I don't think the poll is futile. Don't you think that as Epic grows more bears will want to attend? Don't judge past attendance on what may happen this year. I voted Snowbasin and I'm interested in JH. I may not attend no matter where the Gathering is held. I normally don't make decisions on ski trips 'til fall but given the opportunity to voice my preference, I will. Sorry if this isn't to everyone's liking. The fact is, as much as I would like to meet and ski with the Bears, Epic or even skiing is not my entire life and many things must fall into place for me to attend either. Ask Gonz about intentions and reality.
So folks, calm down, take a drink, pop a prosac, self medicate, chill. There should be no conflict between ESA and Gathering, don't create one. For those of us that travel great distances and spend far more then we should, it would be nice if both were close by. If not, fine. I will make my decision which to attended based on affordablity. Right now, the Gathering is more attractive because there is no extra coaching fees. If additional travel expense to Gathering are as such that both cost the same, then I may choose the ESA. It all depends on your final decision, so decide and allow the rest of us to do the same.
I do appreciate your efforts to herd cats, as the popular saying goes. If I could definately commit every year, I'd like to try my hand at cat herding. Thanks for your patience and effort. Apart from these electronic backslaps, it will be a thankless job until we all meet, ski and party on.