My brother and his family relocated to Sandy, UT, this year and you can bet I’m happy to have a guest room within shouting distance of some of North America’s finest ski mountains! Check out what’s new and improved at Utah’s 13 ski resorts this winter…

Utah ski resorts have been busy adding new terrain, on-mountain enhancements, luxury accommodations, programs and packages to complement the destination’s astonishing accessibility and 500 annual inches of The Greatest Snow on Earth®. Entering the 2010-11 winter season, Utah’s resorts boast some of the most significant resort improvements in the US.



The Canyons Resort has added new terrain to the southern end of its resort property.  Iron Mountain, adjacent to Dream Peak, will open 300 acres of northwest facing terrain. Ten runs ranging from intermediate to advanced intermediate will be cut and nearly 300+ acres of naturally gladed tree skiing will be available. The new terrain brings the resort to 4,000 total skiable acres and makes it the fourth largest ski resort in the US.

Park City Mountain Resort added three new Adventure Alley runs allowing intermediates the thrill of skiing or riding through the trees. The Resort has also continued to glade Crescent Ridge, enhancing the advanced skiing experience.

Powder Mountain brings 1,000 additional acres of expert chutes and bowls to the 2,000 acres of terrain already in use by the Snowcat Powder Safari. The new area, known as La Plata, is named after a nearby ghost town that was founded in the silver rush of the 1890s.  Additionally, Powder Mountain will offer guests the opportunity to take a guided backcountry tour of Wolf Creek Canyon with more than 1,000 acres of pristine snow which includes wide open bowls, glades and steep chutes.

Snowbasin adds a 22-foot superpipe to its already incredible terrain.



Alta planted 1,500 trees, 500 shrubs and spread 500 pounds of indigenous mountain flower and grass seeds through its annual environmental vegetation program.

The Canyons Resort has installed North America’s first, and one of the most technologically advanced, chairlifts in the world. The Orange Bubble enclosed quad lift is like riding up inside a ski goggle. It also has heated seats. The new lift increases the uphill capacity from the base by 47 percent, and it whisks skiers to the top in just nine minutes. Additionally, The Canyons is rebirthing its base area by realigning the gondola. Guests at The Canyons can relax and enjoy an après ski cocktail on the Resort’s new après ski beach.

Deer Valley Resort again invested $4.5 million to refresh the interiors of its three main on-mountain day lodges: Empire Canyon, Silver Lake and Snow Park. In addition, it invested heavily in on-mountain equipment including high efficiency snowmaking, new snowcats, snowmobiles and a new winch-cat to groom the steepest slopes.

Park City Mountain Resort added new snowmaking on the highly popular intermediate Assessment run.
Park City Mountain Resort has also expanded its night skiing and riding with more lights and longer hours. Brian Head, Brighton, Powder Mountain, Sundance and Wolf Creek Utah also offer great night skiing.

Snowbird’s Cliff Spa (on the 9th and 10th floor of the Cliff Lodge) is currently undergoing its first major renovation since the Spa opened in 1987.  Revamped areas include the reception space, salon and retail store, the men’s and women’s locker rooms, solarium, steam room and treatment rooms. Renovations are scheduled to be completed by December.

Solitude has installed three new quads over the past three years making lift lines even shorter.

Sundance will open its new Redford Conference Center with environmentally friendly 3,500 square feet of meeting space, wrapping patios, a large group fireplace and a full service catering kitchen. Sundance is also in the midst of a multi-million dollar lodging room renovation project.


Alta Lodge and freeskiing champion Gordy Peifer team up to offer an All Mountain Ski Adventures camp for advanced skiers. Alta Ski Area continues to offer “Ski Free After Three.” The iconic ski area opens the RFID gates at 3 p.m. on the Sunnyside lift, allowing skiers to access five beginner runs, two intermediate and one advanced run for free.

Beaver Mountain continues to operate as one of the nation’s only family owned and operated resorts. The Resort offers great value, terrain and a laid-back atmosphere.

At Brighton Resort, kids 10 and under ski free when the adult buys any season pass or pack of discount tickets. Busy women will also love the new, one day all-women’s workshops.

Jump off the plane and ski. A same-day boarding pass lets visitor’s ski free that afternoon at The Canyons, Deer Valley or Park City Mountain Resort. The Park City QuickSTART program continues to capitalize on the incredible accessibility of Utah’s resorts, saving guests both money and time.

Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort’s Early Bird Stay and Ski Packages start at $99/person, based on double occupancy, and include lodging at the Cliff and a Tram pass. Valid from November 18-December 22, 2010, with a minimum three night stay. Kids 12 and under ski free for each night’s stay.

Ski Utah will continue to feature incredible packages and deals from its resort and industry partners on the “White Sale” microsite and “Hot Deals” section of


Montage Deer Valley will open in December 2010 with true ski-in/ski-out access to America’s No.1 ski resort, as rated by readers of SKI magazine three years in a row (2010, 2009, 2008). It features 154 deluxe guestrooms and more than 66 suites and private residences ranging from one to four bedrooms.


The FIS Freestyle World Ski Championships come to Deer Valley Resort and Park City Mountain Resort from February 2-5, 2011. Aerial, moguls, dual moguls and ski cross competitions will be held at Deer Valley Resort, and the halfpipe competitions will be held at Park City Mountain Resort.

Snowbasin will host the final stop of the Winter Dew Tour, the world’s premier season-long winter action sports tour, on February 10-13, 2011 with top world athletes in both freeskiing and snowboarding.

Snowbird will host the Subaru Freeskiing World Championships March 9-12, 2011.

For more information on Ski Utah or its 13 ski resorts visit


When the winter winds blow and snow accumulates on your doorstep, there are basically two things to do: either stay inside with furry rabbit slippers and a cuppa hot chocolate, or hit the slopes. I was tempted to do the former, but I opted to do the latter, and am I glad I did.

Read about my Utah ski adventures in: Utah: The Great Ski Escape. 



Ellen Barone has been creating words and images for travel and tourism since 1998. She co-founded and publishes the group travel blog and is currently at work on her first book "I Could Live Here".