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If you could choose only one......

post #1 of 37
Thread Starter 
OK. Lets narrow things down a bit:

If you had say, one ski season to live, and you could choose only one ski area - anywhere in the world - at which to spend your final days, where would that be?

Thanks in advance for helping me get my life's priorities straight.
post #2 of 37
Mont High
post #3 of 37
Phrased that way, I'd probably spend it at crummy ol' Killington since that's where all my friends are.

If I were presented with a $1 million check today and was told that I had to spend it all skiing this winter at one place, I'd get on the phone and give CMH a call. A winter of heli-skiing their string of resorts wouldn't suck.
post #4 of 37
Sun Valley. I'm pretty sure God vacations there, anyway.
post #5 of 37
Sun Valley? Ok, I know who likes to rip groomers.

THis is a tough one, cause any given season any given area (except in the PNW, we always get something) could have crummy snowfall. So I would have to say TBD. I would wait to find out where the snow is hitting and move there.
post #6 of 37
I'm with Sitzmark.
post #7 of 37
Easy: The Trois Vallées.

The ski lifts occupy about 100 square miles (thats over 60,000 acres - about 8 times bigger than the biggest on this side of the Pond - Whistler/Blackcomb). Its got everything from mellow cruisers to killer extreme descents. Year round skiing. The only drawback would be spending the rest of my life surrounded by French people!
post #8 of 37
I think Todd's idea of Les Trois Vallees would also be my choice. With that much acreage and that much variety how can you go wrong??
post #9 of 37
The Italian Dolomites. 47 resorts, most linked, 460 odd lifts, all on the one (cheap) ticket, innumerable villages and towns spread over half a dozen valleys. Lots of lifted peaks at over 3000m and loooong looong runs!

Add great sunny weather, Italian food, wine amd ambience, sprinkle with glamorous Europeans and you have a pretty good recipe in my book. ( Lisamarie-your experience with your 'maestro di schi' wasn't typical in the places I've been)
post #10 of 37
Gerathlete 1, NOOOOOOOOOOOO!
Don't say that!!!!
Let the whole world beleive that
France is the best place...
Let them all go there!
So we'll have the Dolomites all for ourselves
for a little bit more!

P.S. Bormio is not part of the Dolomiti ski area, is part of the Raethian (sp?)
Alps (Valtellina-I/Engadin-CH)
post #11 of 37
Thread Starter 
I Must admit that food and ambience take on greater importance when you actually consider living somewhere for five months or more, so I may have to explore the Dolomites. (Don't worry Matteo, I'll keep my enterage small and make them all swear to secrecy)
Most of the other resorts, including CMH and Le Trois Vallees, were already on my life's to do list.

RYAN, Mt. High? how long is your season there? What makes that your choice?

KNEALE, Do you work at a ski area near Traverse City?

Thanks for the input. Any others lurking out there feel free to post. If your choice is not so Obvious, then tell us what clinched it for you.

post #12 of 37
Chamonix. high alpine skiing at its best.

Les Trois is useful, but doesn't have the atmosphere in the town, and has too many groomed runs and too many English...
post #13 of 37
Chamonix was were we went for our honeymoon...a nice place.
Gelandemeister,reading your profile I see that you like "steep, endless, powdery..." be aware there are few un-groomed pists in the Dolomites...steep and long, yessir.
Take for example the run from Passo Falzarego
(above Cortina) to Armentarola, that is something, albeit no deep pow, the scenery is awesome.
But if you look for deep pow...
The patrollers work from 17.00 to 24.00
to groom every and one of the pists, so the slopes are perfect...
OTOH, it is somehow dull, no bumps, no difficulties, no ice...
Al the great runs I used to ski aren't
recognizable (just an example, until 10 yrs ago the Gran Risa at La Villa was a narrow,
steep and icy nightmare, then they've widened and flattenend most of it, closing down the little "variants" that were making interesting the run, this just to make it accessible to the avg joeskier...) some have become so easy that I can not really call "black" run, and feel honest.
But, I was teasing, everyone is welcome, no secrecy need, visit: www.dolomitisuperski.com
post #14 of 37
post #15 of 37
Gelande. Whenever you see the words "Mtn. High" ,it's a joke. Sort of an inside joke, although they did over 500,000 skier (snowboard, really) days last year, so many here are familiar with it.
post #16 of 37
Gelandemeister: I work at the Schuss Mtn. side of Shanty Creek Resort 3 or 4 days a week, but I routinely also ski at Crystal, Nub's, the Boynes and Caberfae.
post #17 of 37
Gerathlete, rofl

