Snowboarding in the US and Canada. Worth the trip?

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  • Snowboarding in the US and Canada. Worth the trip?
  • headpotdog you hit the nail on the head, Winter Park is awesome! may have to put in some cheeky extra leave to see if we could hit Breck in Feb 2013 what did you think of Breck? are yiu a boarder? we nearly went there in 2011 but decided to try Avoriaz instead, there was no snow on super morzine, only fake snow cannon on Let Pleney and monster muddy grass patches in Avoriaz, it sucked and that year Breck had their best ever year how gutted we were!!!!

    Canada and the US are a great option if you have to go at February half term. I’ve tried Banff, Tahoe and Jackson Hole – all excellent. If your gear is getting a bit tired it’s a great opportunity to stock up (especially if the town has a monster sports store as opposed to a ski specialist)

    Canada was especially awesome when it was $2CAD to the pound

    Lift tickets are expensive though – it’s one thing you can really save money on buying in advance from the UK before you go. (Google is your friend)


    Group of us skied and boarded at Vail and Beaver Creek. The Back Bowls and Blue Sky Basin at Vail are something else, miles and miles of powder. Expensive mind you, and got a frostbitten nose at minus 25.

    The locals apologised on Martin Luther bank holiday because it was ‘busy’. Queues were about 6 people deep and waits of oooh, 20 seconds.

    The jetlag coming back was a killer, factor in 2 days to get back to normal.

    Saying that, the Zillertal valley has been amazing in recent years, really top quality links and conditions. Great powder out at Konigsleiten if you’ve got a car out there.


    I used to help run the snowboard champs for a large UK employer. These were held for several years at a time in resorts across Europe with a regular look at the rest of the world.
    The only reason we didn’t go to US/Canada was the cold. We took a high percentage of complete beginners every year, and the risk to them of the extreme cold was not worth it. For every other aspect, Europe came second. So – wrap up and go for it!


    Jackson Hole was fantastic – great snow, nice people, not too busy even on “busy” days. Just make sure you’re not the scumbag European that doesn’t tip properly.

    Premier Icon Digby

    Do it! You won’t regret it I’m sure!

    But it’s a long way to go for less than 2 weeks I reckon – especially if flying to the west coast. I definitely recommend BC, but whilst Lake Louise is stunningly beautiful, as others have said it is often icy and the snowfall isn’t as high as other resorts.

    Another advantage of staying longer is you have more chance of getting some ‘Legendary Powder’

    – Yes it can be properly chilly – take extra layers
    – The locals are often incredibly polite – as others have said the lift line experience is totally different to Europe
    – Mountain restaurants aren’t as prolific (the mountains aren’t as high as the European alps, weather is often ‘locked in’ with low visibility and the majority of resorts/run are below the tree line
    – Riding in the trees is fantastic – you can still find ‘freshies’ in the trees days after a storm – and you can still ride in flat light
    – Apres Ski isn’t the same as Europe, but then that’s not a problem for many people. Most resorts are situated some distance from the local towns & majority of accommodation which means that Apres Ski in the likes of BC tends to be a few beers & nachos when the last lift has closed … there’s no silly face painting and dancing around to Euro-Disco in your ski boots until the early hours! 😆

    Alps are having somee epic powder now, 1.5 metres in 5 days

    Interesting as I was bigging up Winter Park, CO at the moment it’s 70 degrees out there and Aspen need another 8 inches of natural snow before they can open for hte season!

    Cupid stunt, where specifically? Went to AVoriaz last year and the snow was rubbish! Could’ve done more MTBing than boarding.


    You’re unlikely to want to ski in Europe again.

    This can be a drawback if family/time/money means that you have to 🙂

    Premier Icon stevomcd

    Sainte Foy, Val d’Isere, Tignes (and, I’m assuming Les Arcs / La Plagne / La Rosiere) currently have stupid amounts of snow and it’s still coming down hard. Went up for a quick slide this morning… 😈

    I’ve had neck-deep powder in Europe and rocks & dirt in British Columbia, for snow conditions timing is everything no matter where you go.

    Most of the French Alps had a near-record season last year though, I’m pretty surprised you had poor conditions in Avoriaz munque-chick – did you go later in the season? March was a bit sparse – but then April was epic again.

    In Verbier, snowed another 50cm since, and lots more forecast next week.

    Nope we were away 23-30th Jan or something! super Morzine was green, Le Pleney had only fake snow and Avoriaz was just muddy patches between ice it properly sucked! This year going last week in Feb and waitnig last minute to book where the snow is.


    Definately worth the trip…best for 11 days or more..Friendly people, orderly queues and massive space to play in…Have been to Banff,Lake Louise, Jasper and Kicking Horse….All have their own merits but some fantastic extreme play areas….Skidooing at Mammoth is also worth the day trip…..Avalanche receiver on and go play in the mountains by the old silver mine….Superb experience…jumps, steeps the lot…Now I wanna go back :-(((

    Premier Icon SaxonRider

    plumber – Member

    Oh and Canadians are lovely people

    if you’re a tourist

    otherwise, not so much, f’sure hey

    Oh, I don’t know. I’m pretty lovely. Eh.

    Premier Icon stevomcd

    munque-chick – thinking back, there was loads of snow last year, but it wasn’t especially cold so very low-altitude areas such as Morzine/Avoriaz may have suffered. You were probably in the only place in France that DIDN’T have awesome snow.

    We were running an off-piste week here that week and it was proper epic!

    Where are you STevomcd?? what company recommend it for last week in Feb? keeping options open, open to ideas!!! Want to go wher snow is good hence possibly waiting until last minute this time!!!!!!!!!


    Winter Park is absolutely superb, long flights (7 hours to Newark from Heathrow then 4 hours to Denver) but only an hour from Denver over the Berthoud Pass. They had 14″ of snow over this weekend weekend, the year we went they had 330″ of snow. 4000ft of altitude difference helps to make decent length runs, and you can link Mary Jane and Steamboat to get a huge ski area. Worth noting you might end up with some altitude sickness as the village is at 9000ft, I missed an afternoon of boarding but was fine after plenty of water and some more sleep.


    Hey Munge-chick. Yup, I’m a boarder, but I used to go to the US & Canada with a skier mate. Really mixed up the groomed, mogul & powder runs with him.

    The back bowls at Lake Louise, Vail & Keystone were particularly memorable as he was really fast in all conditions. Reckon I had more fun on the board though, although it was handy having him there to tow me out of the flat sections after Outer Siberia bowl 😉

    We got a great last minute deal on the Colorado trip too. About £550 for 2 weeks!! Didn’t know exactly where we were going to stay when we booked, bit ended up in a 4 star catered chalet in Breckenridge!! Sooo jammy 😀 . I’d love to do it again, but 2 kids makes it more than a little bit complicated & expensive.. 🙁

    Premier Icon stevomcd

    Munque-chick – I’m in Sainte Foy :


    Not read all of this but do remember that some US resorts are much higher that European ones so the air is thinner, making it a bit tougher – especially for less fit people.

    SAmbob you can fly directly to Denver from Heathrow in 9 hours which is perfect for a weeks skiing holiday!

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