Snowbasin: More than just a Ski Resort

Since the past 75 years, Snowbasin Ski Resort has been a major source of joy among the skiing communities. Located in the Weber Country, Utah this resort is about 33 miles or 53 kilometers in the northeastern direction of Salt Lake City. It is situated almost on the back side of the Wasatch Range and receives the freshest of the Greatest Snow on Earth.

Snowbasin Ski Resort, an otherwise lesser known destination came into limelight during the 2002 Winter Olympics games. Now, today, this no ski enthusiasts who haven’t or doesn’t dream of skiing in the fresh powders at Snowbasin. The most famous of the features at the ski area include – the Grizzly and Wildflower Downhill courses which were raised to fame because of the 2002 games; there are also the alpine bowls, and steep chutes along with the perfectly groomed cruises, deep glades and challenging racing courses.

Snowbasin Statistics

Base Elevation: 6400 feet

Summit Elevation: 9350 feet

Vertical Drop: 2950 feet

On the 3000 acres of skiable acres, you will find immense scope to not only show off your skills but you will also find enough opportunities to perfect your skills. The resort avidly boasts of some of the most challenging downhill race courses in the region.

A certain Earl Holding is credited for developing Snowbasin into one of the most popular skiing areas in the country. He had previously built the Sun Valley in Idaho and helped it attain the status of being considered as a legend among the North American resorts. The Snowbasin ski area’s magnificence and well-crafted terrain along with the God-given powder make it a world class facility. Furthermore, the resort is equipped with beyond impressive lodges, world class Lifts and an amazing vertical rise. In addition to these features, there are chairlifts, trams, facilities to indulge into snow sports, sumptuous food items native to Americas and high-speed gondolas.

You can whisk your way through the snow while exploring the varied terrains and pure natural beauty. There are enough number of choices made available to suit your taste and fashion along with plentiful scopes which will test your endurance. Imagine, you are enjoying the simple yet breathtaking view of the area and are enjoying a delicious meal on the mountain itself. Where else could it be possible if not at the Snowbasin resort? When you are met with the challenging yet meticulously groomed slopes, a cold sweat passes through your spine and you somehow find the courage to move further and further again you move while having the greatest time of your lives. There is nothing that ever could come close to having so much fun. Additionally, there are stores wherein you can shop all the necessary items along with renting ski equipment’s and also repairs.

The Snowbasin Ski Resort features one of the largest computer controlled snowmaking systems which can give nature itself a run for its money. Furthermore, the army of snow groomers moves in battalions and showcases their excellent craftsmanship. They will leave no stone unturned when it comes to delivering customer satisfaction. Each day is nothing less than Christmas at Snowbasin.

As the snow begins to melt away, mountain enthusiasts begin to flock towards the region in search of raw adventure. The region will provide you with ample opportunities and its 25-mile long biking scene is none like any other. Along with the hiking trails and additional 25 mile, long trails in the forest make it a summer haven.

The resort is located just about 40 minutes’ worth of a drive away from Salt Lake City. Moreover, reaching Snowbasin is rather easy, you will just have to Thake the I-15, State Route 89 and then the I-84 which goes into the eastern direction of the Green exit. Then you go on and head in the northern direction by taking the SR 167 and finally reach the Snowbasin road. Now, if you are travelling from downtown Ogden, then travel eastwards and Snowbasin will just be 17 minutes away. It can also be easily reached from the Park City area as well.

History of Snowbasin

Snowbasin is considered as the oldest ski area which has been continuously in operation in the United States. The resort has seen everything that the 20th century had to offer, from World War I to the Great Depression.

Back in the day, the region was an utter mess. Its watershed was rapidly deteriorating and to top it all, overgrazing had nearly destroyed the soil. So, in 1938 this piece of land was taken over by the Forest Services department and a certain Alf Engen came forth and committed towards the redevelopment of the region.

Just about a year later, a ski tow was constructed and the all new Snow Basin Ski Park came into existence. The first of the many access roads was built by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the year 1940. As a result of which general public could now easily access the resort. Eventually, the resort grew and prospered, and reached its current potentials.

