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Discussion Starter #1
I know this topic has been brought up numerous times, but i still have not been able to come up with a conclusion. Please brethens, help me out.

Jan 1st 2014 to Jan 5th 2014

UTAH OR COLORADO?

Me and 3 other buddies are starting off 2014 with a bang. We are planning to take a snowboarding trip from the 1st to the 5th of 2014. Now we must decide where to go.

We are all from california and have been to mammoth, tahoe, bear, mtn high and whistler many times.

The following list are things that are important to us.

1. Large mountain with long runs/trails
2. Good amount of snow for early january
3. Near other resorts


We are not concerned about the nightlight, apres, driving (renting car), crowds (were used to it) or price.

We basically want to get the best trip we can with the short amount of days we will be staying. We will only be able to board thursday, friday and saturday.

We are mainly going to ride groomers since one of them isn't that great. Long groomed runs from top to bottom would be great. Park and pipe isnt a big concern at all, but this also means we won't want to ride pow either.

Please help us make a decision!
 

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Early January is a complete crap shoot. Could be great conditions at one or the other (or both) or could be bitter fucking cold with not much snow. January is still pretty early season. If you have flexibility, March is usually the best and safest bet. January can be pretty damn brutal... or pretty damn great.
 

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I know this topic has been brought up numerous times, but i still have not been able to come up with a conclusion. Please brethens, help me out.

Jan 1st 2014 to Jan 5th 2014

UTAH OR COLORADO?

Me and 3 other buddies are starting off 2014 with a bang. We are planning to take a snowboarding trip from the 1st to the 5th of 2014. Now we must decide where to go.

We are all from california and have been to mammoth, tahoe, bear, mtn high and whistler many times.

The following list are things that are important to us.

1. Large mountain with long runs/trails
2. Good amount of snow for early january
3. Near other resorts


We are not concerned about the nightlight, apres, driving (renting car), crowds (were used to it) or price.

We basically want to get the best trip we can with the short amount of days we will be staying. We will only be able to board thursday, friday and saturday.

We are mainly going to ride groomers since one of them isn't that great. Long groomed runs from top to bottom would be great. Park and pipe isnt a big concern at all, but this also means we won't want to ride pow either.

Please help us make a decision!
Utah is going to have more resorts close by to each other. With Park City, The Canyons being 10 mins from each other, and Brighton, Solitude, Snowbird within 45 mins from there, and even more within 1 1/2 hours of that.

Colorado on the other hand has a ton of resorts but they are a bit more spread out. So really, take your pick. As mentioned above I don't think there's a clear cut winner with predicting weather.
 

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Seeing that your primary concern is getting good snow and coverage, I might suggest looking to the PNW if you're dead set on making your trip in early January. I would think it would be a safer bet than either CO or UT.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Because of our work schedules, we are set on early January. Of course we would love to go in feb/march but we can not all get the same dates off.


I have one question about Park City resort. Looking at the trail map, it looks as though the runs are not that long. It also looks like a ot of traversing. Is this correct? The last thing I want to do is having to deal with a lot of flat land.
 

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I haven't snowboarded Utah, so I can't say anything about the riding, but some one should warn you that all the major resorts are probably going to be semi to highly busy (your dates still have some kids out of school, and families on vacation).

After that Colorado has some great pow, but as everyone said it can be questionable that early. One good thing is that if the rain CO had this year is a prediction for snow, then we are in for a sweet winter.

In CO look at the Epic Pass options, since you want to try different resorts.
 

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Utah if you don't want to spend 3/4ths of your time in a lift line.
Are (incredibly) long lift lines as posted in the CO thread normal or just an early season phenomenon?
 

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The lines yesterday WERE NOT LONG! People are fucking retarded if they think that's long. Jan 1st to the 5th is still prime tourist season which means long lines. CO has the most skier visits of any state in the U.S.
 

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Depends on where in Colorado. Between the two states, at that time of year, Utah is probably a better bet for snow. The Cottonwood canyons get a ton of snow. They also have the crowds but it ain't Colorado style either.
 

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Because of our work schedules, we are set on early January. Of course we would love to go in feb/march but we can not all get the same dates off.


I have one question about Park City resort. Looking at the trail map, it looks as though the runs are not that long. It also looks like a ot of traversing. Is this correct? The last thing I want to do is having to deal with a lot of flat land.
There's a few, but i've been to PCMR 10 times at least and never had any issues with traversing. There's a few traverses, but nothing really bad. The few long ones actually have pretty decent declines so it's easy to ride. Snowbird has the worst in the Park City area as far as traverses go.
 

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since price wasnt an issue for you, i would suggest waiting till closer before your trip to book at the last minute on what area gets the good early snow if thats a concern for you.
 

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Snowbird doesn't really have many traverses? Just go down. There are tons of mellower cat tracks that you can just blast off of or play on the side hits. Really depends on your riding style. It sees a lot of midwest people love to just go fast on groomed runs. If that's your style then PC could be good for that.

Snowbird is also not technically in PC. It is in the cottonwoods.
 

