Opinion on Silverton Mountain - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 11-04-2009   #1
 
Evergreen, Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 131
Opinion on Silverton Mountain

Me and a few buddies are talking about putting together a trip to Silverton Mountain (as well as a couple other spots down that way), and am curious as to what peoples experiences have been riding at Silverton Mountain?

As riders I'd say were advanced-intermediate, with multiple snowcat trips under our belts.

I get the impression that some of the earlier (and more negative) opinions of the place were based on the early years when Silverton had not quite fleshed out it's operation.

So how was it? the good, the bad, the mediocre, the annoying.

thanks.

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Old 11-04-2009   #2
 
Durango, Colorado
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My recommendation is to attend the bootpackin days to see and learn about the mountain. you get free lift tickets depending on how many days you attend. Then use those freebies on an unguided thurs. (opening day)- after a mon.-wed. storm.

things might have changed, but thats what i used to do.
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Old 11-04-2009   #3
 
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Wolcott, Colorado
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I've gone guided twice and probably would only try the unguided if I go back. I know they have to but the snow farming is annoying. I saw killer terrain all around that we were not able to go on. Since I spend time in the BC it is hard for me to be guided/ controlled without being annoyed. I would recommend checking it out for yourself, it is pretty fun and your only risking $100+ I "got lost" for one run and had one of the best runs of my life. Seemed like 50 pillow drops in a row thru trees. The stuff dreams are made of.
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Old 11-04-2009   #4
 
Lakewood, Colorado
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I've only been once, but I can say if you go guided, make sure you get in a good group. My friend and I put ourselves in a slow hiking group because we didn't want to hold up the badasses. Instead, we outhiked our whole group by a long shot and were denied a trip to the billboard because of some dude that was "there to ski, not hike." Try to take enough friends to make your own group (as long as you're all similarly fit and ability).

Terrain is awesome, snow was mediocre when we were there, guide was pretty good, we had no issues with the farming thing; our guide made sure we got fresh lines on every run. It was fun but I wouldn't do the guided deal again.
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Old 11-04-2009   #5
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
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I'm an intermediate/advanced snowboarder. I have mostly ridden resorts... a lot of time on good steep resort stuff. Tina and I went two years ago for New Years with the Wigstons and had a great time. We went a day early so did unguided on day one. The lift is awesomely scary with beautiful views, and everything is steep. We kind of just made our way down and figured out the mountain... a simple ridge line layout with a long traverse out at the bottom. We formed our own group of eight snowboarders and requested a snowboard guide. He took us past the ropes at some point on every run that day, and our first run of the day is currently my best ever. By the afternoon or the next day those places were opened to unguided. We spent a 3rd day unguided again. In 3 days I only managed to do 4 runs per day, and was satisfied and spent. The snow was okay, but like a resort it gets tracked out. Having our own group and being on our own pace was key. We spent tons of time kind of just exploring and slowly venturing into untouched fields with sunny skies, and yet our pace would have been many more runs and shorter hikes/breaks if it were a powder day. A powder day of unguided would be legendary IMO now that I know more of the mountain.

If you are coming from the backcountry then I think you can be disappointed in the resort like conditions and limitations. If you are coming from the resort and/or sidecountry, then Silverton will be a fantastic time. And when it comes to guided, it's all about the company you are with.
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Old 11-05-2009   #6
 
Durango, Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cutch View Post
If you are coming from the backcountry then I think you can be disappointed in the resort like conditions and limitations. If you are coming from the resort and/or sidecountry, then Silverton will be a fantastic time. And when it comes to guided, it's all about the company you are with.
^^^ Cutch pretty much nails it.

I'll ad my $.02

Unguided is sweet but can be way too crowded in the spring and early season is unpredictable.

Bootpacking is 50/50.... depending on who you get/the area you're in, it can be a LOT of work and very little skiing, or a little work and quite a bit of skiing. I personally have a hard time justifying working my ass off at 11,000' for the equivalent of $7 an hour.

Guided is just too pricey and way too much turn farming goes on IMO. For a few bucks more, I'd MUCH rather go cat skiing. Or just hike across the road for free.
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Old 11-05-2009   #7
 
Evergreen, Colorado
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Interesting info, thanks.

What is "snow farming"? Never heard that expression before.

And how much time while you were there was spent hiking?
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Old 11-05-2009   #8
 
Durango, Colorado
Join Date: Feb 2006
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snow/turn farming is where the guide will ski a line and everybody in the group has to stay on one side of the line, leaving the rest of the slope fresh for other groups.

Unless it snowed the night before, plan on hiking 10-30 mins each run
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Old 11-10-2009   #9
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
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...other spots down that way...

[QUOTE=kevdog;165110]Me and a few buddies are talking about putting together a trip to Silverton Mountain (as well as a couple other spots down that way), ...

And Storm11 wrote: "For a few bucks more, I'd MUCH rather go cat skiing."

Backcountry skiing in the San Juans is spectacular. Leave yourself a couple of days to do so. I'm with Storm11. I'd MUCH rather go catskiing when in this area. Over the last ten years I've been out with the San Juan Ski Company's cats eight times or so. It has the largest amount and most varied terrain in the area. And they often have deals in conjunction with Silverton Mt.
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Old 11-13-2009   #10
 
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Lakewood, Colorasta
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Go Heli, cat or backcountry. I've done unguided and it was OK. We didn't get to hike becasue it was dumpin. Bombs going off everywhere. Chairlift is sketchy at best. Terrain is great but winds can shut er down in a heart beat. In two days we got 6 rides. I'm going HELI and cat this year. Lots of GAPERS yard selling it in the runnouts. Almost plowed over a few of em. They were not happy. . .
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