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Utah Lodging advice - SLC side or Park City side

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 

Here is my dilema, and I am hoping some of you can offer your advice/opinions.

 

My two brother and I are heading back to Utah in late January, early February. This will be the third time back there in three years. The last two times we have gone, we have concentrated on the LCC/BCC ski areas. This time we are considering skiing Deer valley, Canyons, Snowbasin and Park City. I realize that most of you will tell me to avoid these areas and stick with Alta/Snowbird, but the way we look at it is, we only get to head out West from Michigan once a year and want to ski as many resorts as possible. This being said, the question we have is where do we stay?

 

In the last two trips we have stayed at the super8 in midvale, this was perfect for our budget, and drive time between resorts. We always rent a 4 wheel drive, and we are basically there to ski, not party. That being said, we ski till they kick us out, we go to the hotel, eat dinner, drink 6 beers and go to bed, wake up and do it again.

 

Again, this year we want to hit the other side of the mountains and hit up Snowbasin as well. I believe that the hotels are much cheaper in Midvale, SLC than they will be in park city area. If this is true, how bad of a drive is it from Midvale to deer valley? I know Snowbasin is further North and we are not oppsed to driving, just wondering if there is a better central location for us to stay in the same price range.

 

I have searched this froum to death, and maybe I just dont know how to find it, but not many people are asking the same questions I am, therfore your help would be greatly appreciated.

 

Thanks,

Brian

post #2 of 27

WIth the three of you, a small VRBO house/condo might be the way to go.  There are some north of the city center.  The motels near the airport can be had for pretty cheap.  That way you are closer to Snowbasin and PC, while still only about 30 min from LCC/BCC.

 

My ski buddy and I did a trip a couple seasons ago that was based in SLC just so we could explore places we hadn't been before.  While Alta remains my favorite, I had a good time at the other places too.  Would love to get back to Snowbasin in powder conditions.  Even though we were there in Feb, we were there in sunny spring-like conditions.  Great views from the top of the tram!

post #3 of 27

Hi Brian,

 

I would recommend checking out different lodging options in Park City if you want to ski at DV/Canyons/PCMR. You can stay right on Main Street and take the town lift to PCMR or the free town wide shuttle to DV or Canyons. You can take a shuttle to and from the airport, and don't need a car if you stay downtown in Park City. You would need a car to get to Snowbasin, however. (Powder Mountain is great too...) A lot of places are offering early booking specials, so I'd say it's worth checking out Park City. Just avoid Sundance and holidays like Presidents weekend, and you should be able to find reasonable lodging.

post #4 of 27

Another option would be to stay in downtown SLC as your base.  From there it is about 40 - 45 minutes to the BCC/LCC resorts, about 40 - 45 minutes to the Park City resorts and about 50 minutes to Snowbasin.  As you already know, winter driving conditions and/or traffic will impact these drive times.  The drive to PC and Snowbasin are "generally" less impacted by storms than BCC/LCC.

 

There are multiple options for hotels in downtown SLC - ranging from basic to upscale. The rates are probably not as cheap as Midvale, but much less than Park City.  Prior to moving to Utah, we would stay in the Little America for our trips to Utah.  IIRC the rate was pretty good (about $75/night) plus it is within walking distance to several restaurants and easy access to I-15.


Edited by NeedToSki - 9/17/12 at 2:27pm
post #5 of 27

I'd also recommend downtown or out by the airport if you want to check out both Park City and Snowbasin. When I lived in Park City, we'd head up to Snowbasin on occasion and it's a bit of a hike. From downtown you're pretty much equidistant from all the resorts. You could base yourself out of downtown, check the snow report in the morning and head to whatever resort gets the most snow.

post #6 of 27

Park City's lodging tends to be jacked up compared to other UT areas. There's a Best Western just outside of PC, which will put you a few minutes closer to Snowbasin. It's also cheaper than PC proper, so worth a look.

 

I would also consider basing in Ogden, focusing on Snowbasin and Powder Mountain, and maybe doing a day or two to PC. Snowbasin over PC is hardly even an argument when considering just skiing, and Powder Mountain is huge with more snow and a fun vibe. Ogden hotels/motels are about as cheap as Midvale's, so you could keep things cheap while staying close to the slopes. Ogden is about ~20/25 minutes from Snowbasin and a little farther from Pow Mow. You could get closer by staying in Eden or Huntsville, but prices will be higher.

post #7 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by szokr1 View Post

Here is my dilema, and I am hoping some of you can offer your advice/opinions.

