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Advice for Utah trip in late Feb '14

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Not sure that this is the right forum but if not, hopefully the moderators will move.

I’m kind of leading a small party of family & friends (5 skiers, 2 boarders) to the Park City area for a week of skiing in late Feb/early Mar.  I personally plan to ski 6 days but most of the others will ski/board for only 5 days. We’ve rented what looks like a lovely place outside of PC proper  – just over 5 miles to the PCMR town lift. We will have two rental cars (mini-van and Jeep Cherokee), so we can be fairly mobile.  Several of us have skied out west a few times, but I’m the only one who’s skied previously in Utah (Alta/Bird). In terms of ability, there are no beginner skiers – the ranges are probably intermediate (Level 5) to more advanced intermediate/e/borderline expert (Level 7/8). Only two of us prefer to ski the more challenging terrain (steeps and glades) however. Since I’m the one who’s arranged for the rentals (house and cars) and booked most of the air transport, I’d also like to tentatively identify a rough itinerary for the group. Thanks to this site, as well as some other web info, I’ve gotten a feel for the Park City ski areas but would like some feedback on out tentative plan from folks who regularly ski the Utah areas. Of course, we’ll have to play things by ear, and take the weather into account but here’s what I think things could look like.


Day 1 will be busy. Even though we get to SLC by late morning, we need to recover our luggage and pick up the rental cars before heading to a SLC-area ski shop to pick up rentals and discount passes. So at best it will be mid-afternoon before we get a chance to unload at the rental house. I’d hoped to get a run or two in under the lights at PCMR but I just read that the Quick Start program is not available for the period we’ll be there. For Day 2 I thought we’d ski PCMR to get everyone acclimated to the altitude and, since we’re from the East, to skiing on snow rather than the ice we usually see. For Day 3, I’d like to head to Canyons but I suspect the majority will stay at PCMR but DV would alsobe an option. For Day 4, I thought we’d take the short trip to Cottonwood Canyon and ski/board  Alta/Snowbird (or Brighton/Solitude).  We could split the group up for Day 5 for a trip up to Snowbasin (2 or 3 of us) and leave the rest to ski PCMR/Canyons/DV. For Day 6, we’d stay in the Park City area and ski the resort we missed or conversely, the place we liked best (there will only be 2 or 3 us skiing the 6th day anyway).


Any thoughts or criticisms on this tentative plan are appreciated.

post #2 of 7

CharlieRN: you are in the right place.  Sounds like a fun trip!


QuickStart actually isn't happening at all.  Vail running Canyons may be a factor.


Have you heard about the 24-hour Alta/Bird 50% discount?  Have to register before leaving home and only good M-F.


If the boarders aren't that good, Solitude/Brighton is probably better than Snowbird.  Brighton has terrain parks if that's of interest.  Have to pass a little test to be in them.  Brighton has a free Mountain Host tour mid-morning than can be useful for first-timers.  Brighton has lights on a few trails if part of your group can't wait to get on the slopes on Day 1.


Hopefully others who know PC will chime in.

post #3 of 7

Keep in mind that Deer Valley and Alta don't allow snowboards...

post #4 of 7
Originally Posted by jxb View Post

Keep in mind that Deer Valley and Alta don't allow snowboards...


:DThumbs Up:)Thumbs Up

post #5 of 7

Sounds like you have a pretty good idea of what to do. My only suggestions would be to make the sequence of resorts flexible, in the event a storm dumps on one of the areas on your list. It would be a shame to miss a couple feet at Snowbird if your schedule lists BCC on that day.

post #6 of 7

Sounds good to me. I'm not sure you need to plan much more than you have.


Off the top of my head, these are some of the things to generally keep in mind to help you plan best for the day/next day.


- No snowboards at DV and Alta

- Once you're in PC, you can get around easily on the buses.

- Brighton and Sol are always the quietest places.

- LCC may have access restrictions or closures if it's a BIG DUMP.

- Snow conditions will always be better in LCC/BCC than PC.

- Assuming conditions are good, you should all do Snowbasin for a day. Long runs/fast lifts for everyone.

- Snowbasin can sometimes get more snow than the others depending on the weather pattern.

- As you know, Snowbird is a challenging mountain. If there are skiers who are more intermediate than advanced, Alta probably holds more fun for them. Alta is awesome anyway.


Enjoy! Sounds like a great trip!

post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 

Thanks all.


I'm well aware of the snowboard restriction at Alta & DV, it's nothing more than a minor annoyance. I skied Snowbird years ago and probably still have the stains in my shorts to prove it. Looking forward to getting back though. Actually, I'm also looking forward to skiing DV and Canyons, not to mention Snowbasin.


In fact, there's not much about the trip I'm not looking forward to, though I am just a bit bummed to not be able to take advantage of either Quick Start or the 24 hr Alta/Bird discount. Hoping the early predictions about the amount of snow are accurate and am sure we'll have a good trip. We plan to be very flexible on timing for each of the areas.


Thanks again all.

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