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Utah interconnect, ever happen?

post #1 of 36
Thread Starter 
I am suprised in this age of rampant commercialism in the US that this has not happened. If it did nothing on this continent would compare to Utah, nothing. I know many of the reasons why it won't, Deer Valley is snooty, Alta does not like Snowboarders and evironmental groups and backcountry folks don't want it. There are almost more reasons why it should not happen, than why it should. But as well all know the dollar is a might fine incentive....

On a seperate note if I went on a trip to Utah and stayed in park City and skied , Solitude, Brighton, Canyons, DV, and PC would I have to buy a seperate ticket for each place?

Alfonse
post #2 of 36
Solitude and Brighton offer a combined day pass for around $60. Travel between the two is possilbe on a cat track like solbright trail. pobably sold a few hundred of these last season, mostly to Euros who dig the whole going between resort thing. Hard to due the terrain at both places justice in one day.
post #3 of 36
A few more thoughts on your question. Deer Valley in addition to not allowing snowboarders limits ticket sales. Park City doesn't and a interconnect between the two is geoligicaly feasible, it seems unlikely. Deer Valley pretty much has their niche and really doesn't seem to need any Park City locals.

Solitudes owners are trying to develop a destination resort in Big Cottonwood Canyon. They have never really cared much about locals and never even sold season passes the first 3 or 4 years I worked there. Brighton on the other hand is pretty much about locals and the pipe and park scene. They also cater to a lot of tourbus groups. So other than a courtesy ticket and a possible interconnecting lift in the future, these two will probably remain seperate.

I have heard talk of trying to keep Guardsman road, a summer pass between BCC and Park Snipity, open through the winter. This would cut down on the commute between the two. 15 t0 20 min. vs. an hour or more depending on road conditions. This too is probably doubtful to happen at least soon.

You can ski all these resorts through a SkiUtah interconnect program. About $150 for the day

Oh and as long as you spot for your daughter and are there to pick up the peices if she explodes that makes you a rock star parent.
post #4 of 36
From what I understand The Canyons ski resort and PCMR may develop an interconnect within the next couple of years.

Anyone know about this?
post #5 of 36
There has been much discussion about this for as long as I can remember, going back into the 70's. For one reason or another, any plans (or even talk of plans) gets a rapid 'NO WAY' response from various local officals, conservation groups and the resorts themselves.

Technically, an interconnect would take 5-6 lifts, and not be a big deal. Even connecting the three canyons via tunnel/pass would be a pretty straightfoward feat. DV & PCMR already adjoin one another, as do Solitude/Brighton & Alta/Snowbird. Guardsman Pass is not an option however, as the road is unimproved dirt for at least 5 miles of the way, and other parts are on road bed not suitable for heavy traffic or snowplows.

Economically, I would guess that it's a no-brainer, except for DV. All the resorts would see signifcant skier number increases, as people would visit for the curiosity factor alone. DV would hesitate, because they value a low skier density experience and uncrowded day lodges. In fact, I've heard that a DV/PCMR hook up is currently on hold due to the potential of day lodge overcrowding and no other reason.

But here comes the big NO: local back country and wilderness enthusiasts would never let this happen, and I have to agree with some of the arguments. The Wasatch is a unique range. No where else is there a combination of terrain, snow and wilderness so close to a large metropolitan area (SLC is the only city in the US with a federal wilderness area within its boundaries). Its over use is already being noticed. with the local ecosystem being stressed to its limits. Seven resorts in such close confines to the wilderness areas already take up a large portion of the range. The resorts have done a good job of re-tinkering infrastructure to maximize the user experience, without gaining too much new territory. If a solution was available that offered nearly the same acerage as is currently available, I would be for it. To me tunnels are the best solution.

Powdr
post #6 of 36
First, I am not a proponent of a Utah interconnect. I only know a few details relative to Solitude:

The land necessary for a lift up Grizzly Gulch that could provide an Alta/Solitude interconnet is privately owned either by Alta or Solitude. Thus, as I understand, it would only take County (without all the environemntal impact issues) but not Forest Service approval to install one. Alta's initiation of snowcat skiing in Grizzly Gulch could be considered by some as a harbinger of such a lift. Whether the very independent minded owners of Solitude could ever work out an agreement with Alta is anyone's guess.

