+Snow. Killer terrain. More snow.
- Little nightlife. Not the prettiest base.
Here are the cold, hard facts: Snowbird’s après options are basically limited to beer and billiards at the Tram Club, there are barely any off-hill activities, and its few dining options won’t put Deer Valley out of business. But none of that stops throngs of serious skiers from invading the resort each year. Why? “Perfect in everything that matters: consistent snow, steep, easy-to-access terrain,” a reader explains. The mountain boasts 3,240 feet of vertical and an average 500 inches (783 inches last season) of “light, fluffy, Utahhhhh powder!!” And all that fluff falls on some of the most amazing lines in North America, including the new Zone 5, a trail with are-you-kidding-me pitches. That adds up to some impressive rankings (no. 4 for Snow and no. 2 for Challenge) and a real ski vacation. Complaints? Readers had a few: “The sun has to set.” And, of course, “There’s not enough vacation time to stay here long enough.” —Gordy Megroz
Must Do » Stuff a beer in your pocket and hit The Beach, skier’s left 30 yards down Mach Schnell. It gets the last rays of sun and is a nice return to your ski-bum days.
Off-Hill Restaurant » Order the charbroiled elk tenderloin at the award-winning Tiburon in Sandy.
Signature Run » When it dumps, the long, steep Tiger Tail terrain usually opens late, so keep checking with ski patrol to get first dibs.