 

My two brother and I are heading back to Utah in late January, early February. This will be the third time back there in three years. . . .

How long a trip?  If you are just staying in motels, could stay in two different places.  Make reservations that you can cancel in case conditions warrant.

post #8 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeUT View Post

Park City's lodging tends to be jacked up compared to other UT areas. There's a Best Western just outside of PC, which will put you a few minutes closer to Snowbasin. It's also cheaper than PC proper, so worth a look.

 

 

This is a good option - is the town Coalville or Echo, something like that?  Not sure where you're gonna find those 6 beers around there, however.

post #9 of 27
Staying in a couple of different places is a good idea. Stay in Eden for two nights and ski Powder Mountain and Snowbasin then move closer to Park City for a couple of nights.
post #10 of 27

Listen to locals regarding traffic conditions - they are the ones dealing with that every day. On the other hand, listen to "frugal" Mid-Western tourists where to stay - we are the ones dealing with those issues every year. So, it seems that easiest driving conditions to either PC or Snowbasin would be from Salt Lake City proper (mostly Interstate and some local good wide roads-no need for AWD saves $$$). I stayed for under $60 at a decent place hotel. Clean, safe, centrally located, moderately quiet. Another big savings comes from ski services. If you rent - it is much, much cheaper doing it in SLC. If you have to service your equipment - again, it is much, much cheaper in SLC. Most of "downtown " shops open around 7am and if you leave your skis before 6 pm, they will have them ready for you in the morning. You can buy discounted tickets from them and they will appreciate your daily business. There are some good/cheap local places to eat (had some very good pizza and BEER), Whole Foods for quick salad/hot bar choices, good coffee shops to get a cup for 50 min. ride to the mountain, etc. Most impressive to me was a very clear distinction from "urban, city" environment and "mountain" skiing environment in a very short time. I can see that being bore-some driving every day, but for a week or so it is amusing.

Stay away from PC during the Sundance Film Festival when half of Hollywood and whole of "wanna be Hollywood" congregates in Utah. Jan. 17- 27. 

post #11 of 27

That reminds me, the Dew Tour finishes at Snowbasin.  Looks like Feb. 10-13, 2013.  In 2011, my friends and I were there Sunday during the Dew Tour but found it really didn't make much difference on the slopes.  The third parking lot was never used.  It was fun to watch a bit at the half-pipe at the end of the day.  Locals had said that Sunday morning is usually pretty quiet in general at Snowbasin.

post #12 of 27

If you wan to do both Park City and the Ogden areas in a week then... Here is the answer. 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by marznc View Post

How long a trip?  If you are just staying in motels, could stay in two different places.  Make reservations that you can cancel in case conditions warrant.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ice Queen View Post

Staying in a couple of different places is a good idea. Stay in Eden for two nights and ski Powder Mountain and Snowbasin then move closer to Park City for a couple of nights.

 

In truth, you can easily kill a week exploring just Snowbasin and Pow Mow. Or  barely scratch the surface at PCMR, Deer Valley, and the Canyons. No need to move around too much. 

post #13 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by tromano View Post

 

In truth, you can easily kill a week exploring just Snowbasin and Pow Mow. Or  barely scratch the surface at PCMR, Deer Valley, and the Canyons. No need to move around too much. 

While that is certainly true, for those of us that fly out west once a season it's more fun to check out more than one place when possible.  That's one reason to go to SLC instead of someplace like Steamboat or Whitefish.  Then get a better idea of which places to put on the list for a return trip in the future.

post #14 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post

While that is certainly true, for those of us that fly out west once a season it's more fun to check out more than one place when possible.  That's one reason to go to SLC instead of someplace like Steamboat or Whitefish.  Then get a better idea of which places to put on the list for a return trip in the future.

I will leave it to the OP to decide what is more fun for him. If you have more fun skiing a couple runs off each lift at the resort and moving on the next day, its all good. And like I said, I would move from PC to Ogden valley. For me the added cost is worth it to be above any inversion that may form, just in case, if you know what I mean. 