There is already an additional lift to connect with Brighton with full approval from all necessary parties (Forest Service included) that was part of Solitude's Master as approved a few years ago.
post #7 of 36
I for one hope to never see a lift in Grizzly Gulch. Wolverine Cirque and Silver Fork are easily accessable to anyone with BC equipment and skills. Bad enough PowderWankers Heliskis this terrain. The last thing the owners at Solitude want is a bunch of hardcore LCC freaks huckin off things, not that I would mind seeing this myself. Solitude is set up right now so that at 100% room occupancy and both parking lots full they are still less than 1/2 the resorts uphill capacity.This is what keeps it "Solitude" Change this and they would have to change the name to the Bird or Vail. That would suck. The owners of Solitude are a super cool family. Props to them for pursuing their vision. Glad Interwest is out of the picture, they suck. As for the proposed "Redman" Lift with Brighton, although approved, is pretty far down the list. With a new daylodge and Moonbeam center on tap for the summer.
post #8 of 36
The real reason why DV/PCMR haven't combined passes, is that DV is worried about over filling the day lodges at lunch. Stopping snowboarders isn't a problem, they would have people at the 'gate'
The mtn it self can handle alot more skiers, than they already allow. The last year i worked there Lift capicity per hour was up around 45,000 butts per hr, the highest in Uath, it has since up'd and will go up even further with the upgrading of Sultan to a high speed chairh this summer.
Ticket sales stop at 6,300. Yes locals do have passes at DV, as well as others. They will ski DV on the blue bird days, after playing over in the cottonwoods during the powder days.
This past season saw DV join the Utah interconnect ski tour, offered by SKI Utah.
So yes they are interested. They want to see all resorts connect in one way or another.
Currently in the PC area there is a pass good at all 3 resorts, good for one resort each day. It's offered as a lodging packege.
Now if you want to ski all 3,get to know employees, buy them a beer or two, and they will set you up.
PCMR and the Canyons would need to build at least 1,maybe 2 lifts to be able to connect.
I for one would love to see it come to light, that you park at the Jordanell Gondola at DV, and end your day at the Canyons.
post #9 of 36
DV is an awsome place to ski on a pow day as most of the richie rich crowd are sucking down skinny mocha latte's until 10 am and even then spend most of their day being "groomanators" and whining about to much snow. Awsome glade sking and most of the clientel are scared shitless of trees. Just ask Tony Danza."Ski good or eat wood"
post #10 of 36
Here is one more little tid bit to wet the appitite of those wanting to see an interconnect here in Utah. PCMR owns a big chunk of land that is pretty much the back side of Brighton ski resort. PCMR has had plans on the books for years to add two lifts to get to that area. It has been a Back Country route for years. Also there is only one Land owner between PCMR and the Canyons resort. It would be easy to do a joint venture snowcat ski opertation from both resorts.Most of the problems witha Utah innterconnect are due to the owners of the resorts fighting with each other. Even the Alta/Bird join pass has had it's share of backroom fights between the two resorts. Is a Utah innterconnect a pipedream? who Knows? Maybe it is. Oh but what a dream it would be.
post #11 of 36
Wow, could you imagine an interconnect between The Canyons/PCMR/Brighton, that would be massive acreage to ski.
post #12 of 36
My guess with opening the backside of brighton plus the new area The Canyons has plans for would make it about 10,000 to 11,000 acers of skiing. I guess that would keep ya busy for a day or two. but then again it would mostly be flat boreing runs with very little if any snow
post #13 of 36
Thread Starter 
Forget those three hills, we are talking DV, PCMR, Brighton, Canyons, Solitude, Alta, and Snowbird. That has to be like 15-20,000 acres...

Alfonse
post #14 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Utah49
My guess with opening the backside of brighton plus the new area The Canyons has plans for would make it about 10,000 to 11,000 acers of skiing. I guess that would keep ya busy for a day or two. but then again it would mostly be flat boreing runs with very little if any snow
True, the area will be massive but flat and dry.

What do you know about the area The Canyons plans on opening?
post #15 of 36
Utah49: I'm not sure where you get your info from, but I don't think PCMR owns the area around Peak 10420. That area is combination of ownership between United Park City Mines (Now Talisker), The Boy Scouts of America & Forrest Service. Talisker eventually wants to develop the flat area (Bonanza Flats) for Golf & real estate (with some ski connection to DV, but that near the Empire Pass area of DV, not Jupiter. PCMR leases the land it is on from UPCM (Talisker) and has rights to develop Pinecone Ridge, but I have not heard of any plans (other than skier's pipe dreams) to develop into Guardsman or 10420.

