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One of the great things about living near the ski area with the longest regular season….. (pics)

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
…. is that I get to do this for one to two months after everyone else has put their boards away.

I’ve only been out a handful of times this season due to work commitments and travel, but now that spring season is here I’m going to make every effort to take advantage of it. I got in an absolutely glorious day of skiing on Sunday at Sunshine Village in Banff, and took a few quick (bad quality) photos with my cell phone camera (wife took the good camera to L.A. with her this weekend without telling me... grrrr). The conditions were fantastic, as they always are at SSV, and the views take your breath away. We got brilliant blue sky and sun for 2/3 of the day and then light snow in the afternoon. SSV traditionally closes towards the end of May, and the coverage is usually 100%, or close to it, right to closing day.

They installed a new gondola a couple of years back that’s the fastest 8 person gondola in the world. The problem now is that if you want to get changed out of your ski gear on the way to the parking lot there almost isn’t enough time. Long gone are the days when you used to be able to go up with a sweet thing and ‘break-in’ : the gondola on the ride up (if you get my meaning)…. Bummer.


Photo from the top of the Standish chair. No reason for this one other than the scenery.




Skiing down to the Divide Chair, which takes you to the top of the Continental Divide (all above tree line) and straddles the border between Alberta and British Columbia. The joke here is that when the chairlift crosses the border into B.C. the weather changes from sunshine to rain and fog, that way people visiting from the west coast won't get homesick :




South view from the top of the Continental Divide chair (sorry, the phone decreased the resolution when I tried to zoom it, so I stitched a few images together to get a decent sized pic)




West view from the top of the Continental Divide chair

post #2 of 27
Looks good exracer, I was there just a few weeks ago, and plan on going again in about 1 week. It has been a great season in Banff and Jasper this year, skied Jasper on Sunday April 1st, over a foot of fresh powder that morning, the best April Fool's day ever.

I think the latest I've skie the shine was June 6th, mind you that was in the late 80's/early 90's but still.......you gotta love it!

Thanks for the pics and the update on the conditions.
post #3 of 27
I don't think their season is longer than A-Basin's, is it? Mid October til June/July?
post #4 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Dunn View Post
I don't think their season is longer than A-Basin's, is it? Mid October til June/July?
I should have been more specific. I meant you can ski the entire mountain until the end of May (SSV is the only mountain in N/A where you can do that), and not just a limited number of runs on permanent snowfields or at the very top of the mountain, etc. Is A-Basin in full regular operation in June? I doubt it (certainly not when I was there in the spring years ago). Although SSV has re-opened in July on holiday weekend's in the past, it doesn't make sense to do it from a cost perspective. SSV is usually the first of the major resorts to open each year, and was the first of the mountain resorts in North America to open this year for regular operation.

Here's a photo from Sunshine Village in mid-October this year, believe it or not.
post #5 of 27
NICE!

A-Basin could be in full operation mode this May... but it varies every year. We've had some good late snow this year. I'd say maybe half the time they're close to fully open at that time, if I had to guess.
post #6 of 27
Bachelor closes in June, and used to stay open until July 4th. They don't keep every lift open but it is open top to bottom, about 3,000 vetical feet.

Better late snow than Canada too I think. Fernie closed yesterday, and if I want to get in a few more days, I'll head south.
post #7 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by exracer View Post
Here's a photo from Sunshine Village in mid-October this year, believe it or not.
Wow, I knew you Canucks were clever, but didn't realise you had solved the conundrum of time-travel!
(I know, you meant to write "this season"...)
post #8 of 27
Ah, to let people who sell lift tickets define how long your season is.
post #9 of 27


Lake Louise isn't looking as good
post #10 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kid_Canuck View Post


Lake Louise isn't looking as good
Only the bottom. Backside and upper are still awesome.
post #11 of 27
Heavy snow fall warning in effect for the entire region.
post #12 of 27
I'd guess that Mammoth usually has more days of skiing [maybe not this year ]. And the whole mountain might not be open (two lodges close at the end of april) but the bulk of the expert terrain is what stays best longest--open to july 4 fairly regularly.
post #13 of 27
The correct answer to this question should hinge on how much total terrain open and skiable, not percent of terrain.

I doubt Goat's Eye at SSV is skiable in May judging by the coverage I saw in early April of a good year, but I could be wrong.

A-Basin's base depths never get that high, but it gets a lot of April and May snow that can push its season. I'm not sure how often Paliviccini lasts relative to the upper mountain though.

Mammoth makes July 4 in about 30% of seasons and Memorial Day in 85%. Median close is early June. It does score points for having some of its most interesting terrain open to the end. I once skied Hangman's on July 15.

