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4 Days in Park City. What to Ski?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

Heading to Park City in March and will be skiing 4 days.  Would love to hear some thoughts on how I should spend my days between Deer Valley, Park City, and Canyons.  To put things in context, I'm an advanced skier from the east coast who enjoys spending most of the day in the glades or on "interesting" trails.  I don't need to be wow'd by steeps or cliffs as I've already done Snowbird/Alta, etc. Just looking for some good old fashion fun.  Would also love to hear thoughts on specific trails to hit at any of those given mountains.  Thanks in advance!

post #2 of 8

Ok....

    So much depends on snow conditions. For PCMR, you'll love the glades off Cresent chair between Silver Skis and Shaft. Further on, work your way toward Willys and Silver King and lap the glades. This is generally when there's new snow. On a gorgeous day like today, not a cloud in the sky, perfect corduroy. I take Eagle chair up and Temptation to King Con chair. From there, go left on the low angle King Con Ridge and hang a huge swooper to the left into a wide meadow. Directly below you have the choice of two perfectly pitched, very wide groomers, Sitka and Shamus. Take whichever has no people on it. Put her into high gear and let the skis run. Don't hit the photographer on Sitka. Lap these as much as you want.

    

   Next, hit the Silverlode chair. My favorites off this are Assessment, Mel's Alley and Prospector. Then, take Single Jack toward Thaynes but drop skiers right to the Motherlode chair. Explore the glades in Cadillac Country. You like bumps? Double Jack to Thanes chair.

   Then head for Jupiter Bowl. Main Bowl is right under the chair. Land of the Giants are the big, evenly spaced trees on skiers left. Beyond that, Portuguese Gap and Scot's Bowl.  If you're a hero, hike up and ski Pinecone Ridge, but best scope your line first from Double Jack and use the Thanes Chair as a landmark. You don't want to waste that climb with a crappy line and it's hard to tell from above. 

  

   Wow, there's so much. You can traverse skiers right from Jupiter toward West Face on the the Ho Chi Minh Trail and everythings good. Trees, bowls whatever. War Zone's my favorite but the entrance is hidden... Mind the lake at the runout. It's a rookie trap. A little walk can get you freshies. Follow some local teenagers up the peak and ski the chutes into Puma Bowl. I had the kiddies up on the shoulder last week, it's still a bit boney up high but the powder in the bowl was Utah's finest.

   Drift down Pinyon Ridge toward McKonky's and ski O-Zone and the trees below. Since PCMR is only flat green stuff, it'll be fun and easy!

  I love this mountain. I'll still head to LLC on a storm day if I have the time, but the PC resorts are hardly the booby prize. For variety, and a broad range of skiers, and especially if it hasn't snowed in awhile, PCMR is the best of the bunch, IMO. It's also, save for a few bottlenecks like Home Run, relatively uncrowded as the skiers are so spread out. The vast terrain parks suck up the boarders like mosquito traps, and we have the best Superpipe and jumps and all that stuff in Utah, if that's your pleasure.

  

   For Deer Valley, best runs... Turkey Chile in the Empire Lodge, Ontario Bowl on a powder day, Hidden treasure any time, Anything off the Lady Morgan chair on a storm day because you'll be alone... everyone else is at the St. Regis sipping mimosas. One of my all time best powder days was spent off the Wasatch Express chair skiing Triangle Trees and the groomers- a real treat is when they buff them down and then it snows a foot overnight after the groomers went through...  

 Chicks love DV....

Canyons: People love this place too... I'll let them tell it.


Edited by Mr. Crab - 1/4/13 at 9:12am
post #3 of 8

Mr. Crab, that was a very nice guide to PCMR.

post #4 of 8

Glad we have four threads exactly like this going on all at once rolleyes.gif

post #5 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiThaTrees View Post

Heading to Park City in March and will be skiing 4 days.  Would love to hear some thoughts on how I should spend my days between Deer Valley, Park City, and Canyons.  To put things in context, I'm an advanced skier from the east coast who enjoys spending most of the day in the glades or on "interesting" trails.  I don't need to be wow'd by steeps or cliffs as I've already done Snowbird/Alta, etc. Just looking for some good old fashion fun.  Would also love to hear thoughts on specific trails to hit at any of those given mountains.  Thanks in advance!

At Canyons you have nine mountains with a lot of interesting terrain that the tourists generally miss because they have no idea it is right next to them.  Each mountain has a different "feel," and the difference is similar to golfing a links vs. Arizona target golf course.    Here are some ideas for your quest for "good old fashioned fun":

 

1) Look for the natural half pipes and ski them.  They beat the heck out of groomers any day are are generally a lot of fun.  The best of them are Canis Lupus, found off an intermediate groomer called Boa, and Pinball Alley that I like to access off Grande (a double diamond).

