The season is here, and you may want to know where to head with your family for a fun, memorable, and exciting excursion.
If you’re based in Utah, or if the gorgeous snowy slopes have convinced you to travel from afar, you will find yourself having to consider multiple resorts because there are SO MANY.
SnowBasin Resort and Park City are two resorts that stand out in the Utah skiing geography and are great places to consider for your annual ski vacation. But you will find that both these resorts offer unique perks which will make settling on one option a tough task.
But stick with us, and we’ll walk you through the differences between SnowBasin vs Park City including the fancy features, and all the unique perks at these resorts, so that you can try to settle on one of the two, and have a ski vacation to remember!
Crowd And Expenses
Snowbasin has a surprisingly calm atmosphere that immediately encourages you to hang out with your friends and cruise around. Plus, the crowd is equally light as well.
This resort is not considered by its usual visitors to be an ‘expensive’ venue at all, but that also be due to the fact that there aren’t a lot of significant attractions to spend one’s money on.
Also read our guide on Park City vs Snowbird
So, if you are going for that warm and comfy vibe this ski season for you and your gang, Snowbasin just might be the place for you!
Park City, in contrast, has a much larger crowd (given its sheer size), and has a lot more expensive options. The lodging and the food lean towards the pricier side, and there are tons of restaurants and other attractions that will tempt you to spend a lot of money.
If your budget restrictions are tight, you might not want to head toward Park City. However, if this is a once-in-a-while excursion, this resort will be the place for you and your close ones.
Snow Quality and Terrain
One thing that is particularly interesting about Snowbasin’s 2200-acre terrain is that the area basically slopes down to one common base area. This adds to the entire experience if you are heading there with your friends or your family since you will all end up together when the day is over.
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And the mostly low-crowd slopes have varied terrain as well, so it is an interesting option for the intermediate or adventurous skier because you have ample space and exciting paths to have fun!
Snowbasin is also often seen as an underrated ski area (despite being THE location for the 2002 Olympics!). Snowbasin also offers 4 well-designed terrain ‘parks’ for avid freeskiers as well, and the presence of a good layer of dry snow will ensure all skiers can keep chasing powder throughout their stay.
The Park City resort actually offers 6 terrain parks for all skiers with varying levels of proficiency. It is part of the massive 7000+ acres of skiable area in the resort. The natural terrain here offers gentler slopes for beginners (the Park City area), as well as challenging tough terrain for the experts (the Canyons area) as well.
Experienced skiers will find plenty of advanced skiing areas (whooping 50%!) at Park City resort, but as explained earlier, the beginner or intermediate skier will also feel right at home with the ample park setups and terrain to stretch their legs.
The resort also experiences good dry snow, but if you are looking forward to chasing powder, you might be disappointed since accumulation levels at the resort are relatively low.
Lifts At The Resort
The lifts at both Snowbasin and Park City are high-speed and will take you quickly to multiple areas of the resorts. Snowbasin’s lift system (which boasts a total of lifts – 6 chairlifts, 2 gondola lifts and 1 aerial tramway) has seen significant improvements this year as well. However, there are certain areas in the resort that have high traffic during peak hours and can lead to very slow chokepoints.
Park City has a total of 42 lifts! – 33 chairlifts, 4 gondola lifts, 3 moving carpets, and 2 rope tows. But there are certain areas that are only accessible by very slow lifts, which will once again lead to delays and slow movement.
But you must keep in mind that it all depends on the specific area that you want to reach, and if you keep in mind to check the traffic situation beforehand and avoid the peak hours, you’d do just fine.
Park City resort’s two separate areas offer lodgings that are, interestingly, with contrasting price points. While the lodgings in Park City are mostly affordable, those in the Canyon are known to be very expensive. However, if you are willing to let go of a few bucks this season, you can enjoy a nice lodge for yourself equipped with pools and hot tubs.
Also read our guide on Park City vs Breckenridge
Unfortunately, Snowbasin does NOT offer any on-site lodgings, and you will have to head towards alternative lodgings in the vicinity. The price points of these locations might vary, and it will be an additional task in planning your ski excursion this year.
Best For Beginners And Advanced Skiers
Snowbasin has dynamic terrain but it might not be the best option for the expert skier. The distribution of extreme terrain is sparse, so you will find yourself hunting for the challenging trails which can be time-consuming.
But if you are a beginner or an intermediate heading out for a ski-session this season, Snowbasin is THE resort for you.
Pak City, on the other hand, with its massive skiable land, is the perfect resort for the advanced and adventurous skier. There are ample groomed and ungroomed terrain for the seasoned sportsman or ski enthusiast, which includes glades, cliffs, and terrain that make instant sharp turns that will satisfy the pickiest skier.
Both resorts provide factors for consideration, but the ultimate decision depends on your proficiency level, and your budget. If you are a novice skier, Snowbasin is the place for you, plus it is cheaper.
But if you’re looking to spend money, Park City will do. Advanced skiers with tight pockets can still head to Snowbasin since there are tough terrains there, but it will unfortunately not give the same adrenaline-rushing experience, or the choices, as Park City does.
Regardless of the locales, it is important that you find a spot where you can have fun with your friends and family, and create wonderful memories this season!