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Steamboat alternatives

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
For the past several years, my girlfriend and I have taken a week-long vacation at Steamboat, and have timed the trip to include their Winter Carnival, which she enjoys. This year she may not be able to get vacation during that time (early Feb.), so we wondered what other Colordo or Rocky Mountain resorts might be alternatives, should we choose to try somewhere new.

What we like about Steamboat are its big-mountain feel, plentiful cruisers, consistently good snow (still trying to learn to ski powder!), laid-back town w/plenty of inexpensive good restaurants, free shuttle buses (no rental car needed), friendly people and affordable lodging (the Rabbit Ears Motel). I think last year's 7 days/6 nights all inclusive package w/airfare, lodging, 4 day lift tickets, transfers, etc. was about $2200 for both of us. We can generally get by on about $50-60 a day for food.

Any suggestions as to where (or if) we might find similar conditions, terrain, etc. for about the same cash outlay? We've heard good things about Vail and Beaver Creek, but were warned that they could be pricey. Any first-hand recommendiations would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.
post #2 of 10
Steamboat is my favorite resort and we try and get back there every other year...

Based on what you're after, I'd say that you should look at Telluride, Jackson Hole or maybe even Park City, Utah. Both Telluride and JH are great towns...Telluride is small and not as nice as Steamboat, Jackson Hole is a lil bigger overall the way it's laid out. Telluride wins out on the cruiser runs but neither one of them get very crowded. The Park City area has variety on it's side (you can go to Deer Valley and The Canyons as well), the town is way cool but a lil "trendy" compared to Steamboat. The airfare has to be way cheaper into Salt Lake than Telluride or JH as well. The only downside to the Park City are would be crowds compared to the other places.
post #3 of 10
Since Vail is my #2 favorite, it gets my vote although it can be more expensive...but worth it IMO.

Jackson is a very cool place as well and on that note I would even suggest Grand Targhee. GT has cheap lodging in Driggs, Idaho, friendly, laid back people and if powder is your quest...usually lots of it to learn in on tons of intermediate oriented terrain. It gets metric butt-tons of the white stuff but is nowhere near as steep as JH.
post #4 of 10
From what you have said my first inclination is to say Winter Park. I have another idea as well. Rent a condo in Frisco as well as a car and ski Vail, Copper, Breck, Keystone, A-Basin, Loveland, and WP.

All these would be a short morning drive from a central location. Frisco is a nice little enclave in the middle of Summit County.

The Rabbit Ears IS a great spot
post #5 of 10
Hey Joseph....when are you two planning to take your vacation? Most of the places also have oustsanding events to tie into and that may help you pick as well. Plus the timing of when you want to go will have a really big impact on how much it costs. Usually when I've priced out packages for my group customers I can easily hit your target...but I don't do any airfare work since typically it's a nightmare.
post #6 of 10
Given your preferences (cruisers, fun town and not super expensive) you might like the Park City, UT area. If you go there look into this from the Official Discount Lift Ticket Thread: "Park City Quick start will be in full effect again this year. This is a really great deal if you are able to fly in early...take the Jet Blue out of JFK...This qualifies me to ski free all day at DV, PCMR, or Canyons, effectively making one way airfare about 1/2 price. Delta also has a flight that will get you on snow by noon or so." Might be good to use the freebie at Deer Valley since I think it has the most expensive individual ticket.

Another mountain that might suit you is Breckenridge, CO.
post #7 of 10
post #8 of 10
Big Mountain Montana
post #9 of 10
If you want a mountain similar to Steamboat try Snowmass.
post #10 of 10
Originally Posted by thexcop
If you want a mountain similar to Steamboat try Snowmass.
Yes, another great option. It affords you variety with the ability to go to Aspen, Highlands and Buttermilk. The town is hands down, the BEST...period!!
The one disadvantage is it can get pricey but there are deals to be found. The last (2) trips I've taken there, I flew in w/o lodging booked and found great deals by picking up the "Rocky Mountain News" and looking in the classifieds.

Vail is awesome but definitely pricey, few deals out there and can get un-godly crowded.

Summit County has alot to offer as well but has become crowded with the bargain lift passes. The free shuttle thru-out the county is usually filled to the brim with the "service workers"....very few seats for the $$$ spending tourists thatthe buses were intended for.
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