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Which do you like best? Trying to decide between: Solitude, Brighton, Snow Basin, Brianhead

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 

Hey everybody, trying to decide where to take my family skiing and snowboarding next.

 

Been to Solitude and Brighton, loved 'em both. Haven't been to Snow Basin or Brianhead yet.

 

Criteria are pretty simple:

  1. Family friendly
  2. Good snow (we hope!) :)
  3. Easy access accommodations (base of mountain is best)
  4. Decent food nearby if we're lucky
  5. Good ski school for my wife and daughter
  6. Few if any nutjobs smoking grass and using foul language

 

I appreciate your advice, thank you!

 

Really curious about Snow Basin and Brianhead.

 

I'm in San Diego, not sure if that has any bearing on anything but figured I'd mention it.

 

Hope everyone's having a nice day.

 

Dave

post #2 of 34

My thoughts:

  1. Family friendly--All would be fine.  Snowbasin is not a particularly good choice for novice skiers.
  2. Good snow (we hope!) :):  Brighton and Solitude consistently the best.  Brian Head has largely been short changed this year so far.
  3. Easy access accommodations (base of mountain is best).  Solitude has a compact, conveniently located village.  Brian Head has lots of condos scattered about.  Brighton--very limited.  Snowbasin--no onsight lodging.
  4. Decent food nearby if we're lucky.  Don't have any recent data points on Brian Head.  Solitude and Brighton limited.  Snowbasin--nothing in the evening, some really good options during the ski day.
  5. Good ski school for my wife and daughter  Don't have any recent data points except on Snowbasin which is usually really good.
  6. Few if any nutjobs smoking grass and using foul language.  All should be similar and OK (unless you believe that snowboarders are generally more likely to engage in that behavior--Brighton has a lot of snowboarders)

 

Brian Head would make a nice, low stress family get away.  It is pretty small, not very steep and has limited vertical--my last choice for skiing quality of the four.

 

Solitude--probably the best fit if the 6 criteria are evenly weighted. 

 

Brighton--you've been there--since Brighton and Solitude are so close I am not sure you need to distinguish the two and you could easily ski both on the same trip.

 

Snowbasin--my home mountain and favorite of those mentioned for skiing quality.  However, it may not be a very good choice based on your criteria. 

post #3 of 34

Dave, are you flying or driving?  And do you have a particular time frame in mind?

post #4 of 34

Never been to Brian Head but can't really see a reason to go there unless you're trying to cut down on the drive from San Diego. If you're flying, Brian Head will be the farthest to get to from a major airport and the smallest. A nice option if you want some cool scenery (Cedar Breaks is right across the street and is like a mini Bryce Canyon) and maybe a national park visit on the same trip, otherwise I'd stick to northern Utah for a trip.

 

Snowbasin is the best all-around resort in UTah, imo, but the nearest lodging is 15 minutes down-mountain. I think it is fine for novice skiers - plenty of blues and groomers, but I haven't really skied it as a novice either.

 

Solitude is a fun resort, but too spread out with too little vertical for my taste. I prefer Brighton just cause it's easier to access good terrain. Don't have all that much experience with either, though.

 

I'd just take your last point right off the list. I understand where you're coming from, but I've never really been to any resort in Utah or anywhere else that was filled with pot-smoking, foul-mouthed hooligans. It's really a hit or miss type thing. You might hear some swearing and see some smoke or you might not, could change from minute to minute depending on who's around.

post #5 of 34

DId the Utah tour last year.  I liked Brighton, but it's really a day area -- doesn't have the size or infrastructure of the others.  My hands-down fave was Snowbasin -- but it's got zero lodging or evening accomodations despite the incredible skiing infrastructure.  Solitude might be the best of that limited group for you: there's a nice, small base "village" and it's very family-friendly in the way it's laid out.  If you go over (ski over) to Brighton, you actually have a lot of terrain b/w the two areas -- although none as complex or engaging as at Snowbasin. 

post #6 of 34

Agree with most all above, but also add that Brighton is a very boarder type resort (the ski shop isn't - it's a board shop), so if you prefer a bit more civilized, then it's probably not your best place. BUT - you can get a pass to do both Brighton and Solitude together which makes for an interesting day.

 

 

post #7 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by snofun3 View Post

Agree with most all above, but also add that Brighton is a very boarder type resort (the ski shop isn't - it's a board shop), so if you prefer a bit more civilized, then it's probably not your best place. BUT - you can get a pass to do both Brighton and Solitude together which makes for an interesting day.

 

 



Nothing like those uncivilized boarders mucking the place up nonono2.gif nonono2.gif nonono2.gif

post #8 of 34

Are you keeping our choices limited to Utah?  There are quite a few areas that will meet your criteria (for example, Schweitzer, Whitefish, Bachelor) that are easy to get to by air, and have been getting more snow than Utah this year. 

post #9 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Super D View Post

Hey everybody, trying to decide where to take my family skiing and snowboarding next.

