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ugh too many....
I'd like to add that for partying, nothing in N America comes close to european resorts (especially Austrian resorts...).... Utah is the hardest place to get drunk i've ever been!
But anyway, i digress... as for the most incredible places I've skiied.... to me it's a no brainer as follows
Chamonix, La Grave, Beaver Creek on a pow day, Whistler (although it does get fucked by being SO low and close to the ocean... for that reason it can suck baws sometimes... and be inconsistent - but when good - it's very good)..... Breck and Keystone and Park City for perfect parks, Brighton in Utah for the most fun, epic and easily accesible terrain in America - and I mean quick laps too on Milly etc... and probably also Kicking horse for some steep as shit stuff.... oh and Revvy....
Les Deux Alpes (france), Mayrhofen (austria), and for a the best partying in a ski resort in N America, will probably say Breck or Whistler... but Whistler is a little bit too shiny, expensive and gucci... (same goes for Vail etc.. ) Breck is just fun....
Fairest way to do this is state by state.
California its Squaw vs. Mammoth.
Wyoming its Jackson Hole.
Alaska is Alyeska.
Just from personal experience...
How can people claim the best resorts in the world if they've never skiied them in the conditions they were meant to be skiied in...
For me, some of the best pow days i've had in the USA have been at the Beave... but, in Canada, i've had epic days at Kicking Horse.... i've just had more at the beave and love it... it's quieter then Vail, lots of fun quick laps. I skiied in Utah this season, but in recent shitty snow conditions (By Utah standards)... so I cannot calim it's epic... until i experience it for myself.
But that said, I would imagine Squaw and Jackson would be much much better - I've never ridden there though, so cannot comment.
Craziest LIFT ACCESSED big mtn skiing is nowhere in North America - it's easily La grave in France, one lift - no pistes, glaciers (real big, dangerous serac'd glaciers, not Blackcomb) and rappels and craziness...... you could NEVER have a resort like La Grave in the USA or Canada simply because of the liability... it's too risky for them to have lift accessed terrain like that...
correct. i would say there's at least a dozen, maybe even 20+ resorts in europe which have bigger, badder, lift-accessed terrain (and more of it) than anywhere in north america, squaw, jackson, alta, whistler etc included. the only aspect where north america is superior is park, but the parks over here are getting pretty close now. once you factor in mountain town life, partying, culture etc, there is no question that the best resort in the world is in europe.
for the all-around package I'd argue Val d'Isere/Tignes takes it but I wouldn't have too much problem accepting arguments for Chamonix, Verbier or the St. Anton/Arlberg area.
How bout switching it up like this...
Best park resort: ?
Best big mountain: ?
Best Powder: ?
Best back country: ?
Best place for cliffs/drops: ?
Best place to party: ?
Best place to pretend you're rich and hang out with celebs: ?
Best place to find gapers: ?