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Where to ski with elderly father?

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
My dad was an amazing skier in his day.  He is now 76 and hasn't skied in about 7 years.  Now that my boys are hitting the slopes, he wants to ski with them.  I'm thrilled and terrified at the same time.  I'm afraid of him getting hit by someone which at his age would be a disaster.

We'll be going to Colorado. Is there anywhere you would recommend going where the crowd is a little slower and older?  We'll hit the slopes early and quit early, too.  Other than that, any advice is welcome.

Thanks!
post #2 of 15
 I'm not sure the crowd is older and slower at Crested Butte, but there isn't usually much of a crowd  (or even anything resembling a crowd)  there so it might be a good place for your dad to return to skiing.  I'm a year younger but am at CB all season.  Maybe we could make a turn or two together.
post #3 of 15
Thread Starter 

Great suggestion!  I haven't been to CB in a long time, but loved it when I skied there. We'll probably go in January or Feb on a non-holiday week.  My boys will have to be pulled from school, but skiing with Granddad will be priceless for them (and they won't mind missing school either).
   

post #4 of 15
I'd go to Copper Mountain, on the Union Creek side.

A total lack of high speed zoomers on the bunny hill.

Their divided terrain works for this.
post #5 of 15

This may not be relevant depending on his cardiovascular fitness, but at his age you might consider one of the lower elevation resorts in CO, such as Steamboat (or elsewhere such as Park City, UT). Believe there are a variety of flights into Hayden, CO. It is very close to Steamboat. At risk of stating obvious, it would also make things easier for him if you stayed at a ski-in/ski-out property. I live at sea-level and have gray hair and I find the most difficult part of adjusting to significant altitude changes is the mundane stuff like walking around base areas, buckling ski boots, carrying skis. Once I'm on the slopes things are easier, unless I get ambitious about black diamond runs:-)

post #6 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamesj View Post

This may not be relevant depending on his cardiovascular fitness, but at his age you might consider one of the lower elevation resorts in CO, such as Steamboat (or elsewhere such as Park City, UT). Believe there are a variety of flights into Hayden, CO. It is very close to Steamboat. At risk of stating obvious, it would also make things easier for him if you stayed at a ski-in/ski-out property. I live at sea-level and have gray hair and I find the most difficult part of adjusting to significant altitude changes is the mundane stuff like walking around base areas, buckling ski boots, carrying skis. Once I'm on the slopes things are easier, unless I get ambitious about black diamond runs:-)


+1

Nanf, good on you for getting your Dad out again! 

post #7 of 15
My dad finished his skiing career at Buttermilk.  There was a big group of ex 10th mtn guys and long time Aspen locals like Pete Siebert and Karl Foster that schralped the groomers.
post #8 of 15
I had success in a similar situation with my father by skiing at Snowmass.  Good instructors, plenty of easy runs, all the creature comforts, etc.
post #9 of 15
Buttermilk is an excellent choice, but watch out for their BIG events. X-Games aren't very grand dad friendly. Aspen has the advantage of access to more challenging terrain if desired.

Ski Cooper is a nice family oriented area. Just 20 minutes from Copper.

MR
post #10 of 15
I took a multi-generational trip with my dad a couple of years ago to Breck, he's the same age as yours and a lifelong skier.  He had no troubles except that he got tired more quickly and ended up skiing half days, but had a great time and skied JH the next year.  If he's in typical health for his age, you should be able to take him anywhere. 
post #11 of 15
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone for the great advice.  Guess I should ask Dad where he wants to go and stop worrying about it. (I was skied into 2 years ago while stopped and in plain view, so I'm a little paranoid.)  It will be fun to watch my dad try to keep up with my oldest son.  I hope I'm in as good of shape when I hit 76. 
post #12 of 15
 I would say Deer Valley would be a good option for you. As Jamesj points out, the elevation in CO may be a bit much for your grandfather to adjust to and getting to Park City is easy. Most of the mountain is groomed daily and they don't allow snowboarders so you don't have to worry about him being taken out by one of them.
post #13 of 15
 It might be as easy to block for a parent as for a child. If you can keep up, stay directly uphill from your dad, synchronize turns. Encourage him to ski terrain that is too steep for the gapers who could take him out. I envy you the chance to ski with your old man.
post #14 of 15
JamesJ Makes a good point about altitude. I'm 60, live at sea-level, skied out west the past couple of years: Breckenridge, Vail, A-Basin. Copper, Stevens Pass, Mt Baker. The problem isn't so much the skiing, it's the sleeping. The old adage "ski high, sleep low" might apply. When I slept low the skiing wasn't a problem.

"you don't grow too old to play, you grow old because you stop playing"
post #15 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pinelander View Post

JamesJ Makes a good point about altitude. I'm 60, live at sea-level, skied out west the past couple of years: Breckenridge, Vail, A-Basin. Copper, Stevens Pass, Mt Baker. The problem isn't so much the skiing, it's the sleeping. The old adage "ski high, sleep low" might apply. When I slept low the skiing wasn't a problem.

"you don't grow too old to play, you grow old because you stop playing"

I live at the beach and ski Mammoth a lot, so find myself sleeping at close to 9000 feet. That said, I have found drinking a glass of water before bed and taking a Tylenol PM, etc works wonders for my ability to sleep well. Definitely stay well hydrated in the mountains.
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