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So Just How Crowded Will Alta Be This Christmas Week? - Page 2

post #31 of 42
Still fresh snow or worked over?

I was going to go today but forgot to plan time for post-plow shoveling. Was banking on some nice leftovers (or Strawberry) and hopefully light crowds tomorrow but we'll see.
post #32 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeUT View Post

Still fresh snow or worked over?

I was going to go today but forgot to plan time for post-plow shoveling. Was banking on some nice leftovers (or Strawberry) and hopefully light crowds tomorrow but we'll see.


At Basin? My husband found untracked still but his last run was at noon. I was skiing with my daughter on the greens so don't know firsthand. I would not be hopeful for light crowds tomorrow at all. Christmas day, yes. We are going up on Christmas morning as that is part of our new Utah Christmas tradition.

post #33 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by contesstant View Post
 
I would not be hopeful for light crowds tomorrow at all. Christmas day, yes. We are going up on Christmas morning as that is part of our new Utah Christmas tradition.

Picture please?

post #34 of 42

I stand by my historical warnings given the subpar state of Utah's snowpack 2 weeks ago.  But sometimes the weather brings a pleasant surprise:

Quote = Dec. 23 Snowbasin Snow Report:
One word: SNOW.  Helllo, White Christmas! 22” of new snow in the last 24 hours and 43” in the last 48 hours!!!

The issue now, as in all of Utah, is that lean snowpack 2 weeks ago formed a weak layer and the avalanche danger is through the roof with all this new snow on top of that layer.   Thus Snowbird reports only 37 out of 169 runs open today despite a 65 inch base and 56 inches snow in the past week.  I'm sure Snowbasin has snow stability issues too before more terrain can be opened.

post #35 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Crocker View Post
 

I stand by my historical warnings given the subpar state of Utah's snowpack 2 weeks ago.  But sometimes the weather brings a pleasant surprise:

The issue now, as in all of Utah, is that lean snowpack 2 weeks ago formed a weak layer and the avalanche danger is through the roof with all this new snow on top of that layer.   Thus Snowbird reports only 37 out of 169 runs open today despite a 65 inch base and 56 inches snow in the past week.  I'm sure Snowbasin has snow stability issues too before more terrain can be opened.


Standing by inaccurate information is not always the honorable move. In fact, letting it go is basically always better. 

 

That said, the fragile snowpack is an issue. A Snowbasin patroller was caught in an avalanche just yesterday. Luckily, he made it out with help from his airbag and other patrollers: 

 

http://www.sltrib.com/home/3339795-155/snowbasin-ski-patrol-member-caught-in

 

It doesn't look like there were any terrain or lift closures today beyond what hasn't been opened yet, but I'm not positive. Hoping Strawberry will be coming in the next day or two. 

post #36 of 42
Quote = JoeUT:
Standing by inaccurate information

If that historical info was inaccurate, it was provided by Snowbasin in its online snow reports for the past 16 years.  It does not strike me as likely that a ski area would understate its percent of terrain open.

 

At any rate we know what's happening now: lots of recent snow, most if not all terrain will be open once there has been some time for the snow to stabilize.

post #37 of 42
Even assuming the data is fine, the interpretation was lacking.
post #38 of 42
Thread Starter 

So to answer my original question: Just how crowded will Alta be Christmas week?  It was not that crowded.  A few lines here and there at both Alta and Snowbird. We never waited in a lift line for more than 5 minutes and it was mostly ski on or just a few people in a 1 minute or less line.  Slopes were not overly crowded, in fact I was really surprised at the emptiness of the high traverse at Alta.

 

The lodges were fairly crowded and busy at lunch times.  It was kind of coldish, generally 6 - 16 or so though not too windy all week.  We skied 12/26 - 12/30.

Solitude and Powder Mountain had no lift lines at all... other than waiting for the bus back from Powder Country:)

 

It was an easy and fairly inexpensive last minute trip with great conditions.  We will not plan this every year, but when Utah is getting the goods and we've got the time off and the means to get there, there is a good chance we will be hopping on a flight to SLC!

 

PS.  We stayed at a Hilton Garden Inn in Sandy for a reasonable rate and they had a good hot tub and pool open 24/7 which was a nice feature.  Every place we checked there had availability.  We rented a basic Toyota Corolla using miles and never got enough snow to keep us from driving anywhere.  Would have hopped on the bus if needed.

post #39 of 42

Good report @crank!  When you say Hilton Garden Inn for a reasonable rate, what exactly do you consider to be a reasonable rate?  It appears that the snow will keep well in these colder temperatures.  I'll be there next week hitting up Snowbasin, Alta and Snowbird.

post #40 of 42
Thread Starter 
99 per night. We upgraded to a suite for 122.
post #41 of 42

I agree...very reasonable.

post #42 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by crank View Post
 

So to answer my original question: Just how crowded will Alta be Christmas week?  It was not that crowded.  A few lines here and there at both Alta and Snowbird. We never waited in a lift line for more than 5 minutes and it was mostly ski on or just a few people in a 1 minute or less line.  Slopes were not overly crowded, in fact I was really surprised at the emptiness of the high traverse at Alta.

 

The lodges were fairly crowded and busy at lunch times.  It was kind of coldish, generally 6 - 16 or so though not too windy all week.  We skied 12/26 - 12/30.

Solitude and Powder Mountain had no lift lines at all... other than waiting for the bus back from Powder Country:)

 

It was an easy and fairly inexpensive last minute trip with great conditions.  We will not plan this every year, but when Utah is getting the goods and we've got the time off and the means to get there, there is a good chance we will be hopping on a flight to SLC!

 

PS.  We stayed at a Hilton Garden Inn in Sandy for a reasonable rate and they had a good hot tub and pool open 24/7 which was a nice feature.  Every place we checked there had availability.  We rented a basic Toyota Corolla using miles and never got enough snow to keep us from driving anywhere.  Would have hopped on the bus if needed.


Thanks for the update.  Sounds like a fun trip!

 

I imagine the cold temps would keep some tourists off the slopes.  Or at least they would be spending more time warming up indoors after each run or two.

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