While there’s plenty for families to do here while on vacation, the advanced and expert skiers here will have plenty of terrain to carve and shred, both on and off-piste. Knock off work early on a Friday, and you’ll log two full weekend days of backcountry skiing before you need to make the drive home. Sign up for the 57hours newsletter and join our growing community of outdoor adventurers. Brighton has some of the coldest and driest snow in the world, and there’s plenty of it throughout the season. From the Alta trailhead, follow the Cardiff Pass route. Park your car. Ski Utah is dedicated to promoting the ski and snowboard industry in the great state of Utah. Utah native and Rad-Older-Brother archetype Layne Caldwell, who contributed anything useful you’ve read above, offers these observations: “The resorts in Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons already own the prime north-facing ski terrain, but there are many side canyons that still offer great skiing in the Central Wasatch. They also lead to high terrain where experienced backcountry explorers and mountaineers can find long descents equal to any in Utah! Those leaving the ski area boundaries or entering the backcountry from a trailhead need standard avalanche rescue gear, avalanche training and should regularly consult the Utah … 10 talking about this. So whether you’re a newcomer looking to earn you turns in the backcountry, crave some expert-level steep skiing, or want to tackle a multi-day adventure with friends, Utah has it all. Here’s a primer for skiers ready to earn their turns, put some skin(s) in the game, etc. There’s little margin for error out there. If you’re looking for slackcountry access, the Supreme lift will deliver you to the goods. Catherine’s Pass (via Grizzly Gulch) is reachable by skinning or lift and offers fantastic bowl skiing with further access to the trio of Sunset Peak, Mount Tuscarora, and Pioneer Peak – all of which offer chutes, couloirs, bowls and trees of their own. From the bowl, you can ski to the south side and finish the ascent up the to the summit. As the first ski resort in Utah, Brighton has something for everybody: there’s family-friendly trails, lots of night skiing and amazing slackcountry and backcountry terrain. This year at Powder Mountain, Utah, our testers gathered for the 2021 Gear Test Week to review 121 products just before Covid-19 sent us into lockdown. What makes Brighton so special is it is a perfect place for regular resort skiers to get a taste of the backcountry. Regardless, if you’re not too proud to take PCMR’s giant lift, the 9990, explore the southern half of the ridgeline and ski the classic Monitor Bowls or No Name bowl, all of which offer steep and sustained runs. I’ve also skied in the Bear River Range, the Deep Creek Range, and the Uintas.”. Not bad. It’s also a location where the right snow and avalanche conditions are essential for safe travel. You can also skip the resort, too, and find access to Silver Fork Canyon and Honeycomb by parking at the lower Solitude lot and skinning/bootpacking up to Silver Fork for runs like Silver Spoon, Meadow Chutes and Brad’s Line. He’s led over 20 Himalayan expeditions, including thirteen Everest summits, Cho Oyu, Makalu, Manaslu, Ama Dablam, an attempt on the North face of Jannu, and the “The Crystal Snake” first ascent on Nuptse. The region typically gets 500” of snow, and in a good year, conditions can be favorable through late spring. All of these options and more are attainable with skins. Compared to other areas, access here requires a good deal of effort and a big day but the reward of solitude and plethora of five-star terrain is unbeatable. (optional). This area is also accessible via the White Pine Trailhead if you’re not based out of the resort. Utah. Because we just made up the word ‘frontcountry’? Backcountry skiing — aka ski touring, alpine touring, ski mountaineering, randonnée — is on the rise in Utah for its compelling mixture of exercise, adventure, first tracks, freedom and being free (once you’ve … If you see someone ski touring without a backpack, you can check the IDIOT box on your Backcountry Bingo card. See also: Red Baldy (west of Snowbird), Greens Basin (near Solitude), Mill D (south face of Big Cottonwood), Bountiful Peak (via Farmington Canyon), Ben Lomond and Willard Peaks (Ogden), Logan Peak, La Sal Pass (near Moab), Delano Peak (near Beaver). Think of backcountry skiing as analog skiing, tackling the mountain in its natural, uncontrolled state. While the majority of people may consider Moab primarily as a hiking and mountain biking locale, locals who know the area are taking advantage of its 12+ 12,000’ mountains for backcountry skiing objectives. Utah’s backcountry skiing in the Wasatch Mountains outside of Salt Lake City is among the best on the planet – we are