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I can only give advise on Utah, as we were their 2 years ago on holiday, we went in March and snow/weather was awesome. This March we will:yahoo: be in Colorado for first time http://www.snowboardingforum.com/images/smilies/yahoo.gif

My 2 cents on Utah, there is not really much flat traversing around Park City, or The Canyons...certainly nothing like Heavenly in Tahoe if you've been their.
Just wanted to mention The Canyons as its awesome, a lot of long runs like you asked for. Some of the blues mellow into greens around the tunnel sections on the left of the trail map, but alot of great ridign to be done their if you like cruising/ripping.
The good thing is if you stay their you can mix it up with PCMR and The Canyons. With short drive in rental or free shuttles from a lot of hotels (we stayed closer to The Canyons and had free coach from Best Western to The Canyons or PCMR every morning (only 5-15mins drive). Best to ride these two if you stay around Park City. If you stay in SLC you have the a few moutains to ride, Snowbird didn't really enjoy, Solitude had a few cool runs and Brighton was the pick of this side for me, but overall I think The Canyons and PCMR offer the best overall riding, for longest runs that your asking for, and great parks right their if you want to give them a shot also.
Also staying around their you have the cool snowboard/resort vibe. Staying in SLC you just have a city vibe.
As mentioned just my 2cents, cannot comment on Colorado comparison yet, but Utah, Park City and The Canyons in particular, are a great destination.

cheers,
 

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Neither. Go to Wyoming. Jackson Hole beckons.

I am dead serious. If you only have 2 or 3 days then you will completely WASTE 1 or two of those days traveling in CO as all of the hills are at least 1 hour from Denver International airport. Oh yeah, then there is the shitty adjustment to altitude which will make your first full day and night there tough on your body. Also, you will need to rent a car (or pay $100 for transportation out to the slopes).

As for Utah, Snowbird and a few of the resorts are close to town, but LCC gets closed very often for avalanche control when a big ass snowstorm comes through. It normally re-opens within 12 hours, but that is time you won't want to lose on such a short trip. Also, the base of Snowbird is ~8000 ft, which might still cause some altitude concerns.

As for Jackson, Jackson Hole is ~25 minutes from the airport and the Snow King is about 15 minutes from the airport. The altitude in town is around 6,300 ft, and JHMR has the added bonus that you absolutely will not want to ride anywhere else after you spend a day there. The town is flat as hell, so you don't have to worry about heavy snowstorms blocking access to the hill.... though ski patrol can sometimes take a while to open up the entire mountain (this has happened to me on 2 of my 3 seperate trips there). No rental car needed. You can either stay in Tetone village or pony up $2.50 for transportation between town and the village.

Issues with JHMR? Prepare to open your wallet for airfare, lodging, and lift tickets. It just made some fancy schmancy best of list this year, so it will probably be more crowded than normal. Visit during the week. I have usually had very good luck going there in early January just after New year's.
 

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as of Jan 1 there will be public weed shops in CO

if possible i would wait and watch for best conditions...then go to CO
 

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Neither. Go to Wyoming. Jackson Hole beckons.

I am dead serious. If you only have 2 or 3 days then you will completely WASTE 1 or two of those days traveling in CO as all of the hills are at least 1 hour from Denver International airport. Oh yeah, then there is the shitty adjustment to altitude which will make your first full day and night there tough on your body. Also, you will need to rent a car (or pay $100 for transportation out to the slopes).

As for Utah, Snowbird and a few of the resorts are close to town, but LCC gets closed very often for avalanche control when a big ass snowstorm comes through. It normally re-opens within 12 hours, but that is time you won't want to lose on such a short trip. Also, the base of Snowbird is ~8000 ft, which might still cause some altitude concerns.

As for Jackson, Jackson Hole is ~25 minutes from the airport and the Snow King is about 15 minutes from the airport. The altitude in town is around 6,300 ft, and JHMR has the added bonus that you absolutely will not want to ride anywhere else after you spend a day there. The town is flat as hell, so you don't have to worry about heavy snowstorms blocking access to the hill.... though ski patrol can sometimes take a while to open up the entire mountain (this has happened to me on 2 of my 3 seperate trips there). No rental car needed. You can either stay in Tetone village or pony up $2.50 for transportation between town and the village.

Issues with JHMR? Prepare to open your wallet for airfare, lodging, and lift tickets. It just made some fancy schmancy best of list this year, so it will probably be more crowded than normal. Visit during the week. I have usually had very good luck going there in early January just after New year's.
Don't forget Montana, Big Sky and Bridger...no lines.
 

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If I had to choose between Utah and Colorado for that timeframe I would definitely go with Utah. I went to Utah (Park City and Canyons) for New Years two years ago and the resorts weren't crowded at all. The resorts in CO are a fucking nightmare over the holidays (Christmas day being the exception). CO resorts in general are always much more crowded than UT from my expirience, but even more so during the holidays. If I was spending the money on a trip I'd stay away from Colorado during/around the holidays. Unless you enjoy waiting in lift lines for 20+ minutes to go down a run full of gapers crashing into eachother.
 

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Not that I disagree with you, but I would like to point out that Summit and Eagle counties are not all of Colorado. Crested Butte, Aspen, Telluride, Steamboat, are not nearly as crazy jacked up crowded as those other areas. Maybe Steamboat is an exception to that list, but I don't ever remember it being terrible over the Holidays.

When talking Colorado, it is a huge area. Though most people do just go to Breck, Vail, or one of the other Front Range resorts. Get away from that and it is not really the same.
 
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