Solution: Skip ’em––and cat-ski.
Long considered the poor man’s heli-trip, cat-skiing has come into its own. Few realize it’s not just for double-black-diamond rippers; blue-square skiers can do it too. (You could even say it’s safer than the congested beginner and intermediate runs at some resorts, which boast names like Times Square for a reason.) New outfitter CS Irwin in Crested Butte, Colorado, is a luxe version of the typically bare-bones cat-skiing experience. You kick off with fresh pastries in town, then pile into plush snow buses with leather seats and flat-screens playing ski movies as you chug up the mountain. They’ll groom runs for anyone who prefers corduroy to waist-deep powder, and cook up lunch in their cozy backcountry log cabin. Dec 15–Apr 30; $500/person or $4,500/group of 10 including equipment; csirwin.com