Canaan v Timberline v WISP Ski Resorts
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rover
8 months ago
Member since 01/27/2021 🔗
12 posts

Never been to the 'high country' resorts, looking to go for a day and back not overnight from Fairfax County.
How do these compare/which do you recommend?

I snowboard FYI.

wfyurasko - DCSki Supporter
8 months ago
Member since 07/27/2014 🔗
219 posts
Wisp is farther away for lower elevation and vertical drop than T-Line. As a skier, I'd be inclined to hit T-line, though I haven't been to Canaan Valley.
JimK - DCSki Columnist
8 months ago
Member since 01/14/2004 🔗
2,728 posts
Timberline has a little more vertical and challenge.  A lot more challenge if the glades are open.
marzNC - DCSki Supporter
8 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,544 posts

rover wrote:

Never been to the 'high country' resorts, looking to go for a day and back not overnight from Fairfax County.
How do these compare/which do you recommend?

I snowboard FYI.

 Midweek or weekend?  What kind of car?  Good for driving on snowy roads?

The new high-speed lift to the summit at Timberline can mean more time on snow than usual in the region.

DCSki Sponsor: Canaan Valley Resort
rover
8 months ago
Member since 01/27/2021 🔗
12 posts
Weekend.  Crossover SUV.
marzNC - DCSki Supporter
8 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,544 posts

rover wrote:

Weekend.  Crossover SUV.

 What type of terrain do you like?  Which is your favorite place to board in the mid-Atlantic?

I haven't skied Wisp or CV yet, so can't really compare between your three choices.

Denvern61
8 months ago
Member since 11/11/2020 🔗
10 posts
Have been to all three, hands down Timberline. Sitting here in CV now and rode TM today,. Snow is great, glades are open and they continue to blow like there's no tomorrow
wojo
8 months ago
Member since 01/17/2005 🔗
312 posts

rover wrote:

Never been to the 'high country' resorts, looking to go for a day and back not overnight from Fairfax County.
How do these compare/which do you recommend?

I snowboard FYI.

 Rover, I had never been to Timberline before, wrote a short trip report on another post, here is the link from a never-ever timberline . . . Just Do It. if link doesn't work its on the one titled - Overall Experience at Timberline Mountain

dcski.com

DCRedhawk21
8 months ago
Member since 12/22/2020 🔗
1 posts

I’ve never been to CV, but I will say timberline seems to get fairly crowded on the weekends and everything funnels into one lift for the most part. I’ve heard in talking to some folks at the resorts that CV gets less crowded on the weekends. Perhaps some others can weigh in.

I would think that if these two are options, then there’s no real reason to go to WISP.

rover
8 months ago
Member since 01/27/2021 🔗
12 posts

Thanks, how late in the season do they stay open until typically?

itdoesntmatter
8 months ago
Member since 01/17/2007 🔗
129 posts

I enjoy Wisp, am here right now as a matter of fact.  Yesterday, with lift tickets sold out, the longest we waited in line was 15 minutes back in North Camp.

I would say Wisp is without a doubt better than CV.  Timberline does have more vertical, but I do think Wisp allows you to be more spread out on the mountain with the different sides.  

wgo
8 months ago
Member since 02/10/2004 🔗
1,368 posts


 The previous post is a good summary. To add my thoughts:

CVR is great when there is a lot of natural, not so much otherwise.

For Wisp, I like the fact that it is spread out and has three distinct areas, although I did not like it as much when my kids were younger and they had to deal with trying to skate the flat part at the top. North Camp area is a bit of a missed opportunity, although I do like the 2 blues and the black run in that area. And the Face is pretty steep by mid-atlantic standards.

TL is much improved in terms of the new lifts and improved snowmaking, so even without a lot of natural there is decent variety. And when there is fresh snow it really skis much bigger than you would think. I have not been there on a Saturday so I cannot speak to the 20-30 minute wait - when I was there on MLK day I don't think the wait was ever longer than 5-10 minutes. But I don't doubt that it is drawing a crowd and gets busy on Saturday. 

RodneyBD wrote:

Here are a few random thoughts that assume it snowed and most trails are open and you ski blues and blacks, which is why you are motivated to drive out:

I haven't been to the new Timberline, I'm sure it is awesome and I'll get there soon, but if I have to stand in a lift line for 20-30 minutes (as has been reported in another thread) I would lose my mind.  Hopefully this is a Covid thing.  And perhaps it is just Saturdays.  But still.

Wisp is a mixed bag.  Trails don't connect, weird topography, signage is awful.  Not much in the way of glades.  Annoying run-outs.  But since there are several distinct parts of the "mountain" you can have bop around the hill for some variety which is nice. 

I have a soft spot for CVR.  In my experience there are rarely lift lines.  If there's been enough snow (the kind from the sky), lots of fun different fall lines and mixed terrain and glades.  But they can't/won't/never will make a decent effort at snowmaking, so plan accordingly.   

rover
7 months ago
Member since 01/27/2021 🔗
12 posts

So I went to Timberline.

-I was impressed by the snow itself, BUT the trails themselves were disappointing.

      -Very small, not a big drop, not long

I have snowboarded at Whitetail, and then mainly at Windham in the Catskills, and Killington.

I thought going in the high country here would be like the Catskills but not even close.

So I am wondering, what do you recommend for me?

I snowboard, I am an upper mid (high blue, maybe 1 black diamond).

-After the Catskills Whitetail is a no, what about Blue Knob?  Snowshoe too far.

snapdragon
7 months ago
Member since 01/27/2015 🔗
164 posts
Move out West 
marzNC - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,544 posts

rover wrote:

So I went to Timberline.

-I was impressed by the snow itself, BUT the trails themselves were disappointing.

      -Very small, not a big drop, not long

I have snowboarded at Whitetail, and then mainly at Windham in the Catskills, and Killington.

I thought going in the high country here would be like the Catskills but not even close.

So I am wondering, what do you recommend for me?

I snowboard, I am an upper mid (high blue, maybe 1 black diamond).

-After the Catskills Whitetail is a no, what about Blue Knob?  Snowshoe too far.

 Yep, the mountains in the southeast and mid-Atlantic don't have nearly the vertical that exists in the Catskills and the northeast.  It's comparing apples to oranges.  Massanutten has 1100 ft vertical, which is more than any ski area/resort in PA.  Next time check the vertical and acreage if you don't want to be surprised.

So you are not interested in the bumps or trees at Timberline, correct?

Have you heard of Plattekill?  Trails aren't that long compared to top-to-bottom at Hunter or Belleayre, but you get the full 1000 ft vertical with very little run out.  Also no lift lines on weekends.  It's only open Fri-Sun.

wgo
7 months ago
Member since 02/10/2004 🔗
1,368 posts

tbf if the OP went recently there may not have been as much tree skiing available, and I believe the bumps on The Drop were groomed out. TL stands out when there is plentiful natural snow and you can ski anywhere in the woods (which was the case for the entire month of February). Otherwise...yeah, you have a 1000 ft mountain with 7 or 8 ways down from the top. I happen to like those 7 or 8 ways down but it is not going to compare to bigger mountains. 

I do think the runs at Blue Knob may provide more  of what the OP is looking for, *when the resort is fully open*, which is rare (I do think that occurred this season for the first time in a while). But you are still talking about a hill that is just a shade under 1100 vertical, so set your expectations accordingly.

yellowsnow
7 months ago
Member since 12/15/2005 🔗
271 posts

 

snapdragon wrote:

Move out West 

LOL.  Perfect.

bryantfsu93
7 months ago
Member since 01/29/2021 🔗
4 posts


 

rover wrote:

So I went to Timberline.

-I was impressed by the snow itself, BUT the trails themselves were disappointing.

      -Very small, not a big drop, not long

I have snowboarded at Whitetail, and then mainly at Windham in the Catskills, and Killington.

I thought going in the high country here would be like the Catskills but not even close.

So I am wondering, what do you recommend for me?

I snowboard, I am an upper mid (high blue, maybe 1 black diamond).

-After the Catskills Whitetail is a no, what about Blue Knob?  Snowshoe too far.


