Gary Charles from Australia writes:
I have now been at Cerro Castor for just over 1 week and in that time have the experienced the full extremes of weather from beautiful warm sunny days late last week through a wet (not rain) snowy day on Sunday (resulting in 20cm heavy powder on the upper slopes), a mainly sunny Monday - few people fresh tracks all day to a windy. Tuesday had very strong somtimes gale force wind gusts at the top of the mountain. However, skiing is still possible on all but the top of the mountain as it faces south and although still windy is well protected from the full force of all but southerly winds. Credit to the staff for keeping the all the chairlifts open in trying conditions. (Las Lenas take note).
The resort is basically a large bowl containing rocky outcrops making for varied terrain - mainly intermediate runs with advanced sections. Two quad chairlifts run up each side. A quad chair services the snowboard park which has FIS standard jumps - no one using, too high. The bottom half is below the treeline and so pistes are well protected. This is serviced by another quad chair.
The mountain still has a good but thin covering of snow with most runs still open and off-piste possible with caution.
There are large self service restaurants well located with views of the ski field. These are heated and provide adequate retreat in bad weather.
These serve good freshly made hot soup $24 pesos or large salad bowls with ham and egg ($40 pesos for the healthy skier snowboarder) and the usual range of hot food for the rest. A full silver service restaurant with asado etc is available near the base.
Generally the resort has modern lifts by South American standards - nearly all quad chairs (no high speed detachable though) with tow and magic carpets for beginners.
While some resorts have wasted money on expensive Wifi, (will be obsolete in a few years when 3G mobile data prices drop) Huesped service, expensive hotel renovations, etc to celebrate their 30 years plus existence while their lift system could best be described as a "working museum" (resulting in frequent lift closures). The well designed and run Cerro Castor is able to provide skiers with a full functioning resort in almost any weather as well as large on-piste restaurants spread around the ski field providing a retreat for "fair weather skiers."
With more snow forecast for the final weekend all those reading this report who can't make it here can ''eat your heart out"
The resort is not as good as Las Lenas when the top lift, Marte, is open but if Marte is closed (as is often the case) then Cerro Castor provides a good alternative.