Explore the itinerary, then start planning your Utah ski vacation.
This three-day powder dream ski vacation takes you to Utah ski resorts all known for their seemingly endless stashes of deep powder. In Salt Lake City and Ogden, you can ski or ride all day then relax slopeside for the night, or make the short trip back to the city for a night on the town.
Salt Lake City isn't your regular ski town — it's a Ski City. With big city, world-class amenities galore and 10 different resorts within an hour of Salt Lake City International Airport, Salt Lake City, Utah ski trips can satiate any skier's or snowboarder's lust for more time on the mountain's powder. And not just any powder. Utah’s own brand of powder, the fluffy stuff with perfect floatation we call The Greatest Snow on Earth® (here's why).
Best of all, living your powder dreams can be budget-friendly, or can tap a metropolitan lifestyle and high culture. This three-day itinerary visits your choice of Ski City’s four resorts, plus makes the short drive north for a bonus day on one of Ogden’s resorts. Once you get a taste for Utah ski trips — and once you realize how close it all is — you may never want to ski anywhere else.
Photo: Dan Campbell
- Salt Lake City
- Brighton or Solitude
- Night Skiing
Take your pick from the Big Cottonwood Canyon resorts: Solitude Mountain Resort and Brighton Ski Resort. The amenities, accessibility and affordability of both resorts make Brighton and Solitude a great deal — it’s no stretch to say they’re some of the best family ski resorts out there. While you can enjoy an incredible day at either resort, they also offer the combined SolBright Pass, which enables skiers to access your choice of 15 lifts and over the resorts’ combined 2,250 skiable acres and 130 named runs. The SolBright access trail is from the Milly lift at Brighton, though less-experienced skiers may opt for the short bus trip to the other resort.
Brighton Ski Resort has one of Utah’s longest ski school traditions, multiple terrain parks for riders and excellent night skiing. Milly Bowl is a powdery playground that can keep you interested all day.
Deer Valley’s recent acquisition of Solitude Mountain Resort is ushering in an era of legendary customer service and incredible dining experiences in the resort’s European-style village and base (complete with
If your legs can take it, try out night skiing at Brighton Resort, offering 200 acres of lighted runs. Sometimes the best powder comes out to play at night.
Lodging: Choose from 150 hotels for a base camp in Salt Lake City, which offers the best access to the city’s culture, nightlife and 1,000+ restaurants (taste some of the best in The Perfect Meal). Or lodging at one of the resorts offers cozy mountain accommodations at great rates and the shortest path to first chair if you’re less of a morning person and want the extra 30 minutes of sleep.
The Drive: It’s less than 10 minutes from SLC International to downtown, and roughly 30–40 minutes to the top of the canyon. Add a few minutes for canyon ski traffic on the weekend.
SLC is both a destination city with exciting outdoor adventure, local cuisine and big city amenities and a gateway for travelers making the quick trip to Utah's ski resorts, southward to Utah’s renowned red rock country, or northward to Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks.
The Big Cottonwood Canyon resorts — Solitude and Brighton — are the closest to Salt Lake City and see an average of over 500 inches of snow per year. Enjoy one incredible day at either resort, or take advantage of the combined SolBright Pass, which enables you to access your choice of 15 lifts over the resorts’ combined 2,250 skiable acres and 130 named runs. Or try out Solitude in the day and Brighton at night.
Brighton Ski Resort boasts the largest amount of night-skiing terrain available anywhere in Utah with over 200 acres of lighted runs. Gear rentals and lessons are both available during the night skiing hours which runs from from 4–9 p.m., Monday through Saturday from early December through April. Brush up on night skiing tips.
- Alta or Snowbird
- Spa Time Out
- A Night on the Town
Big Cottonwood Canyon’s not-so-little sibling to the south, Little Cottonwood Canyon, also offers quick metro-to-mountain access and the same option to pick a single resort, or purchase a combined pass. You’ll also find plenty of gear rental outfitters if you don’t have your own equipment.
The AltaSnowbird Pass enables skiers to access both resorts' terrain via a connection gate at the saddle separating Alta's Albion Basin and Snowbird's Mineral Basin. The result is a combined 4,700 acres and some 283 runs. Though there’s a good balance among beginner, intermediate and advanced terrain (with the edge going to intermediate and advanced), both resorts offer some of Utah’s best steep and deep.
