DUDE, A FRIEND AND I WERE LOOKING AT BIG SKY, FOR SNOWBOARDING. HAVE U SKIED THERE? WE WERE ORIGINALLY PLANNING A WHISTLER TRIP, BUT ITS CRAZY $$$$. THOUGHT MONT. WOULD BE CHEAPER & LESS CROWDED, BUT WITH NICE ELEVATION. ANY SUGGESTIONS. IS MONT. GOOD? NICE SNOW? ANYTHING U GOT WOULD BE USEFUL. ANY OTHER MONTANA MTS?
THE FLIGHTS TO MONT ARE PRETTY $$$...BUT THE ACCOMIDATIONS WLD BE CHEAP. WHISTLER IS BANANAS!
― ddb, Thursday, 8 November 2007 04:22 (fifteen years ago) link
ddb: i was a ski patroller at big sky!
...i'll answer in full tonight, tho, i gotta get to work.
― gbx, Thursday, 8 November 2007 12:59 (fifteen years ago) link
also, i was maybe thinking about heading back there this winter myself. when are you going?
― gbx, Thursday, 8 November 2007 13:03 (fifteen years ago) link
TELL ME MORE!
― ddb, Thursday, 8 November 2007 14:03 (fifteen years ago) link
okay, so i just got home, uh...
BIG SKY: is massive, and usually uncrowded, even during so-called holiday weeks. whistler, at the time you are planning on going, would be fucking bedlam, even though it's the the Real Deal Nastiest Area in North America. Thing is, Big Sky + Moonlight Basin is like America's Whistler/Blackcomb, and the terrain can be just as heavy, if you're into that sort of thing. Snowpack might be an issue, however, as early season can (or cannot, if you're lucky) be thin, and Big Sky is basically a pile of rubble. Gnarly rubble, but rubble all the same. Underneath all that snow is loose rock, and it can destroy your board(s) if you're not careful.
That being said, it's a great mountain, and I think they've put in new lifts this year??? I'll have to check on that.
Also in the area is Bridger Bowl, which is arguably America's greatest local mountain on the planet. The terrain is fucking rowdy and steep, but it's also picked over by an entire college town of bros who moved to Bozeman solely to ski. Fun fact: Bridger is like the second or third hardest place to get a patroller job, after Jackson and maybe Aspen Highlands. It's nasty. And cheap.
But Big Sky is the realness. If you wanted detailed beta on how to do it, let me know.
DOs: Do the Big Couloir ("cooler"), if you've got the necessary skills/gear (beacon, shovel, probe). Challenger is the slowest lift in the world, but the terrain is good. If you hike up the ridge from Challenger, there's good chutes to be had. On the Moonlight side, there's the Headwaters, which are o_O and steep as fuck, but coverage will be thin that early in the season, likely, as they're north-facing. In the spring they're siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiick, bro. Most of the terrain off the tram is steep, above tree-line, and good. The stuff off Andesite is meh, unless you get into the steep trees, in which case there's steepness and cliffs galore. Ask a patroller or bro about Bolivia (GET IT? WHITE STUFF) or Marlboro Country (<--- steep, narrow, tree'd, maybe not the best on a board). Ask a bro and not a patroller about the numerous smoke shacks (FOR GETTING HIGH ON W33D).
Shit, I could go on. Lemme get a beer and think on this.
― gbx, Friday, 9 November 2007 02:16 (fifteen years ago) link
suddenly, and non-shockingly, i am depressed :-/
― gbx, Friday, 9 November 2007 02:17 (fifteen years ago) link
Big Sky is sorta like European areas (in a very loose comparison) in that the vast majority of the tourists will stick only to the groomed runs, leaving much terrain untracked and waiting to be plundered by enterprising bros. Dudes from Bozeman don't make it up to Big Sky that often because it's (a) more expensive than Bridger, (b) it's further away than Bridger, and (c) the good stuff is more spread out than Bridger.
Some geology: Big Sky is basically an old volcano that has slowly eroded down to it's core, leaving a big pointy Lone Peak that falls off on all sides (one basin is Moonlight, two more are Big Sky, one is privately owned by a rich fuck who is building the most expensive house in America (true! 150M...includes PRIVATE LIFT TO THE TOP OF LONEPEAK FUCK YOU GUY), and the other is public)). This makes for steepness at the top, chutes, etc., that slowly mellows out into boringville/cruisers on the lower pountain. Bridger, on the other hand, is actually a subduction (I THINK) plate or something, which means there's a ridge that is mellow on the west side, steep as fuck on the east side, but the steep side ends abruptly in an L-shaped sorta deal, and the lower mountain is BOOOOOOOOOOOOORING. Consequently, all your Seth Morrison/Jeremy Jones wannabes hike up the ridge (hiking is required for the goods), are super-fit, and ski out all the good stuff by noon. Then again, Bridger gets more reliable snow, and biblical dumps that Big Sky never sees (2005-2006: 100" over the course of 4 days. they had to close the mountain because some of the lower chairs were buried).
