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Comments Off on Ski Season Is Here. Almost.

Ski Season Is Here. Almost.

The 2010-11 ski season was definitely one for the record books. Could a twin be in the making?

Last winter’s record snow in Utah was a product of a climate condition known as La Nina, a flip-flop of the more well-known El Nino. It brought record snow depths to Utah’s Mountains — nearly 800 total inches at Snowbird — and 4.2 million skiers to in Utah. (The national count was 60.54 million skier visits, an all-time high.)

Weather experts now tell us La Nina will hang around for another winter, and extended predictions call for above normal precipitation in northern Utah. The U.S. Weather Bureau’s long-range forecasts call for above normal precipitation in northern Utah December through March. But, if you choose to believe the Farmer’s Almanac, predictions are that the winter of 2012 will come with average temperatures and below normal precipitation.

Powder power at Deer Valley. (Courtesy Deer Valley Resort)

Utah mountains have already received their initial covering. On Oct. 5 snow levels reached all the way down to the foothills of Salt Lake City, and yesterday snow blanketed the mountains and the valley. Snowbird has received more than two feet of snow at its top station, and temperatures have dipped low enough for resorts to make snow.

The more prudent skiers and snowboarders have already set tracks for the 2011-12 season. They’ve taken advantage of the “locals’’ ski packages at the various resorts and through Ski Utah, looked into the pre-season ski/snowboard sales, checked out the various ski swaps and have given ski/snowboard equipment a quick check.

Red rock snowboarding in Southern Utah. (Will Wissman/Ski Utah)

Haven’t started your ski season prep yet? Here’s a few tips to keep in mind before you hit the slopes.
– The time is right for tuning up and testing ski and snowboard equipment. Skis and boards, as with everything used, wear, especially around the edges. Well tuned equipment responds much better.
– Get physically prepared for the upcoming season. Even a little exercise done correctly can help skiers and snowboarders avoid injuries.
– Make sure equipment for the younger skiers and boarders is properly fitted. There is sometimes a tendency to pass down old equipment that is outdated, too large or too small. There are some great season rental packages available for children . . . and adults.
– Work with an expert when buying equipment. Buying skis, boards, bindings and boots either under or over an individual’s ability can make winter much harder than it need be.

14 Utah resorts
138 Ski lifts
22 Terrain parks
3,677 Acres of snowmaking
28,926 Skiable acres — 28,926
1,210+ Runs
$31 to $100 Ticket price range

Of course there was the usual grooming and manicuring of runs and  upgrades in food and service fetters, but what else can  skiers/snowboarders expect when they visit their favorite resorts this  season?
-A new smartphone app will make it possible for skiers to go directly  from their vehicle to the lifts at Alta by downloading the Alta Card.
-Beaver Mountain added a new Little Beaver lift.
-Brighton put in half a million dollars into its snowmaking.
-Canyons will offer heli-skiing.
-Deer Valley put in 41 new energy-efficient air-water snowmaking guns.
-Powder Mountain expanded its snowcat-access terrain by 50 percent.
-Snowbird put in a new version for its free IPhone app.
-Solitude will offer free Wi-Fi access throughout its lower village.

Sunny days are ample on Alta’s frosted slopes. (Adam Barker/Ski Utah)

Falling snow has made it possible for some resorts to predict opening dates. The likelihood of at least some of the resorts making their target dates is good. All runs and lifts may not be open, but there will be opportunities to ski and snowboard.

Here’s what we know so far:
Alta – Nov. 18
Brian Head – Nov. 19
Brighton – Nov. 10
Canyons – Nov. 25
Deer Valley – Dec. 3
Park City Mountain Resort – Nov. 19
Powder Mountain – Nov. 24
Snowbasin – Nov. 24
Snowbird – Nov. 19
Solitude – Nov. 11
Sundance – Dec. 9

(Adult day passes)
Alta – $72
Beaver Mountain – $45
Brian Head – $49
Brighton – $62
Canyons – TBA
Deer Valley – $96/$100
Eagle Point – $45/$50
Park City Mountain Resort – TBA
Powder Mountain – $60
Snowbasin – $72
Snowbird – $78/$72
Solitude – $68
Sundance – $49
Wolf Mountain – $31

Comments Off on 10 Things forgotten on opening day!!

