Wisp vs. Snowshoe
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b2otto2
December 7, 2007
Member since 02/1/2003 🔗
65 posts
I skied Wisp yesterday and Snowshoe today, hands down Wisp has made more snow on more varying terrain than the Shoe, in fact through a relative of a ski buddy who works at Wisp, Wisp was making snow on all their trails.

Although trails were limited at Wisp yesterday the only reason many were not open were because the groomers had not had a chance to knock down the gigantic mounds of snow. Many of those mounds of snow I spent skiing on, on the Face and Sq. Cage runs!

I was sadly disappointed in not what Snowshoe had open, but in the fact that most of the unopened trails had not had any snowmaking on them. Nothing has been made on Ballhooter (upper and lower), or Grabhammer trails. Advanced trails are basically limited to Skipjack and Spruce Glades. By the looks at the weather forecast, it will be 5 days before major snowmaking can take place. Also, I was not over by Widowmaker, but did hear they were trying to get that lift open soon.

Brad
RodSmith
December 7, 2007
Member since 10/22/2004 🔗
318 posts
Wisp always has better terrain than Snowshoe.
The Colonel - DCSki Supporter
December 7, 2007
Member since 03/5/2004 🔗
3,107 posts
 Originally Posted By: RodSmith
Wisp always has better terrain than Snowshoe.

Just to set the record straight!
Whoa there. Pretty powerful statement...really an opinion.
I ski both places and the terrain at the Shoe (up to 1500 feet of vertical) is far superior to that of Wisp and its 600 vertical. Now Wisp has a great snowmaking system, and interesting and varied slopes, but "terrain better than the Shoe"?...no way.
Compare Snowshoe with all slopes open and Wisp with all slopes open...for the ski experience, or boarding, no comparison! And far more acreage!
The Colonel \:\)
Ullr
December 7, 2007
Member since 11/27/2004 🔗
531 posts
I agree, it's an opinion. And I would agree with Rod, just because when I have gone to Snowshoe I spend all of my time on two trails, but at Wisp I tend to venture off. Maybe it's just me, but for the $$$ I'd rather be at Wisp.
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Reisen
December 7, 2007
Member since 01/25/2005 🔗
364 posts
Guys, we need to ground our opinion in some kind of fact here. If the stats on the two mountains were anywhere close to approximate, I could see an argument here. But saying Wisp always has better terrain than Snowshoe is akin to saying Whitetail has better terrain than Vail...

I've skiied both, and Wisp is fine, but it doesn't come close to Snowshoe, all else equal. That said, I think I'm headed to Wisp Sunday, because the original poster made a great point that right now, Wisp probably offers the better experience.
lbotta - DCSki Supporter
December 7, 2007
Member since 10/18/1999 🔗
1,527 posts
Apples and oranges. Having said that, being addicted to Whole Foods, sometimes I buy apples... Sometimes I buy oranges. Both are good for you.

Wisp is half the size of Snowshoe (32 trails vs 63) and 600 versus 1500. It is more concentrated and as a result, it will seem that there has been more snowmaking there. There has been a tremendous amount of snowmaking at Snowshoe, including the old Widowmaker terrain and I think they would have had it open if it hadn't been for the protocol function yesterday, when the Guv'nah cut the ribbon on the new black runs.

However, Wisp has things I wish Snowshoe had. For example, a fitness center. Being a gym enthusiast, I look at the backwardness of Snowshoe's lack of a fitness center. Or having an adult time at the Split Rocks pools. Or what's more, having a better advanced and expert terrain - albeit the three new runs are all black diamonds...

On the other hand, Wisp lacks the infrastructure that Snowshoe has built over the years. As well as the clientele that extends over the entire region.
b2otto2
December 7, 2007
Member since 02/1/2003 🔗
65 posts
Snowshoe is by far the better resort, 3 highspeed lifts along with Cupp and Shays beats a Wisp/7Springs combined for me. Cupp is one of my favoite runs anywhere. Its just that Snowshoe is not the best place to ski right now if your wanting to get those first runs in for the season, that is unless your favorite runs are green ones.