You "slip of the tongue" is...
I don't have words...
Anyway I've always preferred to ski alone
that little bit of flat, did not like
the "poor" horses......in my face!
But the run is faboulous...
The short one bringing you back at the gondola start is icy and steep...
BTW do you know that in summer one can walk to the top. The ground in mostly
I am not sure it's because the Italians had to blast the whole mountain top during WWI
or simply because it's 2700 mt a.s.l.
the story goes:
Austrian troops where on the top, so Italians dug the mountain from the bottom
up, placed mines and blasted the top of the mount.
Due to the fact that the job wasn't noiseless, the Austrians had already retreated. And were waiting.
Such a waste of young people (on both sides).
This particular phase/tactic of WWI is known
as the mines war (1916 ca)
I'm sure you've read about it at the Rifugio Falzarego...
post #18 of 37
Matteo, have done the run from Passo Falzarego to Armenterola a couple of times and it is spectacular scenery, and the hores drawn sleds at the bottom are something different. Have also overnighted at the Rifugio Falzarego and done the run in howling gales and windrifts everwhere which was not as much fun!

My favorite would probably be the run down the east face back to the Pass which seemed never to be crowded. Then of course there are the long runs over through Selva and north all the way to Santa Croce, or 2 Sella Rondas in one day..... but that's another story and we musn't talk up the attractions of the Dolomites must we?
post #19 of 37
Before anyone gets ideas that should have been "horse" drawn sleds in the previous post!
post #20 of 37
Gel Land,

High is where much of L.A. gets early-season turns in, and here's to SoCal getting real cold real soon so the Highsters can start blowing that snow. Of course you'll get crowds, especially over the weekend, but it's a pretty great spot to work the early season drills and get a little ice technique going at night. And last season, like other area hills, they got a lot of the real stuff. Two separate hills, a piece of road away from each other. Easy to make remarks but plenty of skiers and boarders are damn happy it's here.

post #21 of 37
chamonix also, plus La Meije and La Grave; just cause it's skiing that's as intense an experience as it comes without having to wait for a helicopter or good weather. [img]smile.gif[/img]
post #22 of 37
Thread Starter 
Thanks again for the info.

and I think I get the picture concerning MT High. It seems many major cities have those little feeder day areas that display such a total lack of any amenities, variety, or concern from the management about making any improvements (above those absolutuly required to stay legal). Detroit has several.

So what then is left besides new jean-clad neophytes at these crummy local hills?

In my view:

those die hard skiers who love the sport so much that their week is not complete unless they get in a few runs after work on weekdays.

The not-so-ex-racers who now have "real" jobs, but still kick ass on a 15 second beer league course.

The destination vacationers who wish to audition friends to guage their love of skiing ( i.e. can I go to B.C. with this person for 10 days and not want to kill them by day three).

Skiers who don't currently have gas money.

In short, if you frequent one of these day areas, you get to know the regulars among the thousands of casual and new skiers. if the regular crowd and staff is a good one, then that is why I suspect you return time after time.
That's why I Do.

OH, I almost forgot to mention another reason for enjoying these areas:
Comic relief-- Have you ever seen a substandard "advanced" beginner with 4 total days under his belt trying to teach his pals/kids/girlfriend how to ski?
You just don't get that at the Major resorts.
okay well occasionally you do, but at small areas near the cities it's a nonstop parade of mullet & carhart wearing self-proclaimed experts Yelling TURN,TURN at their victims from afar. If it weren't so darned funny it would be sad.

BTW: Shanty Creek's Shuss Mtn. Rocks.

For those of our readers not familiar with the midwestern U.S., 30 to 60 inches of snowfall is a normal winter for most of this part of the country. Shanty Creek routinely pulls down over 200 inches of snow each season thanks to Lake Michigan! Keep in mind, we have no rocks or stumps to cover so a mere 6 inches can open open hills in this region.

Is anyone else out ther getting excited about the upcoming season? Lets here it... :
post #23 of 37
Gelande, actually you don't get it about Mtn. High. The areas of the type that you described that we have in LA actually are great. Why? It's the terrain, stupid. We have steep and cheap here (hold the deep!). Mtn. High, on the other hand, is trying to become the Vail of LA. But the worst part is that they have plopped terrain parks ALL OVER the runs. There is very little for the non-hucking skier to get excited about. The only reason many Angelenos go there is because it is the closest place that has snowmaking. And that, my friend, is the 800 lb. gorilla.
post #24 of 37
Thread Starter 
"I see" Said the grasshopper.

