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Snowbird/Alta mid-april for father/son advanced/adv. intermediate Eastern skiers

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hi all and thanks in advance for the insights and advice- some great recommendations here led me to terrific skiing at Gore in February over my typical Vt choices.

to the topic at hand: my 14 yr old son (advanced intermediate) and I (advanced) are looking to go to Snowbird /Alta during the mid-april school break. Sounds like the snow pack's in good shape and between the price for flight to SLC and the mountains' height and n'rn exposure, a good bet for at least decent skiing. My question- after browsing some of the threads, I'm just a bit concerned that Snowbird might kick the asses of two eastern-only skiers, new to powder/accustomed to digging those edges in on the ice/hardpack. Should we be aiming to stay in Alta, as it sounds more intermediate-oriented, or is it easy enough to get to Alta from Snowbird via the lifts/mountain (not driving)? Other factor is we'd like to stay near friends, who will be at Snowbird.

 

So, whaddya think?

Thanks!

post #2 of 9

Staying in Alta is probably not a bad idea.   Alta has a lot more mellow terrain. 

Getting from Snowbird to Alta,  can be a little challenging first thing in the morning during a freeze/thaw cycle.

post #3 of 9

My son and I stayed at Snowbird and skied Alta 3 out of our 5 days from there.  They have free shuttle busses and it's a 5 minute ride.  We skied back to Snowbird off Alta's Wildcat lift at the end of the day.

post #4 of 9

I'd say go for whatever you find cheaper lodging. Snowbird has some terrain that might intimidate skiers but there is easy way down from all the lifts!

 

Are you friends used to snowbird? One thing about snowbird is that you can get stuck on cliff or really difficult terrain easily compared to Alta if you decide to ski double black runs marked at the map.

 

Another thing to consider is that Alta supreme/cecret lift will close on April, 13th, also there is a demo day at Alta April, 12th, so this might be a good weekend to ski Alta and still enjoy the Supreme lift which has great intermediate terrain all the way to Albion base.

post #5 of 9
Mid-April you'd better be sure that Alta is still open. You didn't mention whether your kid was a skier or a boarder, but that's important if you are Alta-bound. Snowbird will be likely be open well into May this year.

If you get up early enough in the morning, the refrozen runs will remind you of home. By about 11 AM, however, you'll be honing your slush technique.
post #6 of 9

It is unusually warm in that region so Alta may close early. It was skiing well last week though.

 

From their web site

 

Quote:
Open daily through(conditions permitting)Sunday, April 20th, 2014

 
...then open Friday, April 25th, 2014 through Sunday, April 27th, 2014(conditions permitting)
 
...finally open Friday, May 2nd, 2014 through Sunday, May 4th, 2014(conditions permitting)
post #7 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by lookingforinput View Post
 

Hi all and thanks in advance for the insights and advice- some great recommendations here led me to terrific skiing at Gore in February over my typical Vt choices.

to the topic at hand: my 14 yr old son (advanced intermediate) and I (advanced) are looking to go to Snowbird /Alta during the mid-april school break. Sounds like the snow pack's in good shape and between the price for flight to SLC and the mountains' height and n'rn exposure, a good bet for at least decent skiing. My question- after browsing some of the threads, I'm just a bit concerned that Snowbird might kick the asses of two eastern-only skiers, new to powder/accustomed to digging those edges in on the ice/hardpack. Should we be aiming to stay in Alta, as it sounds more intermediate-oriented, or is it easy enough to get to Alta from Snowbird via the lifts/mountain (not driving)? Other factor is we'd like to stay near friends, who will be at Snowbird.

 

So, whaddya think?

Thanks!

I'll be there April 8-13 at Alta Lodge and have friends who will be there until April 19 because of their kid's spring break.  We've been meeting up in April for several years.  Have always had a good time.  Twice I've extended the trip because of a powder storm.

 

Assuming your son  is somewhat adventurous, you should be fine at Snowbird as long as you start on the easier blues and move to the harder stuff from there.  You can both have a ball at Alta.  I started skiing there as an intermediate, as did my daughter.  She was 7 and learned in the southeast.  No problem skiing blues with the guidance of ski school that first trip out.  We were there the day after a powder storm.  After a day of ski school she was popping off onto the edges of groomers to ski in the powder and loving it.

 

To get from Alta to Snowbird, can either ski over the top of Sugarloaf (Alta side) to Mineral Basin or take the free shuttle bus.  Where are you thinking of staying?  Recently there was a thread about the lodges in the town of Alta.  In April, there are usually deals to be found.

post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 

thinking of cliff lodge in snowbird - they offer a good ski + stay package.

post #9 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by lookingforinput View Post
 

thinking of cliff lodge in snowbird - they offer a good ski + stay package.

Yeah, Snowbird usually has good deals.  Pretty sure it's possible to upgrade lift tickets to a combo for a day or two in order to go over to check out Alta.

 

I think Snowbird has a free mountain tour.  Can be a good way to get oriented.

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