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Taos 2022-23, conditions and latest upgrades at TSV

marzNC

Angel Diva
There will be quite a few Divas headed to NM for a Taos Ski Week in 2023, starting in early January and running through Diva West for the Jan. 26 Ski Week. For Divas with enough posts, look in Meet On The Hill (MOTH) threads for discussion threads for weeks when there are people already committed to heading to Taos.

Snowmaking started at TSV earlier this week. There is more cold weather expected in early November. The target for Opening Day is Nov. 24.

October 25, 2022

If you are curious about past seasons:
Taos 2019-20, conditions and open terrain
Taos 2021-22, conditions and more
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
Just one correction, the Diva West week will start February 26 not January 26.
Oof . . . I've been mixing up Jan and Feb a lot. Probably because I'm doing a Ski Week starting in late January and Diva West is in late February. (Too late to edit Post #1.)

Divas interested in Diva West should check the Diva West 2023 section for details, assuming they have posted enough to see all Divas Only sections of the forum.
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
TSV has purchased 12 electric snowmobiles for use starting in 2022-23. Wonder if they make any noise. BEV cars are set up to make noise at slower speeds to warn pedestrians.
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
I know a few Divas have Taos-only season passes instead of Ikon because they'll be skiing more than 7 days at TSV. For anyone thinking of that as an option in the future, note that another price increase usually happens after late October.

In general, the sooner a plan for skiing Taos is developed, the easier it is to take advantage of lower prices for lift access. That applies to day tickets bought online. I think that price is better at least 72 hours before the date of use. The multi-resort lift access options for 2022-23 include Full Ikon, Ikon Base, Ikon 4-day Session Pass, and the Mountain Collective Pass. Getting an MCP before June would could mean choosing to do the bonus 3rd day at TSV.
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
Snowmaking at TSV is relatively new. The idea is to make sure that the core groomers are covered top-to-bottom well before the Christmas holidays, preferably by Thanksgiving. Ideally it's better if all the lifts can be open by early January, even if not much off-piste terrain is open yet due to low coverage. There is about 1300 skiable acres.

December 2021

". . .
Taos Ski Valley has a total of 270 snow guns from different manufacturers to make snow on 600 acres: 198 "low energy, high efficiency" 30 foot tower guns, 40 Impulse Viper guns (used for specific areas the tower guns don’t reach).

In an email statement, Taos Ski Valley said: “We have pumps that move water through a pipe throughout the mountain and air compressors that also move air through a separate pipe throughout the mountain. We have more than 300 hydrant locations on these two pipes that the guns connect to with hoses. The water pressure and air pressure are then mixed in the snow gun and a crystal is then formed as it leaves the gun head under these high pressures.”

The ski valley said at max capacity they’ll use 50 snow guns.
. . ."
 
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TNtoTaos

Angel Diva
TSV has purchased 12 electric snowmobiles for use starting in 2022-23. Wonder if they make any noise. BEV cars are set up to make noise at slower speeds to warn pedestrians.
That will be interesting -- quiet snowmobiles! I remember when I first started skiing, every time I saw a snowmobile coming up the mtn towards me, I would panic and fall over! :noidea: Eventually I realized they were not going to run me over, LOL!
 

TNtoTaos

Angel Diva
I know a few Divas have Taos-only season passes instead of Ikon because they'll be skiing more than 7 days at TSV. For anyone thinking of that as an option in the future, note that another price increase usually happens after late October.

In general, the sooner a plan for skiing Taos is developed, the easier it is to take advantage of lower prices for lift access.
Yes, the first offer for season passes at Taos comes out in April, and these are not only the lowest prices, but also have the best perks, e.g., Buddy Passes. The first sale gives more Buddy Passes; the next sale offering later in the yr has half as many Buddy Passes included.
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
There has been a shift for Taos Air. The operator going forward is JSX Air. Apparently they have changed the schedule from what was set up for 2022-23 by TSV when the resort was operating the flight service for a few airports in TX and CA.
 

TNtoTaos

Angel Diva
When I drive my camper van to NM for the holidays, I am planning to make a detour stop at TSV and camp out there for a couple of days before the blackout days start :wink: . Gotta make the most of my season Value pass! It's looking like the base is getting a really early start this year, which is a nice change from the previous couple of seasons.
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
Per usual, Taos doesn't have that much terrain open yet. It takes a lot more snow before the steeper zones are holding enough snow to be considered safe enough for people to go exploring. TSV is a bit behind the average for late December. Hopefully by mid-January the coverage will be closer to average.

