By Alison Fox
October 30, 2019
Brighton Resort
Credit: Getty Images

With challenging mountain terrain and some of the best snow in U.S., Utah has rightly earned its spot as one of the top ski destinations in the country.

While Utah skiing offers some of the most difficult runs, it’s also a great place to learn how to ski or snowboard, with varied terrain readily available for people with all levels of experience.

As a bonus, many of these Utah ski resorts are located within about an hour of the Salt Lake City airport, making them very easy to access from just about anywhere in the country.

Utah also happens to be home to two of the three skiers-only resorts in the country with Alta and Deer Valley (the third is Mad River Glen in Vermont). But not to worry, snowboarders have their place here as well: the state’s resorts offer plenty of opportunities for snowboarders to shoot down the mountain and perfect their skills.

Beyond hitting the slopes, these resorts offer everything from walks through the snowy woods on snowshoes to flying through the trees on a winter-y zip line.

These are the seven best Utah ski resorts for your next trip out west.

Best Utah Ski Resorts

Park City Mountain Resort

Park City Resort
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This large resort offers everything from great slopes (there are more than 330 trails over more than 7,300 acres) to a super charming mountain village that is perfect for relaxing after a long and exhilarating day. Ski right to Main Street when you’re ready to swap your ski boots for regular boots and go for a stroll along the picturesque streets filled with shops and a healthy après-ski scene. Later, take in the town’s mining history with a free tour on skis where you’ll explore historic mining buildings sprinkled around the resort.

Distance from Salt Lake City International Airport: 37 miles

Deer Valley Resort

Deer Valley Resort
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This resort is a skiers paradise — no snowboarding allowed — offering 103 runs over more than 2,000 acres. Perfect your skills by heading out with an Olympic athlete, or go on a complimentary ski tour to acquaint yourself with the mountain and learn about its history. Later, drop your skis off with the resort’s complimentary ski storage so you can go straight to dinner or a drink without having to worry about where to put your gear.

Distance from Salt Lake City International Airport: 39 miles

Sundance Mountain Resort

Sundance Ski Resort
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This resort, located south of Salt Lake City, was founded by actor Robert Redford, who bought the land in 1969. The resort is smaller than some of its counterparts, with only 44 runs over 450 acres, but it makes up for it with winter-y charm and fun activities. Enjoy a dinner in the Tree Room where you’ll eat surrounded by Native American art from Redford’s own private collection, or head out on a winter ZipTour, speeding over Mount Timpanogos at 65 miles per hour for an unmatched thrill. Sign up for a free mountain tour to learn the ins and outs of the slopes, or head out for a little night skiing before hitting the hay (a good part of the mountain is open for skiing several nights each week).

Distance from Salt Lake City International Airport: 55 miles


Snowbird Resort
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This Utah resort averages more than 500 inches of snow each year — and what's better than skiing on fresh, powder-y snow? Looking for a real challenge? Get off the manicured runs and try a backcountry skiing tour, or really test your limits with a small group heli-skiing trip. Later, relax with an incredible view of the mountain as you travel up 2,900 vertical feet along a 1.6-mile cable in the resort’s aerial tram, or snap on some snowshoes and traverse the mountain on foot for a unique perspective.

Distance from Salt Lake City International Airport: 32 miles

Find it: Snowbird

Brighton Ski Resort

Brighton Resort
Credit: Getty Images

Ski 1,875 vertical feet across 66 trails on more than 1,000 skiable acres on this mountain escape that expects about 500 inches of snowfall each year. And while they don’t have some of the activities (like tubing or snowmobiling) that other area resorts may offer, it’s one of the best Utah ski resorts to get kids on skis or a snowboard since up to two kids (10 and under) can ski for free with a pass-holding or paying adult. The varied terrain has trails for skiers with a range of experience levels, which means there’s a run for everyone.

Distance from Salt Lake City International Airport: 36 miles

Find it: Brighton

Alta Ski Area

Alta Resort
Credit: Getty Images/AWL Images RM

This mountain calls itself a ski area, rather than a resort, because the ethos is all about the slopes themselves. Snowboarding is not allowed at this mountain, which sees an average of 547 inches of snow each year and offers up more than 116 runs across 2,614 acres. And if you’re up for an even bigger adventure, explore the mountain’s extensive backcountry skiing opportunities, including snowcat skiing and heli-skiing.

Distance from Salt Lake City International Airport: 37 miles

Find it: Alta

Solitude Mountain Resort

Solitude Resort
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Ski or snowboard across 1,200 acres and 80 different runs at this mountain resort, first founded by a uranium mining tycoon in the 1950s. This is one of the best ski resorts in Utah for those looking for a challenge. While there are some beginner trails, this mountain is more geared toward skiers and snowboarders with experience (90 percent of the trails are designated intermediate or advanced/expert level). When you're not skiing, explore more than 12 miles of winter-y solitude with a trek through the resort’s Nordic trails.

Distance from Salt Lake City International Airport: 34 miles