Fri 12 October 2007 by Beanie1Crested Butte is actually in two parts, the slopeside resort (Mount Crested Butte) and the town (Crested Butte) which is three miles down the hill. There is a FREE shuttle bus every 15 minutes between the two, which was a godsend. The slopeside bars do not stay open late, so to eat after 9pm you'll have to go to town.
The town has a main street (Elk Avenue) lined with bars/restaurants. There is plenty of choice food-wise, you won't get bored. Beer is cheaper than the UK and there are some nice local brews available. Spirits come nice and strong too, and aren't that dear, wine unfortunately could be.
The mountain is great for both beginners (and so I am told) those of a more advanced level. There were loads of great green runs for us to play on, and a really nice beginners area (called Peachtree) for us to practice on. When we did venture up, we took the Red Lady Express quad, which services a good amount of nice greens, mainly gentle with a couple of steeper bits here and there. We didn't make it onto the blues and higher, but I didn't hear anyone complaining about the mountain at all. There is another express quad (Silver Queen) which leaves from the base area, it takes you up higher and accesses blues and blacks. The Teocalli bowl has 'extreme' terrain which apparently is the largest area of lift serviced extreme terrain in the USA. The slopes were very quiet, I didn't queue for a lift for more than two minutes. More often than not you could glide straight up and on to the chair with no-one else in front of you.
Snow conditions were on the whole good, a base of 37 - 40 inches while we were there. The green runs were well groomed and rode nicely for a beginner. Locals were saying that it was a poor snow year, but we were totally happy. It was cold, down to -25 overnight, but tucked up in your room you didn't notice that at all. Provided you had decent thermals and gloves, I don't think you would have too much of a problem on the mountain either, I certainly didn't.
Our accommodation was of a high standard and we didn't have a bad meal the whole time we were there. I wouldn't hesitate in recommending Crested Butte to improving beginners and intermediates, although I think those more advanced may want more challenges after a few days in resort. The only downside is the transfer from Denver, it takes nearly 5 hours. That said, I can tell you it was totally worth it.