10 Things forgotten on opening day!!

Opening day is greeted with smiles as wide as the Great Salt Lake and fist pumps by the many who survived summer.  Utah resorts are hopeful to open the season next weekend, a time that each of us will find something forgotten.

10 – Replace bike rack with ski rack

9 – Clean socks

8 – Last season’s legs

7 – Names of your favorite runs

6 – Licking the chairlift is still a bad idea

5 – Boyfriend

4 – Names of your friends you haven’t seen since last winter

3 – Remembering why you bought that Endless Winter shirt

2 – To get a job

1 – Summer

This list only represents the tip of the iceberg, the tip of the ski season, what else have you/will you forget the first day of the ski season?

Comments Off on More reasons to come to Utah!! Like you needed anymore….

More reasons to come to Utah!! Like you needed anymore….

Utah Earns Top Spot in Ten of Twenty SKI Magazine Reader Survey Categories Utah resorts received the top rating in half of the survey categories including Alta for “Overall Satisfaction,” “Character,” and “Snow;” Powder Mountain for “Value;” Deer Valley for “Weather,” “Grooming,” “On-mountain Food,” “Dining,” “Lodging,” and “Service.” Deer Valley Resort also earned the overall number one spot for a remarkable five years in a row. Joining Deer Valley on the top twenty list, Park City Mountain Resort was ranked number six, Canyons ranked 16th and Snowbird landed the 20th position. When planning your ski vacation this winter, don’t take our word. Look to your peers. Apparently, the clear choice is Utah!

Comments Off on Up Coming Events!!!

Up Coming Events!!!

Tue May 17 – Tue Aug 23 – Mid- Week MTB Race Series

Weekly, Tuesday night mountain bike race series.

Sun Jun 12 – Sun Sep 25 – Park Silly Market

Celebrating its fifth year on Historic Main Street, the Park Silly Sunday Market is an eco-friendly, open-air market and street festival. The Market features regional and local one-of-a-kind finds, gourmet foods and farmers’ market fruits and vegetables.

Wed Jun 22 – Wed Aug 24 – Mt. Ogden Mid Week Race Series at Snowbasin

Weekly mountain bike race held on Wednesday evenings at Snowbasin.

Wed Aug 10 – Fri Sep 30 – Canyons Bike Park!

Canyons Bike Park now open! Flow trails off of High Meadow lift, located at the top of Red Pine Gondola. $15 lift ticket or your 2010-11 winter season pass.

Thu Aug 18 – Sun Aug 21 – Third Annual Monster Energy Powder Mountain Motocross

Powder Mountain Resort is transforming its 8,000-foot elevation ski runs into motocross mania for the third annual Monster Energy Powder Mountain Motocross. The resort, along with event partner Monster Energy and title sponsors; Scott Sports, BTO Sports, and 5050 BMX, will host the high-elevation race Aug. 18th – 21st, 2011.

Sat Aug 20 – Canyons Summer Concert Series presents MarchFourth Marching Band

Check out the big band dancing spectacular of M4. Drawing influences from a variety of music genres and offering visual enhancements thru props, guests are sure to be entertained.

Sun Aug 21 – Live Entertainment with Snowbasin – Red Shot Pony – Blues/Country/Rock

Don’t miss Snowbasin’s free music series each Sunday. Delicious food, scenery and music awaits.

Wed Aug 24 – Deer Valley Resort’s Mountain Town Music Community Concert Series presents ~ The Soul Sensations

The Mountain Town Music Community Concert Series welcomes The Soul Sensations. The concert is free and will last from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m

Fri Aug 26 – Park City Gallery Stroll

On the last Friday of every month, members of the Park City Gallery Association offer a showcase of acclaimed artists, special exhibits and art events. The free Gallery Stroll runs from 6-9pm.

