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Thread: WTF Silverton?

  1. #101
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    The proposed heli expansion onto county road 2 areas would suck ass. Locals do ski there, especially from March onward.

  2. #102
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    My experience included a last minute solo trip mid winter, because it was snowing. I was forewarned about getting in a group that did not fit. Best advice ever. If you can, start picking your group in the bar/restaurant/hotel the night before. Find out where the people like to ski regularly, how much they like to ski, their fitness. And then it is up to you to make the group work, and not be the junk show or ass. Made good friends that day, keep in touch with some, some I could call upon to ski with again whenever I wanted.
    Sure I can understand people being upset about the loss of the unguided days, but I would rather see that than real estate or guest pampering

  3. #103
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    May 2004
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    Surprised it took as long as it did for this to become a topic of discussion.. Much of what has been posted is correct, including the comments about risk to reward ratio. We wanted to continue with more unguided skiing and have tried each year to offer more, but have been fighting the economics of it since the beginning. It's really a complex issue that is tied into the evolution of the ski industry season pass i.e. Epic Pass, which as devalued the day ticket as smaller areas.

    When you get so much skiing with an Epic Pass people don't purchase as many day tickets anymore and small areas have a tough time selling season passes at a price that covers operating expenses. It has required adapting to the ever changing ski market or get left behind and risk ending up like Berthoud or other gems that didn't make it off of lift ticket sales.

    When the BLM decided to require extensive avalanche control and roping /signage etc 15 years ago for unguided skiing it changed the original vision before it was given a chance to succeed. One lift, with unlimited access was the goal, but that turned out to be too much of a risk for the BLM to agree to participate. We have a link on our site to a blog about it. Its a really complicated issue that Hal Clifford could write another book about as it skiing continues to evolve into a more corporate commodity where you may need to own 5 resorts to even compete these days.

    http://silvertonmountain.com/expanded-guided-season/

  4. #104
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    May 2004
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    The heli proposal excludes all the skiing down to County Road 2. We dropped that from the proposal after listening to feedback. We also have a standing written commitment to avoid touring skiers and relocate to other zones if encountered.

  5. #105
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    One more time:
    Quote Originally Posted by Summit View Post
    Buster's says no biggie: $160 guided is a great deal compared to Aspen day tickets if you are a wealthy out of state tourist... mostly the opposite of the unguided skier.
    To set things straight, I wrote:
    Unguided was sure fun, but I understand that given some douchebags behavior and the relatively (to the guided season) small revenue, it wasn't worth the hassle.

    Still when you compare skiing at a lot of CO places for $120+/day, their guided season still gets me to the goods.


    To which summit responds:
    Nobody who skied Silverton unguided buys $120 day tickets at Vail/Aspen

    But I skied there guided, unguided, booked, walk on, whatever. I know a few Silvertonians who do buy day tickets at T-ride, Aspen, W/BC and elsewhere. We count.

    I later go on to say:
    Not that I wouldn't love to freeski there. I respect the Brills so all the love and kudos to them for putting it together.


    If the previously unguided are going to ski guided, they need to put together a crew big enough to book a full group to avoid the downsides of guided skiing. And that is hard to do on short notice. Buster's answer was he doesn't need short notice because he has it all booked ahead of time and has different standards. But most of the unguided skiers were following conditions, not booking airfare and hotels weeks ahead.
    I don't always have it booked ahead of time, I just go when I have some time. Sometimes I fly down on short notice, sometimes I'm there for a month, sometimes friends show up and a couple or 4 of us will hook up with some others and have a great time. In my experience, random hook ups can result in 6 or 7 run days.

    I don't have the stats to talk about 'most'. I really question whether summit does.

    But since Buster won't acknowledge the legitimacy at that viewpoint, I quipped about "real skiers."
    You misunderstand me. I accept the legitimacy of the viewpoint on unguided, I have a lot of friends who would LOVE to be able to freeski SM. I get it the view point, it's pretty obvious. I feel badly for my friends and I thought I had expressed that where I supported shredgnar's lamentation.

    Asserting that one can not do what I often do in terms of hooking up with random guided groups as some hardcoded rule is a fallacy. I definitely did not write that I had it booked ahead of time because sometimes I don't.

    My problem is when summit misunderstands what people are writing, he makes things up about "most" or 'usually' that isn't complimentary to SM, doesn't represent my experience and likely has no basis in reality.

