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Any advice for late april ski in the US ? - Page 2

post #31 of 51
Tahoe has had enormous snow this year. But late April is pushing it. Squaw Valley may be open, but you don't have to stay there. Plenty of cheaper places in Tahoe City or even casino hotels in South Lake Tahoe. By April, there will be plenty of California sun. April skiing in California is a unique experience.
post #32 of 51
Alpine Meadows, Squaw, Surgar Bowl, Hevenly should all be great, Kirkwood and Mt Rose have the highest elevation. Tahoe spring skiing is very good usually and sometimes a storm sneaks in with some powder.

Mammoth is the best place for spring skiing IMO. Start at Dave's Run and follow the sun, can't miss.
post #33 of 51
Thread Starter 
You're not encouraging Latchigo... but I get your point ! I'm stil weighting the options. Maybe I should wait for more favourable month in 2006. On the other hand, conditions seem really good in california ('follow the sun' ... I think I'll decide at the last moment, considering the last precipitations (and hotel deals !). Anyway, thanks all for the invaluable informations. I'll definitely visit your side this year or the next one !

And feel free to ask any info on the Espace Killy or others resorts I may know.
post #34 of 51
Quote:
Originally posted by philippeR
I've been several times in the US before, but never on a ski trip. And I've always wanted to try ski here, as you're supposed to have a very special kind of pow, much dryer than the one we have in the Alps
.

philippeR, Latchigo makes a lot of good points. In the last week of April, getting that sort of powder, c'est un crapshoot! It can happen, but no guarantees and the odds get a lot longer.
post #35 of 51
While there should be plenty of skiing to be had late April, you can be pretty darn sure there will not be powder. If that is what you are looking for, save your euros and come next year (not like the dollar is going anywhere up). If you want to come anyway, go someplace high up (my vote would be Little Cottonwood Canyon, altho latchigo is right about SLC as a vacation destination), ski corn (bring sunscreen), drink beer, eat hamburgers, have fun.
post #36 of 51
MAMMOTH! is you best bet this year!

Bachelor only has about 60" now, doesn't look good for late spring this year.

Mt. Hood is very limited. Palmer snowfield is a one trick short pony at best and may not make it too far this year either.
post #37 of 51
Philippe, there is a run named after you at Mammoth. You should come ski it.
post #38 of 51
On the on piste/off piste thing. Just to add my view (I have been to Val and many ski resorts in the US)

At most all US resorts everything inside the boundary lines is open and controlled, unless specifically marked closed. There is no 'piste markers' unless you are skiing a run at the edge of the resort.

Having been to Val/Tignes I was quickly shocked by how little controlled steep 'piste' was available. Everything good was 'off piste'. So I ended up skiing 'off piste' most of the trip. The piste at Val was mostly flat and boring. A few okay runs here and there, but mostly flat boring stuff for the British and French holiday punters.

Look at a map of Jackson Hole, Alta, Snowbird, Arapahoe Basin in Colorado. Its all open and controlled within the boundaries. After a storm, the patrol will close much or all of the terrain and then slowly open it up as it is controlled, or deemed safe. All of those ski areas also have gates at the edge of the resort that lead to the 'backcountry'. The backcountry is uncontrolled off piste (shovel, beacon, probes, avy knowledge partner recommended). If you access backcountry by ducking a rope or by by passing signs that indicate the edge of the ski areas, you will have your pass clipped. Use the gates that are marked by informational signs. Its the resorts way of keeping track of folks and keeping those who don't belong in the backcountry, out of it.

I haven't been to Mammoth, but I presume that it is the same way.

SLC is one big flat strip mall. The skiiing is good though and Snowbird has plenty of snow for April, and you can stay in the city dirt cheap at a nice safe motel with a kitchen ($31 a night for a single + tax weekly).

nate
post #39 of 51
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Uglymoney
Having been to Val/Tignes I was quickly shocked by how little controlled steep 'piste' was available. Everything good was 'off piste'. So I ended up skiing 'off piste' most of the trip. The piste at Val was mostly flat and boring. A few okay runs here and there, but mostly flat boring stuff for the British and French holiday punters.
I may take issue with that ! Aren't you exagerating ? Out of 130 runs in Val/tignes, 41 are red or blacks... and Val rating is usualy considered as 'optimistic'. That's should be adequate for a few days of ski ! Did you try La Sache ? (4000 feet of vertical drop, groomed maybe twice in a season).
But you're right off course about the huge off-piste opportunities. And to have huge monitored and safe ungroomed areas must be real cool !
post #40 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by philippeR
I may take issue with that ! Aren't you exagerating ? Out of 130 runs in Val/tignes, 41 are red or blacks... and Val rating is usualy considered as 'optimistic'. That's should be adequate for a few days of ski ! Did you try La Sache ? (4000 feet of vertical drop, groomed maybe twice in a season).
But you're right off course about the huge off-piste opportunities. And to have huge monitored and safe ungroomed areas must be real cool !
Indeed. He must be thinking of Neiderau or Seefeld.