Sat Aug 27 – Mt. Ogden 50/100k at Snowbasin

The Mt. Ogden 50/100k at Snowbasin is an annual endurance mountain bike race.

Sat Aug 27 – Canyons Summer Concert Series presents the BoDeans!

Head up to check out new and old material from the BoDeans.

Sun Aug 28 – St. Regis Big Stars, Bright Nights Outdoor Concert Series ~ Little Big Town

The Big Stars, Bright Nights Outdoor Concert Series presents Little Big Town!

Sun Aug 28 – Live Entertainment with Snowbasin – A Different Element – Hip Hop/Funk

Don’t miss Snowbasin’s free music series each Sunday. Delicious food, scenery and music awaits.

Wed Aug 31 – Mountain Town Music Community Concert Series presents ~ LMNOP

The Mountain Town Music Community Concert Series welcomes An Evening with LMNOP. The concert is free and will last from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Sat Sep 3 – Canyons Summer Concert Series presents Jackie Greene, in celebration of the finish of the Park City Point to Point endurance mt. bike race!

Singer/songwriter Jackie Greene plays following the finish of the challenging Park City Point 2 Point.

Sat Sep 3 – First Ever Yeti Pass Skootch’n Dash

The Ski Utah Yeti invites all snow enthusiasts to race to winter in the First Annual Yeti Pass Skootch’n Dash Saturday, September 3 at the Salt Lake Farmers Market.

Sun Sep 4 – Live Entertainment with Snowbasin – Turner & Williams – Acoustic/Blues/Rock

Don’t miss Snowbasin’s free music series each Sunday. Delicious food, scenery and music awaits.

Mon Sep 5 – Miner’s Day Celebration

Miner’s Day begins with the famous “Running of the Balls,” followed by the Miner’s Day parade at 11am on Main Street and activities in City Park.

Mon Sep 5 – Live Entertainment with Snowbasin – Kap Brothers – Classic Rock (Labor Day)

Don’t miss Snowbasin’s free music series each Sunday. Delicious food, scenery and music awaits.

Sun Sep 11 – Live Entertainment with Snowbasin – Flew The Coop – Classic Rock

Don’t miss Snowbasin’s free music series each Sunday. Delicious food, scenery and music awaits.

Sat Sep 17 – Northern Utah Fall Color Photography Workshops

Northern Utah Fall Color Photography Workshops on Sept 17 and 24 in Ogden Valley Area, attend one or both. Starting at $10.

Sat Sep 17 – Homegrown Hoe Down Barn Dance

Homegrown Hoe Down Barn Dance, Huntsville, UT

Sat Sep 24 – Northern Utah Fall Color Photography Workshops

Northern Utah Fall Color Photography Workshops on Sept 17 and 24 in Ogden Valley Area, attend one or both. Starting at $10.

Sat Sep 24 – Sun Sep 25 – XTERRA Trail Run Nationals

All 140 of XTERRA’s U.S. off-road triathlon and trail running events now lead to Utah

Sat Oct 1 – 2nd Annual LivaStride Foundation Fall Festival Trail Run at Snowbasin

The 2nd Annual LivaStride Foundation Fall Festival Trail Run and fundraiser will be held at Snowbasin on October 1st with distances of 5k, 10k, 25k.

Fri Oct 14 – Sun Oct 16 – Fall Yoga Retreat at Alta Lodge

The mountains surrounding Little Cottonwood Canyon provide the backdrop for this annual fall yoga retreat at Alta Lodge.

Sun Dec 4 – Thu Dec 8 – Alta Performance Ski Camp

Three-days coaching and lift tickets, four nights lodging, breakfasts and dinners at Alta Lodge.

