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Snowbird - Mineral Basin

post #1 of 42
Thread Starter 
Haven't been to Snowbird. The guys want to hit it next week, but the gals are greens only. Trying to get a feel for if they will be OK or if the mountain in general really isn't for developing skiers. Developing meaning just beginning to work on making parallel turns and coming down pretty slowly.

How tough are the greens on the front side? Are they truly greens or would they blues at other places? The terrain at the bottom doesn't look too bad for beginners, but maps can of course be deceiving.

How tough is the terrain in MB? Is it all powder, or are there some loosely packed powder areas say comparable to the Blue and easier black runs serviced by the Supreme lift at Alta? (The guys want to know) Or is it mostly bumps?

On the MB trail map, it shows a few green runs - bird's nest, luckey boy etc. Are those really "greens"? Or are they advanced greens that probably should be labeled as blues? Since there are no greens from the top on the front side, would they be able to take the tram back down?

Thanks in advance for the comments. Wish we were going to Alta, but one of guys boards. Oh well, always wanted to go to Snowbird anyway and its fun learning a new moutain.
post #2 of 42
Snowbird isa big mountain many of the green runs are nothing more then Cat tracks It is the wrong place to take someone who only skis greens. Greens blues and Blacks are all relitive terms some people coming from the east feel some of the Blue trails at Snowbird are more like double blacks. You may want to think about treating the girls to a lesson. That way you can leave them in good hands and won't have to put up with the evil eye they are going to give you for taking them to such an intimidating mountain. The guys go off and test themselves on some of the best inbounds terrain anywhere in the US. You can always meet them for lunch and for drinks The girls will have amuch better time there and feel safe and learn something in the process. You may also want to take a trip over to the canyons it has some very long very easy blue runs that are scenic and wind though the trees and by multi million dollor log cabins. Now that is an oxymoron! Lots of more challeging areas for the guys It is a well balanced mountain.
post #3 of 42
Why don't the guys ski the bird and the gals ski at Alta and just meet up afterward. Most of the green territory in Mineral Basin is pretty tame in my opinion. But I think you have to ride a pretty narrow cat-track to get there. I don't think Snowbird is the greatest place to take someone who's just learning slow, parallel turns.
post #4 of 42
Send the girls to Snowbasin, its a farther drive than snowbird, from salt lake, but it has some pretty tame terrian in comparison to Alta and Snowbird.
Later
GREG
post #5 of 42
I second snowbasin, lots of good intermediate terrain that is non-threatening, and then lots of good expert terrain for you and the boys to hang out on. It's got the scare factor of snowbird mixed with the easy stuff of canyons/parkcity.
post #6 of 42
Those green circles at Snowbird are clearly labeled as easiest way down, not beginner run. As said before, most are narrow cat tracks that switchback across very steep terrain. Mineral basin has lots of good intermediate terrain, but is also very exposed. It tends to get sunbaked in the afternoon, frozen in the morning and wind blasted on storm days (if you can even get there). Powder can be short-lived in MB due to this exposure. The easier tracks and trails are groomed.

I really like Snowbird but from your original post, I don't think it is where your group will have the best experience. Canyons and Park City have the blend of terrain that will allow your group to ski their limits, and still meet on the mountain, or even ski/board the same lift, but take different lines. For a first experience in Utah, you would be doing your "developing" skills group a real disservice to start them at Snowbird, only to ski on tracks. Work up to it, and take Utah49's advice to use this opportunity to take some instruction to move up to the next level.
post #7 of 42
The cat track at the top of Mineral Basin that must be done to get to the easy runs will definitely freak out a true green run skier.
post #8 of 42
As a side note, this thread isn't doing the ESA any favors by attracting "developing skiers" to the '06 event, which is scheduled to be held at Snowbird.
post #9 of 42
if i were a green skier - i would not be going to snowbird. period.
post #10 of 42
Agreed I ended up taking my girlfreind to snowbird last season (was not a mistake), she is in her words and "advanced beginner". Took her to GAD lift for some greens and blues runs, she ended up on chicadee the rest of the day and I ended up with a bruise on my left arm. She ended up having a great time.
post #11 of 42
Thread Starter 
Many thanks for the comments. The tentative schedule was to be Park City, Snowbird, Park City, Deer Valley. The boarder is on his own one day.

So I take it even the "greens" around the Baby Thunder lift will be too much? I saw the green cat track in MB on the trail map and was concerned about it also. If anything we'd scout it and make a determination.