I wish Snowshoes management would realize that getting advanced terrain open is just as important as getting the beginner runs open. For me there is just no excuse for not making snow on the Ballhooter and Grabhammer trails when the conditions have been great over the last week.
Denis - DCSki Supporter
December 7, 2007
Member since 07/12/2004 🔗
2,222 posts
Who is better is a matter of opinion and I don't think it is an unreasonable question. Snowshoe has 1500 vertical feet - on 2 trails out of 65 - the rest of the layout has ~ 700. Wisp has 600. Furthermore Snowshoe has the Killington problem, many many intersections of trails of differing ability ratings that make life difficult for everybody. They have nothing steep except for ~ 200 vertical feet at the bottom of Shay's, which is really not that steep anyway. Cupp is a blue cruiser by New England or western standards. I like Timberline better than Wisp or Snowshoe, and I like the whitegrass backcountry better than Timberline.

Just my $0.02 worth. Ski what you like.
Scott - DCSki Editor
December 7, 2007
Member since 10/10/1999 🔗
1,139 posts
Wisp and Snowshoe are both visited by thousands and thousands of happy and satisfied skiers and snowboarders each winter. I think the only reasonable thing that can be said is that the skiing at Snowshoe is better in the winter than the summer. Ditto for Wisp. Anything else is entirely too subjective.
anon
December 8, 2007
Member since 11/17/2006 🔗
14 posts
Haha, way to step in there and put out the fire, Scott. God forbid there be any subjectivity in a forum. Especially involving two valuable advertisers..
lbotta - DCSki Supporter
December 8, 2007
Member since 10/18/1999 🔗
1,527 posts
Actually I think Scott was right on the mark. No fire to put out. Like I said, apples and oranges is the analogy to comparing Wisp and Snowshoe. To each his own. I do both, the same as I eat both apples and also oranges. Both are good for you.
Ullr
December 8, 2007
Member since 11/27/2004 🔗
531 posts
 Originally Posted By: anon
Haha, way to step in there and put out the fire, Scott. God forbid there be any subjectivity in a forum. Especially involving two valuable advertisers..



No I don't think that is it at all. Like I said it is a matter of opinion. Mine is that I like Wisp better then Snowshoe, and I stated why.All Scott is saying is to each his own. What is irritating is that when you give your opinion, somebody else comes along and tells why you're wrong..................

It's my opinion!
Ullr
December 8, 2007
Member since 11/27/2004 🔗
531 posts
 Originally Posted By: Reisen
But saying Wisp always has better terrain than Snowshoe is akin to saying Whitetail has better terrain than Vail...


NOPE, you didn't read my post at all..................

I said I like Wisp better then Snowshoe/
Roger Z
December 8, 2007
Member since 01/16/2004 🔗
2,181 posts
If it weren't for Shay's and Cupp, I think Wisp would hands-down be better than Snowshoe. They finally have some long-ish intermediate runs on their new backside with more terrain in the works, some solid advanced skiing and this sense of exploration as you wander around the mountain that you don't often get in the Mid-A. Shoe has too many cross-overs and not enough pitch on the Basin side.

Two plusses for Shoe, one major, one minor. MAJOR plus: Shay's and Cupp, as already mentioned. Those two runs can keep you entertained all day, especially if your winter consists of making turns at places like Winterplace, Bryce, or Liberty. Second plus: even though there's lots of intersections, there's no development along most of the terrain.

One minus for Wisp is that they have, in the past, not followed-through on terrain expansion promises. When they first opened Main Street on the Lake Side, they had mapped out several other runs to be built there as well. Instead, they opted to turn those runs into roads and build that giant suburb you ski through. I'm hoping they finish what they started on the other side of the mountain, but we'll have to wait and see. And the major minus- no 1,500 foot vertical. But that's a minus for all but one ski area south of New York State.
JR
December 8, 2007
Member since 01/1/2003 🔗
276 posts
Its funny how easy it is for everyone to forget Silver Creek. Throw that into the mix and it kills the "intersecting" and "too flat" arguments. That hill, while shorter than the Basin, has a much more consistent pitch and has some of the best intermediate cruisers around. For me, if both Wisp and Snowshoe are nearly 100% open and similar weather it isn't even close. Even if Cupp and Shay aren't open it has to go to Snowshoe (for me at least). People always complain about the long runouts at the bottom of the Basin but what about the long run-in at the top of Wisp. Its pretty flat until you get to the top of Squirrel Cage. Although "Odens Chute to Down Under" and Eye Opener have a pretty good pace nearly top to bottom and are a blast. The new stuff at Wisp is probably some of their best terrain but still, Silver Creek has that x2. It does make a difference that you can't just ski over to Silver Creek but still.

