Trip Planned to Breck for Spring: Cancel or Go?
26 posts
13 users
1k+ views
Baltimore1
8 days ago
Member since 03/13/2019 🔗
6 posts

We are a family of four with a late March spring break trip planned and paid for, to Breck.  This is a carry over trip from last spring, booked through a travel agency.  Last spring, Breck was shut down due to Covid prior to our trip.  I believe that there is no refund if we back out, and the trip is definitely not cheap.

With the current Covid situation, is it safe to plan on going?  Or should we choose not to go due to Covid? I think that the flight and airports are probably the riskiest parts of the trip.  It would be painful to have to cancel, but health needs to be the priority.

Any opinions about this trip, and about flying during the pandemic, are greatly appreciated.

bob
8 days ago (edited 8 days ago)
Member since 04/15/2008 🔗
684 posts

There are lots of people skiing in Summit County. Positivity rate is down. Warning level is reduced. I certainly would not cancel now.

I own a condo in Breckenridge, rent it out, and there are only 6 open days between now and 2/16. So certainly others are visiting.

Just keep watching the local newspaper in order to make your decision.

summitdaily.com

The flight won't be risky as the risk of getting the virus on a plane is pretty small. The biggest risk, IMO, is the train at the airport. When I visited a few months back I was elbow to elbow with lots of people. Problem is that you have to use the train unless you happen to come in at A concourse.. There are no alternatives.

Is flying safe? I let my own behavior speak my attitude to that. I've had 24 flights since I started flying again last May and I am in an at risk category. I have a flight later today. Just follow the recommended procedures.

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
8 days ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,322 posts

I and several friends flew Southwest to either SLC or Denver in December.  Two flew out of BWI.  We researched plane travel all summer before making the decision to plan an early season trip.  Our conclusion was that the way the American airlines and airports were handling the situation made flying a pretty low risk activity.  Our experience was that mask usage was very good even in the SLC airport in spite of the fact that Utah didn't have a state-wide mask mandate at the time.  Southwest boarding went smoothly doing 10 people at a time instead of the usual 1-30/31-60 line-up approach.  Mask usage on the flights was excellent, which many people using high quality masks.  Flights were relatively quiet since few people were bothering to carry on conversations after they were in their seats.  I had a window seat on all the flights.  There was someone in the middle seat on the way home on both legs.  Bottom line is that I and all of my friends were able to stay healthy all of 2020 and and are still healthy.

I'm flying to meet up with friends for a trip to Colorado in early February.  Also have the usual late season trip to Alta planned for April.

fosphenytoin - DCSki Supporter
7 days ago
Member since 12/20/2017 🔗
132 posts

Is driving to CO an option if you are concerned about flying?  Is deferring to next year an option?  

Quote a post from "N95 Mask" from this website posted by @Bob.  see screen shot below. 

https://www.dcski.com/forum/99533

1610494958_bitqmjdrhloz.jpgI think flying is not the risky part, but airport can be.  However, if you practice social distancing, wear mask and stay away from crowds, it would minimize the risk of exposure.  

I took an early season trip to SLC in December, flew SW and Delta.  I had a COVID test before and after travel, tested negative both times.  I know negative covid test does not mean anything, I did it mostly for the peace of own mind since I was traveling with others.  

I did wear N95 mask on the plane.  You can bring Cholorex wipes to wipe down seats and armrest.  Window seats are better than aisle because better air circulation.  

As for ski resorts, I visited JH/GT, Alta/Snowbird for the early season trip.  I found it hard to stay outdoor the entire time because it was cold.  I did spend time indoor to warm up.  But if you are going in March, weather should be warmer by then and days are longer too.  

My friend is in the same situation as you.  Trip had to cancel last year due to COVID, deferred to this year and Breckenridge was available. We already booked trip to Denver in March during Spring break (arrangement made before the Dec trip).

Speaking for myself and myself only, just because I did not get sick in prior trips, it does not mean I can become complacent and let my guards down.  I will continue to stay vigilant and practice social distancing, mask wearing, and stay away from crowds if possible, also I get tested after travel.  

DCSki Sponsor: Canaan Valley Resort
Shotmaker
7 days ago
Member since 02/18/2014 🔗
100 posts

My daughter on her way to Winter Park today! It will be her fist time skiing out west. She was given the vaccine a couple weeks ago as she is a health care worker and despite covid positive individuals all around her has managed to avoid the disease. 