In the year 1996, the United States Congress passed a rather landmark bill which has since then considerably affected the skiing industries of the country and the Snowbasin resort particularly. Now, because the Snowbasin resort was chosen to be one of the venues for the Olympics, it was best suited by the Congress to pass a certain bill which came to be known as the Snowbasin Land Exchange Act, 1996. This bill thereon became a part of the Omnibus Land Bill. What this act did was that it allowed the transference of the 1,377 acres or 557 hectares of land which earlier was a part of the National Forest System, to the private ownership of Snowbasin.

During the 2002 Winter Olympics Snowbasin thus was able to host events such as the –  downhill, combined (downhill and slalom), and super-G. More than 99 % of the tickets were sold and approximately over 22,500 people were present during each of the events.

A few facts and figures

  • Elevation: The summit is located at a height of 9,350 feet while the base is at a height of 6,400 feet above sea level. It has a vertical drop of almost 2,950 feet.
  • Lifts: There is a total of 12 lifts on the resort.
  • Terrain: The terrain spans over 3000 acres and comprises of 104 runs and 4 parks. The longest run at the resort measures about 3 miles in length. Furthermore, the runs can be divided into the following categories:
  • Beginners: 11 %
  • Intermediate: 43 %
  • Advanced: 24 %
  • Expert: 22 %
  • Snowmaking: Roughly 625 acres of land is covered with artificial snow.
  • The much more famous skiing resort in Park City and Cottonwood Canyon many times overshadows the grandiose of the Snowbasin resort. However, this does not deter the folks at the Snowbasin ski resort and they continue to swing along their own music.

When the weather permits at the Snowbasin ski resort you can enjoy outdoor barbeques. The region is well equipped to handle any kind of situation. It has adequate onboard medical facilities and for the rest, you can always travel to Ogden which is just 8 miles away. Additionally, the region is constantly monitored by the Pro Ski Patrols. You will also find ample opportunities to go freestyling, race and children, on the other hand, have their very own specially designed programs through which they too like their counterpart adults can enjoy and learn to ski.

The lifts at the resort can be listed as below:

Chairlifts: There is a total of 9 chairlifts in total. They include the following:

Person Tram: They are made by Doppelmayr and were installed in the year 1998 and can handle 15 people.

Allen Tram

Gondolas: There are two of them in total. Gondolas are high speed detachable and provide with an 8-person cabin configuration. These machines have been made by the famous Doppelmayr and were installed in the year 1998. They can be found under the following names:

Strawberry Express

Needles Express

Quad chairs: There are two quad chairs in total and they too are of high-speed detachable capacities and have been made by Doppelmayr. They are named as:

John Paul Express

Little Cat Express

Fixed Grip Triple chairs: There are total of 4 of them and are named as follows:

Wildcat (the 1973 Thiokol Model), it was first Installed in 1973 and then reintroduced by replacing the classic Wildcat Single.

Middle Bowl, it was first installed in the year 1979 (CTEC Model) and then later upgraded when the new and improved model was purchased from Doppelmayr which had a brand new terminal roof.

Becker, it was first introduced in the year 1985 and was purchased from Albertson-Stadeli.

Porcupine, it is also otherwise known the Porky and was first introduced in the year 1985 when it was purchased from Albertsson-Stadeli.

Surface lifts: They number 3 in total and they are as follows:

Magic carpets – 2 in number, and

Hand rope surface tow which is otherwise known as the tubing hill.

Planned Lifts:

Wildcat Express: It is a high-speed quad which when introduced was meant to replace the old and existing Wildcat Triple.

Additional Lifts: They can be found in the Strawberry Bowl area. All of them are of high-speed quad capacities and allow for greater degrees of access into and out of the Strawberry Bowl. These machines are particularly helpful when high winds are prevalent in the area.

Operating hours of:

The Gondola: It begins at 9:00 a.m. and ends at 4:00 p.m. daily (some lifts close at 3:30 p.m. daily, so make sure that you figure out which ones they are and in any case make your way back to base a little early).

Grizzly Center Retail and Rentals: These stores open at 8:00 a.m. in the morning and close by 5:00 p.m. in the evening.

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