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Replacement for Ski Mag's Resort Ratings (by Bears) - Page 2

post #31 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdf View Post
Peoples choices are about what I would have expected. How about some more difficult categories?

1) Best area for a mixed-ability group.

2) Most underrated area (i.e. reality compared to reputation)
Best area for a mixed-ability group
East:
Stowe

West:
Vail

Most underrated area
East:
Sugarbush

West:
Copper
post #32 of 50
While Stowe has it all I think having a seperate mountain for beginners should hurt them not help them. What if you want to have lunch with those beginners? From what I understand Sun Valley has the same problem.

Alfonse
post #33 of 50
For the original question:

East (good snow year):
Sugarbush
MRG
Tremblant

East (bad snow year)
Killington
Sunday River

West:
I've only been to 8 places and they've all been great.

To (sort of) answer my twist on the question:

Underrated (East)
Sugarbush

Underrated (West - out of my sample of 8)
Deer Vally.

Wait you say-- DV is near the top of the heap in the annual polls -- how can it be underrated? I meant underrated by Bears, and I've seen a lot of discussion of the mainstream ratings as being blunders.

DV has a small quantity but very good quality of double black terrain. It has the best teaching/practice moguls I've ever seen (moderate size, perfectly shaped, regularly spaced over a large area) on the single black under the Empire Canyon lift.

Mixed ability:
I wish I knew (my hidden agenda!) Maybe I'll start a new thread. I agree with Alphonse -- I think a good mixed ability area has different difficulties close together. (The old "I'm going this way, meet you at the bottom of the lift" approach.)
post #34 of 50
I've never skied in the east so I'll give my western faves:
1. I'm looking at it now.... & there's snow up there!
2. Big Sky
3. Mammoth
4. Mt. Bachelor
5. Snowbird/Alta
6. Copper Mtn.
7. Snowmass/Highlands/Ajax
8. Squaw/Alpine
9. Kirkwood
10. I've never skied Taos or Telluride, but statisticly they've gotta be up there.

JF
post #35 of 50
1. Alta/Bird




























>. Vail
post #36 of 50
Mixed ability: Vail #1 and Mammoth #2, by far over any others in North America IMHO.

Underrated: Mt. Bachelor, Big Mountain
post #37 of 50
Snowbird - where else!
Jackson Hole
Squaw
Whistler
Alta
Snowbasin
post #38 of 50
EAST
Haven't been to many, so I can't comment.

WEST
Alta/Bird - What everyone else has said ... oh, and the skiing is pretty good too
Bridger - "The Ridge!!"
Alpental - BC inbounds
Jackson Hole - Everything
Snowbasin - Awesome terrain/experience with no crowds

I will stop at 5 as that is all I will have time for this year
post #39 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Crocker View Post
My opinion has not changed since last year.

1. Alta/Snowbird (combination of snow and terrain is unsurpassed)
2. Whistler/Blackcomb (best terrain, though weather is fickle, snow in alpine is very consistent, the 2004-05 season being only one like that in 40 years)
3. Mammoth (long season, vast terrain for all levels)
4. Vail (even more vast terrain for all levels, but not as many steeps as Mammoth)
5. Squaw Valley (concentration of expert terrain, snow quality a notch below top 4)
6. Mt. Bachelor (longest quality season in North America until 2003 management change, best lift serviced spring corn)
7. Kirkwood (Alta of the Sierra, great steep powder stash)
8. Fernie (another powder stash, great tree skiing in particular)
9. Jackson Hole (superb terrain, would rank much higher if it faced NE instead of SE)

Not a top ten list. All of the above areas average at least 350 inches of snow. The next contenders (Crested Butte, Red Mt., Taos, Big Sky/Moonlight) also have great terrain but much less snow. Big Sky/Moonlight would probably get the nod because it's so huge yet so empty.
This is the best list IMHO--it's all about the snow! And the Jackson Comments are dead on-(though, I loved the town/ area of Jackson more than any other ski-town/ western town I've been too!). And I'm not a Vail lover--though again, I only skied there three times so what the hell do I know! I'd rank Kirkwood over squaw--but I'm probably in the minority on that as well.

My east List FWIW:

1. Sugarbush:-I know, Jay's got the snow--but when you really learn your way around the Bush/ Mt. Ellen the general fall-line feel of the place is the best in the East.

2. Jay Peak-well, of course.

3. Magic-I'm a sucker for retro and rugged--caveat-it's only worth skiing three weeks (and not necessarily consecutive weeks) throughout a whole season. Yeah- Mad River fits the bill here too, and get's more natural snow to boot but 1. Magic does do a fair amount of Snowmaking/ Grooming to help ease the bitter pain of those plentiful lean seasons and 2. Intangible but there are a few lines through trees here than rank among the best I've ever skied (and it's 1.5 hours closer to my House!)