Just checked, Windham has 1600 vertical feet.  Snowshoe has two runs that are 1600 vert (a black and a double black).  Nothing else around here is close to the vert at Windham.  TBL is 1000 vert', you might try Massanutten, it is 1100, the black slopes are not steep but they are a little longer than say White Lightning at TBL (could just be my impression).

  

pagamony - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 02/23/2005 🔗
840 posts

After you have lived here a few years you learn to either take what you got, travel north or west, or switch sports.  We can't change geography or climate.  We all have preferences, but the good thing is we have a few choices so you try them all see what fits.  

(move west was the best answer, imo :-))

Scott - DCSki Editor
7 months ago
Member since 10/10/1999 🔗
1,143 posts
And while Mid-Atlantic ski areas may be lacking in vertical, they more than make up for it by offering innovative vertical hopscotching.
wgo
7 months ago
Member since 02/10/2004 🔗
1,368 posts


 3 weeks early, Scott.

Scott wrote:

And while Mid-Atlantic ski areas may be lacking in vertical, they more than make up for it by offering innovative vertical hopscotching.
bousquet19 - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 02/23/2006 🔗
705 posts

pagamony wrote:

After you have lived here a few years you learn to either take what you got, travel north or west, or switch sports.  We can't change geography or climate.  We all have preferences, but the good thing is we have a few choices so you try them all see what fits.  

(move west was the best answer, imo :-))

 +1 re. the Mid-Atlantic.

(if the West doesn't suffice, there's always the Alps or Himalayas)

mdr227
7 months ago
Member since 01/11/2016 🔗
139 posts
I'd say Timberline hands down for both a day trip and overnight trip from Northern VA.    Corridor H has really made the drive to Canaan Valley much easier, though if you own a Tesla much easier to do Wisp with a few supercharger options along the route while going to Canaan Valley you could get some pretty serious range anxiety in the mountains with the nearest supercharger along the way being 95 miles or so from Timberline.    Terrain at Timberline is great for this area and the new owners have really done a great job (prior to this year Wisp might have been my choice).   One of the big positives for me with Timberline is that groups of varying abilities can ski from the same lift all day and meet up at the bottom easily.  
marzNC - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,544 posts

mdr227 wrote:

I'd say Timberline hands down for both a day trip and overnight trip from Northern VA.    Corridor H has really made the drive to Canaan Valley much easier, though if you own a Tesla much easier to do Wisp with a few supercharger options along the route while going to Canaan Valley you could get some pretty serious range anxiety in the mountains with the nearest supercharger along the way being 95 miles or so from Timberline.    Terrain at Timberline is great for this area and the new owners have really done a great job (prior to this year Wisp might have been my choice).   One of the big positives for me with Timberline is that groups of varying abilities can ski from the same lift all day and meet up at the bottom easily.  

 One reason I wanted a RAV4 Prime PHEV instead of a Tesla was the practicality of being able to operate in hybrid mode for longer drives. :-)

Agree that Timberline is set up very nicely for mixed ability groups.

DCSki Sponsor: Canaan Valley Resort
marzNC - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,544 posts

mdr227 wrote:

I'd say Timberline hands down for both a day trip and overnight trip from Northern VA.    Corridor H has really made the drive to Canaan Valley much easier, though if you own a Tesla much easier to do Wisp with a few supercharger options along the route while going to Canaan Valley you could get some pretty serious range anxiety in the mountains with the nearest supercharger along the way being 95 miles or so from Timberline.    Terrain at Timberline is great for this area and the new owners have really done a great job (prior to this year Wisp might have been my choice).   One of the big positives for me with Timberline is that groups of varying abilities can ski from the same lift all day and meet up at the bottom easily.  

 One reason I wanted a RAV4 Prime PHEV instead of a Tesla was the practicality of being able to operate in hybrid mode for longer drives. :-)

Agree that Timberline is set up very nicely for mixed ability groups.

MarkosC
7 months ago
Member since 02/27/2021 🔗
5 posts

I've honestly been thinking a variant of this question, and I guess I'll post here than start a new thread.

I'm a beginner; still mastering green trails and hope eventually be able to do OK on blue trails.  I'm looking in particular for a good array of green trails.  And one, ideally, that won't be loaded with people speeding by me uncontrolled while I'm practicing turns and edging.  :D

I've been looking to go to a local resort for at about 3-5 days next winter, and probably take a 2-3 lessons over the course of my stay.  I've been to Wisp over a long weekend years ago (where I first learned to ski honestly) and thought it met my requirements: I would go there for a day trip if it weren't so far.  

What do folks think would be the best resort for me to go to among these three and Snowshoe?  Looking at the maps, it seems Snowshoe and Wisp might be the best choices - though my impression from the other thread is that Snowshoe can get really crowded, and is more expensive?

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,544 posts

MarkosC wrote:

I've honestly been thinking a variant of this question, and I guess I'll post here than start a new thread.

I'm a beginner; still mastering green trails and hope eventually be able to do OK on blue trails.  I'm looking in particular for a good array of green trails.  And one, ideally, that won't be loaded with people speeding by me uncontrolled while I'm practicing turns and edging.  :D

I've been looking to go to a local resort for at about 3-5 days next winter, and probably take a 2-3 lessons over the course of my stay.  I've been to Wisp over a long weekend years ago (where I first learned to ski honestly) and thought it met my requirements: I would go there for a day trip if it weren't so far.  

What do folks think would be the best resort for me to go to among these three and Snowshoe?  Looking at the maps, it seems Snowshoe and Wisp might be the best choices - though my impression from the other thread is that Snowshoe can get really crowded, and is more expensive?

 Where exactly are you driving from?  Can you make it to the slopes midweek at all?  Or stuck with weekends only?

Certainly little reason to drive longer to Snowshoe instead of going to CV or Timberline.  But if you want to drive less, Bryce may be worth considering.  Note that Bryce, Massanutten, and CV are on the Indy Pass.  For about $200 you would be able to ski 6 days if you spent two days at each place.

Denvern61
7 months ago
Member since 11/11/2020 🔗
10 posts


 Bingo, you hit the nail on the head. Born in colorado, high school in the whites of New Hampshire, college in Vermont and northern california and then for whatever reason moved to northern Virginia (WTF). Could only dream of getting 75 + days on the snow, even made the trip to southern vermont about once or twice a month from virginia for a few yrs. 

Once married, told wife I had to find snow and good snow at that or I was moving back to North Conway area.  So, long stories could be told but Davis WV is the best area for snow lovers in the mid Atlantic,  really have to go well North to get better snow and winter play. 

Only in CV can you rip decent blacks, play in tree wells(kinda) in the morning, cross country (classic/skate/tel) in the afternoon and go for a snowshoe trekk under a full moon all within minutes of each other.  Only thing missing is ice climbing and ripping across a frozen lake on a snow machine.  not to to long ago we hit 180 + inches depending on who you talked to 👍

Take what you can get, CV is it Just imo.  Yes out west is bigger better...........

pagamony wrote:

After you have lived here a few years you learn to either take what you got, travel north or west, or switch sports.  We can't change geography or climate.  We all have preferences, but the good thing is we have a few choices so you try them all see what fits.  

(move west was the best answer, imo :-))

wgo
7 months ago
Member since 02/10/2004 🔗
1,368 posts


 Good content.

Denvern61 wrote:


 Bingo, you hit the nail on the head. Born in colorado, high school in the whites of New Hampshire, college in Vermont and northern california and then for whatever reason moved to northern Virginia (WTF). Could only dream of getting 75 + days on the snow, even made the trip to southern vermont about once or twice a month from virginia for a few yrs. 

Once married, told wife I had to find snow and good snow at that or I was moving back to North Conway area.  So, long stories could be told but Davis WV is the best area for snow lovers in the mid Atlantic,  really have to go well North to get better snow and winter play. 

