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Sell us on Jay Peak

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
We are getting ready to plan a family trip and haven't been to Jay since 89. When is Canada vacation week, ideally first week of March works best for us, coincides with Ty's college break? What condos are ski in/ski out? We go for the skiing so night life is not important.
post #2 of 26
Sell us on Jay Peak

maybe it's not for you
post #3 of 26
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by carbonissimo View Post
Sell us on Jay Peak

maybe it's not for you
And yet, maybe it is ...let the insiders tell me why.
post #4 of 26
that was my take-away sales pitch Phil
Jay is awesome, as I'm sure you know...I haven't skied it since '75
post #5 of 26
Jay PeaK

Pro's

Great snow from the Jay Cloud

Slope side condos provide good value for sleep and ski

Interesting terrain, especially the trees but it is possible to link trails to woods for fun runs.

Hopping the border to Canada brings good food and other places to ski like Owl's Head, Sutton or Orford.

Fairly big mountain with different faces and lifts to enjoy

Slower lifts preserve snow in some areas like the Bonaventure or Jet lifts.

Con's

Can be boney early in the season

Can be wind blasted leaving scoured trails (and hopefully snowy trees)

In the middle of no where

Doesn't recover well when it doesn't snow

Can get crowded on Saturay's when half of Montreal shows up for 'powdeur'
post #6 of 26
It was frost-bite cold and most of the pistes were wind scoured glare ice the last time I went there. They were making snow and had received 4" the night before, but it all blew into the trees. The locals considered 4" a dump and were downright giddy about the 'powder').
post #7 of 26
Jay has two downsides: The wind and the long run-out on the tram side. Otherwise it has the best snow and some of the best terrain in the east. There are so many different ways to get down the mountain and The only ski hill out east I prefer to it is Le Massif.
post #8 of 26
Jay is great when they've got snow, and can be equally as bad when they don't. If there's a thaw, or it rains and freezes, that's what you are going to ski on until it snows again, as they do virtually no snowmaking after the first of the year. Wind leads to frequent lift closures, not unusual to shut down the whole mountain. Slopeside lodging is pricey, although there are some good deals to be had at the Hotel Jay from time to time, mostly depending on the time of year. And the long runouts at the bottm of the mountain can get old real fast. Don't get me wrong, I love to ski there, but I pick my spots. Booking in advance could be risky, that's a lot of money to lay out just to get skunked.
post #9 of 26
Jay is an excellent ski area. The glade skiing is as good as it gets anywhere when the snow is good, and the snow is good pretty often.

Most snow in the east. When things are funky you're close to the 'rest of the best' snow in the east. Burke is about 30 minutes away and less likely to have wind issues. Stowe 1:15 south, Sugarbush 2hrs... Jay is in the middle of nowhere, but it's not too far to other great skiing.

Jay offers numerous deals, you shouldn't have to pay more than 1/2 price for lift tickets (which begs the question: if everyone pays 1/2, isn't that the actual price?).

The downside is the wind issues, the trail skiing isn't that great and Montrealers can make NYers seem polite and patient... but it's fun hearing people speak French all around you... very cosmopolitan, eh?
post #10 of 26
You'd be happier at Blue Mountain.

The tree skiing sucks and there's no bumps or steeps.
post #11 of 26
Thread Starter 
If we stay east, Jay might be the top choice. Still have west on the radar.
post #12 of 26
Everytime I have been to jay peak the trails have been the icest things ever,

everytime the trees have been filled with TONS of powder. The Dip runs I took in december of 05 are still of the deepest powder runs I have ever had.
post #13 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post
When is Canada vacation week, ideally first week of March works best for us, coincides with Ty's college break?
IIRC the vacation weeks in Canada are staggered, so it's not like here when all the eastern states give Pres week as a school break and crowding ensues. I remember being told its staggered by Province so if that's true I guess what you'd want to avoid is Quebec's vacation week. Hopefully a neighbor to the north can confirm. This is just what I recall being told at Mt Ste Anne last year.

FWIW - I've never skied Jay, so I can't "sell" you. But if you're not sold by others, here's another concept which in my mind would "split the difference" between a trip to Jay and a trip out west. My impression of Jay is it's along the lines of a Stowe/Smuggs/Whiteface/MRG hodgepodge - great eastern skiing to be sure, maybe some issues with ice / cold / wind, some steeps and great tree skiing if you hit it right -- but similar to what you'd find at those places which I think you already frequent. OTOH if you drive a bit further up to the Quebec City area you've got Mt Ste Anne and Le Massif, which are different in interesting ways (especially Le Massif), and probably have more reliable snow than Jay. Less exposure for it to blow off, and the "lake effect" off the St Lawrence is considerable, especially at Le Massif. Good slopeside options at MSA and Le Massif is 30 - 40 minutes up the road. Just a thought.
post #14 of 26
Hey Phil,
forgot to mention that the coldest conditions I've EVER skied in were @ Jay ...MINUS 72 at the top with the wind chill...Ski Patrol was checking everyone getting off the Tram and sending some skiers inside...I kept skiing with my wind shirt , sweater and down mittens...it was minus 30 @ the base...

quote:
''the long run-out on the tram side.'' Alex C

you got that right Alex...never liked that about Jay...
post #15 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post
If we stay east, Jay might be the top choice. Still have west on the radar.
COME TO PARK CITY
post #16 of 26
For me, Jay is a "here comes a storm, let's go" place. Unfortunately, I don't go to Jay often, cause it is a long ways away. We've had great snow there, and during the week it lasts pretty well.