 

2) The resort is the most crowded--if there is a crowd--near the Red Pine Lodge.  The Saddleback lift is near it.  Instead of skiing the groomers off of it,  look at the trees to your right when you get off the lift. The trees are just a facade!.  Go 10 yards through the trees and it opens up to some great runs (Ecstasy or The Pines just down the lift). These runs are missed by almost all the tourists on Saddleback, and are the nuts on powder days when 9990 is temporarily closed for blasting.

 

3) I love skiing everything off the Tombstone lift when the resort is relatively empty.  When it is busy, I'd go elsewhere to avoid any chance of a lift line. Even when there are lines, they usually don't seem to last more than 5-10 minutes.  Escapade Woods is always empty and Cloud Nine is a nice fast groomer.

 

4) The sign by the 9900 lift states, "Experts Only" because you can't expect groomers there.  Regardless, most runs gives you a different perspective of 9990.  For example, 94 Turns is usually a nice  wide mogul field, Fright Gully has trees and a frightful narrow drop when you least expect it, while part of the adventure of skiing Charlie Brown or Red Pine Chutes is just traversing there.   

 

5)  Mystic Pines off the Peak 5 lift is a blast on powder days and worth skiing whenever there is good coverage.  You may not see anyone else there since the tourists generally stick to the groomers like Upper Crowning Glory.  The Abyss is worthy of double diamond status and can be tricky if the snow coverage is light.  This year there should be no problems. 

 

6) There are never  lines on the Dreamscape lift. The runs are listed as blues but if there are moguls several runs can ski like east coast black diamonds.  The runs are shorter but never, ever crowded and good fun.

 

7) Dreamcatcer is located next to Dreamscape with three fun runs.   Phantasm offers great tree skiing and keeps powder for days after a dump due to the lack of skiers.  Pipe Dream is a fast groomer (for some reason the snow is always fast).  My kids for some reason love Bogeyman.  Some guy did a video at Canyons claiming Alpenglow is his favorite groomer.

 

8) Iron Mountain has more intermediate terrain than Dreamcatcher. You have a choice between cruisers and trees. There is never a lift line and if intermediate/advance terrain is your thing, you can carve turns all across the hill and usually never worry about running into another skier.

 

9)  Sun Peak is probably the coldest of the nine mountains, and offers everything from some nice black diamonds that may or may not be groomed, and bump runs (my favorite is Mine Shaft).   

 

10) Below Sun Peak is the Super Condor Express, which is another place you want to be on powder days. When it dumps a lot, most skiers will be elsewhere because the lift may be closed due to blasting (you can see the black powder on Murdock Peak).  When it opens, or when there is good coverage, you can get great runs off the runs on the left (Western Boundary to Yardsale).  If you take BOA, a long cruiser, look for the natural half pipe to your right called Canis Lupus. It is more difficult than the other half pipes and it is where the Canis Lupus challenge race is held each spring (see all the YouTube videos of the insane "race").

 

11) Hiking Murdock can be fun because it is in bounds and will be safe when open.  Be careful about skiing the backcountry elsewhere particularly when the avi danger is up there. 

 

The Canyons used to be a pain in the ass to get around until Talisker came in, moved some dirt and added a few strategically placed lifts. Good signs are everywhere pointing you to the lifts you want. There are even maps on the chairlift safety bars. There is no way you can ski all 4000 acres in a day.  Pick a few of the mountains and call it a day.  If you ski away from Red Pine you are unlikely to find a lift line outside of Tombstone. The food on the mountain is a good as you will find anywhere.   The Painted Horse Terrain Park is around a mile long.  It is not for me, but you may want to try it out.  As with skiing anywhere, watch out for tree wells particularly after the big dumps.


Edited by quant2325 - 1/4/13 at 5:40pm
post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 

Thanks to Quant and Mr Crab for their helpful reviews of PCMR and the Canyons. I will heed the advice of both.  As for JoeUtah, I've never heard of this resort you call "Glad we have four threads exactly like this going on all at once rolleyes.gif," but if it has some nice glades, I'll try it out. 

post #7 of 8

You should. The glades are so flowy and familiar, you'll feel like you've skied them before ... many times.

post #8 of 8

Just hit Canyons a week ago.  Had to look hard to find good snow, but was rewarded when I did.  Deschutes was narrow, steep, and pretty hair-raising, but fun.  Coverage is a little limited in there, FYI.  Grande was great, halfway down it opens into an amazing meadow with steep turns to be had in good snow.  A bonus is Grande empties out right into a fun natural halfpipe.  These are both off Tombstone.  The Pines is great, it's off of Saddleback.  Good snow, widely spaced trees, less steep than Grande and Deschutes..  Charlie Brown off of 99-90 had good snow and empties into an awesome natural halfpipe, a more advanced one than the one Grande empties into.  The only drawback is you can't lap Charlie Brown, since it doesn't take you back to 99-90.  

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