Only in CV can you rip decent blacks, play in tree wells(kinda) in the morning, cross country (classic/skate/tel) in the afternoon and go for a snowshoe trekk under a full moon all within minutes of each other.  Only thing missing is ice climbing and ripping across a frozen lake on a snow machine.  not to to long ago we hit 180 + inches depending on who you talked to 👍

Take what you can get, CV is it Just imo.  Yes out west is bigger better...........

pagamony wrote:

After you have lived here a few years you learn to either take what you got, travel north or west, or switch sports.  We can't change geography or climate.  We all have preferences, but the good thing is we have a few choices so you try them all see what fits.  

(move west was the best answer, imo :-))

MarkosC
7 months ago
Member since 02/27/2021 🔗
5 posts

marzNC wrote:

MarkosC wrote:

I've honestly been thinking a variant of this question, and I guess I'll post here than start a new thread.

I'm a beginner; still mastering green trails and hope eventually be able to do OK on blue trails.  I'm looking in particular for a good array of green trails.  And one, ideally, that won't be loaded with people speeding by me uncontrolled while I'm practicing turns and edging.  :D

I've been looking to go to a local resort for at about 3-5 days next winter, and probably take a 2-3 lessons over the course of my stay.  I've been to Wisp over a long weekend years ago (where I first learned to ski honestly) and thought it met my requirements: I would go there for a day trip if it weren't so far.  

What do folks think would be the best resort for me to go to among these three and Snowshoe?  Looking at the maps, it seems Snowshoe and Wisp might be the best choices - though my impression from the other thread is that Snowshoe can get really crowded, and is more expensive?

 Where exactly are you driving from?  Can you make it to the slopes midweek at all?  Or stuck with weekends only?

Certainly little reason to drive longer to Snowshoe instead of going to CV or Timberline.  But if you want to drive less, Bryce may be worth considering.  Note that Bryce, Massanutten, and CV are on the Indy Pass.  For about $200 you would be able to ski 6 days if you spent two days at each place.

 Thanks!  I'd be coming in from Falls Church.   My concerns with CV is that there are very few green trails, and lots of black trails.   Not quite as bad at Timberline, but still it seems there's only 2-3 main green trails.  Bryce seems to have only one, though it's two hours away vice 3 for the non-Showshoe ones?

rover
7 months ago
Member since 01/27/2021 🔗
12 posts

bryantfsu93 wrote:


 

rover wrote:

So I went to Timberline.

-I was impressed by the snow itself, BUT the trails themselves were disappointing.

      -Very small, not a big drop, not long

I have snowboarded at Whitetail, and then mainly at Windham in the Catskills, and Killington.

I thought going in the high country here would be like the Catskills but not even close.

So I am wondering, what do you recommend for me?

I snowboard, I am an upper mid (high blue, maybe 1 black diamond).

-After the Catskills Whitetail is a no, what about Blue Knob?  Snowshoe too far.


Just checked, Windham has 1600 vertical feet.  Snowshoe has two runs that are 1600 vert (a black and a double black).  Nothing else around here is close to the vert at Windham.  TBL is 1000 vert', you might try Massanutten, it is 1100, the black slopes are not steep but they are a little longer than say White Lightning at TBL (could just be my impression).

  

 Well first to others, I have never snowboarded out west.

I only started less than a decade ago, at Whitetail.

Then I've been in NY and Windham in the Catskills has been my spot.

I thought given that Canaan Valley has arguably a colder climate, similar elevation, and terrain, that TBL it would the Mid-Atlantic's Catskills.

I was stunned that honestly Whitetail is just as steep with longer trails.

So is there anything in the region like the resorts at the Catskills?

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,544 posts

MarkosC wrote:

marzNC wrote:

MarkosC wrote:

I've honestly been thinking a variant of this question, and I guess I'll post here than start a new thread.

I'm a beginner; still mastering green trails and hope eventually be able to do OK on blue trails.  I'm looking in particular for a good array of green trails.  And one, ideally, that won't be loaded with people speeding by me uncontrolled while I'm practicing turns and edging.  :D

I've been looking to go to a local resort for at about 3-5 days next winter, and probably take a 2-3 lessons over the course of my stay.  I've been to Wisp over a long weekend years ago (where I first learned to ski honestly) and thought it met my requirements: I would go there for a day trip if it weren't so far.  

What do folks think would be the best resort for me to go to among these three and Snowshoe?  Looking at the maps, it seems Snowshoe and Wisp might be the best choices - though my impression from the other thread is that Snowshoe can get really crowded, and is more expensive?

 Where exactly are you driving from?  Can you make it to the slopes midweek at all?  Or stuck with weekends only?

Certainly little reason to drive longer to Snowshoe instead of going to CV or Timberline.  But if you want to drive less, Bryce may be worth considering.  Note that Bryce, Massanutten, and CV are on the Indy Pass.  For about $200 you would be able to ski 6 days if you spent two days at each place.

 Thanks!  I'd be coming in from Falls Church.   My concerns with CV is that there are very few green trails, and lots of black trails.   Not quite as bad at Timberline, but still it seems there's only 2-3 main green trails.  Bryce seems to have only one, though it's two hours away vice 3 for the non-Showshoe ones?

 Keep in mind that green/blue/black are only relative to a given ski area.  The blues at Bryce are not really the same as blues at Timberline or Snowshoe in terms of steepness, length, or width.  I have a feeling that if you went to Bryce and had a couple lessons, you might well be able to ski all the blues there.  Once you are comfortable there, then it would be more worthwhile to do the longer drive to WV.

When you compare ski areas, check the vertical drop and the total acreage.  But even that doesn't tell the whole story.  For instance, Massanutten has 1100 ft vertical, which is more than any ski resort in PA.   There is a long green but it's very flat and on the crowded side because advanced skiers use it to get back to the base.  There is also a short green and a short easy blue (Lift 5 mid station).  However, the progression as someone improves is excellent.  Timberline has about 1000 ft vertical.  But there is a green that starts at the summit.  So for a beginner, can be a fun day even just mostly skiing that long trail.  Timberline has a high-speed lift that takes about 5 min to the top.  5 min up, 5-15 min down.  At Mnut, the greens are more like 5 min up and 3-5 min down even for a beginner.  And more likely to have to wait for 5-15 min to load on a weekend after 11am.

Consider the Indy Pass for 2021-22.  For about $200 you could ski 2 days at Bryce, Massanutten, and CV.  Bryce and CV will be less crowded.

pagamony - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago (edited 7 months ago)
Member since 02/23/2005 🔗
840 posts

 I like that you told her this *after* you got married.  Very nice.  How'd that work out ?

I think an important point below is 'snow lovers'.  The valley may not have the most vert, but they have the most snow (along with that place an hour south) and being able to get to real snow is real important - sometimes you just gotta have it real.  And personally, I just like it there.  

Denvern61 wrote:

Once married, told wife I had to find snow and good snow at that or I was moving back to North Conway area.  So, long stories could be told but Davis WV is the best area for snow lovers in the mid Atlantic,  really have to go well North to get better snow and winter play. 

bryantfsu93
7 months ago
Member since 01/29/2021 🔗
4 posts


 Like I said, the only place similar to Windham is going to be Snowshoe.  You just don't have enough vert or acres at any other mid-a resort to compare.

I think you have to find the place that gives you good vibes.  TBL and Whitetail are similar to me in many ways.  I prefer TBL because I find it less crowded and I think it has better quality snow.  I think TBL has the more challenging top end terrain but I think I prefer Whitetails blue runs.  I think Whitetail has a better learning progression.  I like how Whitetail has multiple high speed lifts.  Every spot has it's advantages, you just gotta find what is most important to you.

If you are only going to enjoy 1500+ vert (Only 2 slopes) and 200+ acres then Snowshoe is the only game in  (kinda out) town. 

rover wrote:

bryantfsu93 wrote:


 

rover wrote:

So I went to Timberline.

-I was impressed by the snow itself, BUT the trails themselves were disappointing.

      -Very small, not a big drop, not long

I have snowboarded at Whitetail, and then mainly at Windham in the Catskills, and Killington.

I thought going in the high country here would be like the Catskills but not even close.

So I am wondering, what do you recommend for me?

I snowboard, I am an upper mid (high blue, maybe 1 black diamond).

-After the Catskills Whitetail is a no, what about Blue Knob?  Snowshoe too far.