Fri Dec 9 – Sun Dec 11 – Winter Yoga Retreat

3-day, 2 night yoga retreat

Thu Jan 12 2012 – Snowdance and Auction

Snowdance and Auction at Snowbasin Resort. Dinner, dancing to live music, silent auction and live auction.

Wed Jan 25 2012 – Sun Jan 29 2012 – Backcountry Skiing and Splitboarding Clinic

Three-day, four-night backcountry clinic for skiers and splitboarders at Alta Lodge.

Wed Jan 25 2012 – Sun Jan 29 2012 – January Women’s Ski Camp – Intermediate to Advanced Skiers

Have fun with the girls at Alta Lodge Women’s Ski Camp!

Thu Feb 2 2012 – Sun Feb 5 2012 – Women’s Advanced-Expert Ski Camp

Women’s Ski Camp for Advanced-Expert Skiers

Tue Mar 13 2012 – Sat Mar 17 2012 – Backcountry Skiing & Splitboard Clinic at Alta Lodge with Utah Mountain Adventures

Backcountry touring in the Wasatch Mountains with Utah Mountain Adventures

Thu Mar 29 2012 – Mon Apr 2 2012 – Spring Ski Camp for Women

Just for women,three-day, four-night ski camp in March.

Tue Apr 10 2012 – Sat Apr 14 2012 – Alta Spring Performance Camp

A progressive approach to coaching expert, all-mountain skiers in a three-day camp packaged with lodging.

Comments Off on Yeti Pass!!

Yeti Pass!!

Hardcore Skiers and cold-blooded snow fiend – listen up:

Ski Utah announced its 2011-2012 Yeti Pass today – one that will enable pass holders to ski one day at every Utah resort (that’s 14 if you’re counting) for $499. (Which equates to $35 per day….if you’re counting).

Purchase your Yeti Pass through Ski Utah.  Booking your lodging at Old Town Guest House.  Your Special Yeti Pass Room Rate is $159/night!!  Take advantage of this great lodging rate while skiing Deer Valley, Park City, Canyons, Solitude, Brighton, Alta and Snowbird!!  All 7 resorts are easy to get to from the Inn!!


What’s to be done with 15 feet of snow in June? We know what to do with it!!

What’s to Be Done With 15 Feet of Snow in June? Utah Knows

Tom Smart for The New York Times

The Rieders family, Josh, left, Brandon and their father, Brad, also planned to golf while in Utah.

Published: June 10, 2011

LITTLE COTTONWOOD CANYON, Utah — At the base of a slope that at this time of year usually tests the skills of mountain bikers, roughly 60 skiers and snowboarders, hoping to get first tracks on the mountain, waited for the 8 a.m. opening of the tram at Snowbird resort.

Tom Smart for The New York Times

Eric Jucker, 75, is among the many skiers attracted to Snowbird. The resort is scheduled to stay open for snow sports until July 4.

Wina Sturgeon

The United States freestyle team is at Snowbird, where the moguls coach Scott Rawles gave pointers to Taryn Baker, 13.

Wina Sturgeon

Snowboarders are also enjoying the resort, which had 775 inches of snow this season. It averages 500.

These were not bitter-enders hoping to eke out runs on a thin swatch of snow. At this northern Utah resort, it is still winter. There is hardly a bare spot on the mountain. Piles of snow line the vast parking lot. With much of the country in the grip of record-high temperatures, it was 31 degrees here Friday morning. Snowbird has announced that it will be open for snow sports three days a week until July 4. And it could stay open even later.

An unusually heavy winter snowfall and a cold, wet spring have resulted in a record snowpack in much of the mountain regions of the West. Bob Bonar, the general manager at Snowbird, said the mountain received more than 775 inches of snow this season, well above its average of 500.

“We even got 20 inches of powder over Memorial Day weekend, and our current average base is more than 15 feet,” Bonar said. “The holiday may not even be the end. We may stay open a few weekends longer if the snow stays good.”

