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Best place to go for beginners in early-mid December. (Looking for long, scenic groomed greens and blues at an affordable place with other things to do.) - Page 2

Poll Results: Best place to go for beginners in early-mid December. (Looking for long, scenic groomed greens and blues at an affordable place with other things to do.)

Poll expired: Nov 12, 2010  
  • 22% (4)
    Breckenridge (32 – 4/ .73 inches)
  • 5% (1)
    Vail ( 25 – 4/ 1.5 inches)
  • 0% (0)
    Winter Park (33 - 10 /.78 inches)
  • 16% (3)
    Mt. Bachelor (39 – 21/ 3.5 inches)
  • 0% (0)
    Mammoth ( 46 – 26 / 5.8 inches)
  • 5% (1)
    Tahoe (42 – 14/ 5.4): (because I know a great instructor there)
  • 5% (1)
    Alta (41 – 24/ 2.03 inches)
  • 22% (4)
    Steamboat (32 – 7/ 2.37 inches)
  • 5% (1)
    Keystone (44 - 17 /.83 inches)
  • 16% (3)
    Other
18 Total Votes  
post #31 of 46
Thread Starter 

Alright, to all those who wanted to see how it went for me at Snowbird/Alta, I have put up a trip report that will make its way to the review section for Snowbird.  I will eventually add videos and some more details, but it is EXTREMELY lengthy and detailed covering all points I could think of.

 

Here is the link: http://www.epicski.com/forum/thread/97324/snowbird-not-for-beginners-advancing-beginners-or-low-intermediates

post #32 of 46
Thread Starter 

I have chosen to go to Breckenridge with the Epic pass.  The deals were to good to pass up and seeing that I am going to focus on green groomers I should be fine considering the snow making at Breckenridge (as others have mentioned in this thread).  I also have the chose of many other resorts, including Vail, if the conditions are not good there.  I will report back to let everyone know how it went.

post #33 of 46

I read through most of the thread, but skimmed the last little bit. Are you headed back to CO later in the season? If not, you might want to reconsider the Epic Pass and maybe buy the Colorado or Summit Pass. You get 10 days at Vail with the Colorado Pass and it's significantly cheaper. Sorry if you already addressed this, just trying to save you a little money here.

post #34 of 46

Esumsea,

Agree w/StopGo -- don't see the need for an EPIC pass if you are hitting mostly Breck/Keystone.  We use the Summit Pass.  BUT if I was smarter i too would go for the CO Pass, the added cost is less than one day of the at the window price at Vail and gives you ten days.  Unless you are in the blackout period that forces you to the EPIC pass, go w/the CO pass.

 

Glanced at your trip report from Utah -- Breck should be great.  We also like it better then Steamboat as a town, but Steamboat is nice too. Once you are comfortable beyond lessons, we all like Peak 7 as a fun, low stress area to ski as a group.  It is less crowded than 8 or 9 and the rolling runs are really more like greens then blues to be honest.  Of course as you noted re: Utah, color ratings are totally local. 

 

Snow is already better this year, last year even up to Christmas coverage wasn't great at a lot of Summit County resorts.  Today A Basin opened up the Norway lift to the top, and beyond the one run open up there quite a bit of snow already on the other runs.  Next week Summit County expects snow almost every day if weather.com is right...so December should be good.

post #35 of 46
Thread Starter 

Thanks Stopgo211 and job151.  I chose the Epic pass because I will be in Summit county for 14 days and plan on skiing less each day, but going out almost everyday.  I also plan on going to Summit or Tahoe in March for another 10 days.  Probably will add up to 15 - 20 days of skiing. That's a cost of $30 to $40 dollars a day, which seems to me to be quite a bargain for access to all those resorts.  Glad to hear December is looking good.  I wanted to wait but just could not.

post #36 of 46

Good luck Mario!  There is no perfect world.  Tahoe has it all, and the crowds to go with it. 

post #37 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kneale Brownson View Post

The wonderful easy green terrain on Peak 9 described by others is all serviced by snowmaking equipment, so actual snowfall would be a minimal factor in its availability.