Just checked, Windham has 1600 vertical feet.  Snowshoe has two runs that are 1600 vert (a black and a double black).  Nothing else around here is close to the vert at Windham.  TBL is 1000 vert', you might try Massanutten, it is 1100, the black slopes are not steep but they are a little longer than say White Lightning at TBL (could just be my impression).

  

 Well first to others, I have never snowboarded out west.

I only started less than a decade ago, at Whitetail.

Then I've been in NY and Windham in the Catskills has been my spot.

I thought given that Canaan Valley has arguably a colder climate, similar elevation, and terrain, that TBL it would the Mid-Atlantic's Catskills.

I was stunned that honestly Whitetail is just as steep with longer trails.

So is there anything in the region like the resorts at the Catskills?

Mongo
7 months ago
Member since 02/24/2015 🔗
52 posts
I’ve never been to Timberline or Wisp, but I am unclear why you’d prefer them to Snowshoe. Drive an additional hour to reach a much bigger resort doesn’t seem like a bad deal to me. Three hours each way to TL or Wisp is not a “day trip” - too painful for me, would need at least one night to make it tolerable.
Keith_Moon
7 months ago
Member since 02/19/2019 🔗
162 posts


Cataloochee, Ober Gatlinburg and Winterplace are also on the Indy Pass.  I'm not gonna say Ober or Cat are fantastic just for skiing but if you combine them with a trip to Asheville and/or Gatlinburg they might be worth your time if you have the Indy Pass.  In my experience there is not a lot else to do near  Winterplace but if you are looking for a place with lots of green and easy blue trails I think it would work for you.  Plus they get better natural snow coverage than all the Virginia resorts.  In fact I think the Indy Pass is tailor made for a Mid-Atlantic/South Eastern skier looking for easier runs and a bit of variety.

marzNC wrote:

MarkosC wrote:

marzNC wrote:

MarkosC wrote:

I've honestly been thinking a variant of this question, and I guess I'll post here than start a new thread.

I'm a beginner; still mastering green trails and hope eventually be able to do OK on blue trails.  I'm looking in particular for a good array of green trails.  And one, ideally, that won't be loaded with people speeding by me uncontrolled while I'm practicing turns and edging.  :D

I've been looking to go to a local resort for at about 3-5 days next winter, and probably take a 2-3 lessons over the course of my stay.  I've been to Wisp over a long weekend years ago (where I first learned to ski honestly) and thought it met my requirements: I would go there for a day trip if it weren't so far.  

What do folks think would be the best resort for me to go to among these three and Snowshoe?  Looking at the maps, it seems Snowshoe and Wisp might be the best choices - though my impression from the other thread is that Snowshoe can get really crowded, and is more expensive?

 Where exactly are you driving from?  Can you make it to the slopes midweek at all?  Or stuck with weekends only?

Certainly little reason to drive longer to Snowshoe instead of going to CV or Timberline.  But if you want to drive less, Bryce may be worth considering.  Note that Bryce, Massanutten, and CV are on the Indy Pass.  For about $200 you would be able to ski 6 days if you spent two days at each place.

 Thanks!  I'd be coming in from Falls Church.   My concerns with CV is that there are very few green trails, and lots of black trails.   Not quite as bad at Timberline, but still it seems there's only 2-3 main green trails.  Bryce seems to have only one, though it's two hours away vice 3 for the non-Showshoe ones?

 Keep in mind that green/blue/black are only relative to a given ski area.  The blues at Bryce are not really the same as blues at Timberline or Snowshoe in terms of steepness, length, or width.  I have a feeling that if you went to Bryce and had a couple lessons, you might well be able to ski all the blues there.  Once you are comfortable there, then it would be more worthwhile to do the longer drive to WV.

When you compare ski areas, check the vertical drop and the total acreage.  But even that doesn't tell the whole story.  For instance, Massanutten has 1100 ft vertical, which is more than any ski resort in PA.   There is a long green but it's very flat and on the crowded side because advanced skiers use it to get back to the base.  There is also a short green and a short easy blue (Lift 5 mid station).  However, the progression as someone improves is excellent.  Timberline has about 1000 ft vertical.  But there is a green that starts at the summit.  So for a beginner, can be a fun day even just mostly skiing that long trail.  Timberline has a high-speed lift that takes about 5 min to the top.  5 min up, 5-15 min down.  At Mnut, the greens are more like 5 min up and 3-5 min down even for a beginner.  And more likely to have to wait for 5-15 min to load on a weekend after 11am.

Consider the Indy Pass for 2021-22.  For about $200 you could ski 2 days at Bryce, Massanutten, and CV.  Bryce and CV will be less crowded.

powday
7 months ago
Member since 01/6/2014 🔗
32 posts


 Not to nitpick Massanutten but that 1100 ft vert is deceiving in that how many of those vertical feet are on the green runout trail from the bottom of Diamond Jim and MAK to the base lodge? The same can be said for Cupp Run and Shays at Snowshoe... 1500 ft vertical but at least 1 longish flat.  One thing that Timberline, Whitetail, and Canaan Valley have is a pretty consistent vertical from the top to the bottom with limited runout. 

marzNC wrote:

MarkosC wrote:

marzNC wrote:

MarkosC wrote:

I've honestly been thinking a variant of this question, and I guess I'll post here than start a new thread.

I'm a beginner; still mastering green trails and hope eventually be able to do OK on blue trails.  I'm looking in particular for a good array of green trails.  And one, ideally, that won't be loaded with people speeding by me uncontrolled while I'm practicing turns and edging.  :D

I've been looking to go to a local resort for at about 3-5 days next winter, and probably take a 2-3 lessons over the course of my stay.  I've been to Wisp over a long weekend years ago (where I first learned to ski honestly) and thought it met my requirements: I would go there for a day trip if it weren't so far.  

What do folks think would be the best resort for me to go to among these three and Snowshoe?  Looking at the maps, it seems Snowshoe and Wisp might be the best choices - though my impression from the other thread is that Snowshoe can get really crowded, and is more expensive?

 Where exactly are you driving from?  Can you make it to the slopes midweek at all?  Or stuck with weekends only?

Certainly little reason to drive longer to Snowshoe instead of going to CV or Timberline.  But if you want to drive less, Bryce may be worth considering.  Note that Bryce, Massanutten, and CV are on the Indy Pass.  For about $200 you would be able to ski 6 days if you spent two days at each place.

 Thanks!  I'd be coming in from Falls Church.   My concerns with CV is that there are very few green trails, and lots of black trails.   Not quite as bad at Timberline, but still it seems there's only 2-3 main green trails.  Bryce seems to have only one, though it's two hours away vice 3 for the non-Showshoe ones?

 Keep in mind that green/blue/black are only relative to a given ski area.  The blues at Bryce are not really the same as blues at Timberline or Snowshoe in terms of steepness, length, or width.  I have a feeling that if you went to Bryce and had a couple lessons, you might well be able to ski all the blues there.  Once you are comfortable there, then it would be more worthwhile to do the longer drive to WV.

When you compare ski areas, check the vertical drop and the total acreage.  But even that doesn't tell the whole story.  For instance, Massanutten has 1100 ft vertical, which is more than any ski resort in PA.   There is a long green but it's very flat and on the crowded side because advanced skiers use it to get back to the base.  There is also a short green and a short easy blue (Lift 5 mid station).  However, the progression as someone improves is excellent.  Timberline has about 1000 ft vertical.  But there is a green that starts at the summit.  So for a beginner, can be a fun day even just mostly skiing that long trail.  Timberline has a high-speed lift that takes about 5 min to the top.  5 min up, 5-15 min down.  At Mnut, the greens are more like 5 min up and 3-5 min down even for a beginner.  And more likely to have to wait for 5-15 min to load on a weekend after 11am.

Consider the Indy Pass for 2021-22.  For about $200 you could ski 2 days at Bryce, Massanutten, and CV.  Bryce and CV will be less crowded.

rover
7 months ago
Member since 01/27/2021 🔗
12 posts

OK, gotcha, Snowshoe.

I guess even Blue Knob or Seven Springs wouldn't be similar?

