Skiing/Riding 2016-2017

Zososoxfan

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Jul 30, 2009
5,363
South of North
Where does everyone get their gear deals? Now that the season is winding down, I've started scouring the web for deals on goggles, gloves, pants, and helmets. Looking at the-house, clymb, Whiskey Militia, Backcountry, REI, Peter Glenn, and Christy's. Any suggestions on gloves, pants, and helmets? I have my goggles picked out and just waiting to see how the market is :)
 

InstaFace

MDLzera
Sep 27, 2016
7,593
I'm in need of a new pair of all-mountain skis, so if anyone has notice of sales or have suggestions on what I should target (looking to spend ~$500), I'd love to hear it. There's a big Giants Stadium ski sale every year but it's in January :(
 

GoJeff!

Member
SoSH Member
May 30, 2007
386
Los Angeles
Not necessarily what you are looking for, but I just picked up a pair of Volkl Confessions at Powder7. They seem to have some other good deals.
 

Zososoxfan

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Jul 30, 2009
5,363
South of North
Can anyone comment on South Lake Tahoe (SLT) versus the Utah mountains? I'm beginning to plan a bachelor party, likely around skiing, and trying to maximize fun factor with top notch riding. From what I've read, SLT has the casinos and corresponding late nighlife. Also, the Sierra cement adage about the snow being heavy out there. SLC supposedly has that soft powpow which I'm definitely thirsty for. But, is the nightlife legit? How much of a problem is Sundance? SLC is also much easier to get to from all over the east coast than RNO. Whatchu got SoSH?
 

Quintanariffic

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Apr 23, 2002
4,750
The City of Studios
Unless you care almost exclusively about the skiing, then it should be SLT over SLC and it's not particularly close. You can argue that the Wasatch has better skiing than SLT and I wouldn't disagree - no shame in not being as good as some of the best resorts in the world. But don't undersell Heavenly, which is itself a world class mtn accessible from South Lake via gondola to mid mtn. And if you are OK driving a bit, Mt Rose, Sierra at Tahoe and Kirkwood all offer higher base elevations and a bit dryer snow. It's a matter of degrees however.

The contrast in nightlife is no contest. You'll find more that you're looking to do in a Bachelor Party situation in SLT and it's not particularly close. Casinos, real beer, normal bars and various other sins are easy to find there. Utah? Not so much.
 

GoJeff!

Member
SoSH Member
May 30, 2007
386
Los Angeles
Can anyone comment on South Lake Tahoe (SLT) versus the Utah mountains?
As Quintanariffic said, it depends on your nightlife vs skiing balance. I'll just comment on the skiing.
The big difference is not the quality of the snow or the terrain, but the predictability. Tahoe gets big storms and then weeks of sunshine. Utah gets smaller storms that occur much more often. If you just want sunny ski days, I'd go Tahoe and take the nightlife too. If you want a higher likelihood of a great day, I'd take Utah no question.
 

GoJeff!

Member
SoSH Member
May 30, 2007
386
Los Angeles
By the way, mammoth is supposed to get another 5 feet this weekend on top of the biggest April 1 snowpack of all time. If anyone doesn't feel like hanging it up for the season yet, make your way there in April, May, June...or later.
 

Zososoxfan

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Jul 30, 2009
5,363
South of North
Very helpful y'all. Sounds like SLT is the move, the only issue is getting there. We have a big contingent in South Florida, so it will be tricky for them. But, it's the price you pay for the best ski-party combo I guess.
 

Slow Rheal

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Oct 29, 2001
1,780
Maine
Some pretty interesting moves coming from Aspen Skiing Co and KSL Partners this week - acquiring Mammoth and Intrawest

edit: sounds like they may not be done yet, rumors of Crested Butte, resorts in the Banff region, Sun Valley, Snowbird, and Revelstoke could be added to their inventory. Their season pass package in 2018/2019 is going to be unreal once they get this all sorted out.
 
Last edited:

Quintanariffic

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Apr 23, 2002
4,750
The City of Studios
Some pretty interesting moves coming from Aspen Skiing Co and KSL Partners this week - acquiring Mammoth and Intrawest

edit: sounds like they may not be done yet, rumors of Crested Butte, resorts in the Banff region, Sun Valley, Snowbird, and Revelstoke could be added to their inventory. Their season pass package in 2018/2019 is going to be unreal once they get this all sorted out.
Truth. Wouldn't be surprised with any of those scenarios. Basically picking off the natural targets that comprise the Mtn Collective. My money is on Snowbird. Owners got jobbed by Vail and would like nothing more than to take them on as part of the Intrawest group. And Intrawest needs a Utah solution pretty badly.
 