I love both and have a great time at both but when finances, crowds and drive time aren't an issue, I don't even think twice. Throw in holiday crowds on the Basin and bang for the buck issues and the two places definitely get closer in comparrison.
David
December 8, 2007
Member since 06/28/2004 🔗
2,444 posts
I like them both. But that is not why I'm here. This is why I'm here:

Wisp 23 Trails
Snowshoe 19 Trails

That caught me a little off guard when I read that. I was also suprised to see Mainstreet, Eye Opener, and Over the Edge opened up already...Nice work Wisp!!!
JR
December 8, 2007
Member since 01/1/2003 🔗
276 posts
Wow, not only are there 23 trails open but they're spread across the entire mountain from main street to the new area. Looks like they've got the best terrain around by far. I've heard they have one of the best snowmaking ops in the world and that goes to show it. Even 7springs doesn't have terrain close to them now. What's sad is that I'm here checking reports instead of boarding. Your right David, the Main street area is typically late in the game so to see it open already is impressive. Timberline is up to 3 trails now :P
David
December 8, 2007
Member since 06/28/2004 🔗
2,444 posts
 Originally Posted By: JR
What's sad is that I'm here checking reports instead of boarding.


I know what you mean. If I would have known they were going to have that much open I probably would have went up today and fought the drizzle/fog for some nice first season turns. I had planned to go up tomorrow but I don't think I am gonna brave the conditions....Maybe later in the week though
Roger Z
December 8, 2007
Member since 01/16/2004 🔗
2,181 posts
 Quote:
Its funny how easy it is for everyone to forget Silver Creek.


Excellent point JR! Yeah, I did forget all about Silver Creek. Great snow, nice cruisers, beautiful views. I'm still leaning toward Wisp (net Shay's and Cupp), but that could just be stubborn pride. \:\)
Ullr
December 8, 2007
Member since 11/27/2004 🔗
531 posts
 Originally Posted By: JR
Its funny how easy it is for everyone to forget Silver Creek.


Oh, I agree with that!!!!!!!!! It always gets forgotten waiting on that bus!!! If the two were just a little closer and linked via either a gondola or lift (ala slidebrook express at Sugarbush) it would make it so much easier to access.
MarkMascolino
December 8, 2007
Member since 01/18/2007 🔗
32 posts
Sssssh keep Silver Creek a secret....even on crazy Holiday weekends, the two black runs at Silver Creek are always virtually empty with zero lift line.
snowglobe
December 8, 2007
Member since 03/12/2007 🔗
150 posts
How are the two black runs at Silver Creek like? Never made it there, coz I always go to Silver Creek for night skiing..
skier219
December 8, 2007
Member since 01/8/2005 🔗
1,318 posts
I have always enjoyed myself on Bear Claw and Flying Eagle at Silver Creek. In fact, when the snow is right, those two trails can be spectacular. The lift is kind of slow, but the lack of crowds makes up for it.

As far as SS vs. Wisp, I think they both stink! (I'm only partly joking). The truth is, we used to have arguments about Stowe vs. Sugarbush, or MRG vs. Jay when I lived in New England, and I think you'll find these sort of arguments anywhere (Snowbird vs. Alta). While we debate SS vs. Wisp, it's important to remember they are both podunk ski areas by most standards. But it doesn't matter to me -- in reality, I can have fun at almost any ski area if the weather and snow are good.
MarkMascolino
December 9, 2007
Member since 01/18/2007 🔗
32 posts
Agree with skier219...fun trails to be sure and with good snow they are great. With really good snow I like Bear Claw better otherwise Flying Eagle. Bear Claw initially a little steeper for the first 20 meters or so...Not sure what the technical term for it but the center of the trail has an extremely steep spot at the start with a little bit mellower at the edges.