I'd be coming from Fairfax County; Snowshoe I would think requires an overnight.

wgo
7 months ago
Member since 02/10/2004 🔗
1,368 posts
It's been stated here already but just so it is clear: the 1500 vt feet at snowshoe is just for 2 runs. The rest of the runs are 600-700 vertical feet. My vote would be for Blue Knob *if it is fully open*.
marzNC - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago (edited 7 months ago)
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,544 posts

Yep, total vertical is only one piece of the story.  For the OP, the point is that if total vert is under 1000 then expecting trails to be similar to places with 1200+ ft vert is unrealistic.

Lift 6 at Massanutten has about 800 ft vertical by itself.  When going back to the base, it's a long run out that is the entire length of the long green called Southern Comfort.  There are ski areas in PA where total vert is 800-900 ft.  While it's only two trails (when both open), what makes Lift 6 unusual is that there is never a lift line, even on holiday weekends.  Wintergreen Highlands trails (all blacks) are great with a high speed lift and multiple ways down (if all open), but lift lines on weekends are an issue.

I made the mistake my first time at Whitetail of not having enough speed when heading back to the lodge from the lift that serves black terrain on the flat trail along the edge of the skiable terrain.

Best 1000 ft vertical that I've skied in the east is at Plattekill.  I would make the effort to drive up there once or twice a season if I lived in DC.  Closest place to enjoy lake effect snow.

powday wrote:


 Not to nitpick Massanutten but that 1100 ft vert is deceiving in that how many of those vertical feet are on the green runout trail from the bottom of Diamond Jim and MAK to the base lodge? The same can be said for Cupp Run and Shays at Snowshoe... 1500 ft vertical but at least 1 longish flat.  One thing that Timberline, Whitetail, and Canaan Valley have is a pretty consistent vertical from the top to the bottom with limited runout. 

needawax
7 months ago
Member since 04/19/2019 🔗
14 posts
I gotta get myself down to Massanutten.  Never been there and only 3:45 away from Pittsburgh.  Wonder how many weeks they have left?  Next weekend might be a possibility. 
marzNC - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,544 posts

needawax wrote:

I gotta get myself down to Massanutten.  Never been there and only 3:45 away from Pittsburgh.  Wonder how many weeks they have left?  Next weekend might be a possibility. 

 Official closing day is still March 21.  Check the Mnut webcams after it cools down.

How the the drive time compare to going to Timberline?

A while back I drove up with my daughter and a father and son from the Triangle for the first weekend of March.  The same weekend a father and daughter drove from Pittsburgh.  The girls were both good skiers who could ski off Lift 6.  We lucked out.  It snowed a few days before the planned trip.  The Pittsburgh father was willing to take all three tweens to the waterpark on Saturday evening, so that was a bonus.  I'm not a water fan and neither was the NC father.

Keith_Moon
7 months ago
Member since 02/19/2019 🔗
162 posts

This web site claims to show "true" vertical FWIW:

http://mountainvertical.com/

rover
7 months ago
Member since 01/27/2021 🔗
12 posts

Alright so basically unless I am a black or double black skier (snowshoe) I ain't going to get that Windham experience in the mid-Atlantic?

What, within a day and back drive from Fairfax County, would be the closest to that I can get?

The Colonel - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 03/5/2004 🔗
3,107 posts
Timberline Mountain and Wintergreen
JimK - DCSki Columnist
7 months ago (edited 7 months ago)
Member since 01/14/2004 🔗
2,728 posts

Just a few comments from a long time mid-Atlantic skier;  I've been to all the ski areas within 4 hours of Fairfax and I've also been to Windham a few times (and close to 100 ski areas altogether).  Honestly, Whitetail is a pretty good approximation of Windham.  Although Windham has more trails and a bit more vertical, it feels smaller to me than other 1600' vertical mtns such as nearby Hunter Mtn, NY or Mt. Snow, VT.  IMHO, Windham skis somewhat like a couple of Whitetails put side by side.  Both have a lot of similar trails that shoot straight down the fall-line and are usually covered with good manmade snow.

I understand that you already visited Timberline.  The trails that come straight down the center of the Timberline layout, such as White Lightening, are representative of some of the longer, continuously steep fall lines in the mid-Atlantic.  The trails that wind down the left and right perimeter of Timberline, Salamander and Twister, are representative of some of the better/longer beginner-intermediate trails in the mid-Atlantic.  

The two runs in Snowshoe's Western Territory, Cupp and Shays, are probably the only examples in the mid-Atlantic that would be noticeably longer with good continuous steepness.  The rest of Snowshoe's terrain is comparable to many mid-Atlantic ski areas, although Snowshoe's higher elevation is advantageous for snow conditions. 

There is other terrain/runs in the mid-Atlantic that might be comparable in length and vertical to some of the Timberline terrain such as Wild Turkey at Wintergreen, Paradice/Diamond Jim at Massanutten, and several others.  Even Whitetail is not much smaller.  Mid-Atlantic ski areas tend to distinguish themselves with good snowmaking and grooming offering early and reliable skiing despite the vagaries of weather.  Some offer interesting glades and other natural snow terrain that comes alive on the less frequent occasions when we get a big natural snow storms.

Having said all the above, one ski area that has not been mentioned that you  might find interesting is Seven Springs, PA.  It's about three hours from Fairfax and doesn't have a huge vertical, but has quite a large number of runs and lifts.  There is also a good terrain park scene there for snowboarders.

rover wrote:

Alright so basically unless I am a black or double black skier (snowshoe) I ain't going to get that Windham experience in the mid-Atlantic?

What, within a day and back drive from Fairfax County, would be the closest to that I can get?

dclivejazz
7 months ago
Member since 03/5/2017 🔗
30 posts

@MarkosC I’m also mostly a green slope skier and meant to reply to another post of yours where you mentioned Sidewinder and Snow Park at Whitetail in another post. IMO those are amongst the best green options local to DC. But it is best to go on uncrowned days to avoid the barely-controlled whizzing flybies. Snow Park in particular is fairly challenging for a green but wide enough for wider turns and a lot of ways to get down while avoiding others.

Liberty is also now promoting Vertigo and Adventure Alley as green options and they are slightly more challenging than Lower Blue Streak.

The greens at Round Top are very short but I have been able to manage the blue Minuteman with wide turns along most of it, after hockey-stop turning down along the right side at the top.

Hidden Valley is pretty green skier friendly and also has blues that are manageable, such as Lower Continental. I haven’t gone this year because I don’t want to stay overnight but in normal times their associated hotel is very pleasant and reasonable if basic. They have really cool fireplaces in each room. Seven Springs nearby has several decent green options and another decent hotel option but can get crowded on weekends.

My main problem with advancing to blues is that I’m very cautious and instinctively revert to the backseat after any build up of speed. I’m sure more lessons are the key to getting past this but I’m waiting until next year for that. Also, last year I got a very helpful lesson as part of an outing with the Ski Club of Washington and look forward to doing more of that next year too.

Finally, in normal times the big name resorts you have to travel to out West or in Vermont are a lot of fun to check out and sometimes they have good lessons packages. My partner got me into skiing and is pretty good at it. She just can’t really teach it so it’s especially fun to go to places like that with her. Their greens can be really long, but often they are narrow and pretty steep for what we consider a green around here. 

marzNC wrote:

MarkosC wrote:

I've honestly been thinking a variant of this question, and I guess I'll post here than start a new thread.

I'm a beginner; still mastering green trails and hope eventually be able to do OK on blue trails.  I'm looking in particular for a good array of green trails.  And one, ideally, that won't be loaded with people speeding by me uncontrolled while I'm practicing turns and edging.  :D

I've been looking to go to a local resort for at about 3-5 days next winter, and probably take a 2-3 lessons over the course of my stay.  I've been to Wisp over a long weekend years ago (where I first learned to ski honestly) and thought it met my requirements: I would go there for a day trip if it weren't so far.  

What do folks think would be the best resort for me to go to among these three and Snowshoe?  Looking at the maps, it seems Snowshoe and Wisp might be the best choices - though my impression from the other thread is that Snowshoe can get really crowded, and is more expensive?

