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Colorado Skiing 2020

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Hi, thinking of going to Colorado next year for 10 to 14 days skiing.
4 adults & 3 kids (8 to 14).
Thoughts are fly to Denver get a car and drive to Aspen & Telluride??
I know ski passes are expesnive (well very expensive) but any help with accomodation ideas even vehicle rental.
Thanks
Adam
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I suggest you look at https://www.americanskiclassics.com/ or similar you can get idea of costs and maybe get a deal on lift passes linked to purchasing accomodation.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Ability level? What do you desire as far as terrain?

Aspen is drivable, but Telluride is not, unless you want to spend a few days driving each way, especially if it snows. Aspen is the better of the two, because, it's closer to Denver, but, not too close, which keeps the Denver day trippers away and crowds down. Great terrain, really good skiing at four mountains, a real freak show in town with a lot of people with way too much money and many others hanging onto that scene. Lodging is pricey.
Fly to Telluride out of Denver. Pretty place, more remote, still too many rich people. Great skiing.

Yes, lift tickets are stupidly expensive at the window, so I would think of buying a multi resort pass like the Epic or Ikon right now, when prices are at the lowest. If you do that, consider a shuttle out of Denver to Breckenridge or Copper mountain. Avoid Breck in March at all costs, due to crowds.
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Thanks for the reply.

Kind of mixed ability but all happy to ski a multitude of terrain.
Would like to do some back country.

I see Telluride is about 7 hours from Denver and Aspen 4.

My main concern is accommodation and then lift tickets.
Is Brekenridge cheaper for lift tickets?

Many questions.

Also needs to be good for kids and ski school!!

Cheers
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Hmm, well, if it's your first time to Colorado, maybe Breck/Summit County is your best bet. As I said, seriously consider buying the Epic local pass at $699 right now, gets you unlimited at Breck, which I'm pretty sure is almost 200 a day, and ten days at Vail/Beaver Creek, both of which are definitely over 200 (insane, right?). Also gets you Keystone mountain too, which is more familyish. The Ikon base pass gets you Copper mountain nearby. I'd rent a car and look for lodging in Frisco or Dillon, right on the highway and a nice spot to wake up in and decide where to go. Both towns have plenty of good food and ski shops. All this 1.5 to two hours from Denver airport, just DO NOT do that drive up Saturday or Sunday morning, horrible traffic from the day trippers. Dont come down to the airport Sunday afternoon/evening, either. Be warned. Look into a four pack ticket deal from Loveland, great local mountain with an awesome chair that goes to 13,200 feet, less crowded. Tickets transferable. Good deal. ABasin just left the Epic pass, too bad, my favorite mountain and a must for a day, at least. They sell a three pack ticket deal, worth it. Check both websites.

You will have to deal with altitude issues. You'll be sleeping at 8500-9000 feet, and skiing at 9500-13000 feet. It's tough the first few days, higher than the Alps. There is a small percentage of visiters who need medical treatment. Take it slow at first.
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Lot to be said for Breck, it's more familiar to us Europeans with a good town adjacent to the lifts with a range of accommodation and restaurants. The altitude can be an issue as Mr Pink says, trouble being there's only one way to find out!

It's a shame resort selection is becoming governed by pass purchase. Our last trip we wanted Utah and Aspen so bought the Mountain Collective. It's cheaper than the other two, but much more restrictive.

As to driving, it's personal preference. I don't mind a long drive, Denver, SLC, Aspen, Denver was the last one, but I don't have young kids.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@AdamABennett, stay in Frisco at one of the many reasonably priced h/m...otels and drive to Copper Mountain, Leadville, Steamboat etc. All are better than the ambiance of (people that inhabit) 'Breck'
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Thanks for all the replies so far.
Looks like I need to do some homework over the summer.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
@AdamABennett, NO! You need to do your homework NOW! To have any hope of reasonable lift prices, decide were you want to go and buy 'season' or 'multi-resort' pass. This will save you a K£ and get you to far more interesting places . . . Leadville is a mad riot at the right time wink
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Masque wrote:
@AdamABennett, stay in Frisco at one of the many reasonably priced h/m...otels and drive to Copper Mountain, Leadville, Steamboat etc. All are better than the ambiance of (people that inhabit) 'Breck'


That would have been my quick answer, too, but, I'm trying to help someone who is planning a fairly short stay. I've spent three seasons (about 3 months each) in Frisco, using both the Epic local pass and the Ikon (formerly MaxPass, formerly Copper pass - changes every season), and the economics work out well in that situation, especially if you find a nice condo rental. I really don't like Breck, the town and crowded lower mountain, and it's location makes it difficult to ski elsewhere. But, it's set up well for the one or two week skier who doesn't know the area too well. And the price if that Epic local pass is undeniably the best lift ticket deal in a place where window tickets are over 200 at some mountains. There's your problem. The large ski corporations in America are forcing skiers to buy one or more of their passes before mid summer if they want any hope of being able to afford the sport.
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@AdamABennett, any particular reason for Colorado? I'd personally prefer slightly further north in Jackson or Big Sky.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
@Jonny Jones, no only based on a suggestion from the guy we going skiing with.
Jackson is a possibility along with Park City??
There appears to be so many possibilities just like Europe where you have a dozen resorts along the same section of road.
A work colleague knows Copper Mt, they day trip from the Denver area with family.
A mother buddy is a Jackson lover!!
I've done Whistler but today someone was talking about Revelstoke??
I'd like to try the US as I've never skied south of the border. Flying to Denver is easy for us in the UK and my friend and his family in Sydney.
Staying out of town and driving everyday is an option as too is staying 4 or 5 days in one resort and driving to another so staying somewhere on the I 70 seems good to me.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
Read the small print first but your best bet is buy an Epic local pass EARLY to get the best deal. You get ten days split between Vail and Beaver plus Breck Keystone and A Basin.