Powdr
post #16 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by okolepuka
True, the area will be massive but flat and dry.

What do you know about the area The Canyons plans on opening?
The Canyons does not have any $$$ to develop anything more than what they currently have. They will eventually fall into receivership and be bought up by someone else, so any future development is questionable. Once a new owner takes over, who knows what will happen. That resort has had as many development plans as it has had owners.

The current Master Plan calls for development of Iron Mountain and connections between that area and Dreamscape, as well as improved access through The Colony area. An additional gondola/cariolet is planned for direct access to the left of the resort. Iron Mountain is that Sun Valley like mountain you see on the way into Park City after leaving The Canyons. It has fantastic long fall lines and would make a great addition to The Canyons' terrain. It was proposed as a separate ski area, complete with several chair lifts and a gondola in the 70's, but was never built.
post #17 of 36
According to someone who was in the PC city goverment for a number of years now retired .10420 Has been on the books for some time. Yes it is owned by UPCM now the new entity of Talisker. My gut tells me that once the Bonaza flats project really gets underway (by the way what a poor area for golf to much snow for to long of a time makes for a very short golf season) It might happen. Then again I'm not to opitimsitic about Powder corp and thier plans for PCMR. They seem unwilling to spend money on improvments and also seem to have turned thier back on the locals. They need solve the problems with the silverload lift. Plus work on new lifts for Pioneer and Motherload and Town lift. It would also be a good idea if they brought back a gondola maybe run that one up from the ski team lift up to King Con ridge and build a new lodge up there. I really hate the fact that this year That PCMR groomed the mountain to death. Once i saw a groomed run right down the middle of Blue Slip bowl I nealy pucked. Next thing will be grooming all of Jupitor. You maybe right about ASC and lack of Money rumors seem to come up every year that they are going under. I do know that the Colony has been close to sueing for failure to live up to it's contracts. The thing that the canyons needs more then anything is water rights for more snowmaking. Our good snow year this year might have kept the Canyons from going under. I ight just move to Ogden and start skiing Snowbasin another flat no snow mountain.
post #18 of 36
Not so sure about Powdr Corp not running things well. Although I no longer have a vested interest in PCMR, I always thought Powdr Corp has run things fairly well. Even Nick Badami admits Powdr Corp has improved things significantly. Yes, over grooming is an issue for some, but most tourists loved it. I'm not sure why the Cumming family gets such a bad rap, as all of the best improvements have been put in under their watch. There are, after all 6 detachables and numberous other improvements made to the mountain in the last 10 years. In my opinion, it skies better now than it ever has in the past.

