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Winter Park or Keystone? which one?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone,
I need some help and I hope you guys can help me

I am from Canada and this Winter season I am going to work to Colorado but I don't know which Ski resort is the best for going to work.
I have to decide if I go to Winter Park or Keystone.
If someone knows which one is the best in order to make excellent money and have more than one job and so on.

Any comment will be useful!
post #2 of 9
At Winter Park you'll get the Real Deal program that will let you ski about 20 different resorts in Colorado. Granted, it'll be hard to get to places like Telluride and Purgatory, but you'll be able to ski for free at Copper, Steamboat and Loveland. Oh, and Eldora isn't too far away either - woo hoo!

Now, Keystone means you get to live in Summit County, and I'd rather live there than in the Frasier Valley. If you wanted, you can even get employee housing right at the resort. But Keystone has pretty crappy skiing and in general it's a boring mountain. (However, A Basin is just down the road and you get to ski there for free, ditto for Breckenridge.)

Personally, I wouldn't choose Keystone or Winter Park to spend a season at, but if you had to choose just one I guess Winter Park is the better skiing of the two and Keystone is a better living atmosphere.
post #3 of 9
I disagree that Keystone is crappy skiing and is boring but that's me. Personally I'd prefer to do Keystone for the town environment in Summit County.
post #4 of 9
Another vote for Keystone. Winter park blows...Mary Jane is nice but the combo of A-Basin, Breck, Keystone, Vail and Beaver Creek on one pass all within 30 miles or so of each other is much better deal than just Mary Jane and a 1 hour drive minimum to Copper on the same pass.

The night life will be better in SuCo as well.
post #5 of 9
Are you talking about working for the resort or just in town nearby?

I cannot speak to what those two ski schools or resorts are like to work for. You can do a search and figure out who is/has worked at the resorts and pm them, as they may not want to answer publicly.

As communities, they are so different, it's hard to know where to begin. Summit will probably have more work opportunities. It is a vast, sprawling suburbia off a huge highway. Winter Park/MJ is developing fast, but nowhere near as much as Summit. it's a smallish town and many of the 'locals' live in the even smaller towns of Fraser or Granby. Grand Lake is nice too. It's near Rocky Mountain National Park.

Both have good teaching terrain, if that's what you are going to do. WP has more consistent snow and fewer crowds. Summit has more variety as was mentioned above. WP is also affiliated now with Steamboat, but i don't know if an employee pass gets you there or not. It would be worth inquiring.
post #6 of 9
Welcome to EpicSki, Emily!

Yes, I'm 99.9% sure that a Winter Park employee pass will get you to Steamboat, as well as Copper Mountain in Summit County. Others have mentioned that Winter Park is an Intrawest resort, along with Copper and Steamboat, and employees have long had the advantage of the Real Deal exchange program with many resorts in Colorado--almost all except the Vail Resorts areas (Keystone, Breckenridge, Vail, and Beaver Creek). But a VR pass gets you a lot of great skiing in close proximity. The tradeoff is yours to weigh.

I too disagree that Keystone's skiing is "crappy"--I think it is one of the most commonly under-rated resorts in Colorado. It has a lot of very good skiing, for all levels and interests and, while it is limited in truly extreme backcountry steeps, the terrain available to those who know where to find it, either by hiking or snowcat, will challenge anyone. If you don't believe it, come sign up for a private lesson with one of Keystone's top instructors who can show you around. Unfortunately, Keystone still suffers from the reputation it once deserved, long ago, before the North Peak and Outback developments, as nothing but long, groomed cruisers. There is a lot more!

Of course, there is great skiing at Winter Park/Mary Jane too, and they do tend to get consistently great snow. The choice is yours. You'll be happy skiing either way.

However, if your goal really is "to make excellent money and have more than one job and so on," you should perhaps rethink your plans entirely. Working at a ski resort can be a lot of fun, and truly rewarding in many ways. But you aren't going to get rich. And if you're going to work multiple jobs to try to get rich, what's the point of living in the paradise of a ski resort? Looking out the window at people skiing isn't that much fun!

Good luck. If you have questions about Keystone, I'll be glad to help.

Best regards,
Bob Barnes
post #7 of 9
Originally Posted by Mom View Post
WP is also affiliated now with Steamboat, but i don't know if an employee pass gets you there or not.
Direct to lift at Winter Park, Copper Mtn, and Steamboat as an Intrawest employee. Employee discounts of F&B at your non-home mountain too. Lots of them 'Boaters showed up at WP this past spring. You can stay at employee housing on an as available basis at Copper too. Other stuff available too.

FYI, there are at least two Bob Barnes in Colorado ski country. One is the SSD at Winter Park, the other is the SSD of Keystone.
post #8 of 9
keystone. For all the reasons above. Summit county has mountain jobs plus town jobs at frisco dillon and silverthorne.
post #9 of 9

Skiing is very good, plus you gain access to all nearby Vail resorts.

Summit County is a happening scene, with lots of young people, more job choices, and a vibrant community.

If you haven't lived in a ski town before, you'll find the male to female ratio is about 5 to 1. You won't be lonely - although some dudes are sketchy.

As woman in Avon told me today: "The odds are good, but the goods are odd."
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