1610497101_emnhkimclgzw.jpg

snowsmith - DCSki Supporter
7 days ago (edited 7 days ago)
Member since 03/15/2004 🔗
1,310 posts
There is no way I'm getting in the hermetically sealed metal tube breathing other peoples germs. Four persons in my family recently contracted COVID. Two of them died this past weekend. My brother barely survived and is on oxygen and will be for weeks or months. My wife's cousin is also on oxygen but her husband did not make it. When this kind of tragedy hits home it makes you take the risk seriously. I'll be skiing local this year.
fosphenytoin - DCSki Supporter
7 days ago
Member since 12/20/2017 🔗
132 posts
@snowsmith - I am so sorry to hear this, my thoughts and prayers with you and your family.  
The Colonel - DCSki Supporter
7 days ago
Member since 03/5/2004 🔗
3,081 posts
Snowsmith, God Bless!  Stay safe!
bob
7 days ago
Member since 04/15/2008 🔗
684 posts
Snowsmith, my condolences to you and others in your family.
Shotmaker
7 days ago
Member since 02/18/2014 🔗
100 posts

snowsmith wrote:

There is no way I'm getting in the hermetically sealed metal tube breathing other peoples germs. Four persons in my family recently contracted COVID. Two of them died this past weekend. My brother barely survived and is on oxygen and will be for weeks or months. My wife's cousin is also on oxygen but her husband did not make it. When this kind of tragedy hits home it makes you take the risk seriously. I'll be skiing local this year.

I'm so sorry to hear of your loss. This Covid19 virus with the death of loved ones is the most tragic event of our lives as it is indiscriminate by nature. We all have to live our lives as each one of us chooses and be responsible when around others. My family has sacrificed gathering recently at important times like Thanksgiving and Christmas to practice social distancing. My wife & I won't be getting on a plane this year and have decided to forgo this ski season locally and long distance.

I was fortunately made aware of this virus back in January of last year and purchased N95 masks that day. I remember seeing people in China wearing masks over the Swine Flu and SARS not so long ago so I figured some protection is better than none. If this virus stayed primarily in Asia then the masks could be used around the yard or house. Unfortunately, this virus most likely will be around for some time to come. Even with the vaccine the chance of infection for some could continue for a few years. The SARS virus in 2009 has origins from the Spanish Flu over 100 years ago. So we are very susceptible to these deadly viruses that exist in nature and come around when we least expect them.

Life is unpredictable. What people experienced a long time ago most likely can't be understood by a younger generation today. Young people should live life to it's fullest be smart and have a respect for others. Our time is limited on the snow whether by injury or age make the most of it!

Blue Don 1982 - DCSki Supporter
7 days ago
Member since 01/13/2008 🔗
1,463 posts

Snowsmith sorry for your losses.  That's just terrible. 

My wife and I both were infected in late Nov.  It kicked my ass.  I coughed relentlessly for 4 - 5 days.  I slept 20 hours a day during that time.  

On the flip side - my wife had the sniffles and a mild fever one day.  I hope anyone that anyone who contracts this has her symptoms.

Given all that, I'm going to do a Copper Mtn trip in Feb.  I wear a mask in public and generally avoid crowds. I will follow all the guidelines to keep myself and others safe.

Baltimore1
7 days ago
Member since 03/13/2019 🔗
6 posts
Thanks for the reply.  I need to check to be sure, but I don't think we can defer the trip to next year. I looked up how many hours it takes to drive to Breck, and briefly considered it, but I think that it is too much time in a car; and it would eat up additional work vacation time.
eggraid
6 days ago
Member since 02/9/2010 🔗
473 posts

Tough call; we are planning a trip to Big Sky for the end of March with the family, which was postponed from last April when everything was shut down. My wife and I have both had the first shot of the vaccine and the kids are relatively low-risk. We usually ski, make dinner in the condo, sleep, repeat, so the train at Dulles will be the riskiest part of the trip I anticipate. The rental company was particularly inflexible, only giving us credit for one year rather than a refund, and we had to really get on them to do that.

My wife and I had soft plans (nothing purchased/reserved) to go to Utah in Feb, but we decided to scrap that and just say local to Snowshoe this season. Unless the numbers go way down and we do things at the last minute, we plan to stay here, even though we will both be vaccinated.

eggraid
6 days ago
Member since 02/9/2010 🔗
473 posts

She's so lucky, I love Winter Park!


Shotmaker wrote:

My daughter on her way to Winter Park today! It will be her fist time skiing out west. She was given the vaccine a couple weeks ago as she is a health care worker and despite covid positive individuals all around her has managed to avoid the disease. 