 

And just for the record,  park city offers 3 resorts, Ogden valley offers 2. That is more than one place and plenty of terrain for a week of skiing either way you slice it. 

post #15 of 27

Brian,

 

All the above advice is good, including staying at the Best Western to save money (since that is your goal) when skiing the PC area.  Another idea: Book the 4WD SUV like you usually do and check the weather right before you go.  If it looks like little snow, cancel the reservation and get a full size or luxury car and a rack for $300-$500 less and spend the savings on something else.  If it looks like lots of snow, keep the 4WD.  

 

You would be hard pressed to ski all of the three PC resorts in a week, and you certainly don't want to miss Snowbasin.  In other words, you cannot lose regardless of your decision.  One option is to spend at least a day at each mountain (not enough time...I know), with two or more days skiing the resorts where you had more fun or perhaps with the better ticket prices. 

 

You can always stop into COSTCO after arriving in SLC to see if there any deals on tickets, or check out Liftopia, lifttickets.com and other similar sites before you go.  Often times these places offer much less expensive lift tickets than the typical resort multi-day tickets. I bought tickets from the discounted sites last year for all three PC resorts (I missed Snowbasin and there was too little snow to bother with Powder Mountain the dates that I skied).  DV is always the most expensive (they position themselves that way) followed by either Canyons or PCMR depending upon the week and current deal.  Assuming a normal snow year (whatever that is), running out of good snow at any of the five resorts mentioned in the above postings is like running out of beer in Boston on St. Patrick's Day...it isn't going to happen. 

post #16 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post

While that is certainly true, for those of us that fly out west once a season it's more fun to check out more than one place when possible.  That's one reason to go to SLC instead of someplace like Steamboat or Whitefish.  Then get a better idea of which places to put on the list for a return trip in the future.


Painting with a rather broad brush. I don't doubt some people like exploring several resorts, but there's something to be said about finding a single resort (or multiple resorts in the same general area, in this case) that meets your needs and spending time exploring and enjoying rather than driving around the state.

post #17 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by quant2325 View Post

Brian,

 

All the above advice is good, including staying at the Best Western to save money (since that is your goal) when skiing the PC area.  Another idea: Book the 4WD SUV like you usually do and check the weather right before you go.  If it looks like little snow, cancel the reservation and get a full size or luxury car and a rack for $300-$500 less and spend the savings on something else.  If it looks like lots of snow, keep the 4WD.  

 

You would be hard pressed to ski all of the three PC resorts in a week, and you certainly don't want to miss Snowbasin.  In other words, you cannot lose regardless of your decision.  One option is to spend at least a day at each mountain (not enough time...I know), with two or more days skiing the resorts where you had more fun or perhaps with the better ticket prices. 

 

You can always stop into COSTCO after arriving in SLC to see if there any deals on tickets, or check out Liftopia, lifttickets.com and other similar sites before you go.  Often times these places offer much less expensive lift tickets than the typical resort multi-day tickets. I bought tickets from the discounted sites last year for all three PC resorts (I missed Snowbasin and there was too little snow to bother with Powder Mountain the dates that I skied).  DV is always the most expensive (they position themselves that way) followed by either Canyons or PCMR depending upon the week and current deal.  Assuming a normal snow year (whatever that is), running out of good snow at any of the five resorts mentioned in the above postings is like running out of beer in Boston on St. Patrick's Day...it isn't going to happen. 

 

DV is $102 for a day pass this winter, The Canyons is $105 and PCMR is $119 per day for a 2 day fast tracks ticket.

 

The conventional wisdom that DV is always the most expensive resort doesn't hold true these days. The PC RESORTS are all more expensive than the Cottonwoods or Snowbasin/Powder Mountain/Wolf Mountain, but DV isn't the most expensive of the PC resorts.

post #18 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by szokr1 View Post

Here is my dilema, and I am hoping some of you can offer your advice/opinions.

 

My two brother and I are heading back to Utah in late January, early February. This will be the third time back there in three years. The last two times we have gone, we have concentrated on the LCC/BCC ski areas. This time we are considering skiing Deer valley, Canyons, Snowbasin and Park City. I realize that most of you will tell me to avoid these areas and stick with Alta/Snowbird, but the way we look at it is, we only get to head out West from Michigan once a year and want to ski as many resorts as possible. This being said, the question we have is where do we stay?