As for lift upgrades, PCMR is working w/ the Planning Commision on several. Due for the next few years are the Spiro & Town lift projects. Longer term projects include a gondola from the origninal parking lot up & over ski team ridge to the summit area. That one may be on hold until PCMR gets another partner for what was once the Four Seasons project, until Four Seasons backed out (or at least put it on hold). Even longer term projects include Pinecone Ridge. Again, 10420 and Bonanza Flats have not been mentioned in the circle of folks I keep in touch with.
post #19 of 36
I think that Powder corp has hired some people that really don't relate to the locals. Deer Valley dispite it's glammer factor seems to have a better relationship with the city then what PCMR now has with the City. There was a time when the Town and resort were very close. The Badamis seemed to take a lot of pride in the mountain and were more concerned with skiing then profit. Yes putting on Americas opening cost a lot of money but there wasa big boost for the town asa whole it marked a return to the season and it was always a good weekend for bussiness on Main St. The now Gen Manger of Powder Corp. Was not well liked by the locals in is old post in Coloraro. From what I have heard he has also not well liked here as well. Yes the tourist seemed loved the grooming, but it took what challage the mountain had and made it a near joke. Grooming Blue Slip! what were they thinking? I can see grooming lets say 1/2 of Widow Maker and maybe the bottem part of Naildriver but mark it as a Blue run! Once groomed those runs are not even close to being black diamonds. Maybe groom Cresent but leave Sliverskis or vise versa. Groom1/2 of double Jack so the guest can get down it. I mean i can see that. but leave some bumps give the average joe a chance to improve to challage him or her self. Look at it this way Deer Valley is working on opening up more glades and more challenging runs! Even Aspen resorts are working to down playing the glammer and glitz.
Much of this is what I get from people in town merchents on Main St. I know a great many long time season pass holders at PCMR who will be getting thier passes someplace else. When I was running a shop on Main st People would ask what is your favorite mountain? I would have to say now The Canyons Yes tourist listen to the locals. This might be a case of The resort needing to mend some fences and do a little PR with the rest of the Town. If it is just about the bottom line, The resort has made some big mistakes in the way they hold down cost to improve the bottomline, Penny pinching and pound foolish is the expression. Those cost savings shows in the quality of the PCMR experiance. I don't need a MBA from harverd to know that PCMR makes more money then Deer Valley. Since DV limits ticket sales the Number of skier of skier days on the big week ends far exceeds that That of Deer Valley. Yet The quality of the whole Deer Valley experiance is so much better. The whole vibe there is friendlier. From the lifties on up. Well thats just my rant. I'm just going to let my wallet do the talking next season. I'm sure that my $750.00 won't be missed that much. Ok stepping off my saop box.
post #20 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by skifishbum
DV is an awsome place to ski on a pow day as most of the richie rich crowd are sucking down skinny mocha latte's until 10 am and even then spend most of their day being "groomanators" and whining about to much snow. Awsome glade sking and most of the clientel are scared shitless of trees. Just ask Tony Danza."Ski good or eat wood"
Don't forget it's Park City's best kept secreat for days after a dump.
there are a few hand full of the rich n famous that will venture off the groomers.
post #21 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by tahoetr
Don't forget it's Park City's best kept secreat for days after a dump.
there are a few hand full of the rich n famous that will venture off the groomers.
Kinda like after they close?

http://community.webshots.com/user/powdr_crest
post #22 of 36
Just watch out for the snowboarders doing thier thing at DV as snowcats plowing out the summer road on Bald Mtn.
post #23 of 36
Yesterday there were huge piles of snow pushed off to the side of some runs in an attempt to uncover some of the Mt. Bike trails. Don't know how they plan to get the trails open any time soon as, they aren't making any headway (new snow covering uo what they removed)
post #24 of 36
16 inches new snow at Snowbird yeasterday! Guess whos going skiing this weekend?
post #25 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Powdr
Yesterday there were huge piles of snow pushed off to the side of some runs in an attempt to uncover some of the Mt. Bike trails. Don't know how they plan to get the trails open any time soon as, they aren't making any headway (new snow covering uo what they removed)
Just heard from my fomer Dept. Manager at DV,and he says it's going to be awhile before they see dirt.
The piles of snow you saw was most liklely on the road that goes to the top of the mtns. They need to plow out the roads as soon as possbile to get equpiment to the top so they can start doing summer maiantaince on lifts. And over in the Empire area, they need the road open for the construction company that is building the new delevelopment.
No they do not walk down the bike trails and shovle them out. let Mother Nature do it.

A word of advice to anyone,, plse do go around a unattended lift during the summer. Chances are it's running for maintinace,it also can move anytime with out warning. Observe all posted warning signs, and ropes around the termenal.
post #26 of 36
It is great mbike ride to connect all of the resorts once the snow melts (maybe August this year) - many ways to do it.

My favorite was Mill Creek canyon to 8000' trail in Canyons to Park City past Shadow Lake over Scott's Pass down Mill F to Solitude up Solitide down Grizzly Gulch to Alta, up Alta to Sugargloaf Pass into Mineral Basin, up Mineral Basin down Snowbird down LCC. That is the summer interconnect - no permit or lifts needed.
post #27 of 36
Whoa Thimby!!

You must be in excellent shape.
post #28 of 36
One clarification, I started at top of Mill Creek at Big Water, saving a couple hours off the pavement. There are many places to refuel along the way. I think it took the better part of the day.
It is an end of summer ride.
post #29 of 36
Don't even get me started about the Mt. Biking around here. That's my other joy in life. 300+ miles of trails in the Park City area alone.
post #30 of 36
You can also do a ride like that starting in Upper Lambs Canyon.
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