Happy New Year !
It's time for me to plan our annual family skip trip outside Tahoe, and after such a great help from Epicski community for planning our trip to Colorado in 2014, obviously I'm turning to Epicski community once again for the advice.
For 2015, we decided to visit Utah. We're a family of 4 (two teenagers), heading to Park City in Feb 15-22. We plan to ski 5-6 days, from Monday to Saturday. We have Epic pass, and will stay in Park City within walking distance to PCMR's Town Lift. So, naturally, we plan to ski PCMR and Canyons. On top of that, we want to visit at least one other resort.
My family can comfortably ski any single black diamond runs in all Tahoe resorts (Squaw/Kirkwood/Heavenly/Northstar), and my kids and I can ski some of the double blacks or equivalent runs in those resorts that doesn't require mandatory air or dodging rocks in the steep - i.e. we don't / can't do Palisades at Squaw, but my kids and I enjoy e.g. West Face / Chute 75 / North Bowl / GS Bowl at Squaw, and Wagon Wheel Bowl / Thunder Saddle and various chutes off the Saddle / Eagle Bowl / Palisades at Kirkwood. My wife doesn't do any double blacks (or equivalent), but she can handle all single black diamond runs.
My daughter is very fond of tree skiing and fresh pow, vs my son likes moguls and steeps.
Here's my questions:
How are the double black runs off Jupiter ? Does it have any run that's mostly just steep, or do they all have rocks and mandatory airs (we don't do the latter kind) ? And, the trail map doesn't make it very clear, but is there some easy (i.e. a single black diamond) run from top of Jupiter ? My wife avoids most of double blacks, so if there's no "easier" way down, we'd need to know in advance to plan it out.
Iron Mountain / Dream Peak side looks more isolated than the rest. Would we miss much if we ignore that part of the mountain ?
3) Deer Valley ?
Other than PCMR and Canyons, we are considering three other resorts - Snowbird, Alta, and Deer Valley. However much I want to try them all, given both the time and also the expense, we're not going to ski all three. So I think we'll have to pick one or two of those three.
My wife wants to try DV for the "experience" (with all those glowing reviews of their services, food, etc). However, DV just doesn't seem to have a lot of skiing to offer for me and my kids, given it's more heavily geared toward intermediates with less choices in expert terrain. Basically I wonder my kids and I will get bored if we go DV, as DV looks similar to Northstar where we get bored quickly (unless it's a powder day), due to lack of run variety (all backside runs look similar) and lack of challenges (no real steeps).
4) Snowbird or Alta ?
Would we miss much if we ski just Snowbird for one day but not Alta, or vice versa ? If we have to pick only one of them, which one should we go ?
Alternatively, would it be feasible to get an Alta-Snowbird pass and ski both resorts in a single day (obviously we won't be able to cover as many runs in either resort), or would that just waste time traversing ? FWIW, although it's because we're very familiar with the mountain, my family can cover highlights of the advanced/expert runs in Heavenly or Squaw in a single day, and I think the skiable area of Heavenly or Squaw is comparable to Alta + Snowbird. For example, we can start at one resort, finish at the other, and take the shuttle bus back after skiing. Would that be worth trying ?
5) Breakfast / Dinner
Any recommendation for good breakfast / dinner spots in Park City ?
And a dinner spot or two in SLC ? My quick search found Bambara as a reasonably priced choice, and Forage as one of the best. Any opinions on them ? How easy would it be to go straight to SLC after skiing in Snowbird ?
If there's any fun tourist places we should visit, we're open to skipping skiing one day (or cut it to a half day) and do something else.
Homestead Crater tour sounds fascinating. Is that worth a visit ?
Anything else around SLT or Park City within an hour or two drive that's interesting ?
Thanks in advance.