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Old 12-01-2010   #1
nicho's Avatar
North Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 442
Smaller Resort Skiing?

Looking to avoid the crowds of Summit County big resorts and need a change from Loveland and A-Basin. Any recommendations on smaller less expensive resorts. Did Sunlight last year and it was sweet. Any thoughts are appreciated. Nicho

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Old 12-01-2010   #2
Eagle, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 185
Wolf Creek

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Old 12-01-2010   #3
feats of strength's Avatar
Detroit, Michigan
Paddling Since: 2009
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 78
Sol Vista...can't imagine that's very busy.
"With a wonder and a wild desire..." -Flogging Molly
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Old 12-01-2010   #4
adgeiser's Avatar
Denver,, exhaustion
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 578
depends on how steep you want it.
2 of my best days last season (i had over 60 days) were at ski cooper. with that said we did a "black" run there that would have been green, maybe....maybe blue at a-basin. but still powder both days and NO crowds.

monarch is also pretty sweet.

oh yeah and ski cooper has a tele fest.
"We should restore the practice of dueling. It might improve manners around here" -Edward Abbey
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Old 12-01-2010   #5
Andy H.'s Avatar
Wheat Ridge, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,906
The little family areas are great because the convenience and laid back nature more than make up for anything they lack in glamour or rad terrain. Check out the Colorado Gems card for discounts (they're charging $10 for them nowadays).

For one of the best small areas, next time you're in Utah, check out Powder Mountain near Provo. Its the only place I've had a ski patroller say "follow me" and then drop into a tuck. We had to cross the flats to get over to a snowmobile tow that took us to where we could ski untracked glades down to the road and ride back in an old schoolbus chugging up the hill to the base area. You could almost hear that old Bluebird saying "I think I can..."

Ski Cooper would be a great place for that first day on teles, or your first day on anything, for that matter. Monarch and Wolf Creek are great on powder days, and the Basin just plain rocks. There's also a lot to be said for parking a stone's throw from the lifts.

Have fun out there,

Nothing in the world is more yielding and gentle than water. Yet it has no equal for conquering the resistant and tough. The flexible can overcome the unbending; the soft can overcome the hard. - Lao Tse
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Old 12-02-2010   #6
fids11's Avatar
Rifle, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2010
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 111
Monarch is the bomb, always seems to be snow there. Got some nice steep too.

Sunlight is rad, no lines and all the snow you could ever want is visible from the lifts going up on pow days.

My personal fav for small resorts is powderhorn - has some awesome glade skiing, and has some of the most boulder fields/pillow drops of any of the resorts out there. Had my best day of the year there last year by far! Have fun!
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Old 12-02-2010   #7
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 566
Buy a Monarch pass and it comes with 3 free days at something like 10-11 resorts including Powderhorn, Sunlight, and others. It also includes some sweet lodging / free ski deals to Grand Targhee & Revelstoke, half price deals to Taos & Alta, and one free day at Silverton.

But Monarch itself sucks, big time. You should not ski there ever. Super crowded, horrible conditions, crappy tree skiing, and even worse junk hidden over in Mirkwood. I repeat, if you enjoy Loveland, A-Basin, and other smallish resorts - do not go to Monarch...I hear that they have police pat-downs at every lift too!
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Old 12-02-2010   #8
Park City, Utah
Paddling Since: 1985
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 700
Try powder horn if you are in the vicinity. No crowds and decent terrain.
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Old 12-02-2010   #9
Cheyenne, Wyoming
Paddling Since: 2009
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 217
Snowy Range is a small resort. Pretty cheap too. Although you run the chance that at least one lift will be closed/broken down.
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Old 12-02-2010   #10
God Amongst Men
yetigonecrazy's Avatar
Phuoc My, Da Nang, THE 'NAM
Paddling Since: 1845
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,988
i agree, monarch is terrible, no one should ever go there. ever. especially midweek in february after a storm when you can have two + feet of pow to yourself and thirty of your closest friends. just awful.

but seriously though, monarch is great as long as you avoid the holidays and weekends in january. during those times it becomes a zoo as all the bargain busters from Co Spgs who are too cheap to take the family to Breck instead drag the whole family to monarch. while the terrain and snow never get hectic, the lift lines and some of the more condensed runs can get exciting.

powderhorn is a gem. pillows, pillows, and more pillows. good aspen tree skiing too. but its all about the pillows at pillowhorn.

sunlight is ok too.

"Don't f$&@ing eddy out, just run it! Whaddya doin??" -LMyers
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