 

Been to Solitude and Brighton, loved 'em both. Haven't been to Snow Basin or Brianhead yet.

 

Criteria are pretty simple:

  1. Family friendly
  2. Good snow (we hope!) :)
  3. Easy access accommodations (base of mountain is best)
  4. Decent food nearby if we're lucky
  5. Good ski school for my wife and daughter
  6. Few if any nutjobs smoking grass and using foul language

 


Is it just the three of you?  How old is your daughter?  Can your wife and daughter ski blue runs?  What timeframe are you thinking about?  For Snowbasin, do you consider a 30-min drive too long for dinner?  Although Ogden may be less than that.

 

post #10 of 34

I've been looking a lot at the SLC area resorts lately and I'd say it somewhat depends on what is most important to you. I think Park City might in fact tick more boxes for you, but I'm not sure if that is on the table or not.

post #11 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SB77 View Post

My thoughts:

  1. Family friendly--All would be fine.  Snowbasin is not a particularly good choice for novice skiers.
  2. Good snow (we hope!) :):  Brighton and Solitude consistently the best.  Brian Head has largely been short changed this year so far.
  3. Easy access accommodations (base of mountain is best).  Solitude has a compact, conveniently located village.  Brian Head has lots of condos scattered about.  Brighton--very limited.  Snowbasin--no onsight lodging.
  4. Decent food nearby if we're lucky.  Don't have any recent data points on Brian Head.  Solitude and Brighton limited.  Snowbasin--nothing in the evening, some really good options during the ski day.
  5. Good ski school for my wife and daughter  Don't have any recent data points except on Snowbasin which is usually really good.
  6. Few if any nutjobs smoking grass and using foul language.  All should be similar and OK (unless you believe that snowboarders are generally more likely to engage in that behavior--Brighton has a lot of snowboarders)

 

Brian Head would make a nice, low stress family get away.  It is pretty small, not very steep and has limited vertical--my last choice for skiing quality of the four.

 

Solitude--probably the best fit if the 6 criteria are evenly weighted. 

 

Brighton--you've been there--since Brighton and Solitude are so close I am not sure you need to distinguish the two and you could easily ski both on the same trip.

 

Snowbasin--my home mountain and favorite of those mentioned for skiing quality.  However, it may not be a very good choice based on your criteria. 


Great feedback, thanks for your thought on this! :)

post #12 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by gardenmary View Post

Dave, are you flying or driving?  And do you have a particular time frame in mind?



Flyin', and no particular time in mind. We spent the holidays in Solitude, so next time we're out in Utah it'll be non-holiday time, which is always good for lower crowds. I'm going to watch the snow reports and try to pull the kids out of school for a spontaneous powder trip. :)

post #13 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeUT View Post

Never been to Brian Head...



Thank you, Joe. I'm pretty curious about Snow Basin, been hearing good things about the terrain from good skiers.

 

The smoking and bad behavior my kids have noticed at snowboarding-heavy resorts, and they commented about it to me. We're skiers and snowboarders, but we don't smoke and are pretty well behaved. :)  Just hoping to have a fun, safe and not so crass experience. I haven't run into this so much in Utah, but other places it can get a bit annoying.

post #14 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tch View Post

DId the Utah tour last year.  I liked Brighton, but it's really a day area -- doesn't have the size or infrastructure of the others.  My hands-down fave was Snowbasin -- but it's got zero lodging or evening accomodations despite the incredible skiing infrastructure.  Solitude might be the best of that limited group for you: there's a nice, small base "village" and it's very family-friendly in the way it's laid out.  If you go over (ski over) to Brighton, you actually have a lot of terrain b/w the two areas -- although none as complex or engaging as at Snowbasin. 



Yeah, we stayed in the village at Solitude, really convenient and relaxing. Brighton I have to get back to, boarded there but haven't skied yet, nice place. Snowbasin, you guys are all confirming my curiosity, we have to try it!

post #15 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DesiredUsername View Post

Are you keeping our choices limited to Utah?  There are quite a few areas that will meet your criteria (for example, Schweitzer, Whitefish, Bachelor) that are easy to get to by air, and have been getting more snow than Utah this year. 



I'm just really enjoying the snow in Utah and have had great fun. I used to live in Colorado and after skiing and boarding there and all around the country for the most part, it's hard to beat Utah powder. I've had good powder even in California, but just not often, usually it's wetter/heavier. Bachelor I'm definitely going to try one of these days. Idaho and Montana, I haven't heard the best reviews from my skiing buddies, but I'm sure there are probably some nice places like you mentioned.

post #16 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post


Is it just the three of you?  How old is your daughter?  Can your wife and daughter ski blue runs?  What timeframe are you thinking about?  For Snowbasin, do you consider a 30-min drive too long for dinner?  Although Ogden may be less than that.

