Best place for a beginner?
Of the three closest resorts of Whitetail, Roundtop and Liberty, which of the three would be the best place for a beginner (skied a few times, but not yet parallel)? Of the 3, we've been to Whitetail. Any opinions of the other 2 relative to Whitetail would be helpful. Thanks in advance.
My opinion is Liberty is better for a beginner than Whitetail. I haven't ventured to Roundtop in years, but if it hasn't changed much since the 80's, it also isn't a bad place to learn.
I suggest Liberty over Whitetail for beginners for the following principal reason.
Although, Whitetail has a bunny slope for 1st timers, it's next most difficult slope is marked as a green/blue (although both ways down seem equivalently hard). When I have gone skiing with novices, they get intimidated by this hill and many find it to be too big of a jump from the bunny slope. The net result is that they let fear control them, which results in silly unnecessary wrecks.
Liberty, in contrast, has a very gently sloping green that goes from the top of the mountain all the way to the base. This green is about as steep as the bunny slope, so it is a relatively easy transition from the bunny slope for beginners.
If you can ski the blue/green at Whitetail well, then it probably doesn't make a difference which slope you go to. The intermediate trails at both places seem to be about equal in difficulty.
I might also suggest you consider both Bryce Mt. and Wintergreen, both have excellent learning slopes. Of these two, Wintergreen is a little farther away, but great beginnner slopes. Of the areas you mentioned, I agree that Liberty is probably the best bet.
By the way, I am adopting a new signature line that I stole from the Old Bunch at Alta:
"Skis get old, skiers never do. Ponce de Leon was just looking in the wrong place!"
In keeping with message board tradition, I would like to offer an opinion that will just confuse the issue more...voting for Roundtop.
Last year I headed up there to check it out. I found it a bit far for a drive (meaning Liberty and Whitetail seemed much closer) I was really impressed with the beginner part of the hill. I got the impression that they put a lot of focus on getting people comfortable on skis and not terrifying them, but still have enough of a challenge on the rest of the hill to make sure you don't get bored. I found myself thinking that "if I was going to bring someone skiing the first time, I would bring them here".
I guess it may depend on where you are driving from. What is convienent. As for Whitetail..someone had a good point in a different thread...the slopes can get crowded and that is scary to a beginner. Round Top is a bit out of the way and maybe a bit low key for the masses.
ok, to continue the confusion, I will vote against wintergreen which is otherwise my favorite area place. there is just too big a jump from potato patch to any other slope and forget trying eagleswoop or highlands. a beginner gets boxed into a very small area. i know this from working with my kids - winterplace was much better for them and much to my disappointment. so go with what those guys said above.
Andding more to the confusion. Hidden Valley has some great learing terrain and is very easy to very gradually steeper slopes as you progress.
Continetial would be great to start out on, then you have the bowl of rambler to get slightly steeper on, untill you are ready for wrangler(aka angels elbow). Note to mention are we have almost no crowds except on holiday weekends, give it try you might be pleaslantly surprised.
Extracurricular consideration: which one has a nice, warm fire that you can stretch out in front of? Liberty certainly does. Can't say about the others.
I would agree with bushwackerinpa that hv is a great place for beginners (although i've never been to the locations you specifically mention so i can't compare).. my 'middle-aged wife & myself" first got on skis 3 seasons ago at hv on a weekend getaway. they have a great beginners package which includes lift, lesson and equipment for around $50 bucks. their instructors are mostly excellent and by the end of the first day i was making it down continental, albeit slowly. my wife took slightly longer but from that first experience we were hooked on skiing. i've since introduced many newbies to the sport via hv beginners package and almost all have had an excellent experience and can't wait to be back ( i even took several of my exchange student employees who are from rawanda and had never seen snow before and with some difficulty with language and the instructors were patient and provided an excellent first experience for them on skis).
I want to add a disclaimer to my response that I do instruct at Hidden Valley so I may be biased....but would love the lesson if you guy came over this way.
.......... but from that first experience we were hooked on skiing. i've since introduced many newbies to the sport.......
And that's what it's all about way to go gizmosnow!. Don't matter so much where you learn as it does who takes you. saVE DA whales, take a newbie to your mountain
Who remembers their first day????
Just a reminder to the other posters...the original person was asking about Liberty, Roundtop, or Whitetail. The other resorts may be a bit far for a quick after work trip for them.
sorry for pointing out the obvious..guess I'm feeling like an a#@ today.
appreciate all of the comments and opinions. i agree with the post about whitetail in that its a terribly big jump from the bunny slopes to the next run and the crowds (weekends) could be just as big of a hazard. thanks for the suggestion of bryce and appreciate all of the others even if a bit far. bryce says they are "2 hours" from the DC area. does anyone know if that's 2 hours from, say the very western edge of the metro area (which would make it 2.5 or 3 hrs from dc), or what??
thanks again to everyone and appreciate any further opinions/suggestions.
I would suggest Liberty....BUT...go on a weekday... It gets awful crowded on weekend as Liberty gets skiers from DC/Balto metro area and the local college (Mount St. Mary)...they also have a nice "long" green trail from the top of the mountain..
I live in Warrenton and go out 66 to 81 and down to Bryce, takes me about 1:30 - 1:45 depending on traffic.
I am a huge WT fan (mid week is best, Sunday pm is a close second). The crowds thin at those times and they have some "decent" blues and the green hill keeps me interested when sking with new people. They keep everything plowed wll on the roads when it snows too.
Pre Christmas is very cheap. Any place is good!!