A couple of quotes from the Good Ski Guide :-

'Green means blue elsewhere. A ‘benign’ red would be classified as a black throughout Italy or Austria'

'The quality of the skiing in the area is so varied and demanding that it has raised a whole generation of international experts who never ski anywhere else.'
post #41 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by philippeR
I may take issue with that ! Aren't you exagerating ? Out of 130 runs in Val/tignes, 41 are red or blacks... and Val rating is usualy considered as 'optimistic'. That's should be adequate for a few days of ski ! Did you try La Sache ? (4000 feet of vertical drop, groomed maybe twice in a season).
But you're right off course about the huge off-piste opportunities. And to have huge monitored and safe ungroomed areas must be real cool !

I understand. The thing is, its hard to compare. Yes, I skied the entire Val/Tignes piste, every run that I could lay my hands on, and as much of the off as I could. I hired a guide one day, and was on my own for the rest of the days. I went in 1998 so they may have made some changes since then that I am not aware of.

Yes, there is a couple of sorta steep 'piste's' at Val (like those right above the town of Val, but compared to what I am used to skiing in the states, it was very limited, and nothing was terribly steep. I found the intermediate stuff to be flat mostly, expert terrain limited. Off piste is/was a whole different matter. Val is huge and awesome if you count all the off stuff. I loved it, and need to get back to see some more of it.

I'm not at all tearing on Val. Its a fine area. I'm just stating that in the States there is far more, far better terrain that can be accessed with no need for a guide, avalanche knowledge, route finding, etc. All you need is to be a good skier and a lift ticket.

My understanding is that when conditions are very safe in Europe, some people treat the off-piste as fair game and ski everywhere, which of course would make my point completely moot, but you did state earlier that you have no desire to ski 'off-piste' with your young child, which I think is perfectly reasonable.

Just trying to add my perspective and be helpful

nate
post #42 of 51

Good Long Range Skiing Weather Forecasts

First look at base depths - Tahoe, Utah, Colorado.

Second, I would look at the long range skiing weather forecasts to see what is coming.

A good source of long range skiing weather forecasts is www.snocountry.com/index.php?topic=weather. On Mondays Jim Roemer posts Roemer's Report and once or twice a week Herb Stevens posts Herb's Weather Missive usually once Sun or Mon or Tu and sometimes on Wed or Th or Fr.

Here are Jim Roemer's and Herb Steven's bios from the SnoCountry website.

Homepage: http://www.bestskiweather.com/
Bio: Jim Roemer graduated with high honors and a degree in Meteorology from Lyndon State College in Vermont. Jim provides short and longer term weather forecasts to many major ski resorts and thousands of skiers who depend on more accurate forecasts for the mountains. His specialty is long range forecasting. Jim is also involved lecturing to universities about the climatology of global warming and teaching an occasional class in meteorology. He also advises several energy and futures trading funds and makes recommendations on how ski areas and other businesses can better protect their "bottom line" by hedging in the futures market or buying weather insurance packages.


Homepage: http://www.skiingweatherman.com/
Bio: Herb Stevens has spent much of his professional career on the “road less traveled”. After graduating from The Pennsylvania State University in 1975, Herb elected to see the world as a caddy on the PGA Tour for five years before launching his career as a meteorologist. After one year at WJAR-TV in Providence, RI, Herb became one of the original on-camera meteorologists at The Weather Channel. A year and a half later, he became the Chief Meteorologist at WNYT-TV in Albany, NY. As part of his duties at WNYT, Herb pioneered a weekly on-snow ski report, which in 1988 became his full-time job, The Skiing Weatherman.

The Skiing Weatherman is still Herb’s primary focus, reaching 32 markets and approximately 22 million viewers on a weekly basis. In addition to the weekly television report, Herb writes twice-weekly weather summaries for his own web site, www.skiingweatherman.com, as well as www.snocountry.com and the web site of the Ski Areas of New York. Along the way, he has also racked up an interesting series of other broadcasting credits, including LPGA and PGA play-by-play on ESPN, The Golf Channel, PGA TOUR Radio, and PGA TOUR.com. In addition, Herb was part of TNT’s coverage team at the 1999 Winter Goodwill Games in Lake Placid, NY, and was the feature reporter and interviewer for CBS’s coverage of the 1997 World Nordic Ski Championships in Norway. In September of 2004, Herb launched a nationally syndicated radio talk show about, what else, the weather! Look for Real Weather USA, coming soon to a market near you.