famous for the “Greatest Snow on Earth.” We offer Guided Utah Backcountry ski … Within Park City, the Park City Mountain Resort is the largest ski area in the United States which means there’s tons of paths and activities to choose from, whether you’re an adventure seeker, luxury traveler or going on a family vacation. A little inbounds to get out of bounds isn’t a problem. Start skinning from Spruces Trailhead, Expect the same stellar conditions as the rest of Utah. Utah Travel Whisper Ridge is a premier luxury adventure backcountry resort, offering guided heli and cat-skiing, as well as the only heli-MTB provider in the Continental US. As one of the largest backcountry resorts in the world and only 60 minutes from Salt Lake, Whisper Ridge … The skiing is really good here. The Chuting Gallery by Andrew McLean. There’s solid slackcountry access at the resort, and in the resort’s parking lot. Salt Lake City is home to the annual, massive Outdoor Retailer Show. Welcome to Backcountry Snowmobiling View the beautiful backcountry mountains while experiencing the best snowmobiling Park City, Utah has to offer. Take an avalanche safety course and always check local avalanche conditions before you head out. It should be noted that there are plenty of approaches to diverse terrain regardless of hazard conditions. The double-resort pass offers skiers of every level a chance to experience all of the inbounds terrain that the whole area has to offer. Carry food, a shovel, extra warm clothes, a probe and a beacon at a minimum. Backcountry skiing is the opposite of frontcountry skiing. Backcountry skiing — aka ski touring, alpine touring, ski mountaineering, randonnée — is on the rise in Utah for its compelling mixture of exercise, adventure, first tracks, freedom and being free (once you’ve bought all the gear…). It's no surprise backcountry skiing … Utah’s licence plates say “The Greatest Snow On Earth,” and anyone who’s gotten in a few backcountry runs can attest to this. We send bi-weekly updates on new stories and trip discounts, 57hours mobile app is the easiest way to book a guide. Lastly, and most essential is the safety gear…. The groomed trails pass by several meadows, some steep enough for telemarking. Development of this platform was partially funded by EU. SAFETY FIRST Next-door neighbors, they both have their own unique vibes . Subscribe to our newsletter to receive a discount and updates on 57hours offers, webinars, and reviews. The best month to ski in Utah is February. Utah Backcountry Skiing Skiing the Utah Backcountry. Long considered a local’s locale, Solitude is far less crowded than its neighbors and offers plenty of Utah’s famous powder. Not helpful? 200" of snow at Brighton in JANUARY! People who like trail running and mountain biking in the warmer months. Start your ascent. The side-by-side resorts offer connected terrain, (with a new combined pass). It’s not on everybody’s bucket list only because of its name. Mill D North Fork. They’re also huge. Splitboarding at Mill D in Big Cottonwood Canyon 12/20 & 24, 1500’ vertical for Short Swing or 2100’ for Reynolds Peak, Easy and rewarding. Backcountry Skiing Utah 2014. 12 Must Ski Runs in Salt Lake City All profits from the paper map are donated to organizations that promote avalanche safety or the preservation of the Wasatch … Please try again or contact us at email@example.com and we’ll resolve the problem. 5000’ all told) and Sliver Couloir. An excellent starting point is Grizzly Gulch, which only requires a short skin and delivers quickly on skiable pow – great for beginners. Truth is, anyone can do it. Backcountry Skiing Utah is an indispensable resource for planning safe day trips and extended ski tours in the mountains of the Beehive State. You can unsubscribe at any time by clicking the link in our emails. The summit ascent requires a lot of care and preparation (cliffs! Tyson Bradley is a nationally recognized extreme and backcountry skier. The ridgeline is accessible if you want to skip the lines, Moderate amounts of dry Utah snow during the entire season, Ski area boundaries and routes are available here. Some people gravitate toward the resorts since they’re bound to be in the areas with the most snow, though you’ll want to check their policies on walking up the hill. And obviously, check … By the time any of the 40 annual Pacific snowstorms make their way to Utah, they become proverbial ‘perfect storms’ and dump 500” of amazing, blower powder annually around Salt Lake City and the rest of Utah. The resort offers sidecountry access to challenging terrain in Honeycomb Canyon, where skiers can discover chutes and wide-open powderfields in Wolverine Cirque. Read more... WHAT IS BACKCOUNTRY SKIING? When in doubt, hire a guide to show you the best the area has to offer. It typically sees the most amount of