There is no denying that it has been somewhat of a dry start to winter. After a teaser storm in the beginning of November when Mother Nature graced us with several inches of snow, early season ski conditions in Park City have been a dream come true for fair-weather skiers—we’re talking a whole lot of bluebird days. While we’ll pretty much ski in any and all conditions, we have to admit that three weeks of sunny days spent ripping groomers and getting our ski legs back has been pretty nice. But it’s also safe to say that we are pretty stoked about the storm that rolled in this past weekend, and we are looking forward to a more active pattern in the weeks to come. Fingers crossed!
With the recent resurgence of storm days, conditions at the resorts are rapidly evolving. If you’re planning on traveling to Park City for the holidays, or are a local sticking around and are wondering what the conditions are like at the resorts, then you’ve come to the right place. We’ve been skiing whatever white stuff we can find and are here to give you the 411.
Park City Mountain
As of Monday, December 14th, Park City Mountain Resort has 18 out of 44 lifts open with 25 out of 348 trails open. The resort has received 51 inches of snow leading to a base of 20 inches. Although there has recently been a lack of natural snowfall, Park City Mountain has been hard at work making snow to get more and more terrain open each week. Over the weekend, nine inches of fresh snow fell, allowing Park City to open up even more lifts and giving the runs a much needed refresh.
We still need a few more storms before we’re skiing Jupiter, Peak 5, or 9990, but there are plenty of runs open to keep you busy. Since the majority of the higher lifts are still closed, now is the perfect time to take advantage of runs on the lower mountain that are often overlooked. One of our favorite early season go-tos is a Crescent to Silverlode lap. Start by taking Crescent lift up, ski down Claimjumper to Silverlode lift, take Silverlode up, and then rip Home Run to Muckers to Home Run again and finish it off with good ole Treasure Hollow. Once you’re back at the base, rinse and repeat. If you find yourself on the Canyons side of the resort, Kokopelli off of Saddleback Express is a really fun cruiser, as is Transitions off of Sun Peak Express.
Deer Valley Resort
As of Monday, December 14th, Deer Valley Resort has 17 out of 21 lifts open with 28 out of 103 runs open and a base depth of 26 inches. With plenty of lifts open, it is easy to spread out across the mountain and enjoy all of the different vistas the resort has to offer. Deer Valley is known for its impeccable grooming and the early season is no exception. Some of Deer Valley’s classic runs are open and ready for you to carve down. The iconic Bald Mountain is skiing great as per usual. Ride Sterling or Wasatch Express to the top and then take your pick between Nabob or Birdseye for a long groomer all the way down to Silver Lake Lodge. When you’ve had enough fun for one day and are headed down to the resort base, don’t forget to hit Big Stick.
Tips for Planning
The best way to stay up to date on current conditions is to check out the lift and terrain status page on both the Deer Valley Resort and Park City Mountain websites. If social media is more your style, follow both resorts on Instagram to see regular updates on lift and terrain openings. With the limited snowfall Park City has had this year, early season conditions still exist. However, all of the trails that have opened up at both Park City Mountain and Deer Valley Resort are well covered, and the resorts are working hard to open as much terrain as they can in the safest manner possible.
With the current state of the snowpack, chances are most of your time will be spent skiing hardpack, and the worst feeling in the world is not being able to hold an edge through your turns. To get the most enjoyment out of the open terrain, get your skis tuned at our Rennstall World Class Tuning Center. We have five different drop-off locations throughout Park City and overnight service so you don’t have to miss a single day on the mountain.
As with most things in 2020, skiing looks a little bit different this year. Face coverings are mandatory, lodge occupancy is limited, and reservations are required at Park City Mountain. For a comprehensive guide on COVID-19 protocols at the resorts in Park City and the surrounding area, check out our recent blog post.
Now, stop reading and go skiing!
By: Erin McNeely, Content Writer