 

 

Kids are 9 and 11, and I usually go w/them and my wife, so it's 4 of us. Daughter and wife can ski greens and easy blues. Yep, 30min drive for dinner at the end of a ski day is too long, the kids would eat the car seats by then, lol! :)
 

 

post #17 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Govnor View Post

I've been looking a lot at the SLC area resorts lately and I'd say it somewhat depends on what is most important to you. I think Park City might in fact tick more boxes for you, but I'm not sure if that is on the table or not.



Been to Park City a few times, and although it's got lots of amenities, I just don't love it. Seems too commercialized and crowded to me. I think I must be getting old or something. :D

post #18 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Super D View Post

 

Kids are 9 and 11, and I usually go w/them and my wife, so it's 4 of us. Daughter and wife can ski greens and easy blues. Yep, 30min drive for dinner at the end of a ski day is too long, the kids would eat the car seats by then, lol! :)
 

 


Well if that's not the truth, but if you did Snowbasin you can always have a pretty luxurious dinner at the mountain before you leave. Great mountain and the lodges are like castles. Eat at the top of John Paul lift and enjoy the scenery then ski down and call it a day.

 

post #19 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snowbowler View Post


Well if that's not the truth, but if you did Snowbasin you can always have a pretty luxurious dinner at the mountain before you leave. Great mountain and the lodges are like castles. Eat at the top of John Paul lift and enjoy the scenery then ski down and call it a day.

 



Sounds great, I'm sold. You know how girls love castles, this will be fun for my wife and little girl. :)

post #20 of 34

You can also get get very nice condos and homes in Eden and Huntsville for about the price of a hotel room in Park City or near any major resort in Colorado.  We just booked a 5 bedroom house that sleeps 18 in Eden for our trip in March $2K for the entire week.

post #21 of 34

If I were taking my 11yo daughter anywhere besides Alta after a snowstorm and powder conditions, I would go to Snowbasin as long as there was good likelihood of decent visibility.  Riding gondolas up for long, long blue runs down with her would be a lot of fun.  Note that she is a Level 7 at Alta Ski School at this point.  But I think Snowbasin would've been fun even when she was younger and only skiing blue runs at Alta.  The Snowbasin area is definitely economical in terms of condo lodging.  Then you have the option of eating in at dinner time.  Lots of listings in VRBO.  With a last minute booking, can often get a deal from a savvy VRBO owner.

 

A few examples . . . read the comments.  I've heard good things about Lakeside Village.

 

http://www.vrbo.com/259192

http://www.vrbo.com/366298

http://www.vrbo.com/389065

post #22 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post

If I were taking my 11yo daughter anywhere besides Alta after a snowstorm and powder conditions, I would go to Snowbasin as long as there was good likelihood of decent visibility.  Riding gondolas up for long, long blue runs down with her would be a lot of fun.  Note that she is a Level 7 at Alta Ski School at this point.  But I think Snowbasin would've been fun even when she was younger and only skiing blue runs at Alta.  The Snowbasin area is definitely economical in terms of condo lodging.  Then you have the option of eating in at dinner time.  Lots of listings in VRBO.  With a last minute booking, can often get a deal from a savvy VRBO owner.

 

A few examples . . . read the comments.  I've heard good things about Lakeside Village.

 

http://www.vrbo.com/259192

http://www.vrbo.com/366298

http://www.vrbo.com/389065

 

Awesome, was wondering about that. I have friends who use VRBO all the time.
 

 

post #23 of 34

Another vote for Snowbasin.

As long as you understand the lack of any lodging, stores etc. near the mountain.

Plus, you get to ski the downhill course from the Olympics.

post #24 of 34

Hey Dave - we've stayed at Lakeside for years, and we really, really like it.  We're generally tired at the end of the day, and we prefer to make dinner at home about half the time.  So since you're flying, I'll assume you're renting a car.  You can either have Lakeside stock your groceries before you arrive ($25 charge) or drive around the lake to the Village Market in Eden (5-10 min drive).  In Eden there are a few restaurants, including a pizza place.  If you want any kind of liquor besides beer, you have to go to the state store in Ogden, or Lakeside can get that for you in advance too for a fee.  Beer you can get at the market.

 

Lakeside will likely cut you a deal including lift tickets and on-mountain credit if you give them a call.  Even last-minute.  Each unit has its own jacuzzi too, which for me is a HUGE plus.  The other thing about the Lakeside is the shuttle - both to the resorts (Snowbasin and PowMow) and to dinner spots.  So if you feel like a steak dinner at the Timbermine, but really don't want to drive, they'll take you there.  Ski shuttle is free; dinner shuttle is a nominal fee.

 

Send me a PM and I can give you more info including the folks at Lakeside and around town.

