December 22, 2020 (Salt Lake City) — Every winter, Salt Lake transforms itself into Ski City, Utah’s urban gateway to The Greatest Snow on Earth®. From vibrant downtown Ski City, it’s just a 40-minute drive to Alta, Brighton, Snowbird and Solitude, four of North America’s greatest mountain resorts, each one averaging 500” of Utah’s famous powder each winter. Ski City is one of the most unique and extraordinary ski destinations in the world, an urban basecamp for skiers and riders who come to enjoy the winter playground of the Wasatch Mountains.
There’s lodging that’s affordable and family-friendly for all budgets, thanks to the 20,000+ rooms throughout the Salt Lake valley and its resorts. While après ski and dining have new restrictions this year, there are plenty of cafes, brewpubs, bars and dining options open to satiate all tastes. Not surprisingly, the pandemic has brought a host of new rules and considerations this year. Go to Visit Salt Lake for COVID-19 restrictions and updates.
SKI CITY SUPER PASS
Skiers and snowboarders in search of a great deal can purchase a Ski City Super Pass, one of the industry’s most flexible and value-laden passes, good at all four Ski City resorts. One- and 2-day Super Passes are available as part of hotel packages, while Super Passes sold online in increments of three to 10 days (and valid over a 14-day period)—with no blackout dates—offer substantial discounts from individual day pass rates.
The direct-to-lift Super Pass also lets skiers and riders bypass the ticket window, and includes free transportation to and from the resorts via UTA ski buses and TRAX light rail, making renting a car an option rather than a requirement. It also offers equipment rental discounts at participating rental locations.
Remember that all four Ski City resorts are also members of the Ikon Pass (which requires pass holders wanting to ski or ride Brighton to make advance reservations this season).
2020-21 RESORT NEWS/UPDATES
Alta Ski Area
Alta Ski Area has a number of Covid-19 policies that includes new regulations for parking at the resort. All Alta skiers, even those with a pre-purchased lift ticket, will be subject to parking availability. To help manage that, the resort has introduced a new parking forecast tool on its website to help. As for on-mountain dining, Alf’s Restaurant and Watson Cafe will have 50% indoor capacity, with skiers asked to limit their time to 30 minutes inside these restaurants. Collin’s Grill is closed for the season. Alta is also encouraging grab-and-go food options, available at Baldy Brews, Alta Java and the two food trucks located in each base parking lot. One new on-mountain activity is Birding on Skis, led by Tracy Aviary’s expert birders. These sessions run from 9 am-Noon on the second Friday of each month starting in December. They’re free but require registration in advance.
Brighton Resort has addressed Covid-19 concerns and implemented some new policies for the 2020-2021 season. Life tickets can be purchased online and then picked up at a new electronic kiosk at the resort, contact-free. All lift tickets must be purchased in advance either through the resort’s website or through participating retail partners. For winter dining, Molly Greens now serves food in the downstairs area of the A-frame, and it will be open to families. Upstairs will continue to be a 21+, full-service bar and grill, with extra space between tables, and payment by credit card is required. Guests can order grab-and-go food from other Brighton eateries through the resort’s website and eat at provided slope side seating. Limited indoor dining is still available, and tables will be spread apart to maintain social distancing. Outdoor dining has been expanded to include more patio space. The brown bag area below Molly Greens has been removed and those who bring their own lunch are encouraged to eat in their car.
Snowbird has implemented Operation Stay Safe to address Covid-19 concerns, a program that includes a parking reservation system allowing Snowbird to safely manage the number of skiers and riders at the mountain on any given day. It also enables guests to lock in a guaranteed parking spot. Snowbird has expanded grab-and-go food offerings across the resort, added an additional 15,000-square feet of indoor space, and extended maze designs for lateral spacing. Snowbird also launched a brand-new app that features live chairlift status and wait times, mountain conditions and webcams, as well as the ability to track your day on the mountain and find friends. Those who opt for push notifications will quickly learn of lift status changes and road closures. The app is available for download on both iOS and Android phones. What hasn’t changed this winter is that Snowbird still offers Utah’s longest ski and snowboard season.
Solitude Mountain Resort
Solitude Mountain Resort is not requiring advance reservations for skiing or boarding this winter, but day tickets must be purchased in advance for a specific date, but same-day lift tickets will not be available on-site. Those redeeming Ski City Super Pass vouchers can do so at ticket windows while those already with Super Pass cards can go directly to the lifts. However, reservations for rentals are required this season. The resort will use historic entrance data to set specific daily caps for potentially crowded days. The resort has added grab-and-go food options, additional outdoor seating and heaters to some restaurants, and spread out the seating for indoor dining restaurants. Touchless faucets, as well as touchless soap and paper towel dispensers, have been installed, as have additional hand sanitizer stations inside the resort.
For more information, visit the Ski City website with much more information about what makes this urban center the ideal basecamp for skiers and snowboarders.Ski City is the winter brand of Visit Salt Lake, a private, non-profit corporation responsible for the promotion of Salt Lake as a vibrant, urban destination brimming with unexpected dining, lodging, nightlife, entertainment options and world-class skiing and snowboarding, a destination well suited for leisure travel and conventions alike. In partnership with Salt Lake County, Visit Salt Lake’s mission is to improve the area economy by attracting and providing support to conventions, leisure travelers and visitors while being a leader in environmental responsibility. For more information on all that Ski City and Salt Lake has to offer, respectively, go to Ski City and Visit Salt Lake.