Advice needed Blue runs at Thredbo when only part of the mountain is open

Interruptedbyfireworks

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Hey everyone!

I am an intermediate snowboarder, and I’m looking for some advice about what runs to start with this weekend, noting that not everything will be open.

My level: I went to Thredbo for the first time last weekend and did a lesson up at Cruiser. I was comfortable with Ballroom, and my instructor said next time I should do a level 5 lesson.

Questions: How does Supertrail, High Noon and Anton’s compare to Ballroom? I’m not going to get a lesson this weekend, so where should I start? Also, I can’t figure out how you get back to the village or Friday Flat from Anton’s - is it High Noon return only?

TLDR; what are the easiest blue runs to start with at Thredbo?
 

ShavedBadger

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Hey everyone!

I am an intermediate snowboarder, and I’m looking for some advice about what runs to start with this weekend, noting that not everything will be open.

My level: I went to Thredbo for the first time last weekend and did a lesson up at Cruiser. I was comfortable with Ballroom, and my instructor said next time I should do a level 5 lesson.

Questions: How does Supertrail, High Noon and Anton’s compare to Ballroom? I’m not going to get a lesson this weekend, so where should I start? Also, I can’t figure out how you get back to the village or Friday Flat from Anton’s - is it High Noon return only?

TLDR; what are the easiest blue runs to start with at Thredbo?

The runs off the top of the Cruiser chair at Merrits are a nice progression of green to blue, Antons is a good step up provided you are ok with riding a T-Bar, and Supertrail is a step up again, in terms of steepness, but it is fairly wide for the most part. I'd rank the bottom section of High Noon as probably the trickiest of that lot, as it is prone to getting icy and drops away fairly steeply once you get about halfway down. From Antons you can either go to Friday via High Noon, or go down and to the right to the traverse over to the village trail/Supertrail. Or you can catch the Sponars T up to the top and take Conrod across to the Supertrail higher up.
 

Interruptedbyfireworks

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The runs off the top of the Cruiser chair at Merrits are a nice progression of green to blue, Antons is a good step up provided you are ok with riding a T-Bar, and Supertrail is a step up again, in terms of steepness, but it is fairly wide for the most part. I'd rank the bottom section of High Noon as probably the trickiest of that lot, as it is prone to getting icy and drops away fairly steeply once you get about halfway down. From Antons you can either go to Friday via High Noon, or go down and to the right to the traverse over to the village trail/Supertrail. Or you can catch the Sponars T up to the top and take Conrod across to the Supertrail higher up.
Thanks! From the sounds of it, I will most likely give HN a miss this time, maybe even just download on the gunbarrel like I did last weekend. I’m generally fine on a t bar as long as I’m with my skiing partner who keeps me steady, so maybe we will start with the cruiser area then venture to Antons if I feel brave!
 
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ShavedBadger

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Thanks! From the sounds of it, I will most likely give HN a miss this time, maybe even just download on the gunbarrel like I did last weekend. I’m generally fine on a t bar as long as I’m with my skiing partner who keeps me steady, so maybe we will start with the cruiser area then venture to Antons if I feel brave!

Antons is not a huge step up in terms of actual skiing/boarding, but the entry/access/exit points are a little trickier and where you need a bit more control, and if you are giving HN a miss then I'd definitely check out the traverse from Antons over to the Supertrail/Village Trail, at least you'll get a bit more variety heading over that way.
 

Scoober

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The runs off the top of the Cruiser chair at Merrits are a nice progression of green to blue, Antons is a good step up provided you are ok with riding a T-Bar, and Supertrail is a step up again, in terms of steepness, but it is fairly wide for the most part. I'd rank the bottom section of High Noon as probably the trickiest of that lot, as it is prone to getting icy and drops away fairly steeply once you get about halfway down. From Antons you can either go to Friday via High Noon, or go down and to the right to the traverse over to the village trail/Supertrail. Or you can catch the Sponars T up to the top and take Conrod across to the Supertrail higher up.
All good advice, just to be clear though Sponars T is not spinning yet, so stick to antons or super trail traverse. Also the basin is open this weekend, whilst its a green run it gives a bit of variety and you can ski straight down on to the super trail easily once you're bored
 

Interruptedbyfireworks

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All good advice, just to be clear though Sponars T is not spinning yet, so stick to antons or super trail traverse. Also the basin is open this weekend, whilst its a green run it gives a bit of variety and you can ski straight down on to the super trail easily once you're bored
Sounds like a plan, thank you! Though I do hate traversing, being a pesky snowboarder and all
 