My wife took a 2 hour private lesson here in St. Louis to get her back to beginning making parallel turns. She's starting with in a wedge and finishing parallel. She skis slowly and under control. She made decent progress. She wants to get to parallel turns, but will probably never go beyond groomed blue runs. She learned about 6 years ago in Park City and is comfortable there. I think she's going to do the 1 hour first of the morning private Park City lesson that's semi-reasonably priced and then perhaps an afternoon group lesson or a group lesson one of the other days to reinforce and improve her technique. He goal for the trip is to make it all the way down Homerun at Park City. The other woman skier is greens only but skillwise is ahead of my wife although I'm guessing they eventually will ski together. Perhaps if we do go to Snowbird, my wife should take her group lesson there. That will help her know the terrain and where she can go.

One other woman is going to be learning Snowboarding for the first time. She'll be in school no matter where we go.

We could do Solitude or Brighton. I liked Solitude better than Brighton and would go back for sure. But I know the other guys are targeting Snowbird. We'll have to discuss it. I'll do my best to explain the situation. Perhaps the gals just stay at Park City the day we go to Snowbird. We could drop them at Alta as someone suggested. Alta's a great mountain. The learning snowboarder will be by herself wherever we go.

Give me a bit more about Snowbird if you can. Thanks again guys.
post #12 of 42

I agree..

with the comments about the 'bird.

Although Alta has an experts reputation, it is, in my opinion, an excellent place for beginning skiers. The terrain off the cecret and sunnyside lifts is excellent terrain for learning to turn and carve and getting some confidence. The runs are definitely not cattracks. Plus the scenery in the Albion basin is spectacular!

As an example, my wife and I have been to LCC the past 5 years. The first year, my wife was basically a first timer. I put her in lessons. She loves the green runs at Alta and now can ski about any blue at any resort.

Alta grooms at least 1 run off every lift. We love the supreme area best because my wife can ski down the groomed blue run, and I can go anywhere I feel like and we can meet at the bottom of the lift. If you are a good skier, try heading left off the top of supreme to catherine's area. Keep traversing out as far as you can. It is a short hike to a beautiful, wild area.

All the upper lifts have at least 1 groomed blue and groomed black. Pick how hard you want the skiing to be: groomed, bumps, off trail, trees, powder.

Have fun.
post #13 of 42
ditto Alta.

Go to a different place every day!!!! Skiing the same place(except snowbird for experts of course) is bogus. And absolutely no reason to in SLC except maybe for weather problems. PCMR or Canyons, Snowbasin(real nice for intermediates) and either Alta or Snowbird.
post #14 of 42
one more thing, absolutely no reason whatsoever to ski a different place than the girls. there is plenty of advanced terrain no matter which major resort you pick. do what we do with our group, ski a few runs first thing, meet up for lunch, then meet up again. no problem!
post #15 of 42
Thread Starter 
2X at Park City is OK. We're meeting up with someone else who will be there those two days as he works there but will get ski time. The gals want to go to Deer Valley for the amenities, whatever that means. That left us one day for something else. I'll mention Snowbasin and see if it gets any bites. How long of a drive from Park City is it? We're staying in the PC area.
post #16 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coach13
As a side note, this thread isn't doing the ESA any favors by attracting "developing skiers" to the '06 event, which is scheduled to be held at Snowbird.
I don't think its this thread, its the area. It is very easy to get over-terrained at Snowbird, even for level 7/8 skiers, but I'm sure there are many locations where the coaches can find the right terrain for what they want to accomplish. But it does have an intimidation factor...Teaching carving on Regulator, or evaluating who can huck Great Scott?. What are your thoughts on this?

BTW, stljrs, curious why Canyons is not in your travel agenda? It seems to have something for everyone in your group, and is in the neighborhood.
post #17 of 42
Do not take the girls to Snowbird. It just plain looks incredibly intimidating and they will be freaked out before even getting on a lift.

Either drop them off at Solitude or Brighton for the day, or save the bird for another trip (a guys trip).
post #18 of 42
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cirquerider
BTW, stljrs, curious why Canyons is not in your travel agenda? It seems to have something for everyone in your group, and is in the neighborhood.
3 of the 4 days were already set in PC. I'm along for the ride so the places were not necessarily my choices. They wanted to get away from there (PC) for a day. We'd be at Alta if we didn't have the boarder with us. I'll probably push to drop the girls at Alta so they have a chance at having fun. If anything, I'll get the two-way pass and go over and check on them if no one else wants to.

