Snowbird Ski Resort

Wherever you ski you always meet someone on a lift who tells you the snow is better somewhere else - deeper, dryer, more consistent. Wherever, that is, except for Snowbird Ski Resort Utah.

Snowbird Ski Resort Utah averages over 500 inches of delicious champagne powder a year; it comes early, it comes often, and it stays late. Only next-door Alta Ski Area can boast similar snowfalls, and if you are a snowboarder there is no competition - like nearby Deer Valley Ski Area, Alta does not allow snowboarding.

Snowbird Ski Resort is famous for its extreme powder runs, but skiers and snowboarders of every ability should find something here. Chickadee lift, at the very bottom of Snowbird Ski Area, services some perfect learning terrain. Longer and more challenging green slopes can be found off Wilbere and Mid-Gad lifts, and from the more secluded Baby Thunder lift.

Baby Thunder is where terrain park-loving snowboarders should head for advanced to expert parks. There is an easier terrain park below the Mid-Gad lift.

The best blue runs at Snowbird Ski Area are off the Gadzoom high-speed quad and the more isolated Gad 2 lift. This also services some relatively easy black slopes with good moguls and tree runs. Advanced intermediates will want to try these or Regulator Johnson and the 2.5-mile Chip's Run, from the top of the Aerial Tram.

The extreme slopes accessible from the Aerial Tram have made Snowbird Ski Resort Utah world-renowned. On the front side, the routes down the Cirque are as challenging as any slopes in the world. The bowls and chutes on Hidden Peak, on the back side of Snowbird Ski Area, are easier but still fairly extreme. These are also accessible by a special tunnel from the top of Peruvian Express.

Little Cottonwood Canyon, where Snowbird Ski Area lies, is an area of intense natural beauty, reminiscent of the Austrian Alps. To preserve this beauty, Snowbird has strict rules governing development. For this reason, most accommodation in Snowbird is within walking distance of the lifts. The best is the Cliff Lodge, a luxury resort at the Snowbird Ski Area base. More affordable but still high-quality rooms can be found in the Inn or Iron Blossom condominium complexes.

Snowbird is just 25 miles from Salt Lake City, so if you plan on skiing several Utah ski areas, that might be the place to stay. If you are planning a Utah ski vacation, make sure it includes a day at powder-rich Snowbird Ski Resort.

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