    I guess, what I mean to say, was "you are losing out if you regularly lock up a very specific trip itinerary ahead of time but have a primary goal of getting the best snow for your time." I don't care if you are booking Silverton for Jan, Alta in Feb, or an Alaska heli week in March. That is dumb in my book because there is a better way to do it. I'm not a wealthy 65 year old with 3 kids living in a no-skiing state, but Buster could do it too if he wanted. He doesn't care. He is happy. That is fine. DIFFERENT STANDARDS.
    I don't call people 'wealthy', 'rich' , 'tourists', 'old', 'dumb' or other pejoratives.

    I called summit a dick because I find these pejoratives irrelevant, offensive and inaccurate. Not being able to leave at the drop of a hat does not disqualify one from loving skiing or being a certified member of some 'real skier' club.

    So to summarize, I understand the loss of unguided blows for a lot of people. My sincere condolences.

    But there's still great skiing at Silverton.

    On my local weekend warrior experiences at the local hills, I contrast the crowds, the liftlines, the density of people in that experience and for me, trading off a little freedom for an experience where I'm not worried about being hit or slid or snaked by hordes of snotty aggros, it's a reasonable trade. If it's not for you, I wouldn't exclude you from my 'club' if I had one.
    Merde De Glace On the Freak When Ski
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  6. #106
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silverton Mt View Post
    The heli proposal excludes all the skiing down to County Road 2. We dropped that from the proposal after listening to feedback. We also have a standing written commitment to avoid touring skiers and relocate to other zones if encountered.
    Solid
    #Respect
    Alpental Indiginous

  7. #107
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silverton Mt View Post
    The heli proposal excludes all the skiing down to County Road 2. We dropped that from the proposal after listening to feedback. We also have a standing written commitment to avoid touring skiers and relocate to other zones if encountered.
    Got a map with the current proposal?

  8. #108
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    My anecdotal experience is that the unguided skiing at Silverton is not worth the time/effort/cost to get down there, every time I have done it the really exciting areas have been roped off and the available terrain was fine but definitely not worth a special trip.

    As far as I can tell, by far the best way to ski Silverton is with a strong hand-picked group right after a storm during the guided season.

  9. #109
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    @ Silverton MT
    Much respect for all of the hard work you have done and your vision. At the end of my day there, I was wishing there were more places with the same vision. I will keep coming back whenever in the area.

  10. #110
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    I appreciate Silverton Mt's replies in this thread. I'll remember fondly the days I spent skiing there. I'll be back, but it will be rare.
    Quote Originally Posted by blurred
    skiing is hiking all day so that you can ski on shitty gear for 5 minutes.

  11. #111
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    Quote Originally Posted by Foggy_Goggles View Post
    Most of the douchy behavior I've seen at Silverton is the the "fast skier/fast hiker" groups. I could right a "how to Silverton" thread but I'm sure nobody cares. I will say this, your guide will be keying in on your group dynamic from moment one. You need to help and encourage each other. Any animosity will be viewed as a threat to the group's safety which is the primary concern. If you get all pissy, your group will be on a short leash. If you work well as a team and can be trusted, you'll be guided into some more premium terrain. The guides all but tell you this. If you don't have the patience for the system, Silverton ain't for you.
    This is pretty much guided skiing 101, wherever you are.

    Also appreciate SilvertonMt's replies in this thread.

  12. #112
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leavenworth Skier View Post
    We could camp.
    Thats what real skiers would do.

  13. #113
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lindahl View Post
    Thats what real skiers would do.
    Fuck that, put me in with the wannabe crowd then. After a big day of skiing I want a hot shower and a warm place to sleep!
    dirtbag, not a dentist

  14. #114
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    Quote Originally Posted by raisingarizona13 View Post
    Fuck that, put me in with the wannabe crowd then. After a big day of skiing I want a hot shower and a warm place to sleep!
    I hear that...
    Not to mention room to stretch, dry gear out, etc.
    Besides, it can get pretty cold at Silverton overnight.
    Alpental Indiginous

  15. #115
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    Quote Originally Posted by raisingarizona13 View Post
    Fuck that, put me in with the wannabe crowd then. After a big day of skiing I want a hot shower and a warm place to sleep!
    I question your commitment to skiing

  16. #116
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlpenChronicHabitual View Post
    I hear that...
    Not to mention room to stretch, dry gear out, etc.
    Besides, it can get pretty cold at Silverton overnight.
    So we bring the campers. Big Steve, You, Me, Norsey all can go full Convoy on the route down.

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  17. #117
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    Just an idea Silverton MT, but what if you found some middle ground? Charge more than $49 - $79? for self-guided.