But if the giant snowpack remains a boon to skiers at Snowbird and at Snowbasin Resort about 70 miles to the north, it has been problematic to others.

Ed Chauner, director of the Intermountain Cup Mountain Bike Racing Series, said he had to change the site of a race last month because the original site, Sundance Resort, still had 10 feet of snow. A race planned at Snowbird on July 2 is also in jeopardy because, Chauner says, “there’s still 20 feet of snow on parts of the course.”

“All this weather is killing us,” Chauner said. “No one can get out and train during the week, because it’s been so cold and wet. If they can’t train, they don’t come out to race. Our rider numbers have been way down.”

The La Niña phenomenon is behind the weather anomaly, said Lindsay Storrs, a meteorologist at KUTV in Salt Lake City. In a La Niña year, she said, cooler than normal water temperatures in the Pacific off the coast of Chile leads to cooler and wetter weather in winter and spring in the western United States.

“Troughs develop along the West Coast of the U.S. when this occurs,” Storrs said. “That allows storms to continuously drop out of the Gulf of Alaska, giving the western U.S. above average precipitation.”

Snowbird’s full parking lot is testimony to the attraction of this season’s late snow.

“I have skied for 72 years, and I’ve never skied snow like this in June,” said Eric Jucker, 75, a Swiss citizen who travels back and forth from Laguna Beach, Calif., to Salt Lake City.

Martin Martinov, a Bulgarian biophysicist living in Park City, Utah, got off the tram Friday and said, “I’ve never seen snow like this that you didn’t have to hike to get to at this time of year.”

The record conditions are even attracting out-of-towners. Bradley Rieders of Woodbury, N.Y., traveled to Snowbird with his sons, 23 and 26.

“We came out here to ski and golf on the same day,” Rieders said. “We flew all the way out here just for that. The weather is beautiful, the skiing is fantastic; it’s paradise, just unbelievable.”

Snowbird has its large tram and two lifts operating, offering access to every run on the mountain. By extending the closing date to July 4, it will be open 202 days this season, a record by one day.

“There are places on the mountain that will probably retain snow all summer long,” said Emily Moench, the resort’s communications manager.

The fact that summer is still a long way off for Utah’s Wasatch Mountains works out well for the United States freestyle team, which is training at Snowbird. Scott Rawles, the moguls head coach, said the team was saving money by not having to travel to South America. Winter in the Southern Hemisphere doesn’t usually begin until August, and the only available snow in June and July is on glaciers crowded with the national teams of other countries.

“That is huge for us,” he said.

But just as the snow has hampered Chauner’s mountain bike series, it has even had an adverse effect on the overall operations at Snowbird, which likes to present itself as a four-season destination. The resort would normally be starting summer activities by now.

“Aside from the fact that the weather is cold and wet, the Alpine Slide track is buried under many feet of snow,” Moench said, referring to a popular summer attraction.

Jeff Robins, chief executive of the Utah Sports Commission, which works to attract major sporting events to the state, said the unusual weather had been particularly disruptive in the north.

“We’re seeing the golf season starting later this year,” he said, “and the weather has created issues for the spring sports that are typically played in high school and college — from tennis to track and field, soccer, baseball, softball, the weather has created challenges for competitions typically held in spring. It’s not just snow in the mountains, but rain that is affecting recreational activities like fishing, kayaking, camping, mountain biking and hiking.”

While the delay for northern Utah’s summer activities will have an economic impact on the state, it may be the least problematic of the overall weather effects.

“The snowpack we have right now is 525 percent of normal,” said Brian McInerney, the hydrologist for the National Weather Service in Utah. “The lower level snowpack from 7,500 to 6,000 feet is already gone, but the mid-elevation snow from about 7,500 to 9,000 feet is still there.”

He added: “Our soils were already saturated starting in March due to a heavy rainfall in early spring. Now, if you try to ride or hike on these soils, they will still be wet, still be saturated. If you use the trails at all, especially for mountain biking, it’s going to screw them up.”

