Originally Posted by NYCJIM
Hi, I'm new to skiing, I'm from New York City (this is my 3rd winter skiing) and I'd love to go to Colorado to ski. I've never been there.
So where would you recommend I go. I'm not looking for a 5 star grand hotel. On the other hand, I'm not looking for a hostel. Something tells me I would not like Aspen (From the media portrayals it looks like there's too many people--I get enough of that here in New York City, LOL.
I'd love to go to a place that has LONG blue trails, and beautiful scenery.
I'd probably go with a friend. So, a one bedroom condo or hotel would be okay.
Anyway, I'd love the suggestions. Thanks, Jim
CAN'T WAIT TO SKI!
What makes Colorado what it is, is the large variety of ski areas within its borders. Thats what makes it great. Picking one mountain in particular for someone like yourself who I presume to be intermediate is difficult, because that eliminates exploring all its mountains, which is the best way to take on the state.
My favorite mountains in Colorado: Silverton and Telluride, but I like them for their steeps. Telluride is not the best blue cruiser mountain around, but it is a great little town, has incredible scenery, etc, etc. Silverton is skiing at its best, but best that your a good skier going in. With el nino its possible that these southern areas as well as Purgatory (Durango County SA) will get above average snowfall. At Telluride, stay in town, shun the village.
Aspen: Not like skiing out east. Expensive, but very pretty. Snowmass does have lots of long blues, as does A-Highlands. I like all the ski areas in Aspen, but frankly, the place is too expensive for my middle class budget. Aspen ski areas all have low snowfall totals. My fav here: A- Highlands. Its one of Colorado's gems. Long ago, it was independently owned and operated, always cheaper and more laid back than the rest of the Aspen resorts. Today it is part of the corporation, but still the same mountain.
Steamboat: Plenty of blues, most snow out of the majors in Colorado, especially early season, but it doesn't have continuos top to bottom cruisers. The mountain is sort of broken at the middle, but lots of folks like it. The scenery here is softer, flatter, and imo not as dramatic as most of the rest of Colorado. Exposure makes it sloppy in the spring. Lacking in steep expert terrain, but it makes up for that with soft expert terrain - long, long, soft bump runs that are good for intermediates looking to move up.
Vail/Beaver Creek: Vail is overbuilt on the frontside, backside offers lots of intermediate cruisers, but sometimes poor sun exposure. Negatives: Cost, town located right on I-70 so it take away some of the ambiance. The Beav has some fabulous cruising, generally isn't very crowded, and is an all around good place even though it lacks the steeps that I like. I try to get to the Beav every couple years, just to stretch out and too let my skis run and elbows swing. Both ski areas get more snow than summit county usually.
Summit County: Lots of skiing here, IMO Copper is the best, but all offer Blues in spades. Keystone is the most family, and the most eastern like, I'd stay away probably - I hate ice and it seems to have lots of ice. Breck is big, not well laid out, but ever improving, great town, lots of cool hike too expert if its open. A-Basin is high alpine, steep, and the best of Summit county for experts. You can drive to all of these areas and Vail/Beav for day skiing out of the county. Negatives: not much snow here usually, but on the plus side, high altitude and good exposures keep the snow around. My recomendation for Summit County: get something on Main Street in Frisco and ski around.
Winter Park: Nice ski area close to Denver with a little bit of everything.
Wolf Creek : Awesome early snow, almost every year. Short, flat.
Loveland: If there's an upslope or huge crowds - go here. Its a little flat overall, but has steeps, blues, greens and its pretty and big in a small sort of way. Close to Denver, but most folks drive right past it on their way to Vail or Copper.
Have fun. Keep your options open.