Snowbird Skiing at a Glance
Summit Elevation 11,000’
Vertical Drop 3,240’
85 trails, 11 lifts including a Tram
Acres 2,500’ (4,700 with interconnected Alta)
Annual Snowfall 500″
Snowbird Utah is amazing for a challenging ski vacation, with tons of terrain, plenty of vertical, a base to summit Tram, a panoramic mountaintop lodge and the luxury Cliff Lodge and Spa at the ski village base.
Snowbird’s 125-passenger Tram climbs an awesome 2,900’ vertical in just six minutes. From the highly scenic 11,000’ Hidden Peak summit, where you will find a beautiful new 360 Summit Lodge, you can ski the legendary Cirque, drop into the backside bowl of Mineral Basin, or take the meandering 2.5 mile Chip’s Run back to the base. Skiers can also ski over to Alta, these ski resorts interconnect. No snowboarders allowed at Alta though, its a classic skiers’ only mountain since 1938.
Snowbird gets ton of snow, the greatest snow on earth in fact (Utah trademarked it). over 500″ annually of light fluffy “blower pow” as the locals call it. Snowbird’s ski season is long, mid-November to mid-May, even into June.
Snowbird and Alta connect for almost 5,000-acres of alpine ski terrain, from the steep Cirque bowl, and wild chutes, to well-groomed, long, interesting trails in Gad Valley and the front side, to wide open bowls on the back side – Mineral Basin and Mount Baldy – which connects to Alta. Snowbird has os much to ski, even a tunnel connecting the peruvian quad to teh backside – you must glide through the tunnel on skis – its very novel and gleans a little respect into the life of previous miners who worked on these skil hills in search of their treasure. Now its all white gold and diamond dust snow.
The Cliff Lodge is Snowbird’s luxe ski lodging, a 10 story hotel, best described as a glass concrete avalanche proof tower, with magnificent views of the Wasatch Mountain range and the ski slopes. The Cliff Lodge is ultra-convenient, with lockers on ski slope level to store your skis and dry your boots and gloves.
You can walk to the slopes and the Snowbird Center over the Bridge – to the Skiers Plaza, ski shops, the Tram Bar, cafes and a market are clustered in several concrete floors along with the Tram loading area. Dick Bass and the visionaries behind Snowbird didn’t want smatterings of chalets and condos, instead the construction is big, uniform, snowproof, and sturdy. Besides, you come here to ski, not for alpine architecture.
Après ski at Snowbird, The Cliff Lodge top floor Spa offers massage and treatments, a rooftop pool and Jacuzzi – all with a view. Or go to Aerie Restaurant on the Cliff Lodge’s 10th floor for happy hour in the mountains of Utah, drinks, dining and music at 8,500’. 71 is the retro dining option downstairs, a flash back tributing Snowbird’s 1971 debut with comfort food and a relaxed vibe.
Snowbird’s Tram Bar, literally in the Tram base station, is the place for late night dancing, billiards, and sports on the big screen. But remember, first tracks in Utah’s trademark “Greatest Snow on Earth” are rewarded to those in line for first Tram, not last call at the Tram Bar. Yes, the Tram does get a line, especially on big snow mornings – prepare for the locals and their powder panic.
Snowbird is just 29-miles from Salt Lake City, with convenient shuttles from the airport into Little Cottonwood Canyon and The Cliff Lodge – so you can fly and ski the same day. Leave the driving to them, the tight Canyon can be treacherous in snow, and focus on skiing and enjoying the Utah scene. We say Snowbird’s Cliff Lodge and Spa is the best for a luxury ski vacation in Utah. We also recommend all-inclusive ski and stay and dine packages at The Rustler Lodge at Alta and the new modern Snowpine Lodge next door.