Screen Shot 2022-12-26 at 7.42.00 PM.png
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
All the chairlifts except Kachina are open as of early January at TSV. With the base depth at around 40 inches, there aren't many black trails open yet. In particular most black terrain with trees are still closed until there is more of a base.
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
TSV has purchased 12 electric snowmobiles for use starting in 2022-23. Wonder if they make any noise. BEV cars are set up to make noise at slower speeds to warn pedestrians.
According to this article, the goal is for all TSV snowmobiles to be electric by the 2022-23 season.

January 3, 2022
 

MissySki

Angel Diva
All the chairlifts except Kachina are open as of early January at TSV. With the base depth at around 40 inches, there aren't many black trails open yet. In particular most black terrain with trees are still closed until there is more of a base.
Is that pretty typical for this time of year?
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
Is that pretty typical for this time of year?
Yes. Usually the locals want to have at least 75 inches of snow coverage before they venture into the trees. They expect that to happen by mid-February and aren't surprised if the Kachina lift doesn't run in January at all. However, there is usually plenty of bump terrain for lessons and fun with a base of 40-50 inches. I had a good time and learned several short shots on the sides of greens/blues for practicing skiing bumps fast the season I did two Ski Weeks and the first was over MLK week.

Those of us who prefer to do a Ski Week earlier in the season in order to make the most progress overall don't care about skiing double-blacks or even the steeper black tree terrain that may not be open in January or early February. We normally have another trip planned out west later in the season, meaning after Pres. Day weekend or even as late as April.

I learned plenty of useful drills as an advanced skier in February 2018 when there was essentially no black terrain open at all because of extremely low snow conditions. The SkiTalk mini-Gathering grew out of the fact that DB was stood up by the people who were supposed to share a condo at the base of TSV. It was his first Ski Week experience. My crew had dinner with him as we were headed to TSV and he was heading to ABQ after finishing the week. All of us who did a Ski Week then learned a great deal about fundamentals that were helpful for skiing ungroomed terrain later on.

 

marzNC

Angel Diva
In my Feb 2018 trip report, there were posts about the relative difficulty of Taos blacks and double-blacks compared to other destination resorts in the Rockies. Taos is a steep mountain. That means even the blue groomers can feel a little intimidating initially. Especially for people who haven't skied out west much.

Here's what I wrote about my double-black experience from the first trip in February 2017. Doing a Ski Week didn't fit in the schedule for me and Jason that season. There are a few pics in the original post (click on the arrow link).

Written in February 2018
Well, last season when there was so much snow I skied three double-blacks there were quite different: an open bowl, steep tight trees, steep but open bump trail. I have absolutely no interest in the narrow chutes off the ridges. What I found is that even though I didn't do a Ski Week, my bump skiing improved a lot because there were so many bump sections of varying degrees of difficulty from easy to extreme, with or without trees. Hard to get that sort of mileage on bumps in most resorts, including destination resorts in the Rockies.

Main Street on Kachina was relatively straightforward because the bumps were soft and not as big as usual. Steeper than Liberty at Big Sky but that main reason that I stopped several times on the way down was that skiing at over 11,000 ft is noticeably more effort even after a few days at high altitude.

Getting into Lorelei Trees was my mistake. I was trying to find Lorelei. Jason was following me. We side slipped and maneuvered our way out and over to Lorelei. Helped that I saw an instructor thru the trees. Not going in there again any time soon. Enjoyed doing Lorelei from the top later that week, which is a black.

Jason and I went to Longhorn with an instructor. . . .

In the last few years, I'm much more willing to ski double-black terrain at Taos in good snow. The steeper pitches are no longer as intimidating. Neither are tighter trees. Wandering around big soft bumps has become fun.

Makes a big difference that I've been introduced to "tactics" in terms of how to choose the easiest section of a run during Ski Week lessons. Learning about terrain for "adventure runs" is part of the reason I like to take longer lessons at destination resorts. Some may be short shots through the trees between groomers that aren't on the trail map and others may be a long run that would take a long time to explore without a knowledgeable guide. While adventures with ski buddies are fun, there are fewer surprises when exploring new terrain with an instructor who knows the strengths and weaknesses of a small group of skiers.
 
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TNtoTaos

Angel Diva

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