The most serious consequence of the huge snowpack in the Wasatch Mountains may be lurking well below the summits, especially if the weather changes rapidly to the typically hot northern Utah temperatures of late June and July.

“Once it starts going, the inertia of melting snowpack goes pretty fast,” McInerney said.

The speed of the melt has state officials concerned about flooding. Some rivers have already breached their banks and inundated homes and hundreds of acres of farmland. And though snow-riders are still loving the snow, it remains a threat, a vast rush of water just waiting to pour down on the valleys below.


Fun Race!


20th Annual PEDALFEST

A Park City Tradition

USA Cycling Sanctioned Event

Utah State Championship!

National Championship Qualifying Event!!

Sponsored by: Cole Sport, Jans Mountain Outfitters
and White Pine Touring
  • Get your USAC License on-line at USACycling.org or through our on-line registration. 1-Day licenses are available for Cat 2 & 3 racers for $5. To qualify for the National Championships you must purchase an annual license. Our open and combined categories are considered Cat. 2. Results sent to USAC will be broken into USAC categories for national ranking.
  • Need answers? Email ICupRacing@yahoo.com.
  • National Championship Course
  • Race the amazing professionally designed trails


 Saturday, June 11
 7 – 9 a.m.  Registration at Snowpark Lodge
 8 a.m.  9 & Under and 10-12 Race
 8:45 a.m.  Racer meeting and staging for all racers.
 9 a.m.  Start of race for all categories


 Adult :  $34
 12 & under:  $23
 Pro:  $43


Day-of Registration

 Adult: $39
 12 and under: $28
 Pro: $48

On-line Registration open until 6 p.m. on June 7.


The wide service road climb provides ample space for passing and sorting things out before hitting the wild snaky single-track downhill through the dense woods and spinning gullies. The course may be changed due to weather conditions or construction. Check www.IntermountainCup.com for up to date information.


Snow report!! May 20th!! Really!!!???

Snowbird Ski and Summer ResortUpdated:
05/20/11, 05:56 AM
New Snow last 24 hours: 11″New Snow last 48 hours: 11″

Base: 181″

Runs Open: 0/85Lifts Open: 0/13

Parks Open: 0/1

Comments: Snowbird will re-open for Friday, Saturday and Sunday’s through May 30th. Tentative closing date: May 30th (Memorial Day Weekend)

Comments Off on Get ready for mountain biking season!!

Get ready for mountain biking season!!

It is officially mud season, especially in the higher elevations above Deer Valley resort but soon enough (after we build the ark, get all the animals sorted and the flood waters recede) it will be another hot, brown and dry Utah summer.

In anticipation of that dusty day, Deer Valley has announced that it’s expanding its trail system and adding more lift service to it’s popular (all the fun, none of the climb) lift-served Mountain Biking system).

Aside from running both the Silver Lake Express (from the Resort base) and Sterling Express chairlifts (from mid-mountain) DV will also run the Ruby Express chairlift from the Empire Canyon Lodge area and start and (we hope complete) work on a new connecting trail that will link up Bald Mountain to the Flagstaff area, which will also have new trails.

So there it is. Try and stay dry until then.

Lodging Special!!!  Mention you found this special on the blog and save big time!!  Book any available room between now and October 31st, 2011 for $99/night!!  You must mention this special!!

Comments Off on 711″ of Snow this season!! Snowbird is still open!

711″ of Snow this season!! Snowbird is still open!

I want to personally thank each of you for an amazing season of ski and shred in Utah. But wait!..There is more, Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort is open for skiing through Memorial day or possibly later. Resist societal pressure to put away your boards for the year.

Old Town Guest House is offering a “Hardcore Skier Special”  Book any available room for $89/night!!  Good through the month of May 2011.  Get out here and ski in the morning and sit out on the back deck in the sun in the afternoon!  Life is good!