An avid golfer, Herb qualified for the 1998 U.S. Amateur Championship, and also played in the 1999, 2000, and 2001 British Amateur Championships. He also won the 1994 Rhode Island Mid-Amateur Championship.

Herb is married with two children, and lives in North Kingstown, Rhode Island.
post #43 of 51
Utah or Mammoth
post #44 of 51
Thread Starter 
uglymoney
Quote:
I'm just stating that in the States there is far more, far better terrain that can be accessed with no need for a guide, avalanche knowledge, route finding, etc. All you need is to be a good skier and a lift ticket.
Sounds great to me !

Quote:
My understanding is that when conditions are very safe in Europe, some people treat the off-piste as fair game and ski everywhere
You do understand well, but for the 'very safe' condition, unfortunately...

Quote:
but you did state earlier that you have no desire to ski 'off-piste' with your young child, which I think is perfectly reasonable.
Indeed. But your US safe version of off-piste may offer some opportunities...

Quote:
Just trying to add my perspective and be helpful
You are !
post #45 of 51
philippeR,

I think you need to use a bit of selective filtering here.

Having been fortunate enough to ski most of the major areas in Europe and a lot in the US, I have to say that Val D'Isere/Tignes still remains No. 1 IMHO, (closely folowed by St Anton and Trois Vallees and W/B). This is perhaps influenced by having skied there a lot and knowing my way around well but I was back there for a week in Jan last year, my first time skiing in Europe since 1998 (I won't count days in Scotland!) and it reinforced my view. The only area in North America I have found to come close is Whistler/Blackcomb although again this is influenced by knowing my way around the place well.

Yes there is a lot of great skiing in JH, Utah and Tahoe (among others) but the suggestion that
Quote:
there is far more, far better terrain that can be accessed with no need for a guide, avalanche knowledge, route finding, etc.
does not accord with my experience. You can find some great stuff by hooking up with a local as anywhere else but not anything that is an order of magnitude better than Val/Tignes.

However I certainly strongly recommend trying skiing in the US as it is all part of the different ski experiences. Just a word of caution against raising your expectations too high, go with an open mind!

Also while Utah powder can be fabulous (one of my best ever days skiing was at Solitude in 92 when it got 15 inches overnight and another 12 during the day ) I would repeat my earlier note of caution that the odds of finding this in April are much lower.

Just my $0.02, £0.02 or 0.02 euros worth. Hava a blast wherever you decide to go (and enjoy that glass of wine as well )
post #46 of 51
Thread Starter 
Quote:
and enjoy that glass of wine as well
Trust me on this !
(maybe I should skip Utah...)
post #47 of 51
In the last couple of weeks there has been nearly 9 feet of new snow in the Cottonwood Canyons. And it is still snowing! At this rate we should be skiing at snowbird well into June maybe even later!
post #48 of 51
Thread Starter 
Update
Well, because of some work related issues I have to cut off a few days of my scheduled holidays and wont have enough time for a transatlantic skiing trip this year. (Mammoth would have probably be my choice). The ski season is over for me, (until I can manage one or 2 days in the Pyrénées the last WE of april).
I'd like to thank all of you who did provide a great feedback to my question. This is a great community I will continue to hang around ! Anyway, those informations are not lost, as I definitely intend to visit the US next winter, at a more adequate time of the season. I just hope the current Euro/$ rate will stay the same !
post #49 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by philippeR
I'm french and considering a ski trip to the US (or canada) in the last week of april, with my wife and our 8 years old boy.

I almost didn't answer because of your little "...considering a ski trip to the US (or canada)" bit.
That's like saying "I'm considering a cheese-tasting trip to Belgium (or france)..."
Anyway, here's the answer to your question...


Whistler is fantastic right now!
post #50 of 51
Thread Starter 
Quote:
I almost didn't answer because of your little "...considering a ski trip to the US (or canada)" bit.
That's like saying "I'm considering a cheese-tasting trip to Belgium (or france)..."

Oops, I should know better... Sorry.
post #51 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by philippeR
I just hope the current Euro/$ rate will stay the same !
Don't Worry. If feel confidant that the President and Congress will sufficently screw up the economy that long....

L
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