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Vail Conditions

post #1 of 31
Thread Starter 
Well, we're getting antsy about heading to Vail next week, so I'm hoping one of the Vail locals can give me an update on how conditions should be.

I've been watching the weather and they're calling for some snow through next week with the possiblity of some major snow next weekend. I'm all for that, but I at least have to be able to get there Friday to enjoy it.

If this snow doesn't play out, should I expect conditions to still be pretty good? And...if there's a major storm rolling through, do the road crews do a pretty decent job keeping I70 passable?
post #2 of 31
^ What he said ^

(my chauffeuse will be interested to know the road conditions)
post #3 of 31
I had planned on being in Vail the week of 3/21 but work intervened. I continue to look at the longer range forecast on their website and I think the prospects for snow arriving while you are there is good. I think the YTD snowfall is 228 inches. 52 inch mid mountain base.

Coverage shouldn't be an issue. But certainly this year's snow fall is below their yearly average as was last year's . In my experience over the years lower snowfall amounts really only impacts the bottom of the mountain. Worse case scenario I think for when you will be there would be bad conditions down low but everything in the bowls and mid mounatin up should be very skiable.

The drive over on snowy roads can be tough. When I come out of the Eisehhower Tunnel when the roads are bad I put it in low and pretty much coast down the 5 mile hill to Summit County. From there you just have to go up Vail Pass which I have found to be pretty well maintained. I've made the trip over a couple times in recent years at night on snowy roads . If the weather is going to be bad I prefer daytime driving.

Have a great trip . I forgot if you take all the skis you own you'll have plenty of weight over the back axles if the roads are bad. I'm just jealous!
post #4 of 31
skiing was great on Wednesday. It gets corned up in the afternoon in the bowls, but who would argue with spring skiing in the warm sunshine. I-70 is dry and clear the whole way up (could change with a big storm, of course, but CDOT keeps the road in good shape). Hey fox, when are you coming? Want to meet for some turns?
post #5 of 31
dp, we'll be there 19-26th. Just holler.
post #6 of 31
Coach---I usually ski Vail season after season on closing day which is a month away yet (Apr 17 this year). Coverage will not be a problem and you can download on certain lifts at the end of the day if you wish (though the group I ski with have vowed to never do that !)

You could encounter any type conditions there from mid-March on. Winter snow at the top most always....corn at the bottom....2' of new soft powder....etc...etc. I wouldn't even be thinking about it if you are skiing there in March, conditions then compaired to what you are used to will seem perfect.----April can be a different story.

Compaired to what you are used to here in the mid-Atlantic mtn areas you won't believe how well they take care of the roads.....ONE CAUTION----They have a condition there called "black ice" that we don't see here in the east. You can not see this stuff real well........If there has been a warm day/cold night even though you can't see the ice, assume it's there.

You'll be fine. March is usually the snowiest time there.......stop thinking----just go and have fun !
post #7 of 31
Vail was as bad as i've ever seen it. I mean, there's no sense going out in the back till noon. Ice, chunks and death cookies till the sun warms it up. Even in Blue Sky it was survival of the fittest. Front side wasn't too bad if you had sharp edges and carvers. I can honestly say that it might have been the worst i've ever skied at Vail.
post #8 of 31
We're supposed to get some good snow this weekend and late next week, so it should be real nice for you. They're calling for 5-9 on Sunday on snowforecast.com, which is usually pretty reliable.
post #9 of 31
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the responses guys.

Uncle Louie-I know what you mean about April, we were there last year from something like 4/4-11. We downloaded everyday and every time we did, the kids would talk about how much "it sucked". The top and backside were fine though and we had a blast.
post #10 of 31
LOL---You were there last year when I was..........That was me and Joanie walking through the mud....

Wouldn't have it any other way ! Sure you have seen one of the "Bob Peters" pics here, skiing around the boulders-----We're sorta like that !
post #11 of 31
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by roundturns
I forgot if you take all the skis you own you'll have plenty of weight over the back axles if the roads are bad. I'm just jealous!
I'm only taking 2 pairs of either the RX 8's, 8000's, and the 8800's. The rest of my skis will probably try to jump in my truck from habit when we're loading up.

The 8800's are going for sure so I can dream about that big snow day, and I'm leaning on taking the 8000's as well. They're great on everything except ice. Any thoughts on this choice? I took the RX 8's last year and they definitely suffered in the soft stuff, especially late in the day.

Lars-Were you on your B2's?

BTW Tom, it sucks that work got in your way. Being there 2 years in a row at the same time would have been amazing. Maybe next year.
post #12 of 31
RX8s will be great for the mornings. Swap out to the fatties at lunch for the slush, if needed.
post #13 of 31
Can let you know tomorrow.Just got back up & will be here all week while the kids are on break.
Last weekend was excellent because the sun is out. This time of year we're really at the mercy of the weather.
If it snows, then everything is fine.
If sunny & warm, then the morning is for groomers and afternoon for playing in the backside mashies.
If cloudy....get out early for some groomers & plan on ending early. Stay away from the back as it will be bulletproof.
post #14 of 31
Had friends skiing at Vail today and they said it was great--spring conditions, sunny.

