they call crowds don't even show on the radar at most resorts in the lower 48.
The exchange rate is beneficial and the snow is usually pristine. The big drawback is that there are virtually no onslope accomodations; but if you don't mind driving to the mountains, you would have to look a very long way to beat what they offer at their prices.
post #6 of 11
There's no way around it: trams just plain suck. I had the misfortune of riding three of 'em last winter -- Jackson Hole, Snowbird, and Cannon. There are ways around them, of course, but the chairs that go to the top of these mountains are all slow-as-molasses fixed grips.

Cut to the chase: go to SLC and ski at least two days at Snowbasin. The place is DESERTED and has piles of upper intermediate and double-black terrain, high-speed gondolas and lifts, and swanky lodges. I'm also a big fan of The Canyons, with its very unique topography, narrow New England-esque trails, oodles of aspen groves, and high-speed lifts.

Yeah, they don't get as much snow as the LCC/BCC areas, but they also don't get tracked up like Alta/Snowbird either.
post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
Wow, Vail is lookin pretty good now. The only thing I didn't see was the double diamonds for when I start feeling sick. Also, a friend of mine said the bowls aren't steep enough. As for Banff, I think I'd like to stay in the U.S. this winter.
post #8 of 11
If a black diamond is an experts only run, what exactly is a double black? Expert experts? A black/blue or even green for that matter is only relative to the resort you are at on a given day. Ever notice that most resorts have about 1/3 of each? This is where marketing takes over. There is no universal guide to difficulty of a ski run.

I personally think the back bowls are pretty nice at Vail. Not super steep, but challenging in their own right. Hook up with a Vail Bear and get the inside scoop on where to ski if your interested in that place.

Might also want to look into the Tahoe resorts.
post #9 of 11
Vail is a fun place to ski. No, the back bowls aren't super steep in general, but lots of fun. Lots of good skiing in Blue Sky Basin, too. The only real negatives are there can be a lot of traversing since the mountain is so broad, and you don't have the sustained vertical of, say, Whistler (< 2000 ft. in the Back Bowls).
post #10 of 11
Summit County is not bad!

A-Basin
Loveland
Winter Park
Keystone
Breck
Vail
Beaver Creek
Copper
Cooper

Not all in Summit County, however, all withen an hours drive. Where else on earth would one have those choices?
post #11 of 11
Quote:
Originally posted by AltaSkier:
If a black diamond is an experts only run, what exactly is a double black? Expert experts?
Yes, of course the trail rating system is relative to each mountain. Thus, a black diamond at Nub's Nob is not going to be the same thing as at Jackson Hole, but come on, you know what I'm talking about.

In fact, at Jackson Hole, they don't distinguish between black and double-black on the printed trail map, but thankfully they do on the actual on-mountain signage. The reason: to keep people like me (only been skiing for two years and capable of enjoying relatively difficult single-black trails, but have absolutely no business attempting hike-to terrain like the Baldy Chutes and Devil's Castle, or even lift-accessed High Rustler) from inadvertently getting into serious trouble. Are you telling me that some of those runs off the tram at Big Sky or "La Poubelle" at Chamonix (from Tom@Cham's now-famous photo) should not be rated "expert-expert"?

My double-black remark was an attempt to paraphrase Bob Peter's description of Snowbasin: "miles and miles of perfectly-groomed easy cruisers. It's like Park City or Deer Valley without the crowds, except that it also has a lot of terrain that will satisfy the hottest of the hot on this group."
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