Whistler Powders Up

This video from Jan 3 has me believing that conditions have gotten a whole lot better at Whistler this week.  More snow is expected to move in this week with heavy snowfall forecast for Friday.  This could be the tipping point!

It’s Snowing in Andermatt!

lageplanLocated in one of the oldest villages in Switzerland, Andermatt reported a whooping 350 cm snow last week. Its last snowfall, on Jan 4th, was reported to be a staggering 35 cm and it is expecting a snowfall of 4cm on Jan 10th. More commonly referred to as the crossroads of the alps, this ski resort is situated to the north of St. Gothard Pass.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASkiers and snowboarders can enjoy downhill skiing that runs a length of 56km and crossroad pistes that run a stretch of 20 km in Andermatt. The resort has 24 individual pistes and 13 ski-lifts(10 open). The lowest piste is set at a height of 1450m, while the highest lift is set at a height of 2960 m. The ski-lifts cater to nearly 4,100 snowboarders/skiers ever hour. The conditions are said to be excellent for snowboarders and intermediate level skiers, although, it is equally frequented by expert skiers and beginners alike.

Skiing in the Heart of the Swiss Alps

mapAndermatt is a ski-resort located in one of the oldest villages in Switzerland. The resort is set at an altitude of 1440m. As it is situated to the north of the St. Gotthard Pass, it is popularly referred to as ‘crossroad of the Alps’. The resort reported a heavy snowfall of 350cm last week. It last received snow on 26th December; the snow is currently at a depth of 20cm.

sdt-skigebiet-disentis-skifahrer-martinThe resort has 24 individual pistes and is served by 13 ski lifts(10 open). The pistes are situated above 2500m and the highest lift is set at an altitude of 2960m. The resort’s downhill and cross country pistes run a length of 56km and 20km respectively. Its conditions are excellent for snowboarders and intermediate level skiers, and the ski lifts carry up to 4100 skiers/snowboarders every hour.

1381834_10153392642985121_893868537While the piste skiing at Andermatt is enjoyable, it has two smaller areas that offer good off-piste skiing.

Solitude, Utah – A Powder Hound Secret

Solitude Ski Resort is 45kms from Salt Lake City and right beside Brighton Ski Resort. Park City is only 40Kms away. The cool thing about Utah is the shear number of resorts within a 1 hour drive. I don’t think any place in North America can match that.Screen Shot 2013-12-26 at 1.00.25 PM

I’m having a look at Solitude because they’ve been highly recommended by powderhounds.com for their powder snow, best chance for freshies, tree skiing, and uncrowded slopes. These are the things that are dear to my heart!Screen Shot 2013-12-26 at 12.57.32 PM

Solitude receives an average annual snowfall of 12.7 meters which is comparable to Whistlers average of 11.9 meters annually. (OK it’s better but who’s counting really?) Similar to the Canadian Rockies, Utah is known for it’s dry powder and Solitude get’s more than it’s share!Screen Shot 2013-12-26 at 12.56.35 PM

Solitude offers a variety of skiing that I look for in a resort. This includes open bowls, steep chutes, some groomies and great glade skiing. I love skiing the bowls and steep chutes but when it’s dumping there’s nothing better than thrashing waist deep powder in the trees. I find it close to a spiritual experience.Screen Shot 2013-12-26 at 12.57.02 PM

Solitude is small at 1200 acres of terrain – that’s only about a quarter the size of Lake Louise (4200 acres) and much smaller than the big resorts in the area, Park City (3300 acres), Alta (2200 acres). But the snowhounds like Solitude.Screen Shot 2013-12-26 at 12.56.19 PM

“It remains a mystery as to why Solitude Utah is still somewhat of a secret when compared to neighbouring resorts. However the low profile tranquility of Solitude Ski Resort is what makes it such a great resort, especially for powder hounds, so shhhhh….. don’t tell anyone. “ – snowhounds.com

NO, DO SKI SOLITUDE

POWDER DAY FROM 2012

SKI UTAH – NOT BAD EH?

With the best resorts and snow conditions in the world all within driving distance, I find it a waste of time and energy to look beyond Alberta, BC, and a tiny bit of Montana for great skiing.  But this morning I find myself with my wife and my neighbour’s cat (Chaos) sleeping on the couch beside me so I have all the time in the world too look outside my box.  Turns out there are some pretty cool places to ski in Utah.  It would seem that they have the best resorts and snow conditions in the world as well :-))  Perhaps I need to investigate a bit further.  But for now enjoy this promo video from skiutah.com.

 

Best of 2012-13 Deep Powder – Ski Utah from Tim Roberts on Vimeo.

Gliding Over Alpine Valley

directions_lg-252x300Situated at an altitude of 460m, Alpine Valley is popular among both snowboarders and skiers. Last week, the resort recorded a staggering snowfall of 305cm. It is expected to receive a snowfall of 2cm on the 25th December.

Alpine_Valley_Resort_2_350127-300x225Set in the snowy Wisconsin, Alpine Valley has 25 individual pistes and 18 ski lifts. The highest lift is at an altitude of 370m. The resort is perfect for intermediate level skiers and for those who are just starting out. The 18 ski lifts have the capacity to cater to about 15,000 people every hour. ‘The Valley Flyer’ is one of the first detachable, high-speed quad chair lifts in the area. It is also one of the only ski resorts in the Midwest that boasts of three high-speed quads. The resort also has a separate snow park.

What’s Cookin’ at Jackson Hole?

 

I was having a look through the resort web cams today and from Sunshine to Whistler the weather ranged from overcast to socked in.   Feeling like I needed some sunshine for inspiration I looked south to Jackson Hole and found the bluebird skies at last.  The post header is from one of their webcams.  Spectacular!  – and they’re expecting more of the same until the weekend.

I was also very envious to see that their total snowfall so far this season is over 300cms, best in the west according to the graph shown below.  Well Fernie is reporting 301cms to date and Revelstoke is reporting 353cms.  I’d say we’re doing quite well in the great white north!Screen Shot 2013-12-17 at 1.35.39 PM

Jackson Hole is one of the resorts that I’m dying to get to.  Bucket List!!  My buddy and I tried a few years back and in typical guy fashion waited until the last minute to book accommodations.   Turned out we picked the President’s Day weekend so we were completely out of luck.  My Brother In Law also gave it a try a couple years back and he was also denied because there was so much snow they closed the highway.  Ah, the elusive Jackson Hole.

Why the big attraction?  I believe it’s the incredible snow and challenging terrain.  Here are couple of my favourite pics from their recent photos gallery.  Yeah… the snow looks pretty good.

Screen Shot 2013-12-17 at 1.36.25 PM

Screen Shot 2013-12-17 at 1.37.02 PMBut my promotion of Jackson Hole would be incomplete without the resort’s own promotional video.  This is a good one!

Whitewater – Why I Love The Koots!

OK.  Red Mountain is a pretty close second.  I prefer Whitewater because the get more snow and the backcountry opportunities are much better and easy to access.  Anyway, check out this Whitewater promo video released just one week ago.  If this doesn’t get you out on the weekend nothing will.

It's Snow Time!