Park City Mountain Resort, the biggest ski resort in the USA, offers world class skiing and vibrant apres-ski, just 45-minutes’ drive from Salt Lake City International Airport. Away from the skiing, Historic Main Street tastefully blends silver-mining history with modern day shops, galleries, bars and restaurants.
A thriving silver mining town until the late 19th century, then ghost town and latterly a thriving ski resort, Park City ski resort merged in 2015 with purpose-built The Canyons to form Park City Mountain Resort – the biggest lift-connected ski area in the USA and world class ski resort just 45-minutes’ drive from Salt Lake City International Airport.
Stretching fifteen miles along I-80 and across 17 mountain peaks from Kimball Junction, home of the Utah Olympic Park and Canyons to Park City town, Park City ski resort features 7,300 acres of skiable terrain, over 330 named trails, 42 lifts and eight terrain parks. And it’s not just the quantity of skiing that’s impressive.
The vertical drop is a respectable 3,226 ft (about 1,000m) and annual snowfall of 355 inches or more ensures there is enough fluffy powder from November to April. The ski area is easy to reach too via multiple fast lifts from Park City Mountain Village and Canyons Village. A free bus service runs between both village base areas and the Town Lift just off Main Street offers easy access from Park City Old Town too.
That should be more than enough for anyone, but Park City District is also home to Deer Valley. Though the two ski areas are not connected, Deer Valley Ski Resort (2,026 acres) is just across the fence and easily reached by car or bus. Solitude, Brighton, Alta and Snowbird are also within day-trip range. Advanced skiers can ski between them on an organised Utah Interconnect tour.
Park City ski resort is not all about skiing, though. With skeleton, luge, bobsleigh, ski jumping at the Utah Olympic Park at Kimball Junction, and the Flying Eagle zip wire and Alpine Coaster at Park City, there are plenty of adrenaline rushes available.
Back in town, Park City’s Historic Main Street harks back to its silver-mining heydays and is a nice place to wander around, thanks to an abundance of quaint shops, galleries, restaurants and bars coupled with small-town charm. Historic Main Street is especially lively at night and along with everything else on offer it’s easy to understand why Park City claims to be “Winter’s Favourite Town”.
Park City is also home to three beautiful graffiti artworks by famous and anonymous street artist Banksy; his works Dirty Rat, Camera Man & Flower and Praying Boy can be seen at 328, 402 and 537 Main Street. If you come in January, you might glimpse some film stars taking part in Robert Redford’s Sundance Film Festival.
Park City accommodation includes plenty of condominiums and hotels to suit all budgets. Park City Old Town is best for shops, galleries and vibrant apres ski along Historic Main Street especially or for easiest access to the ski area there’s a good choice of accommodation at Park City Mountain Village and Canyons Village.
Whether you stay in Park City Old Town or in the villages, a fleet of electric ski buses circulates around the resort, so unless you’re staying very far out, you won’t need a car.
Still enjoying a legendary boom, Park City and Deer Valley is the most expensive housing market in Utah. Famous people with homes in the Park City area include Will Smith, Michael Jordan, Mitt Romney and Katherine Heigl.
Park City Mountain Resort Strengths & Weaknesses
+ The largest lift-linked ski area in the U.S.
+ Short transfer from major international airport
+ Reliable snow record averaging 360” each winter
+ Diverse ski area with great skiing for all abilities
+ Vibrant and authentic old town centred on Historic Main Street
+ Good apres-ski and plenty of other activities
– Lift system is adequate but with room for improvement
– Lift tickets are expensive
– Mountain restaurants