Bring steaks or something to grill up on Blue Sky!
post #15 of 31
Planning on bringing Pistols & 1100s. And a big smile.
post #16 of 31
Hi Fox- It looks like next week and the following week (when you are in town) may be the only period that I won't be able to get up there, although I may be able to make it on Friday the 25th for the morning(have to be on the road by 2pm; it will depend on how much work I get done in the evenings, as that is my only non-clinical day of the week). I'll let you know. By the way, it is snowing like crazy right now in Denver- hope it is the same above 8000ft!
post #17 of 31
Saturday was 45 deg & sunny.
The back was phenomenal. Creamy mashed potato snow everywhere.
A few inches is predicted each of the next few days and my fingers are crossed.
If the sun isn't out & the snow not fresh then the back will pretty much be off-limits.
post #18 of 31
Originally Posted by Uncle Louie
.....ONE CAUTION----They have a condition there called "black ice" that we don't see here in the east. You can not see this stuff real well........If there has been a warm day/cold night even though you can't see the ice, assume it's there...
"We don't see black ice here in the East??" : Where's that, the Florida Keys?
Funny, I've seen it dozens of times over the years all over the Northeast.

One time here on L.I. I left my house at 7:30 AM on a beautiful, sunny morning, to go to work. It was probably close to 40 degrees and the roads were dry, or so they looked. As I passed through a low lying open area behind a sod farm, (where sometimes fog lays in the early am - but wasn't there at that time) I hit a road that was completely covered with black Ice, and went into a 300 ft. slide at 35 mph into a telephone pole.

Luckily I took the hit on the passenger side of my old Bronco II, but it was totalled. The only object that was unshaken was my fabulous THULE 600, which is still going strong after about 20 years.
post #19 of 31
To me Colorado's "Black Ice" seems far less visable than Ice on the road in the NE. I lived in VT and CT for nearly 40 years and the stuff really took me by surprise when I spent a few seasons in CO.

Coach is also a "neighbor" of sorts now that we both live in the mid-Atlantic and driving here you can almost always see ice on the road. It was more a warning for him----and I probably should have qualified it just a bit better.

IMHO --"Black Ice" probably can exist anywhere where it is cold enough to freeze, but Colorado's is particularly nasty.
post #20 of 31
Thread Starter 
Well, 48 hours until the plane flies and I'm keeping my fingers crossed for some decent conditions while I'm there.

It looks like Mother Nature may cooperate a bit, for Vail/BC and the Summit Co. resorts, based on this forecast.
post #21 of 31
post #22 of 31
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Wear The Fox Hat
: Yep, can't wait. The more the merrier.
post #23 of 31
We will be there 3/23-3/28 and I just know its gonna snow the whole time.
post #24 of 31
If it snows REALLY HARD on 26th/27th we might not be able to get back to the airport, and have to stay on an extra day or two... particularly if I slash the tyres on the SUV...
post #25 of 31
I'm coming all the way from the UK to Vail for two weeks . . . . have to leave at 4am this sunday morning. Ouch.

Still, you can't argue with a snowy forecast
post #26 of 31
bgp, sent you a PM
post #27 of 31
Look us up when you get here... Fox arrives today, and Coach13 should be here as well

I work out of Lionshead, and Bob Barnes works out of Golden Peak.
post #28 of 31
While this may be a little late, here is my trip report from last weekend:


Snow coverage was spotty on lower mountain and exposed southern slopes.

I would echo the death cookies and chicken heads comments about the back bowls, unless you want to fight these wait until at least 11:30 before heading for there. There were plenty of nasty hard refrozen little bumps and skiied up with rocks sticking through on the steeper runs.

If you have a short fat ski like pocket rockets, 8800's (in my case precursor little big fats) etc. I would highly recommend these if you are going to the back bowls. Otherwise it will be lots of work for not lots of fun.

Upper elevations were ok on the front side and all of those blue black groomers should be fine.

Have a good trip and be careful out there.

post #29 of 31
Thanks snopro. It's really snowing here and I hate to leave but I'm really looking forward to Skiing Vail for the 1st time. I will make every effort to get over to Lionshead to look you up. We are staying in East Vail so will probably head to Goldenpeak and up the Rivabahn each morning and make our way to the West. There are going to be 18 of us so we have are own traveling fiesta!
post #30 of 31
we got 9" between friday & saturday and another 11" reported this morning.
Unfortunately I had to head back down to the front range so I can earn some $$$, but needless to say, conditions were amazing friday-sunday and should be even better today. Rasputin's easily had over a foot on saturday and fresh tracks were easily found all day on Rasputin's, out in siberia, little ollie and the unmarked trees in both Blue Sky bowls.
Enjoy it and save some of that snow for me until i get back next weekend.
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