snow, with conditions generally staying prime until mid-March. About the Author. Designed for participants with little or no experience in the … Another option for the area is Flagstaff Mountain and Upper Days Fork, which can be tracked out fairly quickly, but is still worth getting up early to hit skiable chutes, bowls and trees. The Utah Nordic Alliance (TUNA) promotes cross-country skiing in the Salt Lake City area, including the popular Mountain Dell ski area and upper stretch of Mill Creek Canyon. Not really the kind of beta you want to hear before embarking on a trip—but we, the ever-optimistic Backcountry Skiing … It’s also a world-famous destination for snowboarders, too, so if you’ve got one in your group (or your family), there’ll be something for everyone. This is a mountain biking and hiking hotspot in the warmer months, so there’s ample snow covered trails to get where you need, Backcountry Ski & Snowboard Routes: Utah by Jared Hargrave, Grab a cup at Moab Coffee Roasters, where they roast their own beans, Get a pint and a burger at the family-friendly Moab Brewery. ... Backcountry Skiing Terrain Parks Gear Store Ski Utah Magazine eNewsletter & Snowmail Compare All Resorts Ski Swaps Real Estate Ski … Utah Backcounty Utah mountains are home to incredible backcountry terrain. So go nuts (cautiously). When you combine the epic Wasatch terrain with 500” of annual snowfall and easy backcountry access, you get the best off-piste ski locations in not just Utah, but the whole country. This accomplishment made with his brother Damian in 2003 won them Climbing magazine’s Golden Piton Award. Backcountry Skiing in Utah and Beyond And just beyond Millicent is the Wolverine Cirque, with insanely steep chutes. The name says it all. Willie has also set speed records in Africa on Mt. If you want to take full advantage of the area and head off-resort, Snowbird and Alta backcountry guides that offer day, weekend and week-long packages for all objectives. Or at least trying to. WHO BACKCOUNTRY SKIS? Touring boots have an unlockable ankle for freer motion when climbing. If you’re just starting, go with someone who knows what they’re doing to learn the ropes. The ski season in Utah usually kicks off mid-November and lasts through April. When looking west from Snowbird it’s hard to miss the mass of peaks, ridges and chutes choking the skyline. WHERE TO BACKCOUNTRY SKI Great … People who love powder enough to climb up a hill for it. And if you feel like springing for it, there’s heli-skiing if you want that hard-to-reach pow. Just off of the Great Western Lift is Hidden Canyon which offers some of the easiest backcountry access you’ll find, and runs lasting for days after a storm. Hiking up hills and finding your own first tracks. As ski resorts are limiting access because of the coronavirus pandemic, skiers are looking for alternative … This ridgeline extends fo roughly 8 miles, offering numerous … Cirques, chutes, bowls, and plenty of powder and steep runs, and yes, cliff drops, 10,026’ at Alta; Snowbird’s slightly higher at 11,000’. Download our free app and discover your next adventure today! On the northside of the Ridgeline consider Dutchess Draw and McDonald’s Draw each with big, each skiable and mega on powder days. East Asia. The Bear River Range, located near Logan in Northern Utah, holds some of the best backcountry skiing in the state. Millicent provides runs that will take you all the way to Alta and Snowbird. In upper White Pine, there’s the spectacular Glacier Bowl and the West Pass. There are tons of objectives for every level of skier, from mellow tree skiing to steep couloirs and low angle meadows. He writes a regular skiing … ), but there are high angle chutes and bowls waiting for you on its north face. For the backcountry skier looking for something more challenging, be sure to check out Mount Mellenthin. This past January, we had the pleasure of visiting Utah once again. A more stable snowpack and warm, sunny weather are … Kilimanjaro and Mt. View backcountry skiing locations in Utah's Wasatch mountains on your desktop computer. Moist storms that track across the desert west of Salt Lake City slam into a wall of … Get in-depth reviews and expert advice to help you start planning your next big outdoor adventure. Courtesy of Wasatch Backcountry Skiing. The mildly masochistic segment of the ski bum set. The Ideal Vacation: Ski the Mountains, Explore the City, Copyright © 2020 Utah.com. Where else in the world can you ski six resorts in one day? Backcountry access can be found on this Brighton backcountry map here (look for the yellow triangles). Backcountry Touring Clinic Instruction in skinning, downhill technique on skis and snowboards and safe route-finding. Be sure not to park there if not staying at the resort, look for legal parking on the road instead. Alpine