 Where exactly are you driving from?  Can you make it to the slopes midweek at all?  Or stuck with weekends only?

Certainly little reason to drive longer to Snowshoe instead of going to CV or Timberline.  But if you want to drive less, Bryce may be worth considering.  Note that Bryce, Massanutten, and CV are on the Indy Pass.  For about $200 you would be able to ski 6 days if you spent two days at each place.

 

rover
7 months ago
Member since 01/27/2021 🔗
12 posts

JimK wrote:

Just a few comments from a long time mid-Atlantic skier;  I've been to all the ski areas within 4 hours of Fairfax and I've also been to Windham a few times (and close to 100 ski areas altogether).  Honestly, Whitetail is a pretty good approximation of Windham.  Although Windham has more trails and a bit more vertical, it feels smaller to me than other 1600' vertical mtns such as nearby Hunter Mtn, NY or Mt. Snow, VT.  IMHO, Windham skis somewhat like a couple of Whitetails put side by side.  Both have a lot of similar trails that shoot straight down the fall-line and are usually covered with good manmade snow.

I understand that you already visited Timberline.  The trails that come straight down the center of the Timberline layout, such as White Lightening, are representative of some of the longer, continuously steep fall lines in the mid-Atlantic.  The trails that wind down the left and right perimeter of Timberline, Salamander and Twister, are representative of some of the better/longer beginner-intermediate trails in the mid-Atlantic.  

The two runs in Snowshoe's Western Territory, Cupp and Shays, are probably the only examples in the mid-Atlantic that would be noticeably longer with good continuous steepness.  The rest of Snowshoe's terrain is comparable to many mid-Atlantic ski areas, although Snowshoe's higher elevation is advantageous for snow conditions. 

There is other terrain/runs in the mid-Atlantic that might be comparable in length and vertical to some of the Timberline terrain such as Wild Turkey at Wintergreen, Paradice/Diamond Jim at Wintergreen, and several others.  Even Whitetail is not much smaller.  Mid-Atlantic ski areas tend to distinguish themselves with good snowmaking and grooming offering early and reliable skiing despite the vagaries of weather.  Some offer interesting glades and other natural snow terrain that comes alive on the less frequent occasions when we get a big natural snow storms.

Having said all the above, one ski area that has not been mentioned that you  might find interesting is Seven Springs, PA.  It's about three hours from Fairfax and doesn't have a huge vertical, but has quite a large number of runs and lifts.  There is also a good terrain park scene there for snowboarders.

rover wrote:

Alright so basically unless I am a black or double black skier (snowshoe) I ain't going to get that Windham experience in the mid-Atlantic?

What, within a day and back drive from Fairfax County, would be the closest to that I can get?

 Thank you.

The reason I have been at Windham vs Hunter is that I have been a blue, now though I am upper blue/single diamond and probably going to do more Hunter.

So, let me see if I can get you to summarize......I am looking for a place I could drive to and from the same day from FFX Co that has good snow and good height/long runs like Windham....so it seems it goes (in no order):

-Whitetail (snow is meh, front range, but run length and vertical decent)

-Timberline (snow good, decent height, but length and trail options meh)......CV and WISP not much better

So 

-Wintergreen...really...that has good height and runs in Windham's caliber?  What about the snow?

-Snowshoe....confused...is it really worth the premium drive or is not that much better?

-Blue Knob.....whats the deal there?

-Seven Springs.....how is that compared to Windham, in that league?  (Only issue with Seven Springs is that it is run by the owner of the Pittsburgh Pirates who I try to boycott).

wgo
7 months ago
Member since 02/10/2004 🔗
1,368 posts


 This is a good post, but if the issue for the OP is that the runs at TL were not long enough then I don't think Massanutten and Wintergreen would meet his criteria - and I say this as someone who has skied both of them quite a bit and like them. Same if the issue is challenge (I do wonder if the OP tried any of the advanced glades at TL). I still think the most challenging terrain in the Mid-Atlantic is at Blue Knob, when it is fully open.

JimK wrote:

Just a few comments from a long time mid-Atlantic skier;  I've been to all the ski areas within 4 hours of Fairfax and I've also been to Windham a few times (and close to 100 ski areas altogether).  Honestly, Whitetail is a pretty good approximation of Windham.  Although Windham has more trails and a bit more vertical, it feels smaller to me than other 1600' vertical mtns such as nearby Hunter Mtn, NY or Mt. Snow, VT.  IMHO, Windham skis somewhat like a couple of Whitetails put side by side.  Both have a lot of similar trails that shoot straight down the fall-line and are usually covered with good manmade snow.

I understand that you already visited Timberline.  The trails that come straight down the center of the Timberline layout, such as White Lightening, are representative of some of the longer, continuously steep fall lines in the mid-Atlantic.  The trails that wind down the left and right perimeter of Timberline, Salamander and Twister, are representative of some of the better/longer beginner-intermediate trails in the mid-Atlantic.  

The two runs in Snowshoe's Western Territory, Cupp and Shays, are probably the only examples in the mid-Atlantic that would be noticeably longer with good continuous steepness.  The rest of Snowshoe's terrain is comparable to many mid-Atlantic ski areas, although Snowshoe's higher elevation is advantageous for snow conditions. 

There is other terrain/runs in the mid-Atlantic that might be comparable in length and vertical to some of the Timberline terrain such as Wild Turkey at Wintergreen, Paradice/Diamond Jim at Wintergreen, and several others.  Even Whitetail is not much smaller.  Mid-Atlantic ski areas tend to distinguish themselves with good snowmaking and grooming offering early and reliable skiing despite the vagaries of weather.  Some offer interesting glades and other natural snow terrain that comes alive on the less frequent occasions when we get a big natural snow storms.

Having said all the above, one ski area that has not been mentioned that you  might find interesting is Seven Springs, PA.  It's about three hours from Fairfax and doesn't have a huge vertical, but has quite a large number of runs and lifts.  There is also a good terrain park scene there for snowboarders.

rover wrote:

Alright so basically unless I am a black or double black skier (snowshoe) I ain't going to get that Windham experience in the mid-Atlantic?

What, within a day and back drive from Fairfax County, would be the closest to that I can get?

JimK - DCSki Columnist
7 months ago
Member since 01/14/2004 🔗
2,728 posts
Really, nothing south of NY compares to the better ski areas in NY, VT, NH, and ME.  If Snowshoe had 20 slopes in the Western Territory and all had 1500' vertical it might be better than Windham, but it doesn't.  Seven Springs is similar to Windham in it's horizontal spread, but much less vertical.  Blue Knob, IMHO, has the best terrain in the mid-Atlantic, but much of the best advanced stuff only comes into play when they have good natural snow conditions.  The gladed terrain at Timberline is close and it comes into play more often because they get more natural snow.
rover
7 months ago
Member since 01/27/2021 🔗
12 posts

JimK wrote:

Really, nothing south of NY compares to the better ski areas in NY, VT, NH, and ME.  If Snowshoe had 20 slopes in the Western Territory and all had 1500' vertical it might be better than Windham, but it doesn't.  Seven Springs is similar to Windham in it's horizontal spread, but much less vertical.  Blue Knob, IMHO, has the best terrain in the mid-Atlantic, but much of the best advanced stuff only comes into play when they have good natural snow conditions.  The gladed terrain at Timberline is close and it comes into play more often because they get more natural snow.

 Gotcha.  So it sounds like for me, if going to the mid-Atlantic, Blue Knob if all is open would be the best for what I want...and if not....then Whitetail...the others aren't going to be worth the extra drive it seems.

I am surprised Blue Knob doesn't get a lot of snow since it is more in the high country.

wgo
7 months ago
Member since 02/10/2004 🔗
1,368 posts
The Snowshoe question is tough. From what you describe, I think you would like the two 1500 vertical ft runs quite a bit. But would you be happy driving the 4.5 hours or whatever for the 2 runs? You can cross over from one run to the other halfway down so I guess you can say there are 3 ways down with the full 1500 vert but I am not sure how much of a difference that makes to you.
wgo
7 months ago
Member since 02/10/2004 🔗
1,368 posts


Blue knob gets a reasonable amount of snow for the area, it is just not situated in an area where it gets as much as TL/CV (or snowshoe for that matter). And it is still subject to the Mid-Atlantic thaws, so even if it got more snow it would still need better snowmaking to be reliably 100% open. 

rover wrote:

I am surprised Blue Knob doesn't get a lot of snow since it is more in the high country.

