So many mountains, so litte time; We know it might be hard to choose where to go when you only have a few precious free days in the season. The Active Times staff would like to help you make the best of your time in the snow. In addition to our gear reviews, ranked lists and interviews with the experts, we’ve started this section to gather the most important information you’ll want to know before booking a trip or heading out for a day on the slopes. Each week we will feature a new mountain, complete with statistics, snow conditions and plans for 2014. So, when you’re thinking about your next big trip or you’re going last minute, check out the details on the top mountains here.
Location: Little Cottonwood Canyon, Utah
Chairlift pitch: “Spectacular scenery. When you are at Snowbird, you are surrounded by towering granite peaks, and magnificent views,” said Emily Moench, a Snowbird representative. “Snowbird is also home to the iconic Aerial Tram, and North America’s only ski tunnel. Located just 40 minutes from Salt Lake International Airport, we are North America’s most accessible ski destination. Snowbird also consistently wins awards and recognition for terrain variety and snow quality – our powder skiing is the best in the world.”
True-up Vertical Descent: 3,243 feet, according to mountainvertical.com
Ski-able area: 2,500 acres
Ratios of difficulty (trail classification): 27 percent beginner, 38 percent intermediate and 35 percent advanced/expert
Number of trails: 85
Longest run: Chip’s Run at 2.5 miles
Number of lifts: 11
Hours of operation: Hours vary by lift
Avg. annual snowfall: 500 inches, according to snowbird.com
Avg. Adult lift ticket price on their website: $92/day
Deals and discounts: Snowbird sells discounted lift tickets through Costco and local ski shops. When shopping online, check liftopia.com.
Renovations: Snowbird is constructing a new building atop Hidden Peak. The building will hold dining areas, a place for special events, a coffee shop, storefront, ski patrol headquarters and restrooms. Sitting at 11,000 feet the views of the Wasatch Mountains will be uninterrupted and unrivaled.
Recommendations: With 15 restaurants and five different bars, the choices at Snowbird can be overwhelming, which is why we sought advice from a Snowbird representative. “The Aerie is amazing—offers the only sushi in Little Cottonwood Canyon, alongside modern American gastropub fare,” said Emily. For the best bar, The Tram Club is the place to go: $5 shot and beer combo year-round.
Note: Unless otherwise stated, the information above was found at the mountain’s website or provided by a mountain representative.