― gbx, Friday, 9 November 2007 02:25 (fifteen years ago) link
During the holidays, I think I'd recommend Big Sky, for sure, esp over Whistler. Whistler will have more reliable snow (and more of it, probs), but they will also have everyone from Vancouver/Seattle/Portland. The terrain is mind-blowing (from what I've heard), and the nightlife is guaranteed bad decisions, but it might be crowded. Then again, that might actually recommend it over Big Sky, where the nightlife is relatively quiet (but much dirt-baggier), and the snow less reliable.
If you want like no crowds, Big Sky. If you want the best terrain on the continent, Whistler.
― gbx, Friday, 9 November 2007 02:29 (fifteen years ago) link
Places to NOT go:
Vail (NEVER GO HERE IT BLOWS)
Aspen (GREAT TERRAIN, ACTUALLY OK TOWN, BUT THAT TIME OF YEAR IS BANANAS)
Alta (YR NOT ALLOWED, LOL)
Jackson Hole (WILL BE CROWDED, BRO-DOWN HOE-DOWN, BUT THE SNOW IS LIKELY TO BE GOOD, ALSO $$$)
Taos (AGAIN, YR NOT ALLOWED)
Anywhere on the east coast (WTF)
― gbx, Friday, 9 November 2007 02:31 (fifteen years ago) link
ok now i'm gonna go get a beer
why does skiing attract such rich golfer fucks
― El Tomboto, Friday, 9 November 2007 02:32 (fifteen years ago) link
and yes I'm calling out u and ddb with that obv
well, there's the obvious $$$ factor, duh. it's like hockey: you must have XXX dollars to even get onto the mountain (or rink), and you must live someplace White and wintry to even have access.
that being said, again like hockey, if you live someplace where skiing is readily available, there's loads of people who pinch pennies and make it happen even if it strains the budget. the best racers in my high school were fucking farm kids who had parents doing everything they could to make ends meet while also furnishing their kids with race gear.
people that travel from, like, texas or florida to go skiing are generally of the golfing set. patrollers at big sky are usually carpenters and/or fly-fishing guides in the summer, and scrape by on about a fifth of your salary, though, dogg.
― gbx, Friday, 9 November 2007 02:55 (fifteen years ago) link
i am terrible at golf.
**STOKED FOR THE MADNESS** or a thread for wayward bros
― gbx, Friday, 9 November 2007 02:56 (fifteen years ago) link
srsly, go to a ski town, and the best rippers (<--- embarrassing) are guys like Noel who i went to high school who wash dishes and sleep in a $200/month hovel in order to be close to the slopes. the term "ski bum" is still apt, and generally includes drop-out dudes that want only to be in the mountains. the tourists, on the other hand, are going to the mountains because, you know, that's what you do when you've got money.
― gbx, Friday, 9 November 2007 02:59 (fifteen years ago) link
also, if you want to get into the backcountry, the bar for entry can be less than $800, and the lift tickets are free. "earn your turns" etc.
― gbx, Friday, 9 November 2007 03:01 (fifteen years ago) link
EVAN...I <3 U. SRSLY.
I HAVE TO SAY THO....VAIL = AMAZING.
ASPEN IS OK.
THX DUDE!!! REALLY!!! U R ULTIMATE BRO...JUST READING THIS GOT ME SO SIKED!!!!!!!
― ddb, Friday, 9 November 2007 04:00 (fifteen years ago) link
OH MAN....BEST THREAD.
RIDING/SKING IS DEF A WHITE MAN/GOLFER THING...I CAN SEE THAT......BUT BRO......THERE ARE NO SUCH THING AS GOLFERS THAT WILL WALK UPHILL IN 2.5 FEET OF SNOW FOR A LONG TIME, HUFFING AND PUFFING.........TO RIDE DOWN GNARLY ASS DEATH TRAILS.
I LOVE THIS SHIT.
― ddb, Friday, 9 November 2007 04:06 (fifteen years ago) link
i am not going to argue about vail v. aspen on the internet. i will say this: vail has no steeps. aspen does, in spades. SPADES.
but yeah, ddb is right: there is no such thing as hiking for the goods in golf, unless that means like riding a bike from london to st andrews or something with a fucking golf bag on your back.
normally this thread would make me psyched, but now i am depressed because i live in the city again.
― gbx, Friday, 9 November 2007 04:17 (fifteen years ago) link
now i don't know if i should scrape pennies together for:
(a) climbing trip to Thailand w/pals (BEFORE YOU GET ALL GOLFER ON ME, I'VE GOT MONEY SAVED FOR A TICKET OF SUCH EXPENSE, PLUS THAILAND IS CHEAP, SHUT UP TOM)
(b) skiing trip in MT w/pals + DDB and bro
in all honesty, i'll be in better shape for skiing than i will be for climbing, unless i hit the gym bigtimes.
― gbx, Friday, 9 November 2007 04:19 (fifteen years ago) link
on the off chance that i can get to MT at that time, btw, i can probably get cheap tix at Big Sky. HOOK UPS YO
― gbx, Friday, 9 November 2007 04:20 (fifteen years ago) link
i'm like two beers away from blowing off my plans for the night and just flooding this thread with ski/snowboard videos.
