Key Take-Away: Know Before You Go.

You can reserve for seven days between Dec. 8 and April 4 at Park City.
Credit: Park City

In these uncertain times, one thing is sure: Utah powder. As of this writing (mid-November), several Utah resorts had bases of two feet or more. Here are some updates of what you will see at Utah ski areas this winter. 

In Little Cottonwood Canyon, Alta is limiting the number of parking spaces, on a first-come, first-served basis, no reservations. By contrast, Snowbird requires parking reservations, made online. In both canyons, buses have limited capacity to 20 vs. the usual 60 meaning longer waits at the stops, but UTA, the free, public bus service, plans to run nine buses it had planned to retire.

At Alta if the resort is full, you can ski if you took the bus or are staying there. Only the lodge bars are open and for guests only; check with Snow Pine Lodge. In Big Cottonwood Canyon, Solitude has pay-for-parking, and Brighton is limiting skiers based on parking. At Brighton, IKON pass holders will have to make a reservation.

Snowbasin near Ogden will essentially turn inside out. It has a ticketing yurt for faster pass pick up; rented several executive bathrooms to be placed throughout the resort; built three slopeside “food trucks”—cheese fries and burgers anyone? It has built a trail to ski right to the parking lot vs. riding the shuttle. Bus users will have a baggage check next to the stop. Parents and kids can duck in and out of a yurt village mid-mountain to warm up. You can ride the gondola alone.

Dreamcatcher at The Canyons. Plenty of snow already for the new season.


Park City has developed a reservation system for every day of the season. Starting Nov. 6 you can reserve up to seven days for the core Dec. 8-April 4 season. Up to Dec. 7 the mountain is reserved for Epic pass holders only. All tickets will be sold online. Apres-ski? Head to downtown Park City.

Booting up in the car? Powder Mountain Resort skiers are used to it. The main lodge now has sit-down dining with reservations only. The Powder Keg is closed, but still has take-out for beer and ramen. There will be “pop up specials” at various areas so you can grab food and eat it on the lift.

Keeping employees safe is a huge issue. Brian Head Resort has a team in place to temperature-check employees and do follow-up care. Workers go straight to their stations so they minimize mingling with visitors. They will receive additional training to help them triage guests’ concerns and direct them to the right resource. 

Deer Valley notes it has always limited visitation based on restaurant seats not mountain capacity and will continue to follow those limits, noting that its vast acreage can accommodate many skiers. It will provide a mobile app to let you know where they can feed you immediately and where the lift lines are not. 

The general idea is that ski areas will do everything they can to stay open and may have phased-in closings for indoor spaces. It could be that an area has to close for two weeks, then reopen.

The main message as you’ve heard all along is this: Know before you go.

For updates, click here.


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