1610497101_emnhkimclgzw.jpg

 

JimK - DCSki Columnist
6 days ago (edited 6 days ago)
Member since 01/14/2004 🔗
2,671 posts

Interesting thread with many thoughtful posts.  My brother-in-law age 70+ with emphysema just tested positive last weekend and has all the symptoms.  We are very concerned about him and also by the possibility that my sister is likely to get it too.  Hoping like heck they get a mild mutation.

I have yet to ski, but in a few weeks I am planning to drive to Utah to stay for three months and do a lot of skiing.  The thing that might delay me is if Virginia starts offering the vaccine to my age group 65+ before then.   Another factor is that my wife is more concerned than ever with the recent nationwide surge of infections.  If she decides not to accompany me to Utah I would feel really guilty leaving her on her own for an extended period during a pandemic.  Sort of in a wait and watch mode right now while trying to decide things. 

PS:  Wash DC to Breck is 27 hours of typically fairly easy driving.  Done the VA to CO drive many times in two days, very helpful to have a second driver to help.  But must be motivated and enjoy open road driving.

fosphenytoin - DCSki Supporter
6 days ago
Member since 12/20/2017 🔗
132 posts

@baltimore1:  I believe reservation is needed for visiting Epic resorts (Breckenridge is Epic) this year.  Not sure if that's a deal breaker?  Are you only planning to ski Breck the entire time?  If you are going in Spring break week, I don't know how fast slots get filled up.  But Breck location is close to other resorts: Keystone, Copper, Loveland, A-Basin.  If you can't visit Breck on certain day, i suppose there are alternatives. 

I am working full time so driving to CO is not an option for me also, I am wasting 4 days vacation just for travel. Even though I'd consider it at one point.  If I have to drive to CO, I'd need to stay > 2 weeks to make the trip justifiable.  

@JimK - hope your brother-in-law speedy recovery and your sister will be ok.  

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
6 days ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,322 posts

JimK wrote:

PS:  Wash DC to Breck is 27 hours of typically fairly easy driving.  Done the VA to CO drive many times in two days, very helpful to have a second driver to help.  But must be motivated and enjoy open road driving.

Knowing that you've done the drive many times, I considered driving to CO in February from NC via Ohio where one of my ski buddies lives.  He's semi-retired now and was willing to consider the option.  But given our experience flying Southwest in December, we decided that flying made more sense for a 10-day trip.  I've done some long distance driving since June.  While it's not too hard to choose where to stop for gas or restrooms, or an overnight stay at a quality motel, it's definitely more stressful than pre-Covid.  Also my ski buddy who lives out west was concerned about us running into a snowstorm in the midwest.

bob
6 days ago (edited 6 days ago)
Member since 04/15/2008 🔗
684 posts

The drive west is fine unless you run into bad weather, and then it might be agony -- snow, fog, ice.

On one tip I ran into 6 hours of heavy fog at night   and then suddenly I was in clear skies  in what seemed like 100 mile visibility --  talk about two totally different air masses. At least I wasn't on the autobahn where drivers regularly do 90-100 mph in fog.

itdoesntmatter
5 days ago
Member since 01/17/2007 🔗
119 posts

I cancelled my trip for March.  But it was really for the other things that would not be available.  My daughters love to ski, but not as much as me.  Part of the fun of skiing with them is meeting them at a bar for drinks after skiing, having a place for them to sit for an hour to warm up in the middle of the day, etc....  All of that isn't available at the resorts right now.  So I opted to postpone until next year.  

It's a tough call. 

bob
4 days ago
Member since 04/15/2008 🔗
684 posts

The decision about whether or not to go to Breckenridge might be complicated by the continuing poor snow conditions in Summit County

... "That’s much-needed snow for ski areas, which have yet to hit the 100-inch mark on the season. Breckenridge is leading the way with 98 inches so far this winter. Keystone Resort is just behind at 97 inches. Both ski areas are reporting a 28-inch base.

A year ago today, Breckenridge was reporting 165 inches on the season and a 45-inch base. Over at Keystone, the slopes had seen a total of 131 inches of snowfall with a 37-inch base.

Both ski areas opened later this year — Breckenridge by five days and Keystone by 25 days — which could account for some of the difference because resorts don’t start counting season snowfall until opening day.

