Subject: Re: Ski trips
Hi skiing Ziners, Nothing gets a skier's blood going like reading the morning ski report in the hotel lobby!

My personal favourite is Banff, Alberta. Some skiers don't like getting in the car to drive to a mountain - they prefer the ski village experience, so Banff might put them off. However, I love the drive to Sunshine or Lake Louise every morning and we take an off day to head up to Jasper or hang around Banff town and skate, toboggan or go dog sledding if it's available. We usually stay at the Banff Springs. Again many prefer something more modern but to my mind this is a magical place. A few years ago, we stayed on the mountain at the Sunshine Lodge. At the end of the day, the skiers went home and we luxuriated in the spectacular, star-studded quiet. That was one of the most memorable experiences now lodged in my travel mind.

Tom, you wrote that you wouldn't return to Louise. Don't know when you were last there, but I hope you change your mind. Because it's situated in Banff National Park, the federal government won't permit growth so the operators won't pour in the millions needed to upgrade. But that's not necessarily a bad thing - we have to preserve our beauty. Part of the fun of the park ski areas is that they aren't overrun and it's possible to ski in relatively secluded spots.

Depends on what you want. I don't like Whistler too much - and that's where I learned to ski - because of the party hearty atmosphere and the long lift waits. Also, I find the weather is undependable. After investing a chunk of time and money coming from the East only to be faced with rain is a real downer. Banff generally has lots of snow.

We try to get our ski legs in shape at the beginning of the season by heading north out of Toronto to the Blue Mountain region. But these are hills not mountains - some call them bumps on the horizon!

Best news for Toronto skiers is the new air service between here and Mont Tremblant in Quebec. No more six hour drive. Makes a weekend of skiing in Quebec possible. Looking forward to ski season but heading out to New Orleans first to soak up some warmth. Lucy in Toronto