Alta Ski Area is a skier's paradise (no snowboards allowed) that receives 550 inches of the fluffy white stuff per year on average and features a vertical drop of more than 2,000 feet and some of Utah’s most storied ski runs, like the infamous High Rustler.
While there’s great terrain for beginners at Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort, expert skiers and riders can carve first tracks in wide-open bowls, fly down steep chutes, and make their way through the mountain itself on North America's only ski tunnel. Be sure to hit the 1,200 vertical feet and 40-degree pitch of North Baldy. New for 2016 is the 23,000-square-foot Summit Lodge on Snowbird's Hidden Peak, which offers a local-inspired menu with an 11,000-foot view.
After two days of skiing, relax at a spa and loosen up for an evening out on the town. Salt Lake City boasts the metropolitan culture and nightlife of a world-class city.
Lodging: Salt Lake City or slopeside at Alta or Snowbird. Both resorts offer extensive lodging options and amenities, ranging from inexpensive dorm-style rooms at Alta and rustic bars to the fine dining and renowned rooftop spa of Snowbird’s Cliff Lodge.
The Drive: Return to Salt Lake base camp after skiing Big Cottonwood Canyon or head straight to a lodge or hotel up Little Cottonwood. It’s about 35 minutes back downtown, or 45 minutes to the top of the neighboring canyon. Add a few minutes for canyon ski traffic on the weekend.
After back to back days on the slope relax and rejuvenate at the spa. Snowbird’s Cliff Spa treatment comes with all-day spa facility use and a stunning view of the ski resort’s Wasatch Mountain home from the spa’s grand rooftop pool and hot tub. Or try out the Ski Boot Soother at Alta's Rustler Spa, a warm mud treatment and reflexology foot massage.
When the sun goes down and the ski slopes empty out, head downtown and soak up the metropolitan culture and nightlife of this world-class city. Whether you're looking for family-friendly activities on a budget (ice skating, Christmas lights, a Utah Jazz game or children's museum), or high-class culture élevé (Utah Symphony or Opera, Ballet West, art gallery stroll) wander down from the slopes for vibrant downtown life.
- Ogden Valley Resorts
- Ogden's Historic 25th Street
Spend a day on the slopes of one of Ogden's three resorts, then grab an early meal in Ogden Valley or extend your night on the historic, lively and artsy 25th Street area of downtown Ogden.
During the 2002 Olympic Winter Games, Snowbasin Resort was the site for men and women’s downhill, super G and combined races. You'll see why this epic resort was selected for three competitions with its 3,000 skiable acres, 3,000 vertical
The largest of the three Ogden ski resorts, Powder Mountain, offers prime powder stashes on this sprawling mountainscape with 7,000 acres of skiable terrain. Skiers relish in both the groomed slopes and the
Work is underway to grow the boutique Nordic Valley Ski Resort to 2,000 acres. For now, you’ll enjoy intimate slopes that showcase great variety, excellent night skiing, and a terrain park with more than 20 features.
The Drive: On I-15 northbound, it’s less than an hour to the Ogden Valley. It’s about 30 minutes back to downtown Ogden.
Ogden is a family-friendly town and world-class winter recreation destination. Powder Magazine ranked it as the #1 Ski Town in the U.S. Just 40 minutes from Salt Lake City International Airport, it's also convenient. The slopes are just a few minutes from town with Snowbasin, Nordic Valley, and Powder Mountain each just a few miles away (17, 13, and 19 miles, respectively).
The Ogden Valley is currently home to some 10,500 of skiable acres with nearly 300 named runs, across three resorts: Snowbasin, Powder Mountain and Nordic Valley. All three of these Ogden ski resorts welcome both skiers and snowboarders and public transit is available from downtown Ogden. Each has their own distinct feel and flavor, but you can't go wrong. We won't judge you if you have to pick more than one.
Ogden's 25th Street is remembered as a place of excitement and variety. Saloons and bordellos stood side-by-side with businesses that thrived on Ogden's status as a railroad hub. Today, 25th Street offers a glimpse into the past with the opportunity to enjoy unique shops, antique stores and local restaurants.