I second the intimidation factor. I've been by it on the way to Alta. Sometimes I wonder if I want to ski it.
post #19 of 42
The green cat track going down to Mineral Basin is definitely not a good idea. The first part of it has what appear to be cliffs going off the side. That being said, if you can get by the first part(which is spooky), it's not too bad. Also, there is the other chair in Mineral Basin by which you can access Alta, which has pretty easy terain as I recall. However, Snowbird in general is one of those places where you don't want to accidentally take a wrong trail. It will test your limits.
post #20 of 42
Dump the knuckle dragger and head to Alta
post #21 of 42
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by powderhound24
Dump the knuckle dragger and head to Alta
Ah if only it was that easy.........
post #22 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by stljrs
So I take it even the "greens" around the Baby Thunder lift will be too much?
From my experience, Baby thunder is only open sporatically. I wouldn't count on it. It's also very near the terrain park. What a great mix....

L
post #23 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by stljrs
2X at Park City is OK. We're meeting up with someone else who will be there those two days as he works there but will get ski time. The gals want to go to Deer Valley for the amenities, whatever that means. That left us one day for something else. I'll mention Snowbasin and see if it gets any bites. How long of a drive from Park City is it? We're staying in the PC area.
Snowbasin will be a little bit longer drive than Alta/Snowbird - it should take you about 1 hour 15 minutes or so to get there from Park City. It's not really a bad drive, either - interstate most of the way. Snowbasin is a great resort and would be enjoyable for everybody in your group.
post #24 of 42
so talking about beginners and cat tracks - here is what happened the
first time i went to snowbird. I was not a beginner. we skied Big Emma , Bassacwards(sp?), regulator johnson (slowly) in the morning and then headed out to Mineral basin. those narrow cat tracks freaked me out. so I head skiers right down the cat track - there are these 2 idiots who have stopped in the middle of the cat track - standing across. i could not stop in time. I hit their skis and somersaulted . bindings release. my skis flies down the slope on the left. luckily a good samaritan picks my skies, hikes up and gives me my skis. my ankle felt horrible all day long. luckily I didn't break anything.
post #25 of 42
Snowbasin is no more then a 45 min drive from Park City. for the most part it is all Freeway. It is pretty scenic drive following the Weber river into Ogden Canyon. by the way since the ladies want DV for a day m Don't worry DV hasa wild side that most skiers miss. You might want to take the black diamond tour of DV. Mayflower bowl is steep and long. I think about 1200 vert in one shot. with rock bands trees and a lots of things to keep it fun. On a powder day DV has some of the best skiing that Utah has to offer. Just past Daly bowl is the Daly chutes are the steepest in Utah! Seems a lot of skiers ski right past Lady Morgan bowl without even looking. There is great tree skiing all over DV. One of my favorites at DV is the area around Perseverance bowl. It is easy to put DV down as just another place that is over groomed and nothing challenging.
post #26 of 42
Hey Utah49, just to nitpick, you follow the Weber river into Weber canyon, which is hwy 84. The Ogden river runs though the Ogden canyon, which is 12th street.
post #27 of 42
I second Alta! The best place for starters. They will be very happy there.
post #28 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maui Steve
However, Snowbird in general is one of those places where you don't want to accidentally take a wrong trail. It will test your limits.
I'll whole heartedly second this. The kids and I were wishing we had gone back to Brighton.
post #29 of 42
Thread Starter 
I've been to Deer Valley before. I thought it was a bit stuffy, but the mountain itself was nice. I still think the quality of the snow was better at Alta and Solitude. For some reason, DV reminded me of Breckenridge. I don't know why.
post #30 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by stljrs
My wife took a 2 hour private lesson here in St. Louis to get her back to beginning making parallel turns. She's starting with in a wedge and finishing parallel. She skis slowly and under control. She made decent progress. She wants to get to parallel turns, but will probably never go beyond groomed blue runs.
stljrs,

Take it from a flatlander. Those parallel turns here in the midwest are great but they will break down on the terrain at the Bird. This could lead to a real frustrating trip. Have her ski the steepest terrain at her home hill if she enters the turn with a wedge that is the way most of the day will go out west. Don't get me wrong she could have a great time at Snowbird but the expectation of maintaining parallel turns there is unrealistic. Its all part of the learning curve.

Ed
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