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,544 posts

A general comment for any newbies lurking about trail ratings.  Green/blue/black/double-black ratings are meant to be for a given ski area/resort only.  That's why blue is defined as "More Difficult" and black is "Most Difficult" or some variation of those descriptions.

Here are the trails for Timberline.  The blues are generally steeper than most of the blues at Massanutten.  Skiing the Glad Runner trees is quite a different experience than Lower White Lightning, which is a wide open trail and often groomed.  Mnut doesn't bother with double-black and only has blacks, with MakAttack being significantly more difficult than Paradice or DJ, assuming the bump long bumps have been formed.

The same is true out west.  Alta has green/blue/black.  The black terrain goes from Challenger that is groomed every so often to Main Chute that requires a 45-min hike, is very narrow, steep, and has cliffs on both sides.  Snowbird is on the other side of Mt. Baldy and has terrain designated as double-black, but that doesn't mean it's an easier mountain than Alta.

Standard recommendation for an advanced beginner or cautious intermediate when going to a new ski area is to start with a green before trying a blue.  Usually can get advice from someone at the base about which trails are the easier blues.  At big mountains, if there is a free mountain tour those are on greens or green/blue trails.  Can be a great way to learn where to go.

1616005508_gwhrmmfjkpvy.jpg

dclivejazz wrote:

@MarkosC I’m also mostly a green slope skier . . .

My main problem with advancing to blues is that I’m very cautious and instinctively revert to the backseat after any build up of speed. I’m sure more lessons are the key to getting past this but I’m waiting until next year for that. Also, last year I got a very helpful lesson as part of an outing with the Ski Club of Washington and look forward to doing more of that next year too.

Finally, in normal times the big name resorts you have to travel to out West or in Vermont are a lot of fun to check out and sometimes they have good lessons packages. My partner got me into skiing and is pretty good at it. She just can’t really teach it so it’s especially fun to go to places like that with her. Their greens can be really long, but often they are narrow and pretty steep for what we consider a green around here. 

marzNC wrote:

MarkosC wrote:

I've honestly been thinking a variant of this question, and I guess I'll post here than start a new thread.

I'm a beginner; still mastering green trails and hope eventually be able to do OK on blue trails.  I'm looking in particular for a good array of green trails.  And one, ideally, that won't be loaded with people speeding by me uncontrolled while I'm practicing turns and edging.  :D

wfyurasko - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 07/27/2014 🔗
219 posts

I'm enjoying this thread. My take as a 1-2 times a season (not this season tho) intermediate skier in 40s.

Timberline -- It wasn't into total decline when I went but getting there -- I feel like my legs burned more there than anywhere else within DC Commuter skier range. Twister was closed, despite being advertised as opening that day. I'm eager to ski it again.

Blue Knob - An inch or so of fresh powder that day made a huge difference. Often icy, not quite as many trails as they claim, but perhaps the most interesting place I've skied in the region. Pretty rustic too.

Whitetail - Snowtime got a lot out of that mountain despite location and orientation. I found it easy to justify going there instead of other places given proximity to DC. Not sure how new ownership is going, but it doesn't sound great.

Massanutten - The two Lift 6 runs are among my favorites - did laps on them all day. Beautiful scenery too.

Elk - Not really "commuting" distance but I felt like it skied bigger than actually is - cheap lodging up and down I-81 corridor, so it's worth dropping $55 on Friday night for a full day Saturday.

My first hand reports: YAAAAH-HOO-HOO-HOO-HOOEY!


marzNC - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,544 posts

Next time you feel like driving north into PA, considering checking out Montage.  It's unusual because the steeper trails are below the lodge, which is at mid-mountain.  White Lightning is steep enough to require a winch cat.  Not as busy as other eastern PA ski areas on weekends.

wfyurasko wrote:

I'm enjoying this thread. My take as a 1-2 times a season (not this season tho) intermediate skier in 40s.

Timberline -- It wasn't into total decline when I went but getting there -- I feel like my legs burned more there than anywhere else within DC Commuter skier range. Twister was closed, despite being advertised as opening that day. I'm eager to ski it again.

Blue Knob - An inch or so of fresh powder that day made a huge difference. Often icy, not quite as many trails as they claim, but perhaps the most interesting place I've skied in the region. Pretty rustic too.

Whitetail - Snowtime got a lot out of that mountain despite location and orientation. I found it easy to justify going there instead of other places given proximity to DC. Not sure how new ownership is going, but it doesn't sound great.

Massanutten - The two Lift 6 runs are among my favorites - did laps on them all day. Beautiful scenery too.

Elk - Not really "commuting" distance but I felt like it skied bigger than actually is - cheap lodging up and down I-81 corridor, so it's worth dropping $55 on Friday night for a full day Saturday.

My first hand reports: YAAAAH-HOO-HOO-HOO-HOOEY!


 

rover
7 months ago
Member since 01/27/2021 🔗
12 posts

Let's remove 'snow' quality from the equation.....in terms of run length/height....which mid-atlantic resort will give me the closest feel to Windham/Catskills?

Lets assume snow is fine for this exercise.

wfyurasko - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 07/27/2014 🔗
219 posts

marzNC wrote:

Next time you feel like driving north into PA, considering checking out Montage.  It's unusual because the steeper trails are below the lodge, which is at mid-mountain.  White Lightning is steep enough to require a winch cat.  Not as busy as other eastern PA ski areas on weekends.

I skied it one Friday night in college with a friend -- $10 lift tickets from a radio station promo. As we drove past it on the way to Elk in 2019, my friend and I lamented that we blew it by not doing that every weekend. I don't remember specifics, but we had a lot of fun that evening.

We really liked Elk which is about 30 minutes further away. Also, the steeps are not necessarily the biggest draw for us given the infrequency we actually get to ski.

RodneyBD - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 12/21/2004 🔗
194 posts

Only Snowshoe. 

rover wrote:

Let's remove 'snow' quality from the equation.....in terms of run length/height....which mid-atlantic resort will give me the closest feel to Windham/Catskills?

Lets assume snow is fine for this exercise.

Denis - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 07/12/2004 🔗
2,228 posts

RodneyBD wrote:

Only Snowshoe. 

rover wrote:

Let's remove 'snow' quality from the equation.....in terms of run length/height....which mid-atlantic resort will give me the closest feel to Windham/Catskills?

Lets assume snow is fine for this exercise.

make that 2 trails at snowshoe; the western territory.  Everything else is about half that.

 

rover
7 months ago
Member since 01/27/2021 🔗
12 posts

RodneyBD wrote:

Only Snowshoe. 

rover wrote:

Let's remove 'snow' quality from the equation.....in terms of run length/height....which mid-atlantic resort will give me the closest feel to Windham/Catskills?

Lets assume snow is fine for this exercise.

Thanks.  Wow, not even Blue Knob.

Let me ask, is Blue Knob at least a significant enough upgrade over Whitetail or Timberline so far as vertical/run length? 

JimK - DCSki Columnist
7 months ago
Member since 01/14/2004 🔗
2,728 posts
Blue Knob has about 50-150 more vertical feet than Whitetail and Timberline respectively.  It has some long intermediate runs and some steep bump runs and glades, but many only come into play when they have sufficient natural snow cover, which sometimes only lasts for a couple of weeks in the heart of the ski season.  It looks like ops at BK are winding down for this season.  They are currently closed until Saturday 3/20/21.
dinozaur
7 months ago
Member since 02/1/2014 🔗
15 posts

While Massanutten or Western Territory might technically have more vertical, as Clapton said "it's in the way that you use it." Blue Knob and Timberline have a higher skill ceiling. Whether I'm in Vermont, Val Thorens, or Virginia I'm always looking for difficult trails that make me pucker a bit. TL and BK have that with some natural snow.

