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WESTERN SKI RESORTS
S
 
Terrain
Challenge
Bumps
Value
Elbow Room
Lift Lines
True Vertical
Grooming
OVERALL
Last Visit
UTAH
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alta
 10
10
9 
10 
8 
5 
8 
4 
10 
'99 
Brighton
 7
8 
7 
9 
9 
9 
8 
8 
8 
'99 
Deer Valley
  6 
7 
5 
3 
8 
7 
7 
10 
6 
'97 
Park City
 7
7 
6 
3 
8 
7 
8 
9 
6 
'97 
Snowbasin
  8 
8 
7 
9 
10 
10 
9 
7 
8 
'99 
Snowbird
 10
10 
9 
8 
8 
6 
10 
6 
10 
'99 
Solitude
 8
8 
7 
9 
10 
10 
7 
8 
9 
'99 
Wolf(Canyons)
 6
7 
7 
5 
8 
6 
7 
7 
6 
'97 
COLORADO
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
A-Basin
 8
9 
9 
9 
8 
8 
7 
3 
9 
'98 
Breckenridge
 8
8 
8 
6 
9 
8 
8 
8 
7 
'98 
Copper
7 
8 
7 
7 
9 
9 
8 
7 
8 
'98 
Keystone
7 
7 
6 
5 
7 
8 
9 
8 
6 
'98 
Vail
9 
6 
6 
2 
9 
7 
9 
9 
6 
'98 
 
More Information on the Above Resorts

UTAH:

Alta: Incredible snow, incredible terrain, incredible lift prices.  All the hype about Alta, it's true.  And of course Alf's High Rustler is on the top 100 things to do before you die (from People magazine I think).

Brighton: Caters more to snowboarders with all the grooming, but an excellent resort nevertheless.  I especially like Millicent area, no crowds and the steepest trails at Brighton.

Deer Valley: If marble bathrooms, cushy chairs, close to $60 lift tickets, and trails that are groomed with a fine toothed comb are your thing, then this is your place.  Not many steep or bump runs here.

Park City: Jupiter Bowl makes this place worthwhile, although still expensive for what they offer.

Snowbasin: Wide open terrain, lots of high-speed stuff, low lift ticket prices, and yet no crowds.  Get to this place before the Olympics, it's definitely worth it.

Snowbird: See Alta.  With the addition of the Gadzoom high-speed quad, you don't really need to buy the tram ticket anymore, but you will need a little hiking for trails like Great Scott.  But for the choice to ski one of the best resorts in the world for only $33, I'll traverse a little for Silver Fox. :)

Solitude: Honeycomb Canyon.  It's reason enough to ski here.  Wide-open bowl with fresh snow days after a storm.  And as the name states, crowds are sparse here.

Wolf (formally Park West, now The Canyons):  Been here when it was Park West and Wolf, but never the expanded Canyons.  Have heard some good things about peak 9090, but I can only comment on Wolf.  Wolf wasn't worth it.  Will ASC make Canyons worth the price??  Who knows.

COLORADO:

Arapahoe Basin: Favorite resort in Colorado.  While small (only 500 acres), what it lacks in size it makes up for in steep, challenging terrain.  The runs coming off the East Wall and Pali are some of the best I've skied.  Plus a great, relaxed attitude is always a plus.  If you want slopeside lodging, this isn't the place for you. :)

Breckenridge: Huge area, but the set-up isn't that great.  Hard to explain, but it seems as if the lifts are in the wrong places on the mountains.  Some very steep trails like Devils Crotch make Breck a nice resort, but fairly expensive.

Copper: Some great tree skiing and nice bowls.  Also several steep drops such as Drain Pipe.

Keystone: Reminds me too much like east coast skiing.  Not a single bowl or wide-open skiing.  Not too much steep stuff either.  I would keep driving up the mountain until you hit A-Basin.

Vail: This is where I become unpopular. :) For all the hype, Vail didn't impress me at all.  Sure, it's enormous, but back to the old theory "size doesn't matter".  While Vail has a great lift system and grooming, boy do you pay for it.  Plus, it was way too hard to find any steep bump runs, Vail consists of mostly groomed blues.  While some people live and die by Vail, I think I'll stick to my Alta's and A-Basin's.