― gbx, Friday, 9 November 2007 04:21 (fifteen years ago) link
Evan, I love you but shut up -- the whole time you were out there you were lacking in variety of population. Ski bums/bros/patrolers are one thing, but you can't sleep with them, and they're basically all the same type. You know you could move back to the mtns at ANY TIME, doll, but you couldn't live the life you want there. So don't be blue, find the time/$$ to bro down w/ the snow-boarders but do not be blue in November. xoxoxoxoxo
― Laurel, Friday, 9 November 2007 05:13 (fifteen years ago) link
Laurel, I love you for that stern and masterly reigning in.
I wish I had the time (and money) to get good enough to ski off piste. I just do too much shit.
Can we change the name of this board to I LOVE TO DO THINGS IN THE OUTDOORS YOU WHINY FUCKS WHO OBSESSES ABOUT THE EXTRAS ON ADVD OF THE LATEST SHIT COMEDY SERIES.
― Ed, Friday, 9 November 2007 09:57 (fifteen years ago) link
I wish I had the time (and money) to get good enough to ski off piste
Ditto. My boarding skillz are so poor.
― ledge, Friday, 9 November 2007 10:51 (fifteen years ago) link
Oh god Evs, I'm sorry, you don't need another mother but I had a lot of tequila.....
― Laurel, Friday, 9 November 2007 14:56 (fifteen years ago) link
haha, no worries. it did seem a little over the top; like, i didn't think i was bellyaching THAT much.
but whatever. cycling in the city has been a good surrogate.
― gbx, Saturday, 10 November 2007 01:05 (fifteen years ago) link
I just don't want you to convince yourself you're unhappy when you don't need to be, which I should know better that you won't do, you of all people can be trusted to go and DO something to snap out of it. I just hate to see people regretting, it's kinda self-/destructive.
― Laurel, Saturday, 10 November 2007 01:21 (fifteen years ago) link
KEEP MOVING. LIKE A SHARK.
every week is shark week.
also: i'm not actually unhappy!
― gbx, Saturday, 10 November 2007 01:54 (fifteen years ago) link
SO IT LOOKS LIKE....VAIL.
AND 3 WEEKS LATER, ASPEN FOR WINTER X GAMES. FREE PLACE TO STAY AND FREE LIFT TICKETS. MY BROTHER IS "WORKING" IT....WHATEVER THAT MEANS.
THE FLIGHTS TO BIG SKY WERE $RETARTED$.
― ddb, Thursday, 15 November 2007 17:59 (fifteen years ago) link
hopefully you get good snow at vail. god knows you won't have any good terrain (SNAP).
i lived across the street from Buttermilk during the 2005 X-Games. Hiked to the top of the pipe for the men's ski superpipe finals. dudes were boosting like 25 feet over the lip (and my head). totally rad.
then i had to pee, so i did it into an empty mountain dew bottle (LOL) and threw it in a garbage can nearby. or, rather: i went to the bathroom on nat'l TV!
i've got hell of beta on Aspen/Snowmass, if you want it.
― gbx, Thursday, 15 November 2007 18:02 (fifteen years ago) link
HA!! VAIL HAS AWEOSME TERRAIN...BACK BOWLS!!!!!!!!!!!! BASINS, COME ON!!!! U CRAZY. I DONT SKI, SO WIKED STEEPS ARE LIKE WHATEVS!!
YEAH, BUTTERMILK FOR XGAY-M'S...NEVER BEEN THERE. LOVE SNOW MASS THOUGH!!! BE RAD TO SEE SOME HALF PIPERY!
― ddb, Thursday, 15 November 2007 18:10 (fifteen years ago) link
all i want ever is wicked steeps.
omg dude highlands should be SIIIIICK now that they've installed the deep temerity lift. you MUST hike highland bowl, if you haven't already. hopefully there'll be enough snow to take the gut of it, but the trees far skier's right are perfect: spaced enough that it's easy cruising, steep enough for sickness. in years past you would have had to take your board off and walk up to the traverse, but now you can ride out in the mellow bowl below down to the new lift...you and every other gaper from the east coast.
hanging valley at Snowmass is always good. the best stuff, tho, is the sidecountry off highlands/ajax/snowmass. snowmass, in particular, has rad sidecountry terrain (gate accessible), that NO ONE skis (except my buddy Haskell). like, it can be days after a storm, and no one will have touched it. he claims (as an ex-JXN guy) that Aspen/Snowmass is the single best place in America for both inbounds and lift-accessible backcountry.
*UPLOADS HELMET CAM FOOTAGE TO YOUTUBE*
― gbx, Thursday, 15 November 2007 18:19 (fifteen years ago) link
snowmass sidecountry, as shot by buddy haskell. traversing skier's right at the bottom will eventually (15-20 minutes) get you back to one of Snowmass's out-there lifts.
― gbx, Thursday, 15 November 2007 18:36 (fifteen years ago) link
fascinating-wayback revive feelings
― and i approve this message (Hunt3r), Monday, 11 November 2019 17:03 (three years ago) link