Well now that is a shame. Based on what you say, I'm guessing that the proximity and the snowmaking are making Mt. High the first skiing experience for many, many people.

I for one, deeply appreciate the variety of this sport. and that's not just lip service: on any given winter day you might find me skiing steeps, mogul fields, race courses, or teaching lessons. I also spend time learning ballet manuevers (good for edge work), carving up the powder fields (when available) and yes even throwing some big air. But Wait, There's more! Anyone who has skiied for more than five years has hopefully learned to appreciate other subtle nuances of the sport, like the silence of those runs that go way back into the woods on a snowy day away from the lift engines and crowds. Or, a sunny day with the smell of bratwurst and burgers rolling up the slopes. Even the big log buildings, or the smell of wax luring you into the skishop. And maybe, most important of all, The broad range of people you meet on the lifts and in the lodge.

Any ski area that fails to keep this in mind will never be anything close to a destination resort. Cheap Amusement park, maybe, but certainly not a place I could ski for more than a few days, especially if I knew that a hill with much more variety could be found not much further away, like the others in your area.

It is not good when a ski area with big potential like that turns away from real market developement in favor of targeting their marketing to those aged 14.2 to 15.1 (no offense to anyone who may be in that crowd). It would seem like this could turn a lot of newcomers off to the sports' real charms.

By the way, I've always wondered if one of the local L.A. ski areas was where Warren Miller films the people struggling to exit the chairlifts? funny stuff, but in all my years of skiing, I have never been anywhere to see that many people in a row fail to get off the lifts cleanly.

Miles: I will be in the L.A. area several times this winter (for my "real" job). If I only had a day to ski, where could i get the most variety and/or bang for the buck? Thanks.
post #25 of 37
Galendemeister - I have not watched a Warren Miller film in probably seven years, but I do remember some from the late eighties/early nineties had lots of silly footage from Snow Valley. I can think of one segment in particular that was sped up, and showed all sorts of people falling off the beginner chair.

Yea, Mtn. High has pretty good terrain, especially Mt. High East. That bowl at the bottom is steep for So Cal, that's for sure. But really, Baldy and Waterman kill it, if there is natural snow. I guess that is a pretty big "if". Ski Sunrise is pretty fun, and seems to have a very liberal out of bounds policy, although I here Mt. High is opening it's boundries this winter. Cool, there is some challenging terrain off the ridge.

If I had to choose one area...
Mammoth, I ski it everyday, and still have plenty of lines I have not touched. Plus, the High Sierra is God's gift to backcountry skiing. Love that Sierra corn... Not to mention ...windbuff.

Europe is tempting, I could be really happy at Val D'isere/Tignes. It skis like two dozen Mammoths with twice the vert.

The Dolomites? Way too low. I was there the season before last and the skiing was horrid. Slick, grey, manmade snow. Even the Marmolade sucked. The food was not even that good, La Thuile has much better eats. is We felt really stupid leaving Mammoth with a 12 foot base to ski rocks in Italy.
post #26 of 37
Yes, thank you Spinheli, please tell more!
Act as a scarecrow, so I can have the
Dolomites back almost all for myself,
as it was once upon a time.
The quantity (and the quality) of skiers it's become unbearable, in the last 5-7 years, that's the reason I stopped going there.

P.S I edited the rest of my message, Dolomites' cusine is good, plain and simple.

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ October 09, 2001 02:02 PM: Message edited 1 time, by Matteo ]</font>
post #27 of 37
It wouldn't necesarially be a mountain.. but I want to ski Chile real bad... I'm fluent in Spanish, so the language wouldn't be a problem.. and remote areas liek that are so beautiful.. I see them in ski movies and just want to cry.. [img]smile.gif[/img]
post #28 of 37
Thread Starter 
Good Point, with all that endless expanse above treeline, how could you go wrong?
post #29 of 37
If I could have an entire country to myself it would be either France (french people aren't a problem, I speak fluent french), or if I could have access to a helicopter I would go to Russia for sure!!!
post #30 of 37
Spinheli said <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>The Dolomites? Way too low. I was there the season before last and the skiing was horrid. Slick, grey, manmade snow. Even the Marmolade sucked <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Way too low? Don't know where you skied but most of the peaks in the parts of the Dolomites I skied were up over 3000m(>9800ft) I gather that the snow last year was pretty bad and of course then the Marmolada would be bad because it is all natural snow.

Don't bother. Leave it to Matteo and I!
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