 

post #25 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by gardenmary View Post

Hey Dave - we've stayed at Lakeside for years, and we really, really like it.  We're generally tired at the end of the day, and we prefer to make dinner at home about half the time.  So since you're flying, I'll assume you're renting a car.  You can either have Lakeside stock your groceries before you arrive ($25 charge) or drive around the lake to the Village Market in Eden (5-10 min drive).  In Eden there are a few restaurants, including a pizza place.  If you want any kind of liquor besides beer, you have to go to the state store in Ogden, or Lakeside can get that for you in advance too for a fee.  Beer you can get at the market.

 

Lakeside will likely cut you a deal including lift tickets and on-mountain credit if you give them a call.  Even last-minute.  Each unit has its own jacuzzi too, which for me is a HUGE plus.  The other thing about the Lakeside is the shuttle - both to the resorts (Snowbasin and PowMow) and to dinner spots.  So if you feel like a steak dinner at the Timbermine, but really don't want to drive, they'll take you there.  Ski shuttle is free; dinner shuttle is a nominal fee.

 

Send me a PM and I can give you more info including the folks at Lakeside and around town.

 


Good to know about the free shuttle from Lakeside to Snowbasin and PowMow.  It can be a bit of a hike from the parking lot to the base lodge.  Does it run only in the morning and late afternoon or can you get a ride midday too?

 

Got curious . . . http://www.lakesideresortproperties.com/

 

They have package deals for 4-5 night stays where kids ages 7-17 ski for free.  Definitely going to keep this on the future reference list.

 

post #26 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post


Good to know about the free shuttle from Lakeside to Snowbasin and PowMow.  It can be a bit of a hike from the parking lot to the base lodge.  Does it run only in the morning and late afternoon or can you get a ride midday too?

 

Got curious . . . http://www.lakesideresortproperties.com/

 

They have package deals for 4-5 night stays where kids ages 7-17 ski for free.  Definitely going to keep this on the future reference list.

 


Over the holidays they had midday service; that may be the case the rest of the year as well.  I can't recommend this place enough; lovely condos, beautiful views, and great people running it.

 

post #27 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by gardenmary View Post

Hey Dave - we've stayed at Lakeside for years, and we really, really like it.  We're generally tired at the end of the day, and we prefer to make dinner at home about half the time.  So since you're flying, I'll assume you're renting a car.  You can either have Lakeside stock your groceries before you arrive ($25 charge) or drive around the lake to the Village Market in Eden (5-10 min drive).  In Eden there are a few restaurants, including a pizza place.  If you want any kind of liquor besides beer, you have to go to the state store in Ogden, or Lakeside can get that for you in advance too for a fee.  Beer you can get at the market.

 

Lakeside will likely cut you a deal including lift tickets and on-mountain credit if you give them a call.  Even last-minute.  Each unit has its own jacuzzi too, which for me is a HUGE plus.  The other thing about the Lakeside is the shuttle - both to the resorts (Snowbasin and PowMow) and to dinner spots.  So if you feel like a steak dinner at the Timbermine, but really don't want to drive, they'll take you there.  Ski shuttle is free; dinner shuttle is a nominal fee.

 

Send me a PM and I can give you more info including the folks at Lakeside and around town.

 


Thanks  so much Mary, this is great. I'm taking the kiddies to Steamboat in a week, and the snow's not doing so well there, so I'm thinking a spring trip back to Utah is in order. Will PM you if we get planning in motion on that. Very appreciative, thanks again for your helpful info. :)

 

post #28 of 34

Here is a TR of our trip to Snowbasin. Stayed at Lakeside, and all the details I could recall are listed. Simply put, great mountain and very good vibe.

http://www.epicski.com/t/100767/a-7-year-old-discovers-utahs-secret-snowbasin

 

 

post #29 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Super D View Post

The smoking and bad behavior my kids have noticed at snowboarding-heavy resorts, and they commented about it to me. We're skiers and snowboarders, but we don't smoke and are pretty well behaved. :)  Just hoping to have a fun, safe and not so crass experience. I haven't run into this so much in Utah, but other places it can get a bit annoying.



Replay my post 6 comments. According to some (rolleyes.gif) it's not nice to state the obvious, but Brighton is afflicted by those you would prefer not to have to be around.

 

Snowbasin is great.

post #30 of 34


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by snofun3 View Post



Replay my post 6 comments. According to some (rolleyes.gif) it's not nice to state the obvious, but Brighton is afflicted by those you would prefer not to have to be around.

 

Snowbasin is great.



This is an overstatement to say the least. Outside of the central crest express area Brighton feels like any other resort. Even still, you might find one or two groups of kids being kids... But that's about it.

 

On the other hand, Brighton is the only resort where I've noticed a significant number of retiree age season pass holders. If they can handle the snowboarders on a daily basis surely any barking bear should be able to.biggrin.gif

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