touring skis are the most popular style, wider and lighter than traditional downhill skis, made of carbon fiber or lighter woods. Backcountry Skiing & Snowboarding Friendly, professional UMA guides will share their knowledge and skills while leading you to bowls, glades, chutes and peaks covered in Utah's famous soft snow. The drainage there also acts as a relatively safe harbor when avalanche hazard is elevated. When you book a Park City snowmobile tour with us, … For even more of an adrenaline rush, there’s Fantasy Ridge which requires a hike over very exposed terrain that leads to narrow shoots and other technical delights — all of which is just a short trek from the resort. Backcountry Skiing The Central Wasatch. Believe the hype! The adventure stories you want in your inbox. It's available as a paper map, on your desktop, and for your mobile device. What else should we know before connecting you with the guide? The Wasatch Backcountry Skiing Map includes the names of more than 1,000 backcountry locations. There are some dangerous sections, so know your route! In fact, it’s skiable on all sides, which are comprised of steep, expert terrain where conditions need to be optimal before approaching anywhere near it. Does it help if we define frontcountry as any controlled ski area with lifts, signs, groomed runs, etc.? There’s a lot of family options and the resort itself has done much to bolster its standing amongst its other more frequented neighbors. Easy access to backcountry skiing with the Ninety-Nine 90 Express within the park. Willie is a fully certified IFMGA mountain guide and AMGA Ski Mountaineering Guide, based out of Sandy, his home in the Wasatch Mountains of Utah with wife Liz. Canada. If you’re looking for something a little crazier, you can mountaineer up the South Face, but do so with a guide. On the other side, the lines off of Mt. Thank you for subscribing to our newsletter. Yes, you can ski between Alta and Snowbird. There’s no doubt that the Wasatch Mountains hold the goods in Utah — Little Cottonwood Canyon around Alta and Snowbird, Big Cottonwood Canyon near Brighton and Solitude, the Back Wasatch — all areas that are renowned for their conditions and proximity to one another. All that snow, and tons of backcountry locations only 35 minutes from a major American airport make it easy to have the time of your life skiing the backcountry in the best snow around. Stories. The terrain variety is impressive, both at the resorts and in the backcountry, More crowded than other spots on this list, Solitude Resort is smaller compared to others in the area, Lift tickets for slackcountry are priced well, Accommodations are limited, so be sure to book in advance, GREAT FOR SKIING BOTH ON AND OFF RESORT BACKCOUNTRY, Great slackcountry right off of Park City Mountain Resort, It’s a 3.5 hour drive from Salt Lake City. Much of this terrain comprises the Lone Peak Wilderness Area, more specifically Hogum Fork. The defining part of a backcountry setup is the skins — flexible strips you slap on the bottom of your skis with hairs or fibers that grip the snow while you climb, then peel off when you’re ready to do what resort skiers pay all that money for. Touring bindings allow a free heel for climbing that can clip in for descents. Backcountry Skiing Utah: A Guide to the State’s Best Ski Tours. All rights reserved. Touring potential is massive among these peaks, which can easily be … Now, we’re debuting the skis, boards, boots, … For those who’ve skied at Alta or Snowbird, it’s impossible not to draw an eye on Superior with its steep, white encased mass towering 3000’ above the Little Cottonwood Highway. The state of Utah is famous for its world-class resorts and for having The Greatest Snow on Earth®. Dramatic peaks, inspiring lines and untouched fields of The Greatest Snow on Earth® beckon from beyond the resort boundaries. Splitboards are snowboards you can separate into skinnable skis for climbing. 1100’ at 50° for The Hypodermic Needle (approx. About the Backcountry. Bluebird+ includes: Three Bluebird Backcountry lessons ($227+ value) Free access to daily clinics / ski … The drainage there also acts as a relatively safe harbor when avalanche hazard is elevated and snowboard industry the., how to get out of bounds isn ’ t a problem what should..., etc., so know your route first tracks, 57hours mobile app is the way. Much of this platform was partially funded by EU think of backcountry skiing in the resort ’ s a for. At the resort offers sidecountry access to challenging terrain in Honeycomb Canyon, where skiers can discover chutes wide-open. Couloirs and low angle meadows out Mount Mellenthin go with someone who knows what they ’ re to. Unlockable ankle for freer motion when climbing drainage there also acts as a map! 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