Adam_P

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The what comes next after Merritt's is a question that I have had to deal with a few times with my kids when they were at what sounds like your your level. My 2c worth.
- The steep section of High Noon (2/3 the way down) was pretty intimidating for them, especially at the end of the day, when it was either icy or chopped up slush. They were much happier doing the traverse from Merritts to Village Trail. Other than keeping speed on the traverse, the only slightly tricky bit is the small steep bend (just after Sponars) and the cat track after that can be a little intimidating at first due to the narrowness.
- I would definitely steer clear of Antons and Sponars. Whilst the terrain may be OK, having very experienced skiers / boarders flying past them put them off.
As weird as it probably seems I think the best progression after Merrits is The Basin. Gets you used to T-bars and boarding in a more exposed area. As Scoober mentioned, you can then get down via Super Trail (which I think is the best option off the mountain for that level as it is the widest).
 

Interruptedbyfireworks

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The what comes next after Merritt's is a question that I have had to deal with a few times with my kids when they were at what sounds like your your level. My 2c worth.
- The steep section of High Noon (2/3 the way down) was pretty intimidating for them, especially at the end of the day, when it was either icy or chopped up slush. They were much happier doing the traverse from Merritts to Village Trail. Other than keeping speed on the traverse, the only slightly tricky bit is the small steep bend (just after Sponars) and the cat track after that can be a little intimidating at first due to the narrowness.
- I would definitely steer clear of Antons and Sponars. Whilst the terrain may be OK, having very experienced skiers / boarders flying past them put them off.
As weird as it probably seems I think the best progression after Merrits is The Basin. Gets you used to T-bars and boarding in a more exposed area. As Scoober mentioned, you can then get down via Super Trail (which I think is the best option off the mountain for that level as it is the widest).
Good tips thank you, I do get a bit freaked out by narrow cat tracks and lose all ability to link my turns, so I’ll have to put my big girl pants on. Merrits and traversing along to ST/basin it is! I’m so excited to see that side of the mountain after stalking the snow cams for the last few weeks :p
 

crackson

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At Merritts, ballroom is the nicest slope to practice on with the occasional diversion down valley view. Less traffic on these two and good slope angle.

Then move onto the basins first tbar. Don't go up the second one yet. Explore all of that and you should be good to try a run down highnoon. Don't let the stories of the steep at the bottom scare you. At slow speed it's a breeze.

The top 3/4 of highnoon is bliss.
 

sastrugi

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I’m generally fine on a t bar as long as I’m with my skiing partner who keeps me steady, so maybe we will start with the cruiser area then venture to Antons if I feel brave!

Good on you! I wish more snowboarders would understand that travelling a t-bar with a skier is the easiest and most stable way to ride it on a board. So many try to ride alone and waste precious time and Ts getting it wrong.
 
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Interruptedbyfireworks

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Oh and narrow cat tracks... one thing to note, it's not really about linking turns, it's about avoiding other people. Your snow plow should be coming up more often in these environments!!!!
Yeah I think it is all just in my head! I hate the cat tracks that are super icy and super flat, because I need to keep up speed in order to traverse (snowboarder) but then that makes dodging people on the narrow track a little sketchy and I end up losing my nerve and falling on the hard ice. I am getting more confident though! And I put my board in for tune this week which I am hoping will help with icy sections.

I didn’t end up going across to the other side at all last weekend, had a blast at cruiser area with the additional runs that had opened up, then downloaded on gunbarrel. Heading up again Sunday and hoping to be brave enough to head across to ST then, so I’ll try out the routes you mentioned, thank you!
 
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Interruptedbyfireworks

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Good on you! I wish more snowboarders would understand that travelling a t-bar with a skier is the easiest and most stable way to ride it on a board. So many try to ride alone and waste precious time and Ts getting it wrong.
Yes definitely! I was so surprised the first time I went up with a skier. It is soooooo much easier! My one time on the J bar (?) at Dinner Plain took me five goes by myself and in the end I just walked up the slope haha
 
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LMB

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Yes to heading over to The Basin.

I didn’t think it was *flat* - many a fun day has been had there even as a strong snowboarder, when it was the only place open. No it’s not steep and gnarly but it’s a great little spot.

The Merrits T can be the trickiest at times, if you’ve got that down on a board then you’ll be fine else where.

Remember if you are wanting to finish at Friday Flat you can always ski back to Merritt’s and download the Merritt’s chair to mid way, jump off and run it in to Friday’s.
 
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