Whistler is early June also, though I'd guess Mammoth's spring weather makes for more consistent ski conditions.

I think Bachelor had the most terrain open late by far until Powdr Corp took over. Half of the acreage and 3,000 vertical until July 4 in over half of seasons. But now Memorial Day is the end and the cutback to half the mountain and half the hours was on April 23 in this above average season. In terms of getting the rocks covered in early season, on average Bachelor is way better than SSV.
post #14 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Crocker View Post
The correct answer to this question should hinge on how much total terrain open and skiable, not percent of terrain.

I doubt Goat's Eye at SSV is skiable in May judging by the coverage I saw in early April of a good year, but I could be wrong.

A-Basin's base depths never get that high, but it gets a lot of April and May snow that can push its season. I'm not sure how often Paliviccini lasts relative to the upper mountain though.

Mammoth makes July 4 in about 30% of seasons and Memorial Day in 85%. Median close is early June. It does score points for having some of its most interesting terrain open to the end. I once skied Hangman's on July 15.

Whistler is early June also, though I'd guess Mammoth's spring weather makes for more consistent ski conditions.

I think Bachelor had the most terrain open late by far until Powdr Corp took over. Half of the acreage and 3,000 vertical until July 4 in over half of seasons. But now Memorial Day is the end and the cutback to half the mountain and half the hours was on April 23 in this above average season. In terms of getting the rocks covered in early season, on average Bachelor is way better than SSV.
Flachelor is down to 1 chair and the Summit chair on Weather Standby. 4-5" of cold Snow today and 1 chair open...........brillant.
post #15 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by slider View Post
Flachelor is down to 1 chair and the Summit chair on Weather Standby. 4-5" of cold Snow today and 1 chair open...........brillant.

That can be a good thing. One day I skied Pine Martin until tracked out, ducked into Outback, powder 8's to the bottom, skinned up Northwest, powder 8's to the bottom. By then the evil patrol (I hadn't joined them yet)was cruising on a snowmo, busting some snowboarders. I ducked into the nordic trail and skied out "no one here but us XC skiers" (clomp clomp of AT gear). A good day in mid May.
post #16 of 27
yo newfydog,

the bachelor website shows a may 20 closing. have you heard it is going to be later?
post #17 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Crocker View Post
The correct answer to this question should hinge on how much total terrain open and skiable, not percent of terrain.

I doubt Goat's Eye at SSV is skiable in May judging by the coverage I saw in early April of a good year, but I could be wrong.
Good point. Over 3,000 acres skiable at the moment at SSV. I don't know how that compares to others. Goats Eye is still fully open.
post #18 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by SunValley View Post
yo newfydog,

the bachelor website shows a may 20 closing. have you heard it is going to be later?

That is probably correct. I hear they have snow but Powdercorp is trying to cut back more every year. The pole Pedal Paddle race is the 19th, so let's just close on the 20th. Six weeks early if you ask me.
post #19 of 27
Website says 20th. It looks like it is getting a bit thin at the bottom.

post #20 of 27
any extension to the ski season is a good thing in my book - but i'm glad i don't live in Banff as i do like some summer and i take it yours must be very short?
post #21 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Dunn View Post
I don't think their season is longer than A-Basin's, is it? Mid October til June/July?
A-Basin closes the first weekend of June - regardless of the snow conditions. The old days when they tried to stay open until July 4 are gone. They will close June 3 this year.
post #22 of 27
Just stole a day at SSV this week during the WWW2007 conference. The conditions were exceptional for so late in the season, and I understand they were even better just before I arrived.
post #23 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by keir View Post
any extension to the ski season is a good thing in my book - but i'm glad i don't live in Banff as i do like some summer and i take it yours must be very short?
Actually, spring, summer and autumn are the best times of year... far more to do in terms of activities. Winter/ski season is actually 'low-season'.

It's shorts and golf weather in Banff right now. The skiing at Sunshine Village is at much higher elevation.
post #24 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by splitter View Post
Ah, to let people who sell lift tickets define how long your season is.
Heh. Here are some pictures taken Friday, May11, near Santa Fe. I didn't notice that the lifts were running, but it looks like there're a few more weeks of skiing here in New Mexico:

post #25 of 27

Timberline

Almost open year round, the only place in US with skiing in August, flat but unique.
post #26 of 27
I'm drooling on my keyboard.
post #27 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by trekchick View Post
I'm drooling on my keyboard.
Glad you liked them - perhaps you'll enjoy these from last Saturday (6/02/07) on La Plata Peak in CO:











Long live long seasons!
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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › General Skiing Discussion › One of the great things about living near the ski area with the longest regular season….. (pics)