GoJeff!

Member
SoSH Member
May 30, 2007
386
Los Angeles
The season keeps going! Mt. Dana and Dana couloir near Yosemite on Wednesday:

IMG_3336.jpg
IMG_3366.jpg

Skied Mammoth on Thursday and there is still tons of snow.
 

GoJeff!

Member
SoSH Member
May 30, 2007
386
Los Angeles
Finished up my longest season in 20+ years yesterday with another great day up at Mammoth. The snowpack is down to just a couple of runs off the top, and they close tomorrow.
 

Zososoxfan

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Jul 30, 2009
5,363
South of North
That's so awesome. This was a great season to get to ride a lot. Tons of snow everywhere. Next year I'm going big - trying to do a few days in Park City, Kirkwood, and finishing at Heavenly.
 

Zososoxfan

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Jul 30, 2009
5,363
South of North
I owe this sub an apology as I took a great trip out to SLT this season and haven't had a chance to write about it yet. I'm putting together an edit of my trip, but that's even farther out. So, I started out with a couple of days at Vail and Keystone. Vail was an utter disaster in early January, so we decided to go to Keystone for day 2 instead and it was much better. It was my first real day of the season, so I couldn't enjoy it to the fullest extent. Really, these two days were about getting my wife to enjoy her first ski experience of her life. Vail almost ruined it for me (she loved the Village though obviously), but Keystone was a total 180 and saved hope for future family vacations.

Next, my crew headed to Kirkwood for 4 days. I've never quite experienced conditions like those. There was tons of precipitation (1-2 inches by most calculations IIRC), but with temps hovering right at freezing, the base was soaking wet. The peak was awesome and I took on The Wall several times. Kirkwood is a crazy mountain with not the best tree skiing but the cliffs were amazing, and I'm not typically the cliff jumping type. At Kirkwood though, there's not much of a choice as the best terrain involves hucking a variety of challenging cliffs (most of the 5-10 feet variety). Kirkwood is definitely a locals mountain though and the infrastructure could really use a boost. Can't have it all I guess.

After that, we spent the weekend taking on Heavenly. Sadly, the backside bowls were closed and conditions were very spring like. Conditions also kept a lot of traverses and trails closed, so getting around the mountain was agonizingly confusing. We had multiple team meetup points blown because you thought you were on track to arrive on time only to have the map flipped on you completely with closed trails. Nevertheless, Heavenly was a good time with lots of good apres.

BUT! The reason I'm posting now is I've got the itch to travel to South America and take on Chile/Argentina. Has anyone had any experience there? My family is from Argentina, so I started looking there first, but it seems like some of the Chilean mountains are a lot easier logistically. My understanding is that there are several excellent mountains 2-3 hours away by car from Santiago (namely the Parvo/Colorado/Valle Nevado trifecta). Whereas to get to Las Lenas or Bariloche in Argentina, you almost certainly have to take a flight from Buenos Aires to Malargue and still drive to Bariloche. If you have been there, can you please fill me in what logistics was like in terms of safety, convenience, price, etc. How long did it take to get from Santiago to the mountains? Also, I'd be curious about accommodations there (ritzy resort or hostels or both?) and nightlife. Cost of food. TIA!!
 

InstaFace

MDLzera
Sep 27, 2016
7,593
From what I understand, the resort to go to is Portillo, in Chile. My friends and I have been eyeing a northern-summertime trip there for a number of years. That's about all I can help you on, so if anyone's actually been there I'd welcome a report too.
 

GoJeff!

Member
SoSH Member
May 30, 2007
386
Los Angeles
I highly recommend going to Chile and Argentina. I did a trip down there about ten years ago and came back with some amazing memories.

I was further south, in Patagonia. I went to Bariloche and Chapelco on the Argentinian side, and skied a small area (can't remember the name) plus the Villarica volcano on the Chilean side. All the areas are much smaller than Portillo or Las Lenas, but the terrain was great and the towns are a blast. Like you might expect, it's a very late night culture, but I guess I was young enough to go on very little sleep for a couple of weeks. Those areas are also right in the midst of the big Chile/Argentina national parks, so there is plenty to do besides skiing.

Winter down there is not as intense as northern hemisphere winters-there are a lot of spring like days even in midwinter, and snow coverage is a little more on-and-off year to year. If possible, you might want to get a sense for what areas are having a good year before booking, but realistically that is hard since it is such a long trip.

If you are interested in any specific Patagonian area, shoot me a message and I'll try to dig up my notes.