Southern Utah in late feb
I'm new here and registered to see if some locals could have some useful tips for me. I'm brazilian and will be heading to utah last week of Feb. I want to go skiing/snowboarding, but the prices of the lodging and mountain near salt lake city were a bit to steep for me, so I was looking at beaver mountain up north or brian head south.
Since I'll probably go to Vegas, Brian head would be ideally located. But I am worried about snow conditions at this time. My questions:
1 - Does it still snow at this time on Brian Head, or will I probably get artificial snow?
2 - Would I be better off north of salt lake city, would it increase my chances of getting good snow?
3 - I plan to spend a week in a mountain, how many days will I be able to ski with my gf - able as in having physical conditions? :) (I did it once and I know you are all sore the next day... I'm imagining two days in a row would call for a day off)
4 - Any tips on other spots I could go skiing? I was looking for lodging at around $100/night on the mountain if possible, only place I found closest to that was Brian Head.
To be considered: Snow is awesome in itself for us who never see it, so if I could go to a place a bit more expensive or off mountain who had greater chance of having snow or better snow, I would most definitely consider it!
I called a few places, but I always get "Yes, we will have snow", so I figured I might get something more transparent from folks who know the region! All advice will be greatly appreaciated, I'm very unsure on what place to book at!
Brian Head has the highest elevation in Utah I believe. (maybe the area). I grew up in Vegas and went up to Brian Head regularly. February will still have snow absolutely. Feb/March are typically when the most snow drops. There is another place about 2 hrs north of Brian Head that's relatively new called Eagle Point. It's only been open like 5 years? So I have no idea if it's good or not. Brian Head is alot of fun, but it's not a big mountain. Vegas itself also gets snow at Mt. Charleston, which is about 45 mins outside the city. It also has a ski resort (tiny as fuck, like 3 lifts and 10 runs) but if all you want to do is play in the snow it's a fun area. I can't guarntee snow there though, because it is at a lower elevation.
Also, Salt Lake City will be WAY better in terms of variety. But Brian Head will have snow, it'll actually have snow till early April.
If you want great snowboarding and skiing - come to Salt Lake City.
You have 11 resorts within a short 45 minutes drive.
Four of the resorts near salt lake city:
All average 500" of snowfall per season
Brian Head averages about 350" per season
Then near Salt Lake City you also have Park City which has three more resorts:
Park City Mountain Resort
Deer Valley (Ski Only)
Park City averages 350" of snow per season as well. Park City is known for it's Ski Town with tons of restaurants, main street, bars and very nice other amenities right at the bottom of the mountain.
As you can see you're more likely to see snow near Salt Lake City in northern utah.
All will have mainly real snow. I have never been to brian head but it's a lot different. SLC has big jagged steep mountains shooting way up into the sky. Brian Head is in the middle of the desert, with red rocks and more mellow terrain - typical desert mountain area.
Anywhere in Utah get's a lot of snow compared to most places. February/March is when Utah gets the most snow.
Ski resorts near SLC will have so much diversity, you can find everything and anything you want there. Brian Head is kind of in the middle of nowhere.
Here is a map of the area with ski resorts: http://i.imgur.com/Tnx8w.jpg and http://i.imgur.com/f0JNM.jpg
Here is a weather site so you know what to expect closer to your trip: www.Wasatch Snow Forecast.com
Here is a great site for Ski info in Utah: www.SkiUtah.com
Let me know if you have any more questions.
NoOtherOptions and WasatchMan,
Thank you so very much for the answers!! It's great to hear you normally get most of the snow on Feb/March... I was thinking it would begin to melt from then on.
I looked at the SLC area, but found prices were a bit too high for lodging on the mountain, I was looking for something more like "Get out the door and walk to a closeby lift not having to drive my car". I would have to stay at driving distance to the resorts to get the rates I was looking for.
Also, since I'm a beginner, I get the feeling any of these resorts will be enough for a week of fun... I'm looking for a week of chilling at a lowball place and skiing when I feel like it. It seems to me Brian Head may be better to find not so crowded places since its farther than most resorts and cities, while the resorts in the SLC area might get all the fuzz from people driving in and out for a day of skiing, am I correct to assume that?
On the other hand, we do like to spend some cash on a nice dinner and wine at times, so that tips me a bit in favor of SLC. I'm afraid we'll be camping at BrianHead in terms of food and restaurants =D Any thoughts on the area?
If you have any particular suggestion of lodging you've already used, that would be great too!
ah, last question for now: should I get lift passes in advance or is it better to get them on the spot in case of discounts?
There's only like 3 places to eat in brian head. A mexican place, that's actually not bad. And two of the lodges have places to eat. Both lodges are actually really nice, Brian Head Lodge and I can't remember the other. The foods good at both. There's also a great pizza place there in case you want to have a casual dinner out or a romantic dinner in. But yes, the food is limited. Brian Head is like a 3-4 day stay place, not a week.
I honestly don't know anything about where to stay...sorry.
The only place I know is the Brighton Lodge, right at the bottom of Brighton Resort in Big Cottonwood Canyon, 40 minutes from downtown SLC. Brighton is a smaller resort, without a lot of amenities. It's a local spot at the top of the canyon in the middle of the Wasatch, so it gets huge snowfalls, it's great for hardcore riders who only care about parking their truck and riding. You don't go there to eat or anything - although they do have three places at the bottom of the lifts to eat, one is a bar. The brighton lodge though is more like a dorm room, very small rooms, bathroom, kitchen, tv room are all outside in community rooms in the hall. It's like $80 bucks a night I think, two second walk from the lifts. I've only seen one room, i don't know if they have bigger rooms which I think they might (with bathroom, tv in room etc.)
I don't know a lot about lift tickets, i usually just buy a season pass. You'd have to check package deals from resort sites or skiutah.com or check utah avalache center for discount single day tickets or local ski shops like canyonsports ,salty peaks etc.
edit: are you coming by yourself JUST to ride or are you coming with family?
WasatchMan, I'm going with my girlfriend, our plan is to ride most of the time.
However I imagine we wouldn't be able to do it every day because I know snowboard makes you fell like a cargo truck ran over you multiple times, so we might rent a snowmobile on one of the days and maybe go for a hike or do some scenic routes on off days
Nars you make a decision on where you going? Was curious.
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