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Old 01-04-2013, 01:55 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Whiteface?

Hey guys,

Couldn't find much information on this forum, but I'm very interested in getting a trip to Whiteface this season. I heard great things in terms of the degree of difficulty in their trails as well as the technical ability required and was wondering how to go about it. I rarely book on my own and usually go through a ski club package. When I checked their website (which needs an overhaul, to be kind) there were a number of ski & stay packages but they all look like they're variable distances from the mountain when I checked them on Google maps.

Questions that I would greatly appreciate if anything can answer them:

1. When is the best time to go? I've heard that it's usually either ridiculous cold and wind-swept there or bare and that there's generally a short window of time where everything is just right. Unless this is false...
2. Do the ski & stay packages on their website offer shuttle-service to the mountain? If not, how does one go about booking a slopeside stay there?
3. I've heard a lot of things regarding Whiteface to be one of the most technically challenging mountains in the East. Is this true? If you were a novice/intermediate skier/boarder would this be a good place to go, or would you not be able to experience the whole mountain?

Thanks in advance for responses!
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Old 01-04-2013, 02:24 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Whiteface is my favorite place to ride. March is usually the best time to go, as the slides usually open by then if snow is on average.

Stay in lake placid, its like 10 minutes away. Great town with great bars and restaurants. I think there is a shuttle from town to whiteface.

The slides are really technically challenging. As are some of the glades around the mountain, but its nothing crazy (except the slides).
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Old 01-04-2013, 02:54 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Was my home mountain for 4 years (I went to college nearby). Great spot.

You're right - it does get very icy and windswept in January and part of February (not to mention, cold). End of Feb or early-mid March is the best time to go. I was never able to do the slides in the four years I rode there, and I was riding almost every weekend in the winter.

When there is snow, its fantastic. It's got the most vertical in the east (I think).

It's a more nuts-and-bolts kind of mountain, meaning there isn't a lot of fluff like you see at Stratton or Mount Snow. People go there to ski/ride. Period. There are no slopeside condos or nearby hotels, with the exception of a few mangy motels and Lake Placid, which is basically the size of Stratton Village. Still a great town though - I'd stay there if I were you.

The mountain is not terribly challenging when compared to other Northeast mountains. Its definitely steeper in spots but an intermediate rider will have no probably getting top to bottom. A novice rider may have more trouble, but nothing too bad.

Lock your board though. Mine was stolen there once.
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Old 01-04-2013, 02:54 PM   #4 (permalink)
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We drove up from PA last week during the storm to get in 2 days at Whiteface. It was fully worth it. Great riding and great town. Lots of fun. I agree with the suggestion to stay in Lake Placid. Day 1 was 8-16 inches of powder and my first day on my Jones Hovercraft. Sweetest day ever. Even the soft moguls that developed by late day were lots of fun. The second day was crispier but still very fun on my Flagship. The top does get windswept and scraped off but there are many ways to get down and lots of great stuff on the trail edges all day long. I suspect the lace is outrageous crowded on weekends so do mid-week if at all possible. Big mountain but slow lifts at times. Have fun!
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Old 01-04-2013, 03:19 PM   #5 (permalink)
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thanks for the responses, sounds like i'll look for a place to stay in lake placid! it sucks about the wind and such. cold and even wind chill i don't mind so much (about 20-30 degrees in NYC now but I'm still walking around in a sweater and a spring jacket ), but from my experience at jay peak it sucks when all the snow gets blown off like that.

it sucks that the slides aren't reliably open every season. they look pretty gnarly and worth the hike up. but what about them makes them especially challenging? if any of you has been to jay peak, how does it compare to the chutes (pitch, terrain, general difficulty)?

if it's a nuts-and-bolts mountain as you say i guess crowds aren't really an issue there. again, very helpful!
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Old 01-04-2013, 03:54 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Weather is a factor on every mountain, however when the weather is not co-operative, Whiteface can be frustrating. They are quick to shut down lifts due to wind and the wind turns Whiteface into "Iceface"

My mistake was trying to ride there on cold, windy Presidents Day weekend.

As mentioned above, the mountain is first rate. However when conditions are less than ideal, you are in a location where the there are virtually no hillside amenities other than the base lodge; restroom, restaurant, rentals, etc. You are about a 20 minute ride from the town of Lake Placid. It's not like you can walk off the hill and have a choice of places to hang out at.

If you can hit Whiteface on good day, it will be excellent. However, a windy day can turn into a bust. Plan accordingly if you can.
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Old 01-04-2013, 04:22 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Usually hit Whiteface at least once a year, when conditions are good, almost no better mountain. When conditions are bad it's still doable and challenging, but you learn where the term "Iceface" comes from."
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Old 01-04-2013, 04:53 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I'm hitting up Whiteface this weekend for their super Sunday deal. Impressions depends on weather. It's either Iceface or Niceface.
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