The nice thing about the trees is they come with quite a bit of variety, in steepness and tree tightness.

The tram side and the other side (forget what they call it) can be like two different mountains. On our last trip there (Dec 12, 07 - just looked at my photos) the main trails on the tram side were one of the iciest things I've ever been on, but when we went back to the other side (Jet chair) there were still powder scraps.

We stayed in the cheapest on-slope condos, which were fine though kinda beat up. The next notch up looked nice, though we did not see the inside.

I'd say cross your fingers and go for it.
post #17 of 26
Nothing special about Jay if you can't get into the woods.

It can be cold. Still remember the Green Mt Flyer at the top in big wind - under dressed as usual. No worse than any Northern Vermont ski area.

IMHO, Jay is top two or three in the east. The skiing in the woods is so fine. The headwall is steep and unique. You can ski down to the road and get picked up by your wife or hitchhike

Don't get me wrong, there are some great trails at Jay, but I would not knowingly go to Jay unless there was snow.

How about a day trip to Burke?

bz
post #18 of 26
Why not consider Stowe?
Accommodations are amazing, and you're within driving distance of a few other options if you want to go exploring.
post #19 of 26
I stay in Stowe when skiing Jay. It's one hour and Stowe is better at night. Usually ski only one day at Jay.

The ski in ski out idea would be nice at Jay, especially if it gets real cold.

If you were to stay in Stowe you could opt out at Jay for a day and ski Stowe instead. You can do the same thing from Jay.
post #20 of 26
Let me know if you end up deciding on Jay for your vacation... I'll try to hook up with you and show you around the woods a bit, and you'll never ask this question again!
post #21 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by ts01 View Post
IIRC the vacation weeks in Canada are staggered, so it's not like here when all the eastern states give Pres week as a school break and crowding ensues. I remember being told its staggered by Province so if that's true I guess what you'd want to avoid is Quebec's vacation week.
Ontario weeks tend to get pretty crowded up there too, I don't know exactly when they fall this year... but I bet our friend google does!

Quote:
Originally Posted by carbonissimo View Post
Hey Phil,
forgot to mention that the coldest conditions I've EVER skied in were @ Jay ...MINUS 72 at the top with the wind chill...Ski Patrol was checking everyone getting off the Tram and sending some skiers inside...I kept skiing with my wind shirt , sweater and down mittens...it was minus 30 @ the base...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Jones View Post
It can be cold. Still remember the Green Mt Flyer at the top in big wind - under dressed as usual.
I can almost guarantee there were no locals riding the "freezer" that day... We know better!
post #22 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayPowHound View Post

I can almost guarantee there were no locals riding the "freezer" that day... We know better!
I was a local!!!
post #23 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by carbonissimo View Post
I was a local!!!

Bet you didn't ride the quad that day...
post #24 of 26
I'm baack! Guess it must be geetting close to ski season!

Ok Jay Peak. Not much to ad to what's been said.

In March you should be out of danger of doublr digit belos zero temps. But it can be cold..windy too. The Flyer is aptly called "The Freezer" The Tram is great if lines are not long.

The trails are OK. The woods are awesome and seemingly endless.

Regarding comparison to Mont St. Anne and Le Massif, Jay is much more tree skiing oriented. If no thaw the snow conditions are often best in the east at Jay. I have only been to Ste Anne/Massif one time and conditions were good, but, that was a week when the entire northeast was good. We hit Jay on the way home from Can. that year and there was more and fresher snow at Jay. Then we booked last Feb. vacation at Jay and had scratchy conditions most of the week. Liike I said Phil, hit or miss.


The only problem with Jay is when there is a thaw/freeze cycle, and this seems to happen at least a couple of times every season. So if you book in advance you are taking a chance. Feel lucky? Well do ya?
post #25 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayPowHound View Post

I can almost guarantee there were no locals riding the "freezer" that day... We know better!
Had to be in the 20*s
post #26 of 26
Hey, its true of any eastern area, the best conditions can be right now. Hop a flight or car and it could be raining when you arrive no matter the month. You know that Phil. You should try Jay because when its good its great and when its bad its ok because it is a big mountain with over 2000 vertical of all types of terrain off the tram or the Flyer. K-ton does not have that. If I recall the most vertical is the original Killington Peak at about 1800 . There was one or two trails that dropped the entire 3000 vertical from the Peak to the old gondola base on RT 4, Great Eastern and Jug-nuts.

You should try Jay, Mad, Stowe, Sugarbush, Cannon over in NH, Sugarloaf, in short any big eastern mountain. Find a local to show you around there is always fun to be had, even at Bromley, Cranmore and the 'lesser' mountains that make PA (east or west) look like bumps.
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