Both resorts had all of their lifts spinning as of mid-January last year. This winter, Breckenridge has 28 of 34 lifts and 99 of 199 trails open as of mid-January. That represents just less than half of the resort’s total terrain, much of which is above tree line with no snowmaking. Copper Mountain Resort is also hovering around the 50% range for open terrain with 21 of 23 lifts and 104 of 152 trails open. Keystone is faring better with 20 of 21 lifts and 109 of 135 trails open, representing 80% of its terrain."


https://www.summitdaily.com/news/weather/breckenridge-sees-116-mph-wind-gust/

fosphenytoin - DCSki Supporter
4 days ago (edited 4 days ago)
Member since 12/20/2017 🔗
132 posts

We are in mid January, March is 2 months away.  Perhaps things will turn around by then. 

If no additional cost involved to keep the trip, why not keep it?  OP can decide as it gets closer to the trip date. If additional cost will be significant and needs to decide by a certain date (to keep or forfeit), then it needs to do some risk calculation and list (potential) pros / cons. 

For me, I am keeping the trip because the trip can no longer be deferred (already deferred once).  I am an intermediate skier, I don't go to expert/advance terrains, even if they are open, I won't be able to ski them.  Therefore, it does not make difference to me.  

I am used to ski at Liberty / Whitetail, even if 1/3 terrain open at Breck, I'd be very content (my standard is low).  Plus there are several resorts near Breck, plenty options as back up.  

@JimK: If vaccine in VA opens to >65 age group, are you going to wait to complete both doses then head out west?  If so, probably it will be mid-Feb the earliest? Pfizer is 21 days apart, Moderna is 28 days apart.  Or you are going to get first dose, drive out west, fly back to get the 2nd dose and then fly back out? 

JimK - DCSki Columnist
4 days ago (edited 4 days ago)
Member since 01/14/2004 🔗
2,671 posts

@JimK: If vaccine in VA opens to >65 age group, are you going to wait to complete both doses then head out west?  If so, probably it will be mid-Feb the earliest? Pfizer is 21 days apart, Moderna is 28 days apart.  Or you are going to get first dose, drive out west, fly back to get the 2nd dose and then fly back out? 

-------------------

Good questions.  Would wait for both doses if received sooner.  Or, might possibly get first dose, go west for a while, then return east for second dose, then go west again :-{   If vaccine rollout is really slow, may go west without any and return later for first dose.

I have registered with the county for receiving the vaccine (moderna), but they sent notice that there's not enough supply to give an appointment at this time.

bob
4 days ago
Member since 04/15/2008 🔗
684 posts
Remember, according to the CDC "you will START having some immunity 7 DAYS after your first shot and full immunity about TWO WEEKS after your second shot."
squeakywheels
3 days ago
Member since 08/4/2017 🔗
23 posts


 When Azar said to open 65 and above plus 16 and above with medical conditions, he was a little careless. Now VA has 3.5 million people that are qualified to receive vaccine, but federal government only allocates about 100,000 doses a week to VA, good for 50,000 people (two doses). How does that math work unless the supply increases drastically very soon.

JimK wrote:

@JimK: If vaccine in VA opens to >65 age group, are you going to wait to complete both doses then head out west?  If so, probably it will be mid-Feb the earliest? Pfizer is 21 days apart, Moderna is 28 days apart.  Or you are going to get first dose, drive out west, fly back to get the 2nd dose and then fly back out? 

-------------------

Good questions.  Would wait for both doses if received sooner.  Or, might possibly get first dose, go west for a while, then return east for second dose, then go west again :-{   If vaccine rollout is really slow, may go west without any and return later for first dose.

I have registered with the county for receiving the vaccine (moderna), but they sent notice that there's not enough supply to give an appointment at this time.

dclivejazz
3 days ago
Member since 03/5/2017 🔗
24 posts

Very sorry for the losses Snowsmith experienced, and glad that Blue Don was able to recover from being sick. Hope Jim K's Brother-in-law pulls through. Please stay as careful as possible, everyone. It's a race between the virus and the vaccine now. 

JimK - DCSki Columnist
2 days ago (edited 2 days ago)
Member since 01/14/2004 🔗
2,671 posts

Yes, I am moderating my expectations.  It was a nice gesture to open another phase of eligibles for the vaccine in Virginia, but realistically it appears to be many months before the shot can be delivered to so many people.  Also, I know that the truly elderly and infirm should take precedence over relatively healthier older people.

 

squeakywheels wrote:


 When Azar said to open 65 and above plus 16 and above with medical conditions, he was a little careless. Now VA has 3.5 million people that are qualified to receive vaccine, but federal government only allocates about 100,000 doses a week to VA, good for 50,000 people (two doses). How does that math work unless the supply increases drastically very soon.

DCSki Sponsor: Canaan Valley Resort

Ski and Tell

Speak truth to powder.

Join the conversation by logging in.

Don't have an account? Create one here.

0.14 seconds