One consideration:  It's a significant jump from the easy greens to the easy blues at Breck.  Not an issue if you're already comfortable on steeper blues in WVA.

Pretty terrific views from any slope at Breck.


I really have a hard time telling the difference at Breck between a Green and a Blue-both will be flat,smooth and wide-

post #38 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by cal to colorado View Post




I really have a hard time telling the difference at Breck between a Green and a Blue-both will be flat,smooth and wide-



The bigger difference for Peak 8 and 9 is that the Blue runs will all start higher on the mountain so you will get better views and while to experienced people a lot of the blues on 8 and 9 won't feel too steep they certainly have more pitch than the lower green runs.  You'll also have to intermingle with more of the resort guests on these runs so that can pose a challenge to beginners and low intermediates.  The Peak 10 Blue runs are also different in that they have undulations in the terrain which I personally think is fun but am aware that it can freak people out who aren't used to it.

 

I love Breck and it is one of my favorite places to ski but you should keep in mind that the base areas of Peak 8 and 9 can get crazy busy during the middle of the day so make sure you get an early start if you are coming during a high time.

post #39 of 46


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmascolino View Post





"You'll also have to intermingle with more of the resort guests on these runs so that can pose a challenge to beginners and low intermediates." 

Agree, with all in the post, but especially the crowding issue.  My kids and I really like the runs at Breck, though we also really like the back mountains at Keystone.  Always seems to us that the schools move further up the hill (8 and 9) later in the day.  At all points, but especially the lower half of 9, you have to be ready for some pretty unexpected moves (they will happen) and rounding bends in the trees and finding clusters of riders/skiers spread all over the snow.  This has only been a problem for my youngest who likes to bomb down the hill, unless kept under control (lots of yelling to slow down and "watch it" still work with a 10 year old tho -- multiple paraphrasings of the "code" is a good idea too ).  Breck does do a pretty good job with what i call the "courtesy patrol" and signage to let you know you are coming into areas with lots of learners on 8 and 9.

 

8 and 9 blues are not particularly steep, as already stated, i always thought some of the blues at Keystone were narrower and steeper in stretches.  7 is even less steep to me, and as I stated a nice early stop as it is less crowded then 8 or 9, really easy to cruise down in groups, and all in all very low stress.  We even saw a moose and her calf crossing one of the runs last year from the chairlift, guess that was a little more stress for those very close by -- not in the code but it appears all ceded right of way to the moose below them.

 

For 9 the runs to the left as you go down the hill are a bit steeper and less crowded I believe, but no real evidence to back that up.  This year as my kids feel their comfort zone expanding more we are expecting more time on ten and up the T Bar runs, but more likely in Jan/Feb. 

 

All in all if you are spending 14 days or so in Summit, and have Epic passes, have a great Opp to start easy at Breck, drive or take the bus over to Keystone and even A Basin later, and of course go over the pass to hit Vail on at least one day.  Though we will likely hit Breck 10-20 times from November till April, would not like to ski it every day for 14 days.  The other Epic pass locations give you great variety, and the views (as stated by several) are great from the peaks at every resort. Enjoy  

post #40 of 46

Nov 8, 2010

 

Originally  posted by Metaphor:

 

Oh god, I'm sorry to hear your poor wife tore her ACL on a green run. I always thought ACL tears happen only to more advanced skiers who make mistakes while sitting back and low. Awful to hear.

