Originally Posted by ssh
If you learn to ski well in typical early season conditions at Stowe, you will be well-served to ski anywhere else on the planet in most conditions. What a great opportunity! Don't believe it? Go back and read some of the threads wherein Bears discussed their experiences at the eastern early-season events.
Well I beg to differ a bit. I did learn a lot at the ETU, because of the incredible skill of Tom Burch at identifying what I (and the other students in our group) needed to work on. The talk at night with Bob Barnes et al was also very helpful.
However it was quite icy and there was limited terrain. We stayed on Spruce for most of the time, which was good learning, but one trail over and over. When we went to the main area, it was crowded (early season or not) and very icy. Yes good to learn on, but awfully hard to develop new skills - there was a lot of survival aspect to skiing on it.
I also agree that a little later in the season would be better. Last year's event was the "tune up" so December made sense. For an "academy" I'd want better conditions. Early January would be a little safer.
Finally I must say that since Tom and Bob (for me) did so well, I'd want to stay with them rather than some other coaches. I'm sure there are other fantastic Level III and Examiners around, but it's always hit or miss when dealing with the specifics of a teacher, their eye, their communication skills, their ability to not overload you with information, etc.
Just my $.02