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Old 11-27-2012, 02:57 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Banff Area Riding

Hi guys - I'm new to the forum and to Calgary in general. Moved here from the snow mecca that isn't London, England a couple of months ago and have basically been counting the days to the first dump. Spent the last three weekends consecutively at Sunshine as that's where some friends have their season pass so I've been doing a little exploring, while teaching my other half how to ride from scratch. I hear that Goats Eye has opened this week so I'm looking forward to checking out some of the vert there but we're probably going to head to Louise on Friday.

Anyway, my brother and buddy are visiting for Christmas and new year. We've been riding for 12 years and spent a few seasons in the French Alps and one in whistler - so pretty advanced. I'd appreciate any advice on the best gladed runs, powder stashes and anything else that would make their trip out here memorable.

We've got a cabin in Canmore from 26th Dec for a week so if anyone has got any suggestions on good places for beers etc in the evening it would be nice - plus maybe any NYE destinations?

The weekend after we've booked a days cat riding at castle - very excited about that.

Cheers.

Mike
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Old 11-27-2012, 05:24 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Lake Louise, Sunshine, Fernie, etc. are all filled with TONS of available off-piste riding. So I'm not going to tell you about some of my favorite spots! lol I will say that all of them have spots that can hold fresh powder for days after a storm, even during busy times. Just watch where the other people go and don't go that way. Usually spines seem to have more snow on top (maybe people are scared to get out to them?) and other areas that you have to traverse to. If you stick to the fall line things will be more heavily travelled.

The other thing is I LOVE finding my own secret stashes in places. It's an adventure just to find them! At Louise your best bet would be the top of the world chair or the platter, some of the back stuff is decent too but I find it actually more abused back there.

For riding advice, I'd say xmas day, boxing day, and possibly new years eve will be worth it. Otherwise it'll be a gong show. I was at Lake Louise last year on boxing day and it was great. We stayed in town that night and had to go to the base of the hill on the morning of the 27th (lost car keys) and the line just to get a ticket looked like it was hours long. Then the lift lines were retarded. I would avoid the big 3 like the plague from the 27th to the 30th.

Have fun!
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Old 11-27-2012, 05:31 PM   #3 (permalink)
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SUNSHINE
there is a lot of good stuff off of goats eye. The southside chutes are good and there are lots of trees to riders right of the chutes. they are smaller up top and get bigger, snow stays good in there for a long time.

The shoulder (under neath the double chair) can have some good snow later in the season but it is pretty short.

If you have avy gear there is the dive and wild west.

Lake Louise
someonen else will give you better info usually i ride in the park there although i have found good snow on the back side. I have a seasons pass there this year so im sure i will find out where the good stuff is but don't really know yet.

Kicking Horse
EVERY WHERE, about 1:45 from canmore super steep and great snow, don't know how conditions will be that early in the year.

Revy
Probably around 4 hours from canmore unreal tree runs tons of snow. Same as KH i don't know how condidtions will be that early but i went last dec and had 1 foot the first night with another 6 inches the second night. Fresh pow the whole weekend. Great tree runs.
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Old 11-28-2012, 01:48 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Cheers guys - appreciate the info. Because I'm new to the area, and the few guys I know here ski, I've been going off doing some exploring on my own but I'm a bit hesitant to do much solo off piste exploring without a transceiver etc. I just want to make the most of their time out here. Will defo look at the weather forecast for KH during that week and we're contemplating getting a guide to do the dive at SSV.

not sure if we'll be able to get to revvy during their trip this time but I'm definitely going to hit that around Feb.

I've read that the platter at LL is a bit of a pain - is it really worth it once you get up top??
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Old 11-28-2012, 01:54 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loves2splooge View Post
Cheers guys - appreciate the info. Because I'm new to the area, and the few guys I know here ski, I've been going off doing some exploring on my own but I'm a bit hesitant to do much solo off piste exploring without a transceiver etc.

I've read that the platter at LL is a bit of a pain - is it really worth it once you get up top??
No need for a transceiver in bounds. Not saying in bounds avalanches are impossible but they're very rare. I venture all over the place here on my own...

The platter is a pain, but only you can judge if it's worth it. There's some very good boarding up there on both the front and back side of the platter. Because it's a pain it will be less tracked out. Just be prepared to rest for a minute at the top.
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Old 11-28-2012, 02:17 PM   #6 (permalink)
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The platter is definitely worth it. Best runs i've ever ridden on that side of Lake Louise.

But, then again, I ride in Australia
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Old 11-28-2012, 04:30 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I'll definitely give it a go in December - don't think I could bring myself to take my missus up there before she's mastered toe turns.

I took her up the divide chair on Saturday, it was her second time ever riding and I thought she'd appreciate being taught the way I was taught.

I was wrong.
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Old 11-28-2012, 04:48 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Take her to the top of kicking horse then. Throw her in the deep end👍.

Best way to learn
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Old 11-28-2012, 08:46 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loves2splooge View Post
I'll definitely give it a go in December - don't think I could bring myself to take my missus up there before she's mastered toe turns.

I took her up the divide chair on Saturday, it was her second time ever riding and I thought she'd appreciate being taught the way I was taught.

I was wrong.
Yeah that's a little much. Took my GF to the top of the Divide after she boarded for a couple years first. It was windy as hell and visibility was low and she was so upset I think she was honestly scared for her life. That's not what boarding's all about.

Please don't bring somebody on the platter who isn't high intermediate at the least.
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Old 11-28-2012, 10:21 PM   #10 (permalink)
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People who are not good enough to ride the the top of the lake won't get up the platter!
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So many runs so little time.
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