4. Mad River Glen-They've had a few hard consecutive seasons-when it's great-it's great. But Hey-in the East-I've developed a certain affinity for Snow Making and Grooming--and that's why MRG ranks a little lower on my list. And though we all love the terrain accessed by the Single Chair--I'm coming out of the closet on this one--I just never liked the dang single chair-nostalgia schmalgia!

5. Killington-When it's good-it's great-the Terrain Betwen Skye/ Needles Eye and Superstar on the other side has Great trees, Great bumps, a few steepish stuff-can run it many times even with midseason weekend crowds-Just Great--Trees to the right of Devil's Fiddle are nutty. Lot's of fun through April!

6. Stowe-Could pick this over Killington-a little smaller and the Spruce Peak side is an inaccessible afterthought so total area is a little narrow (and very unpleasantly compacted on weekends) for my tastes. But steeps and Fall-line skiing abound in spades.

7. Haystack!-Similar to Magic--YEAH I KNOW IT"S CLOSED-but they'll re-open in some fashion or another--and last year I took a few weekdays and hiked/ skied it-best trees in S. Vermont (and still gets more snow the Cannon). That old abandonned lift line (and the trees to either side of it) is just wacky fun to ski.

8. Burke Ski Mountain: With all the mountain bikers wondering the same thing-will this stay the best kept secret in the east?? Probably not-all fall-line, decent snow, no crowds, some serious pitch here and there and again, that delightful retro New England Feel..did I mention no crowds?

9. Hunter (or Hun-Tah for you weekenders) Mountain. That Catskills are cool- so rocky, so Hill-billy chic-The Place is nasty and hard. Ski mid week only-gets the most culturally aggressive crowd in the East on the weekends (save for maybe Mountain Creek-but I wouldn't ski there on a dare).

10. Gore Mountain-way better (and closer) than whiteface-more varied exposures, better bumps, better feel, better ice management-fairly affordable--I like gore.

NOTABLE MISSING RESORTs:

1. All of Maine-I've never ever skied in Maine-though I'd probably should include Sugarloaf on reputation alone

2. Okemo-I've tried and Tried-I just hate it so, so very much.

3. Mt. Snow-Love the North Face, fun to poke around mid-week-but crowds and cost are just too much of an offsetter.

4. Stratton:- 80 bucks for what????

5. Cannon-I've been several times and conditions just always have sucked-Franconia Notch is a beautiful region and man the terrain looks great but I just haven't gotten to ski it with any kind of cover-it only gets around 130 in avg-wth quite a bit of rain (followed by artic cold!)--someday I'll catch it in a snow storm and get to see what the fuss is all about. Price is right, however.

Fun thinking about this stuff!

Liam
post #40 of 50
worst for mixed groups in the west:
Sun Valley - beginners are relegated to Dollar
post #41 of 50
Thread Starter 
Liam,

Holy ****!
post #42 of 50
1. Alta
2. Park City
3. Snowbird
post #43 of 50
East Jay Peak
West Alta/Snowbird Always the best conditions, (Alta) no
snowboards. Best terrain, anything from groomed to
deep powder (real Powder)
post #44 of 50
Okay, let me think about it...:

East (includes Canada):

1. Stowe (tie) VT - Great terrain, challenge, variety and fall line skiing. The scenary isn't bad either.

1. Sugarloaf (tie) ME - same as Stowe + snowfields

3. Whiteface NY - Best vertical, Fall line, groomers. The price is right.

4. Mad River Glen VT - A trip in Mister Peabody's WayBack machine. Why skiing was great back then... Great terrain and challenging. No manicured runs here. You against the mountain and the elements.



5 . Ste-Anne QC - Best skiing and best mountain in Quebec. Fall line, steeps, no flats + great and reliable snow.

5. Smuggs VT - A more modern MRG. Great terrain and twisting trails.

7. Sugarbush VT

7. Jay VT

9. Sunday River ME - McSkiing and not as crazy as Kmart. Fun groomers.

10. Killington VT - Is a beast, but it's not all bad.

Not in the Top10 but not far (more or less in order):

Wildcat, Cannon, Tremblant, Burke, Massif, Orford...


Eastern Canada (note - only Ste-Anne makes the Eastern Top 10).

1. Ste-Anne QC - Way above the rest.

2. Tremblant QC - Fun, but a zoo... Also more geared for the intermediate skier.

3. Le Massif QC - Best views in the East and greatest vertical in Quebec (close to 800meters).

4. Orford QC - Great steeps, crazy glades.

5. Sutton QC - Glades and atmosphere.

I haven't skied Massif du Sud and Mont Edouard which I've heard great things about.

