Too many places to go, too little time: there seem to be endless incredible ski destinations out there in the world, so how to choose the next one for your holiday?
We’ll let you in on a little secret: we’re currently obsessed with Utah. The snow, the variety of resorts, the ease of access, the ultimate après ski adventures, the under the radar, the glitz and glamour and all at the right price point.
Here are our six ultimate reasons why we’re heading to this particular US state next season.
1. The ‘Greatest Snow On Earth’. Really.
We know it’s a big call, but Utah is scientifically proven to have the Greatest Snow on Earth® – it’s even their registered trademark. And it’s all thanks to getting over 13 metres of light, dry, fluffy, blower powder every year.
The bad news is that you probably won’t be able to make a snowman or a snowball due to there being so little moisture in the snow. The good news is that you’ll be busy in the white room skiing and boarding some of the best powder in your life, which seems like a pretty decent trade-off to us.
2. A lot of resorts to choose from
Try 15 world-class ski resorts in the state, 10 of which are less than an hour from Salt Lake City. And when we say world-class, we mean it.
Skiers-only Deer Valley is consistently ranked Number #1 Ski Resort in the United States. Park City Mountain has 7300 acres of terrain to explore, Snowbird stays open the longest (it’s still open now), Powder Mountain has in-resort cat skiing, Brian Head is in the red desert. The list goes on.
Can’t choose a favourite? We don’t blame you. But for those who love a rocking ski town vibe, then be sure to stay in the former silver mining town of Park City, which is just 35 minutes from Salt Lake City and offers up – among other things – the Utah Olympic Park for bobsled, ropes courses, ziplines and 140 dining establishments to work your way through.
3. The ski pass
Four words for you: Ski City Super Pass. This baby gets you access to four resorts on the one pass – Alta, Snowbird, Brighton and Solitude. Customise it for any length of trip between three and 10 days and get discounts at the rental shop, along with free transportation on UTA ski buses and TRAX light rail. Combining all four resorts, it’s a total of 427 runs to explore, spread across 33 lifts so it might just keep you busy for awhile.
The EPIC pass is another epic option (the name doesn’t lie) for Aussies spending time at Perisher, Hotham or Falls Creek this season. Purchase one and you’ll have season-long, unlimited riding in Park City with no restricted dates, along with seven days at Snowbasin.
Ikon Pass holders have 7 day benefits at Thredbo and Mt Buller in Australia then 7 day benefits at Deer Valley, Snowbird, Alta and unlimited at Solitude, while the Mountain Collective gives pass holders time at Thredbo, Snowbird and Alta.
4. Super easy access
The best way to get to Utah is to fly from Sydney to Salt Lake City, with a quick stopover through LAX. Delta’s hub is Salt Lake City and the airline is currently selling flights from just $1204 per person including tax – subject to availability and conditions apply. Enquire with the Travelplan team here. Sale ends June 20.
By flying with Delta, you get two 23kg bags included with your airfare and all the creature comforts onboard; plus you can download their handy app to track your bags, and even utilise the parking reminder function that lets you upload a photo of exactly where you parked the car so you remember how to find it after each longhaul journey.
5. The food, glorious food
The word ‘vibrant’ is often thrown into the mix when talking about the culinary scene in Salt Lake City, and with good reason. 180 bars, 2000 restaurants, and 10 breweries and distilleries do not make for a dull time. There’s even Campos Coffee from Australia.
Those staying in Park City will love the world’s only ski-in whiskey distillery – High West, where you can ski in for a drink and lunch before heading back out on the slopes (or, you know, sticking around for the rest of the day).
6. The deals, deals, deals
However you like to bed down, there’s something for you from high end luxe to boutique chic, self contained condos, ski in hotels and downtown lodges.
Try seven nights in a king room at the Park City Peaks hotel from just AUD$2395 per person twin share, including a six day EPIC pass.
Or seven nights in a two-bedroom apartment at the best location – The Lowell Condominiums from AUD$3505 per person quad share including the six-day EPIC Pass.
It’s all possible with the team at Travelplan, who work with suppliers to ensure you’re getting the lowest possible price for everything from accommodation to rentals.