. . .

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tromano View Post

 

In truth, you can easily kill a week exploring just Snowbasin and Pow Mow. Or  barely scratch the surface at PCMR, Deer Valley, and the Canyons. No need to move around too much. 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post

While that is certainly true, for those of us that fly out west once a season it's more fun to check out more than one place when possible.  That's one reason to go to SLC instead of someplace like Steamboat or Whitefish.  Then get a better idea of which places to put on the list for a return trip in the future.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeUT View Post


Painting with a rather broad brush. I don't doubt some people like exploring several resorts, but there's something to be said about finding a single resort (or multiple resorts in the same general area, in this case) that meets your needs and spending time exploring and enjoying rather than driving around the state.

JoeUT:  I was supporting the OP's original statement that they want to explore as many resorts as possible on this trip to SLC.  For my ski trips out west, I do both.  One trip my ski buddy and I covered six places in north Tahoe.  Last season we were at Big Sky for a week.  Being retired, I had the luxury of time to also check out Bridger.  Being able to ski at both made it easier to decide that flying to Bozeman was worth the higher cost.

 

I drive 4 hours each way for weekend ski trips locally.  Not for everyone, but for me it's worth it to get on the snow with my daughter more than once a year out west.  So the drives needed in the SLC area to ski more than one place seem incidental.

post #19 of 27
Thread Starter 

Guys, thanks for all the input. Based on input here, we are going to be looking at finding lodging in SLC, this puts me about 45 minutes away from any resort we decide on. Like MARZNC stated, coming from Michigan and driving 3 hours to get 500' of vertical makes a 45 minute drive in Utah staring at mountains fun!! And while I understand some of you prefer to spend a couple days exploring a mountain, we prefer to see as many as possible, then plan the return trip to hit the ones we really liked. Like I said, we have been there the last two years, and really enjoyed skiing at Alta and Solitude. These two resorts just hit the sweetspot for us, and while me and one other brother liked Snowbird, the other brother hated it as it was just over his head, we all agreed that while Brighton was fun, we would go somewhere else. This is why we are hitting the other resorts this year.

 

Thanks again for your input and maybe we will run into some of you this winter!!

Brian

post #20 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by szokr1 View Post

Guys, thanks for all the input. Based on input here, we are going to be looking at finding lodging in SLC, this puts me about 45 minutes away from any resort we decide on. Like MARZNC stated, coming from Michigan and driving 3 hours to get 500' of vertical makes a 45 minute drive in Utah staring at mountains fun!! And while I understand some of you prefer to spend a couple days exploring a mountain, we prefer to see as many as possible, then plan the return trip to hit the ones we really liked. Like I said, we have been there the last two years, and really enjoyed skiing at Alta and Solitude. These two resorts just hit the sweetspot for us, and while me and one other brother liked Snowbird, the other brother hated it as it was just over his head, we all agreed that while Brighton was fun, we would go somewhere else. This is why we are hitting the other resorts this year.

 

Thanks again for your input and maybe we will run into some of you this winter!!

Brian

Hope you have great conditions for Snowbasin.  Given that you three liked Alta and Brighton, my guess is that will become a favorite.  Best to go there the first time when there is decent visibility, both for the views and to make it easier to learn the mountain.  If lucky enough to get a powder dump, check out the snowcat rides for $18 at Powder Mountain.

 

Remember, if you have the energy then you can hit Brighton for a night session.

 

Have fun!

post #21 of 27

FWIW, if you stay in Park City, you won't need a 4 wheel drive. Which would save you enough dough to stay in a condo. So long as it's not a snowstorm, the drive to Snowbasin from PC is easy and beautiful. I would search VRBO. I bet you can find someplace which will be way more comfortable than a cheap hotel in SLC and end up about the same on money. Just my 2 cents.  

post #22 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by jtrain609 View Post

 

DV is $102 for a day pass this winter, The Canyons is $105 and PCMR is $119 per day for a 2 day fast tracks ticket.

