Archive for ‘USA’
I love holidays. I love planning them, and I love going on them. Over the years I have skied at more than 70 resorts worldwide and my trusty ski companion is my mum, who patiently acquiesces to all sorts of wacky plans to ski more resorts and cram in even greater experiences.
One of my favourite things to do is to combine a ski trip with my other passion – wildlife. There’s lots of places where you can do that, particularly in North America. Here’s a taste of some of the things I’ve seen on my ski travels.
I’ve just returned from incredible Colorado multi-centre trip thanks to Colorado Tourism Office and Norwegian Airlines. I wanted to share a few of my standout experiences and recommendations.
Flight with Norwegian
The trip started off with an excellent flight with Norwegian Airlines from Gatwick to Denver – one of the great things about this flight is that you’re taking off at 10am so arriving in Denver around 1pm, with the full day ahead of you – so whether you’re heading straight up to the mountains, or into the city for a few days, it’s perfect.
On board Read the rest of this entry »
Our latest blog post comes from a long-standing Ski Independence client and veritable food, drink and skiing connoisseur. John shared his Jackson Hole ski resort review with us after he recently returned there many years after his first visit.
“I’m goin’ to Jackson, I’m gonna mess around,
Yeah, I’m goin’ to Jackson,
Look out Jackson town.”
Jackson Hole is a town-sized dude ranch. That’s not a criticism, it is a proper western town, but one can’t help noticing that the day of the cowboy and the wild west is more legend than present day reality. Still, I love the place.
Our top 9 recommendations for 2018/19
A family ski holiday is one of life’s great pleasures. There’s nothing quite like being together in the fresh air of the mountains, watching your children grow in confidence and ability. Ski Independence have been a family ski holiday specialist for 25 years and we know from experience that the bet family ski holidays take a lot of careful planning and a good dose of detailed knowledge – so why not leave it to us? We’ve highlighted some of our recommendations for the best family ski holidays for next winter, and if you don’t see what you fancy below we’re happy to recommend a huge range of alternative destinations, accommodation & activities to suit your family. So, in no particular order…
1. Les Gets, France
A short transfer from Geneva and a traditional pretty village are often two sought-after points on a family holiday wish list and Les Gets more than ticks these boxes. The centre of the village is lined with shops and restaurants serving a selection of Savoyard specialities along with a couple of lively bars offering laid back après-ski. Read the rest of this entry »
Find out all about what’s new for 2018/19!
We’re excited to announce that the brand new Ski Independence brochure has arrived, bookings are rolling in and early booking offers are high in demand.
Now is the best time to book and to give you some inspiration here’s an overview of what’s new for our European & North American programmes.
One Pass | 26 Ski Destinations
A brand new season pass is coming for Winter 2018/19!
**UPDATED 8 March 2018**
Exciting news for fans of skiing in the USA & Canada: the Ikon Pass is a new season pass set to go head-to-head with the Epic Pass next winter, offering skiing in 26 destinations on one lift ticket. Chief Marketing Officer of Alterra Mountain Company, Erik Forsell, said, “The Ikon Pass is a collaboration of like-minded mountain destinations across North America where incredible terrain, unique character and local traditions are celebrated.”
Ikon Pass holders will be able to access resorts including Steamboat, Winter Park, Mammoth Mountain, Tremblant, Squaw Valley, Aspen Snowmass, Jackson Hole and Big Sky, Revelstoke Mountain Resort and Ski Big 3 (Banff Sunshine Village, Lake Louise, Banff Mount Norquay) all featured Ski Independence resorts and among the best ski destinations on the planet. We have two pass types available, with discounted children’s rates on offer before 9th April 2018.
Ikon Season Pass
Adult: £627 / Teen: £502 / Child: £313
- Full season pass with completely unlimited skiing all season in 8 destinations including Steamboat, Winter Park, Copper Mountain Resort, Squaw Valley, Mammoth Mountain and Tremblant plus 7 days skiing in a huge number of other resorts including Jackson Hole, Big Sky, Deer Valley, Revelstoke Mountain Resort and Aspen Snowmass.
- Until the 9th April 2018, children’s passes are better than half price with the purchase of a full adult pass.*
Ikon Base Pass
Adult: £418 / Teen: £334 / Child: £209
- Unlimited access to 8 destinations including Winter Park, Tremblant, Copper Mountain and more, as well as 5 days at destinations including Steamboat, Mammoth Mountain, Jackson Hole, Big Sky, Killington Resort and Revelstoke Mountain Resort, Aspen Snowmass, AltaSnowbird and Ski Big 3 (Banff Sunshine Village, Lake Louise, Mount Norquay).
- Until the 9th April 2018, children’s passes are half price with the purchase of a full adult pass.*
The Ikon Pass In Numbers
- 26 destinations in 9 US states & 4 Canadian Provinces
- 63,709 skiable acres
- 3,304 trails
- 481 lifts
Ikon Pass Destinations
The Ikon Pass will rival the hugely popular Epic Pass in scope and scale for skiing across North America and our team of Ski Specialists can advise you on how to get the best out of your Ikon Pass next winter, whether you’re planning a multi-centre holiday or more than one trip in the season.
