Skiing: Park City
Park City is a great place to spend a vacation. Fantastic skiing and all the amenities expected in a ski town can be found here. Park City was a silver mining town in it’s early days. Nowadays snow is the commodity most often pursued here.
Last Sunday I went up to Park City for the final day of the year. Only Snowbird is still open at the time of this writing. The drive over from Salt Lake City takes about 45 minutes.
City ski resort rises directly from the town of Park
City, the Town Lift escorts skiers from the center of town to
the mountain. This lift stands in the same place as the tram
that used to carry ore from the mines located on the mountain. Park
City has a very efficient lift system, numerous six
passenger high speed lifts tend to eat up the lines nicely.
Although just like any other ski resort it can be crowded on the
I arrive at Park
City and meet up with the friends I will be skiing
with. One of my skiing partners today is Ralf Daum. Ralf came to
Park City about 14 years ago to ski for a living. Skiing for a
living means working to survive and skiing to keep alive.
The town of Park City has many diversions for the non-skiing
members of the family. Some of the best shopping and restaurants
in the state of Utah are found in Park City. There is a
manufacturers outlet mall located near I-80, this mall features
outlet stores from many famous name’s. Main Street features
many boutiques and galleries. In Park City you can find many
fine galleries featuring stunning western art.
Ralf is one of a dying breed
in Park City, the ski bum as we know it is fading away. The
young powder hound coming to Park City today would find himself
(or herself) facing very high housing cost’s and low income.
Park City has a
wide variety of skiing terrain, ranging from beginner slopes to
hike accessible expert’s only terrain.
For the best beginner terrain on the mountain be sure and hit
First Time and Three King’s. Park
City caters to skiers of all abilities and there are
plenty of trails which allow the beginner to see and appreciate
An intermediate can negotiate a way down from every lift except
the Jupiter lift. The Prospector area is the spot most
intermediate skiers will find entertaining. Consistent pitches
and well groomed trails make this a cruisers dream.
Park City does
offer some superlative expert skiing. The Jupiter lift gives the
skier access to the steepest skiing Park
City has to offer. Scott’s bowl receives the most
snow in the resort. While most of the folk’s are skiing on the
front-side of the mountain, Jupiter will reward the inquisitive
with stashes in its nooks and crannies. Jupiter Peak when open
is a hike accessed adrenaline rush of 45 degree pitches.
McConkey’s is another lift where the confident skier can find
snow after the obvious lines are skied out. Take a left after
getting off the lift and dive into the tree’s, although tight,
this area will have untracked lines for days after a storm. Be
careful here and don’t pull a Bono/Kennedy, every year someone
dies here in the tree’s.
older ski bums are becoming productive members of the community.
A true skier will somehow provide him or herself with a
worthwhile existence, while at the same time assuring that the
job providing this existence is in close proximity of several
major ski resorts.
Park City is home
to many clubs, being located in the state of Utah there are
various hoops to contend with. Any “Bar” you go into is
actually a “Private Club”, you are charged a membership fee
That said, there is a lot of fun to be had here. The Alamo and
the Cozy are two of the most popular local hangouts, a fun after
ski atmosphere can be had at either.
The Baja Cantina is located in the base area of Park
City, this small joint offers after ski beers and
great Mexican food.
Park City is a
fine place for a vacation destination. Deer Valley and The
Canyon’s are nearby to provide alternative places to ski while
you’re here. There are many lodging opportunities in Park
City, ski-in ski-out capability will be improved once the
Marriott hotel is finished in the base area. If you have a
rental car I would highly recommend traveling to the Cottonwood
Canyon’s. Snowbird, Alta, Solitude and Brighton are a short
drive from Park City and are well worth the trip over.
Today’s snow is kinda
slushy, the ski runs seem as rivers of white through the brown
scrub of the sun exposed hillsides. Only the Jupiter and
McConkey lift’s give a tiny glimpse that winter still has a
small grasp on the high country. Warm and sunny, this is a
fitting close to another great ski season.
Enjoy Skiing In Utah!
City Snow Report
Atlas and Gazetteer
Tracks: A Century of Skiing in Utah
Salt Lake City and Beyond: Including Park City, Deer Valley,
Alta and Snowbird
to Skiing Index