 

Hi Metaphor:

 

Once a few years back, on a company ski trip,a fellow employee was standing at the bottom of a beginners slope and while turning her head and body to talk with someone, she made a "slow turning tumble" with her legs caught in a crisscross.  When she finally hit the snow, one ski was pointing one direction and the other the opposite direction.  Everything happened in slow motion, so from appearances, it didn't seem like that serious a fall.  However, she couldn't get up even after her legs/skis were straightened or even after the skis were removed. She had torn both of her ACLs,  

 

Hi OP:

 

One of the most honest and straight forward TR I've come across ever.  If this report prevents injuries and disappointments for others, you will have made an invaluable contribution.  I hope that your wife makes a complete recovery and that you enjoy your next trip. Although you have shown a preference for big western resorts, I think that you will also enjoy big eastern resorts as well.  A few examples might be Okemo and  Stratton, both which have reputations for being skier friendly.  In addition, Stowe and Killington both have dedicated mountains/areas devoted to beginners/intermediates. 

 

Think snow,

 

CP

 

ps:  ops, posted on the wrong thread.  Meant for this reply to go on the "Snowbird. Not for beginners" thread.  My apologies.


Edited by CharlieP - 11/8/10 at 11:41am
post #41 of 46
Thread Starter 

Jaques: I appreciat ethe luck.  God knows I need it learning this sport at almost 40.

 

Cal to Colorado, mmascolino and job151:  Good to hear that those blues are mellow. Thanks for the overview of Breck, it is appreciated. Looks like I might get to venture onto the other peaks (7) that have all blues.  Hopefully I can do this before the crowds roll in around the 15th.  Then I can move to Vail, Keystone or A-basin (if I have progressed nicely) as you suggested.

CharlieP: You know what?  I just realized I posted my link to the Snowbird review on the wrong thread, so don't feel so bad. Thanks for the complement on the TR.  I tried to be as honest as I could, even when it was painful (Pic of me with women's skis was very hard to actually post, but it is funny and also has a lesson behind it).  Hopefully it will save someone else from the same experience I had.  That is one of the main reasons I wrote it. I appreciate your suggestions for eastern skiing and I think I may have to consider that in the future.  However, since I live so far south, I don't think the price difference will be that great.  I am considering some of the western North Carolina resorts like Boone.

 

Again, guys, this site rocks because of people like you who take the time to help out a beginner. That is why I really did my best in my reviews, so I can give back.  Thanks for everything!

post #42 of 46

I know I'm late to the party but when I think long, high quality beginner and low intermediate trails, the following come immediately to mind:

 

(1) Keystone and/or Breckenridge (same pass and close)

(2) Northstar

(3) Big Sky

(4) Vail (I have never been to Beaver Creek but I believe it has a ton of this type of terrain)

(5) Aspen (Buttermilk is an entire mountain essentially devoted to that kind of skiing, Snowmass also has plenty to offer)

 

Big Sky is always uncrowded and, not conincidentally, the harderst to get to.  Aspen is similar.  However, during the weekdays, none of these areas areas are likely to be too crowded.

post #43 of 46
Thread Starter 

Just wanted to give a quick report back.  Breck was an amazing place to get our confidence back.  I cannot say enough about it.  Keystone was cool and good after a couple of days of re-acclimation, but Breck was simply the best I have seen for long mellow green runs.  Plus the weather this year was awesome.  A big thumbs up!  More details to come in God knows how long.

post #44 of 46

Hey Mario, I'm glad that Breck worked for you.  When did you go?  We went Dec 31-Jan 6, Brrrr!  It worked well for us.  So glad to know the thrill is back for you two!

 

Sam

post #45 of 46
Thread Starter 

Hey Sam!

 

Yeah, breck was just what the Dr ordered.  Great place to get reacclimated. I was there from Dec 6 - 24th and came back in March for a week.  It was not nearly as I am in love with A.Basin.  Quickly progressing and cannot wait until next season!!!!

 

Thanks for your advice.

 

Regards,

Mario

post #46 of 46

 

Quote:
as I am in love with A.Basin.

I guess you've improved! Congratulations, you may well enjoy Snowbird in a couple of years.

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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Mountain/Resort Related Forums › Resorts, Conditions & Travel › Best place to go for beginners in early-mid December. (Looking for long, scenic groomed greens and blues at an affordable place with other things to do.)