- Colorado: Steamboat, Winter Park Resort, Aspen Snowmass, Copper Mountain Resort
- California: Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows, Mammoth Mountain, June Mountain, Big Bear Mountain Resort
- Eastern USA: Killington Resort, Sunday River, Sugarloaf, Loon Mountain Resort, Snowshoe, Stratton
- Wyoming: Jackson Hole Mountain Resort
- Montana: Big Sky Resort
- Utah: Deer Valley Resort, Snowbird, Alta Ski Area
- Canada: Tremblant, CMH Heli-Skiing & Summer Adventures in British Columbia, Blue Mountain, Ski Big 3 (Banff Sunshine Village, Lake Louise, Banff Mount Norquay), Revelstoke
Speak to a Ski Specialist on 0131 243 8097
*T&Cs apply to all purchases, please get in touch with us for further details.
Voted the best place to live in America in the 2016 US News and World Report, Denver is sophisticated and diverse, boasts a great climate, is packed full of cultural attractions and has a thriving restaurant scene. Our Senior Ski Specialist Karen visited Denver on an educational trip in December 2016. Here are her thoughts on her experience in the Mile High City.
A Denver City Stopover might just surprise you!
I’m not going to lie, Denver, in my head, was an industrial sprawl providing infrastructure for the Rockies, but little else. How wrong I was – downtown Denver is clean, walkable, safe and full of interesting architecture and quirky independent boutiques. Hipsters have well and truly taken over here – it’s virtually impossible to buy a drink that’s not in a jam jar. And if you’re not serving hand-ground-artisan-coffee-beans-personally-sourced-from-an-indigenous-community-in-the-woods then you’re not selling coffee in this town!
Our group stayed at the Crawford Hotel. Part of a new (2 year old) refurbishment of Denver’s Union Station, dating from 1881, it’s an awesome building and there are lots of bars, restaurants and shops on the ground floor. Every outlet is independently owned and local – no chains here. Hotel guests get given a discount card when they check in: this gives you a free coffee, a scoop of ice cream, a beer and discounts in the stores. Entry level rooms are small, but really stylish and comfortable.
Why this hotel is of particular interest, though, is its location. The tram from Denver Airport arrives right at the back door of the hotel and we got from the plane to the hotel in just over an hour! The tram goes every 15 minutes from the airport terminal, and takes just over half an hour. Read the rest of this entry »
The 2016/17 winter season is officially underway! Here is a short roundup of recent news and images to inspire your next ski holiday. From early resort openings in France and Canada to record snowfalls for the time of year, we can’t wait to get out there and ski! The first of our resort visits for the season start today – our Sales Manager, Gareth, is off to Verbier whilst Ski Specialist, David, is heading out to Colorado.
Whistler Blackcomb Open Ahead of Schedule
It has been nothing short of a brilliant start to winter for British Columbia’s ski resorts, with huge snowfalls early on. Whistler is celebrating its biggest November snow base in 6 years. Watch this video from Whistler’s opening day:
>> Find out more about Making the most of Whistler Blackcomb
Also Open for Winter 2016/17
- Banff and Lake Louise: Lake Louise Ski Resort has been open since Friday 18th November and the famed Delirium Dive at Sunshine Village is now operational too. These superb Alberta ski resorts are off to an incredible start to the season, with yet another storm system passing through this weekend.
Snow Photos – our latest selection
Welcome to the first in our series of galleries for Winter 2016/17. Our partners in resort have shared a whole range of inspiring and ‘make-your-friends-jealous’ images with us, which just make you want to get out there and ski!
Keep up to date with recent snowfall as it happens in the USA, Canada, France, Switzerland, Austria, Italy and Japan. Check back here for updates throughout the season & don’t miss the Ski Independence Instagram page!
Get in touch with our team of Ski Specialists for more advice on where to ski this winter and to book your tailor-made ski holiday now. Call the team on 0131 243 8097 or request a tailor-made quotation online.
Two iconic mountains in the Teton range, legendary ski terrain and an authentic Wild West experience. Now easier than ever, Patrick Nelson from Jackson Hole Mountain Resort gives us the lowdown on getting to Jackson this winter:
While Jackson Hole has long been known as a Wild West outpost, it is actually really easy to access from the UK. Surrounded by National Parks and Wilderness and with the Elk, moose and bison population roughly equalling humans, you might not expect easy flights to Jackson Hole.
British Airways (American Airlines codeshare) and United continue to offer one-stop options through Chicago and Dallas, but new for Winter 2016-17 is a 3x weekly one-stop from Heathrow to Jackson Hole on Delta (Virgin Atlantic codeshare). This flight departs London Heathrow around noon and lands in Salt Lake City around 16:00 with easy customs and quick layover before the short flight to Jackson Hole. Jackson Hole is as remote as ever, but now easier than ever to get to. And the airport is only 15 minutes from the town of Jackson and 35 minutes from the slopes.
If you’ve never skied Jackson Hole, or haven’t been for a few years, it might be time to (re)visit “The Big One.” Read the rest of this entry »