You need a hire car. Book through rentalcars.com and get CDW included.

Do your due diligence on hotels via tripadvisor. I stayed at Silver Inn, Silverthorne and was happy with the price and facilities. Fridge in the room microwave in the lobby quiet and clean.

If you really want more variety in resorts then I would choose Winter Park or Steamboat over Telluride which is a much longer drive.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Buy an Ikon Base Pass.
Fly into Salt Lake City. Hire a car.
Ski at Alta, Snowbird, Brighton and Solitude.
Drive to Moab (three hours).
Check out Arches National Park.
https://www.nps.gov/arch/index.htm
Drive about three hours to Aspen. Drop car off as you won’t need it in Aspen.
Ski Snowmass, Highlands, Aspen.
Transfer to Denver. Fly home.
You can reverse that itinerary obviously.

Alternatively buy an Epic Pass and ski Park City and Snowbasin which are local to Salt Lake City. Then once you’re over in Colorado (stay in Frisco, Dillon or Silvertnorne) you can ski Vail, Beaver Creek, Breck, Keystone as suggested.

The visit to Arches NP is easy and well worth it and breaks up the skiing nicely.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
sbooker wrote:
Buy an Ikon Base Pass.
Fly into Salt Lake City. Hire a car.
Ski at Alta, Snowbird, Brighton and Solitude.
Drive to Moab (three hours).
Check out Arches National Park.
https://www.nps.gov/arch/index.htm
Drive about three hours to Aspen. Drop car off as you won’t need it in Aspen.
Ski Snowmass, Highlands, Aspen.
Transfer to Denver. Fly home.
You can reverse that itinerary obviously.

Alternatively buy an Epic Pass and ski Park City and Snowbasin which are local to Salt Lake City. Then once you’re over in Colorado (stay in Frisco, Dillon or Silvertnorne) you can ski Vail, Beaver Creek, Breck, Keystone as suggested.

The visit to Arches NP is easy and well worth it and breaks up the skiing nicely.


Good thinking. Moab is pretty cool.

And, to take it a step further, the Manti LaSals that hover over Canyonlands have some serious backcountry skiing.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Not that aspen and Telluride are not great resorts, but them being on separate passes makes things a lot more expensive to ski both. Unless you have a specific reason to ski them, plenty of other resorts fit your requirements.

The easy option for Colorado is to buy epic local pass. Stay in one of the places with easy access to the mountins (e.g. Dillon or silverthorne). Then you can take your pick of easy drive to keystone, Breckenridge, Vail, or Beaver creek each morning - arapahoe basin was mentioned above, but they are leaving epic. (Note that you only get max 10 days between Vail and Beaver creek and there are some blackouts for those 2 resorts). There's plenty to keep you busy for 10-14 days there, but if you really want to add a second location you could drive over to crested butte for a few days too.

You could also get ikon pass but it would likely require more driving and multiple bases throughout the trip. There are some potentially amazing road trip possibilities but really depends how much you want to drive and if you feel the ikon resorts offer a better ski experience for your personal requirements.

The main thing is to decide very soon as passes go up. In fact ikon have the 19/20 pass on sale now if you want the lowest price. Their website says the first price increase is in 3 days.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@AdamABennett, Jackson may be a smart move for you. There's usually a deal available where one kid up to 14 gets to ski free with a paying adult, and two free days get added to the lift pass after 8 days. Accommodation in the town is usually very cheap in winter, and the town is the place to be in my view as it has much more character than the ski resort. Overall, it's likely to be a much cheaper option than anywhere in Colorado.

Flights are longer as you need to change, usually in Chicago or Dallas, but transfers are very short so the overall journey isn't too bad. Personally I'd hire a huge SUV and drive to the slopes each day rather than take the free buses offered by most hotels.

If you want some variety, you could do a day or two in Grand Targhee. It's an easy day-trip drive from Jackson and has a stupid snow record, so powder is close to guaranteed there. Another option that the kids might enjoy would be a day in Yellowstone national park - you can expect to see huge herds of bison, etc as well as the obvious geysers.

If you want to stay on piste, Jackson might be quite limiting for 14 days. But I've never met any 8-14 year olds who want to stay on piste, and the possibilities are endless there once you start to explore the ungroomed slopes, and 14 days will be to short to fully explore the mountain.
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