 

The conventional wisdom that DV is always the most expensive resort doesn't hold true these days. The PC RESORTS are all more expensive than the Cottonwoods or Snowbasin/Powder Mountain/Wolf Mountain, but DV isn't the most expensive of the PC resorts.

 

I am referring to the discounted sites from last year and previous years.  The ticket prices are not yet up on Liftopia, lifttickets.com, etc.  Usually these prices are adjusted based upon how busy the resorts are expected to be on a given date, and as I mentioned in my posting the are usually much less expensive than the resort pricing. The discounted sites will offer little of a discouted value over a holiday, and sometimes great values on other days.  DV is the smallest of the three with the most perceived panache (no snowboarders, ulta-grooming, limited ticket sales, etc.), so the tickets are usually more expensive.  At any rate, the OP can check the prices before he goes knowing that for a 2 or 3 day ticket (all the time he will spend at one resort) it is usually cheaper to purchase tickets from the discounted web sites.

 

The PC resorts are more expensive than Snowbasin or Powder Mountain for the obvious reasons.  Since the OP just wants skiing with cheap lodging and not the benefits of the Park CIty area, those resorts could end up being a great choice.  Again, the discounted web sites often times have MUCH better prices for 2 or 3 days of skiing.  Liftopia is up right now, but has nothing for those dates.

 

Maui Steve has is right about the car rental.  If there isn't any powder that week, save several hundred bucks by not renting a 4WD  (and staying in PC) or by renting a regular car and driving to the 5 resorts. 


Edited by quant2325 - 9/18/12 at 4:47pm
post #23 of 27

No matter where you stay, can always reserve a 4WD that can be cancelled with no penalty.  Then see what makes the most sense a few days before you arrive.  They won't run out of 2WD cars in SLC.

post #24 of 27

Just so yez know....the always lovely '70s time warp...

Chateau Apris Park City

post #25 of 27

We've stayed at the Best Western mentioned that's "outside of PC" - it's in Kimball Junction and was a nice place.  I think they have a shuttle to the resorts, and there's some places to grab a beer within walking distance.  As far as individual tickets go, full price at Snowbasin last year was $72 a day.  PowMow has posted this season's rates, $65 a day full price.  The Costco in Ogden had discount tickets for both hills, as do most of the ski shops.  We got ours free with our condo rental at the Lakeside in Huntsville.

 

Obviously the beauty of the SLC area is the proximity of so many resorts.  Here in SoCal it's a minimum 2-hour drive to the local mountains on very windy roads.

 

I'd second the VRBO suggestion, unless you can find a good hotel package deal that throws in lift tickets.  But absolutely stay out of PC until Sundance is over.  If your trip time overlaps, then stay near Snowbasin & PowMow until PC clears out.  Some VRBO owners can work ticket deals too.

 

Even last December, which was hands down the worst conditions I've ever encountered in Utah, was still a great time.  I think your trip is timed to do likewise.

post #26 of 27

The good news about staying downtown, is that the road to Park City gets plowed early and often.  When LCC is still closed due to avy work, you can easily drive along I80 to Park City.  

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

We've stayed at the Best Western mentioned that's "outside of PC" - it's in Kimball Junction and was a nice place.  I think they have a shuttle to the resorts, and there's some places to grab a beer within walking distance.  As far as individual tickets go, full price at Snowbasin last year was $72 a day.  PowMow has posted this season's rates, $65 a day full price.  The Costco in Ogden had discount tickets for both hills, as do most of the ski shops.  We got ours free with our condo rental at the Lakeside in Huntsville.

 

Obviously the beauty of the SLC area is the proximity of so many resorts.  Here in SoCal it's a minimum 2-hour drive to the local mountains on very windy roads.

 

I'd second the VRBO suggestion, unless you can find a good hotel package deal that throws in lift tickets.  But absolutely stay out of PC until Sundance is over.  If your trip time overlaps, then stay near Snowbasin & PowMow until PC clears out.  Some VRBO owners can work ticket deals too.

 

Even last December, which was hands down the worst conditions I've ever encountered in Utah, was still a great time.  I think your trip is timed to do likewise.

 

That's not the Best Western I was referring to, fwiw. There's one in Coalville down the highway. Since it's completely out of PC (about 15 minutes), it is cheaper than anything in PC.

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