Flying Eagle tneds to have big swells of snow which I personally enjoy going over and coming back down (Reminds me a lot of the negative G's of a roller coaster which I really like). The only downside of Flying Eagle is that there is a run out at the bottom to get the lift but if you properly tuck you can usually make it to the lift without having to use the poles.
Ullr
December 9, 2007
Member since 11/27/2004 🔗
531 posts
Craig,

Debate? What debate? This isn't even close! In my opinion Jay beats MRG by a mile!!!!

Let the flame war begin!!!! \:D \:D \:D
JohnL
December 9, 2007
Member since 01/6/2000 🔗
3,518 posts
 Quote:
Debate? What debate? This isn't even close! In my opinion Jay beats MRG by a mile!!!!


No flame war coming. Jay is clearly better for those skiers whose best turn is the snowplow and who couldn't find a tree shot unless the trees were spaced 30 feet apart.
skier219
December 9, 2007
Member since 01/8/2005 🔗
1,318 posts
I would address the Vermont debate by saying Sugarbush rules, but then we would have to argue Sugarbush North vs. Sugarbush South!
JohnL
December 9, 2007
Member since 01/6/2000 🔗
3,518 posts
Sugarbush does rule, but it costs $$$$.

Sugarbush North should always be called Glen Ellen. It's like calling Pico Killington East.
JohnL
December 9, 2007
Member since 01/6/2000 🔗
3,518 posts
I think Denis summmarized it best; it is reasonable to compare Wisp to Snowshoe. Basin-side alone, I'll take Wisp hands-down. Throw in the Western Territory and Silver Creek, and Snowshoe comes out ahead. But it is a lot tougher to get to from DC...

When conditions are fine, I'll take Blue Knob over all of the previously-mentioned (Mid-Atlantic) areas.
Ullr
December 9, 2007
Member since 11/27/2004 🔗
531 posts
 Originally Posted By: JohnL
 Quote:
Debate? What debate? This isn't even close! In my opinion Jay beats MRG by a mile!!!!


No flame war coming. Jay is clearly better for those skiers whose best turn is the snowplow and who couldn't find a tree shot unless the trees were spaced 30 feet apart.


Oh, the gloves are off now!!!! Tree skiing? At MRG? You mean every 3rd year when they get enough snow to ski their trees!?! Come on, the endless, bottomless snow of Jay will always rule.

Ullr
December 9, 2007
Member since 11/27/2004 🔗
531 posts
 Originally Posted By: skier219
I would address the Vermont debate by saying Sugarbush rules, but then we would have to argue Sugarbush North vs. Sugarbush South!


I liked Sugarbush, but for some reason the Mrs. didn't. I thought Ellen was the better of the two mountains. The wife is a big Okemo person, but being a mom of two will tend to do that to people.....
skier219
December 9, 2007
Member since 01/8/2005 🔗
1,318 posts
I am still trying to figure our where to take my wife if we venture out of the mid-A for a trip this season (which might be a good idea for a change). I don't feel like flying, so Vermont looks like the place to go. I have a long history with Sugarbush, but that's also the place where I stupidly tried to teach my wife to ski, so it might be asking for trouble to go back there with her (she forgave me and took lessons a couple years later, but no need to revisit the experience....). Then again, those new Claybrook condos look nice, and they have some decent deals. The benefit to the Bush is that I can hit Castle Rock or even venture over to MRG if my wife wants to skip a day. Plus I know the area, the restaurants, and a couple patrollers there. But if there are some other wife-friendly ski areas up in VT, I need to find out about them. The shorter the drive the better, so places like Okemo or some of the southern VT resorts would be good. Any suggestions?
The Colonel - DCSki Supporter
December 10, 2007
Member since 03/5/2004 🔗
3,107 posts
Mt. Snow in southern VT or Sunday River in Maine. Lots of discount shopping in Southern NH on trip up and back. LLBean headdquarters store.
The Colonel \:\)
Ullr
December 10, 2007
Member since 11/27/2004 🔗
531 posts
My wife had only been skiing around two years when we went to MRG. They just had gotten 3 feet about two days before and she loved it!!! People always think of it as some place that beginners or intermediates would hate, but not so, it has something for everyone. Pam liked Okemo cause of the whole kid thing (I think). If she likes Snowshoe, she may love Stratton \:\( It's not the kind of place I like, but I can see where it would appeal to some.

I still would like to take a spring trip to Tuckerman's! That has been on my list of place to hike and wimp out (instead of ski)!!!
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