If you're just looking to glide down a wide groomer? Yes, save the drive time and go to Whitetail.

RodneyBD - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 12/21/2004 🔗
194 posts

Cannon in NH has 2k vert but some of the most fun skiing is off the 500' vert Zoomer triple.  Similar example is the Outpost double at Pico.  Check out the Copper trail map, the terrain under the Resolution triple is a blast.  Would you rather ride a straight roller coaster with a few wide turns or (to borrow a few aviation terms), a roller coaster with a bunch of changes in pitch, roll and yaw?

No right or wrong answer, just a few different filters for looking up at the mountain.  

rover
7 months ago
Member since 01/27/2021 🔗
12 posts
Whatever it was, Timberline just did not even come close to Windham as I thought.
Evans Dad - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 01/27/2021 🔗
30 posts

RodneyBD wrote:

Cannon in NH has 2k vert but some of the most fun skiing is off the 500' vert Zoomer triple.  Similar example is the Outpost double at Pico.  Check out the Copper trail map, the terrain under the Resolution triple is a blast.  Would you rather ride a straight roller coaster with a few wide turns or (to borrow a few aviation terms), a roller coaster with a bunch of changes in pitch, roll and yaw?

No right or wrong answer, just a few different filters for looking up at the mountain.  

This is an important point.  I have skied all over the Western US & Canada and in France and I often have the most fun doing laps off of short runs, bumps, glades, pow whatever.  When I first started skiing seriously I was always looking for the highest vert and not really considering the snow quality and really the overall experience. 

Regarding Blue Knob, and this is only MY opinion, it looks good on paper, but unless there is fresh snow I would skip it.  I don't know if this has changed in the last 10-15 years, but their snow-making/grooming isn't the best and the 2 or 3 times I went it was really icy. 

wojo
7 months ago
Member since 01/17/2005 🔗
312 posts

MarkosC wrote:

I've honestly been thinking a variant of this question, and I guess I'll post here than start a new thread.

I'm a beginner; still mastering green trails and hope eventually be able to do OK on blue trails.  I'm looking in particular for a good array of green trails.  And one, ideally, that won't be loaded with people speeding by me uncontrolled while I'm practicing turns and edging.  :D

I've been looking to go to a local resort for at about 3-5 days next winter, and probably take a 2-3 lessons over the course of my stay.  I've been to Wisp over a long weekend years ago (where I first learned to ski honestly) and thought it met my requirements: I would go there for a day trip if it weren't so far.  

What do folks think would be the best resort for me to go to among these three and Snowshoe?  Looking at the maps, it seems Snowshoe and Wisp might be the best choices - though my impression from the other thread is that Snowshoe can get really crowded, and is more expensive?

 I have thought about this question a bit.  My wife is thinking of a family local trip and I am noodling through it; on the list are Timberline, Massanutten, Snowshoe and Wisp.  Not sure any of those are worth a week trip in and of themselves for the skiing alone, but for camaraderie and family time I think all would work and could support a mixed level of skier.  I think Wintergreen might be in the mix too, but its on the far edge of day trip, and I remember is as having an Advances pod, a Blue pod and a Green pod separating the group.  I ski every day I can, but never enough.  I have two thoughts for you.

1.  I did Wisp with a mixed group for a long weekend.  You are right about it meeting your requirements, lodging was "reasonable" when we went and there are lots of options from Posh to budget.  The good skiers enjoyed it enough as Wisp makes the most of their hill, there was plenty to ski for the less skilled in the group.

2.  My son and I did a PA road trip several years in a row, required changing hotels a few times, but our route was Liberty for a day, Roundtop for a day (requires a single night in a hotel). Up to Scranton and hitting Montage and Elk, both Montage and Elk offer skiing for all levels too.  All of those places could support two days of skiing.  There are B&Bs and reasonable hotels, since it was a boys trip, we stayed in cheap hotels :-). Elk is a snow magnet, I have been there 4 times and each time there was 10 or more inches of freshies :-)

Hope this helps.

wojo
7 months ago
Member since 01/17/2005 🔗
312 posts

rover wrote:

 Thank you.

The reason I have been at Windham vs Hunter is that I have been a blue, now though I am upper blue/single diamond and probably going to do more Hunter.

So, let me see if I can get you to summarize......I am looking for a place I could drive to and from the same day from FFX Co that has good snow and good height/long runs like Windham....so it seems it goes (in no order):

-Whitetail (snow is meh, front range, but run length and vertical decent)

-Timberline (snow good, decent height, but length and trail options meh)......CV and WISP not much better

So 

-Wintergreen...really...that has good height and runs in Windham's caliber?  What about the snow?

-Snowshoe....confused...is it really worth the premium drive or is not that much better?

-Blue Knob.....whats the deal there?

-Seven Springs.....how is that compared to Windham, in that league?  (Only issue with Seven Springs is that it is run by the owner of the Pittsburgh Pirates who I try to boycott).

Lots of superb info in this post on pros and cons of local hills.  Loved reading all the excellent feedback.

 I have skied and boarded in PA, MI, VA, CO, CA, NY, VT, NV, OR, Italy, France, Germany, and Austria.  I have skied 200ft bumps and 4500ft mountains.  I have skied in the rain, snow and sunshine.  I have skied from -25 wind chill to 72deg.  I have skied solo and I have skied with a group of 30. I have sat and "talked skiing" with a guy who spoke only German and me only English. I have snowboarded with first day people and took a class with some sponsored pros.  I have skied in Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, Jun, Jul, Oct, Nov. I have skied east coast "packed power" and "loose granular" and 2-3ft deep pow at Heavenly, Snowbird and Liberty PA (Yeee Haaaaa,  WOOOOWWWWWWW) and . When people ask me what I do, I have been saying I ski and snowboard.

All I can say is a bad day skiing/boarding is better than a great day at work.  There is nothing like it.  I do it for the love of being out side and the feel of gliding down any hill, anywhere, anytime, any condition, with anyone.  

Evans Dad - DCSki Supporter
7 months ago
Member since 01/27/2021 🔗
30 posts

wojo wrote:

rover wrote:

 Thank you.

The reason I have been at Windham vs Hunter is that I have been a blue, now though I am upper blue/single diamond and probably going to do more Hunter.

So, let me see if I can get you to summarize......I am looking for a place I could drive to and from the same day from FFX Co that has good snow and good height/long runs like Windham....so it seems it goes (in no order):

-Whitetail (snow is meh, front range, but run length and vertical decent)

-Timberline (snow good, decent height, but length and trail options meh)......CV and WISP not much better

So 

-Wintergreen...really...that has good height and runs in Windham's caliber?  What about the snow?

-Snowshoe....confused...is it really worth the premium drive or is not that much better?

-Blue Knob.....whats the deal there?

-Seven Springs.....how is that compared to Windham, in that league?  (Only issue with Seven Springs is that it is run by the owner of the Pittsburgh Pirates who I try to boycott).

Lots of superb info in this post on pros and cons of local hills.  Loved reading all the excellent feedback.

 I have skied and boarded in PA, MI, VA, CO, CA, NY, VT, NV, OR, Italy, France, Germany, and Austria.  I have skied 200ft bumps and 4500ft mountains.  I have skied in the rain, snow and sunshine.  I have skied from -25 wind chill to 72deg.  I have skied solo and I have skied with a group of 30. I have sat and "talked skiing" with a guy who spoke only German and me only English. I have snowboarded with first day people and took a class with some sponsored pros.  I have skied in Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, Jun, Jul, Oct, Nov. I have skied east coast "packed power" and "loose granular" and 2-3ft deep pow at Heavenly, Snowbird and Liberty PA (Yeee Haaaaa,  WOOOOWWWWWWW) and . When people ask me what I do, I have been saying I ski and snowboard.

All I can say is a bad day skiing/boarding is better than a great day at work.  There is nothing like it.  I do it for the love of being out side and the feel of gliding down any hill, anywhere, anytime, any condition, with anyone.  

 Great post!  Especially the last paragraph. :)

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