West (includes Canada):

1. Whistler/Blackcomb - Everything, maybe too much.

2. Alta/Snowbird UT - I need maybe to ski more to make a better judgement, however it's doesn't have the Whistler zoo effect which is a BIG positive.

2-3 or 4. Jackson Hole WY - Crazy and challenging. I've had 3 out of 4 amazing condition days, however this could potentially be a #3 or 4.

4. Mammoth CA - I've skied in June and July. But I've seen the map and the mountain. Definitely Top 4.

5. Lake Louise AB - Groomers on the Front side and Bowls in the Back.

* See note


I won't mentioned the rest as my experience in the West is limited: other places that I have visited not mentioned (not in order):

AB: Sunshine, Norquay, Marmot, Fortress
MT: Bridger, Big Sky/Moonlight
WY: Targhee, Snow King

Europe:

1. Val d'Isère/Tignes FR

2. Les 3 vallées FR (Courchevel, Meribel, Les Menuires, Val Thorens)

3. Les Arcs FR

Other areas I've seen, but not in same category as the Top 3.

FR - Flaine, Brevent/Flégère, Grand Montets, Vallée Blanche, Alpe d'Huez, Chamrousse.
IT - Courmayeur
SW - Jungfrau (Grindelwald, Wengen, Murren)
post #45 of 50
My top in the East

1)Stowe: killer terrain
2)Big K: could keep me busy all week
3)Mont Alta (Quebec): This is Quebec's best kept secret
4)Whiteface great long Runs
5)Smuggs: Fun
6)Sugarbush: Great variety
7)St anne
8) Owl's head
9)Jay
10)Sutton
post #46 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by pat ski alta View Post
My top in the East

1)Stowe: killer terrain
2)Big K: could keep me busy all week
3)Mont Alta (Quebec): This is Quebec's best kept secret
4)Whiteface great long Runs
5)Smuggs: Fun
6)Sugarbush: Great variety
7)St anne
8) Owl's head
9)Jay
10)Sutton
Tell me more about Mont Alta. Only 600 feet of vert, must have some short, sweet steeps?? Did it go by a different name at one point?
Also, why no Le Massif on your list? How does it compare?
Thanks.
post #47 of 50
BTW, here's a pretty reasonable piece on the best 10 ski areas in North America (W/B comes first, Stowe only one from East), has an advanced/expert perspective:
http://www.forbestraveler.com/2006/0...811_story.html
post #48 of 50
The reason I did not put Le Massif on the list is because I have not skied it yet. I would rather go south to Vermont, however I have only heard good things about it.

Mont Alta has been named that since I could remember. Yes it is steep, no lift lines you could do a whole day skiing by noon a 30 second wait in line is the norm. No grooming, No snowmaking and the trail network means nothing the whole mountain is fair game. get there early on a saturday and ski powder from the whole week before, it is closed midweek. Mon Alta is at a higher altitude than most other mountains in the laurentiens so it gets lots of good snow. You must ski it once!! I guess it is a secret no longer.

http://mont-alta.com/indexen.php

http://www.media.zoneski.com/tv/disp...album=2&pos=17
post #49 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamesj View Post
BTW, here's a pretty reasonable piece on the best 10 ski areas in North America (W/B comes first, Stowe only one from East), has an advanced/expert perspective:
http://www.forbestraveler.com/2006/0...811_story.html

snowbird gets shunned again, good list though best one i have seen yet from a mag. but also look who was judging it. better judges than any other place. right Jimk I can believe it took me this long to see you on here.
post #50 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by pat ski alta View Post
Mont Alta has been named that since I could remember. Yes it is steep, no lift lines you could do a whole day skiing by noon a 30 second wait in line is the norm. No grooming, No snowmaking and the trail network means nothing the whole mountain is fair game. get there early on a saturday and ski powder from the whole week before, it is closed midweek. Mon Alta is at a higher altitude than most other mountains in the laurentiens so it gets lots of good snow. You must ski it once!! I guess it is a secret no longer.
There's Frankontour (he's mainly on zoneski now, but used to write alot on firsttracksonline, snowjournal, timefortuckerman) that been raving about the place for as long that I've been writing on ski forum (2003).

The place has been described as a mini-MRG. No snowmaking, old double, little grooming and glades. It's located in the Laurentians snowbelt between St-Sauveur and Tremblant.

Mont Alta isn't it original name, it used to be called le Mont Chevreuil (Deer Mountain) in the 60s.

No, I've never been, maybe one day.
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