|Originally posted by BetaRacer:
I can only comment on Whistler. February is one of the best months to visit here. Weather is usually nice, temps are cold, and there is a thick base of snow. Still, there is a good amount of fresh snow, but the storms are less severe. Not a lot of people either, since all the major holidays are earlier or later.
I'll take your word on that for most of February, but as far as president's Week is concerned, I'd absolutely recommend avoiding that one. I was there last year for that, and if you ask me, it was crowded as hell.
20-30 minute lift lines were common on some lifts, and if you didn't have a dinner reservation, good luck. The restaurants were jammed. I've been to Utah, Lake Tahoe and Colorado during the same week in the past, and ALL were FAR less crowded than Whistler during Pres. Week.
I also want to dispel the notion that Whistler is cheaper than Utah. In Whistler, everything is jacked up in price compared to the rest of Canada because they can get away with it. You might save a little on lift tickets, but food prices and expensive lodging gave me very little bang for my buck. I can absolutely get in a much cheaper week of skiing in Utah. Airfare is MUCH cheaper to SLC, cheap food and lodging is plentiful (unless you stay at the Cliff Lodge, etc.) Lake Tahoe and Jackson Hole also get my vote as a better bargain than Whistler.
Whistler does have lots of great terrain, and can have great conditions, but the 5K vertical is overemphasized as well because the botom third of both mountains is really nothing more than a slushy run-out back to the base at the end of the day IMHO.
I'd like to go back to Whistler again on a less crowded week though just because of the great variety of terrain.