New Year's might seem far off, but for powder hounds, it can't come soon enough – especially when there are deals to be had for booking some of 2011's roster of gay ski weeks early. Some even start happening before your hangover has had time to subside. Details below.
Never been to a gay ski week? Looking for something more low key? Ski Bums, the nation's largest LGBT ski and snowboarder organization, runs group trips across the country and select worldwide pilgrimages (Courchevel, France and heliskiing in Sweden are on tap for in 2011), as well as day trips from NYC, creating what amounts to a mini gay ski week in the process. A new California chapter launches next Friday, October 8 at Gym Sportsbar in WeHo, so West Coasters can start feeling the chilly thrills soon. Both black diamond masters and bunny hill newbies are welcome.
Utah Gay & Lesbian Ski Week
January 5-9, 2011
Park City, Utah
A multi-mountain event (The Canyons, Snowbird / Alta, Snow Basin, Solitude / Brighton) just 30 minutes outside Salt Lake City . Don't skip its surprisingly robust gay scene on your way in or out.
• Official Ski Week Dinner and Party must be booked by December 15 to guarantee a spot. Call 877-429-6368.
Arosa Gay Ski Week
January 8-15, 2011
2011 Events are TBA, but two things are guaranteed: a United Nations of European powder hounds and primo Alps ascensions.
Aspen Gay Ski Week
January 16-23, 2011
One of the first – and largest – gay ski weeks around, Aspen brings out a tony crowd with spa days, drag shows, dance parties, and, of course, pool parties. Early Bird specials available now with rooms from $299 at the Limelight Lodge and passes from $199, as well as custom air/lodging/lift ticket/event pass packages. Every booking through Stay Aspen Snowmass (StayAspenSnowmass.com) benefits the Roaring Fork Gay & Lesbian Community Fund.
Winter Rendezvous Gay Ski Week
January 19-23, 2011
A more grassroots affair in one of the Northeast's best resorts. Events TBA but will include après-ski cocktails, wine tastings, and DJ'd dance parties.
January 30-February 6, 20100
Part gay ski week, part Pride, part circuit party, it's no wonder Whistler's annual gay blowout is North America's largest – both in numbers and skiable terrain – and thanks to the 2010 Olympic Games, it's also tops in buzz. Package deals forthcoming, so keep checking back, but expect something similar to the 2010 deals.
Telluride Gay Ski Week
February 26-March 5, 2011
Rated Number 1 Gay Ski Week by Gay.com, the 10th edition of this spirited but still friendly event is pulling out all the stops, with new parties to match the hardcore slope action.
March 6-13, 2011
South Lake Tahoe, Nevada
Primo powder, spectacular views of the crystalline Lake Tahoe's south shore, and plenty of friendly Bay Area boarders fill the slopes for the 16th edition of this still intimate event. Once again mega-resort Heavenly plays host, allowing you to ski both in California and Nevada.
March 16-20, 2011
Mammoth Lakes, California
SoCal's closest mega-mountain drew 600+ guys last year with its circuit-party vibe. Mountain-top dance floors, anyone? (Lodge bunnies will especially be comfortable here.) Buy weekend passes and tickets to main events early, such as Saturday's Boys, Boarders & a Beach Party, as they will reach capacity. They've outgrown every après-ski venue in town!
SWING (Switzerland Gay Ski Week)
March 20-27, 2011
Another popular Euro getaway has a more relaxed, four-star Alpine vibe perfect for groups of friends or couples, with fondue dinners, time in a hammam, movie nights, and races on tap.
March 29-April 3, 2011
Crested Butte, Colorado
If Aspen is too much of a scene, Crested Butte offers a more sedate, genuine Colorado ski town experience. 200 snowboarders and skiers come for the small town feel and friendly events – some including open bar.
Scandinavian Ski Pride 2011
If you've already done the Alps, why not join some Vikings and try Norway's “alps” in Hemsedal. It's only the second year this event is being put on – and dates are still forthcoming; last year was a long-weeked starting April 15 – but check the web site for a taste of what to expect and updates.
Vail Ski Week
Summer skiing you say? Color us intrigued, especially considering the 2010 edition took place in January.
And if you really want to plan ahead, mark your calendars for these southern hemisphere escapes.
Gay Ski Week NZ
September 4-12, 2010
Queenstown, New Zealand
Bariloche Gay Ski Week
September 5-11, 2010
Have anything to update or add to this gay ski week schedule? Or tales from specific events? Let us know in the comments below!
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