    I've been a few times for Guided, while we booked weeks in advance, we were thrown into a large group of 10+. Guide was meh and took us too many times into easterly terrain that was crusting up and our voices to hit the westerly shady stuff was ignored in the din of a large group. Was slow with such a group and inevitably had someone who ate shit and lost a ski and us the time to tag the last run. I woudn't do guided again with the chances of another experience. I know the terrain well enough to hit the 6-7 runs I'd want in Unguided.

  18. #118
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lindahl View Post
    I question your commitment to skiing
    I'm 41 with nuthin to prove! It's a nice place to be actually.
    dirtbag, not a dentist

  19. #119
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    Nov 2002
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    I'm not sure if there article is before or after the change is application but it is a start

    http://www.durangoherald.com/article...d-heli-skiing#

  20. #120
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    Silverton is unique place and the skiing is right in line with most of the skiers on this forum. It makes financial sense to limit the unguided if the guided can fill the resort.

    I've done the unguided, guided and heli (if the conditions and weather cooperate). With 3 kids, I usually plan for a Thursday and cross my fingers. Regardless, it has some best consistent fall-line skiing in Colorado. Of course, some runs are better than others. And yes, the law of nature will eventually pair you up with a group that has that 'one' skier that holds everyone up, but you meet new people and become instant friends because we all like the same thing.

    Most of the time I roll up solo, just jump in the fast hike, fast skier group and see what happens. As a group, the norm is to take turns on first tracks and ultimately you'll get the goods even if hasn't snowed in a while. At their altitude, the beer at the end of the day tastes better than anywhere else.

    And yes, I run into Buster 90% of the time.

  21. #121
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    Quote Originally Posted by skier666 View Post
    Silverton is unique place and the skiing is right in line with most of the skiers on this forum. It makes financial sense to limit the unguided if the guided can fill the resort.

    I've done the unguided, guided and heli (if the conditions and weather cooperate). With 3 kids, I usually plan for a Thursday and cross my fingers. Regardless, it has some best consistent fall-line skiing in Colorado. Of course, some runs are better than others. And yes, the law of nature will eventually pair you up with a group that has that 'one' skier that holds everyone up, but you meet new people and become instant friends because we all like the same thing.

    Most of the time I roll up solo, just jump in the fast hike, fast skier group and see what happens. As a group, the norm is to take turns on first tracks and ultimately you'll get the goods even if hasn't snowed in a while. At their altitude, the beer at the end of the day tastes better than anywhere else.

    And yes, I run into Buster 90% of the time.
    better than at the Anheuser-Busch brewery? Better than at Busch Gardens?
    Zone Controller

    "He wants to be a pro, bro, not some schmuck." - Hugh Conway

    "DigitalDeath would kick my ass. He has the reach of a polar bear." - Crass3000

  22. #122
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    Quote Originally Posted by Foggy_Goggles View Post
    I'm not sure if there article is before or after the change is application but it is a start

    http://www.durangoherald.com/article...d-heli-skiing#
    I think that's old based on the date and the map shows areas that go to cty rd 2. I found another map that seemed newer, but it also seemed to go to 2. Even if it includes areas like Cunningham that are accessed from 2, it's still an overall bummer for bc skiers. The best thing about the Silverton BC is that those crazy miners built roads everywhere, so everything is pretty accessible- including the areas that are proposed for heli expansion. (As far as I know)

  23. #123
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    Is real skier status similar to local status? Available for purchase?

  24. #124
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    Nov 2002
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    Agreed about the mining roads. You find road signs in the middle of the backcounty in San Juan County. If you can even semi-reasonably tour there in a day, I don't think that is an appropriate location for heli skiing. I need to go ski McMillian again.

  25. #125
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kinnikinnick View Post
    Just an idea Silverton MT, but what if you found some middle ground? Charge more than $49 - $79? for self-guided.

    I've been a few times for Guided, while we booked weeks in advance, we were thrown into a large group of 10+. Guide was meh and took us too many times into easterly terrain that was crusting up and our voices to hit the westerly shady stuff was ignored in the din of a large group. Was slow with such a group and inevitably had someone who ate shit and lost a ski and us the time to tag the last run. I woudn't do guided again with the chances of another experience. I know the terrain well enough to hit the 6-7 runs I'd want in Unguided.
    you a shrill for vail?

    you shrilling for vail for sure
    Zone Controller

    "He wants to be a pro, bro, not some schmuck." - Hugh Conway

    "DigitalDeath would kick my ass. He has the reach of a polar bear." - Crass3000

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