Click on a camp below, and prepare yourself to get better. Much better.
Jackson Hole, Wyo.
Steep and Deep Clinic: Jan. 13-16, Jan. 27-30, Feb. 10-13, March 3-6, 2010
When it comes to extreme terrain, there’s everywhere else, and then there’s Jackson Hole. With the new tram, Jackson once again boasts the longest single-lift-accessed continuous vertical drop in the U.S.: 4,139 feet. Five hundred of those sit atop Rendezvous Mountain on a 40- to 50-degree chute that’s 50 feet across at its widest point and arguably the most notorious trail in North America: Corbet’s Couloir….
Speed Week with Doug Lewis: Feb. 2-4, 2010
Former U.S. Ski Team downhiller Doug Lewis didn’t have to think long about where he’d stage a citizen’s downhill race—and pre-competition race clinic—on his home hill. Indeed, the highlight for participants in his weeklong speed-event camp is competing on the same course Franz Klammer, Pirmin Zurbriggen and other World Cup stars skied when it was part of the King of the Mountain pro downhill series back in the ’90s. For his amateur event, Lewis took out the 100-foot air over an SUV near the bottom, but otherwise it’s the same track, professionally designed with both challenge and safety in mind….
Mogul Camp: March 5-7, April 9-11, May 29-31, 2010
With a summit elevation of 11,053 feet, Mammoth Mountain is the highest ski area in the Sierras. The altitude helps Southern California’s premiere resort retain much of its 400 annual inches far into the spring. It also provides perfect conditions for soft, evenly-spaced, impossibly long late-season bump fields. From the double-black diamond pitches off the summit to milder pine-lined slopes lower on the mountain, Mammoth consistently offers moguls for every ability. The resort almost always stays open through Memorial Day, sometimes through the Fourth of July, and averages 300 days of sunshine annually….
NASTC All Conditions & All Terrain: March 28-30, 2010
When they say all conditions and all terrain, they mean it. The North American Ski Training Center isn’t affiliated with any one resort, so it’s not limited to a single mountain—or a single continent, for that matter. The roving school explores skiscapes around the globe. But if guided catskiing at Grand Targhee, Wyo., or a tour of La Grave, France, feels slightly out of your comfort zone, work up to it with one or a series of AC/AT clinics. In NASTC’s flagship fundamentals course, the terrain accessible from Northstar’s Comstock lift provides a natural progression from moderate, groomed frontside blues to the unmanicured, mile-long bump and powder runs on The Backside. Plus, Northstar’s new base village accommodates pre- and post-ski fitness and tech talks, as well as optional après imbibing….
Skimmersion: Jan. 17-22, Feb. 21-26, March 7-12, 2010
As laboratories go, this is as good a place as any to conduct your own personal skiing R&D. Vail, which says it grooms more terrain on a daily basis than any other resort in North America, has everything you need to test methods and techniques that apply to the science of our sport. Its 5,200 skiable acres include moderate mogul runs, steep bowls and tight tree runs on which to progress. There are dozens of trails at or just above your ability level, making it the ideal place to spend a full week submerged in an intensive accelerated learning program. And that’s to say nothing of its off-hill diversions….
Women’s Week: Feb. 7-11, March 7-11, 2010
Telluride has been called a lot of things. Girly isn’t one of them. Given its reputation for steep, gnarly terrain, it might seem ironic that Telluride was one of the first resorts to offer a dedicated women’s immersion program, in 1981. What’s not surprising is that its ski school doesn’t take the standard shrink-it-and-pink-it approach to serving women. Women’s Weeks celebrate—and make no apologies for—girls’ favorite things, from skiing to shopping, though you needn’t be hardcore about either to attend. Nearly a quarter of Telluride’s ski trails are classified as beginner, and there’s no limit to tough terrain. The point is: No matter how far you want to push your limits, Telluride can accommodate you….