Top Three Runs at Utah Ski Resorts

Top Three Runs at Utah Ski Resorts

By Chad Taylor & Jake Wilhelmsen
March 01, 2018

With the Ikon Pass, you’ll never get tracked out

You know that person who asks you five times before September if you’ve bought your season pass to [insert ski resort here] yet? The single-minded type who Steve-Jobsed their wardrobe and eats the same thing every day for lunch (very likely egg salad sandwich on wheat)? Who wouldn’t dare set their alarm to an odd minute and still refuses to use hashtags on principle?

We love these people, and there’s something to be said for the efficiency of routine. But come on. Live a little. There’s more to ski in Utah than what you’ll get at a single resort.

The Ikon Pass gets you access to three Utah ski destinations: Deer Valley Resort, Alta Ski Area and Snowbird. And since we’re dealing in threes, here are our top three runs at each:

Deer Valley Resort

Deer Valley

Novice: Nabob (Blue)

Top: 9,226 ft

Bottom: 7,927 ft

Vertical drop: 1,299 ft

Length: 0.88 mi

Always groomed with a nice variety of terrain. Experienced skiers use this as a warm-up run and novices find it a nice, manageable challenge. Tree islands create cool natural markers.

Intermediate: Jordanelle (Double Blue)

Top: 7,805 ft

Bottom: 6,611 ft

Vertical drop: 1,194 ft

Length: 1.11 mi

A favorite groomed run of the locals. Best skied in the morning when the sun is out to soften up the corduroy just enough. Awesome views if you’re comfortable enough to pick your head up.

Advanced: Ruins of Pompeii (Black)

Top: 9,114 ft

Bottom: 8,363 ft

Vertical drop: 751 ft

Length: 0.36 mi

Definitely not suited to beginners, but its variety of terrain and steep pitches make it ideal for regulars.

Alta Ski Area

Alta Ski Area

Novice: Crooked Mile (Green)

Top: 9,446 ft

Bottom: 8,652 ft

Vertical drop: 794 ft

Length: 1.18 mi

A gentle groomed run that’s the perfect introduction to Alta. Nice and wide in most places making it great for gauging speed (French fries!), stopping (pizza!) and turns.

Intermediate: Ballroom (Blue)

Top: 10,184 ft

Bottom: 10,033 ft

Vertical drop: 154 ft

Length: 451 ft

Way up high, where the true powderhounds congregate. An excellent run to familiarize yourself with the resort’s famous powder and prepare for black diamonds.

Advanced: Westward Ho (Black)

Top: 9,199 ft

Bottom: 8,711 ft

Vertical drop: 486 ft

Length: 0.2 mi

Many people say that this is the best tree skiing at Alta Ski Area. The pitch is steep (but not “this isn’t fun because I’m going to die” steep) and offers a variety of lines you can take to weave through the trees.



Novice: Chickadee (Blue)

Top: 8,235 ft

Bottom: 8,097 ft

Vertical drop: 138 ft

Length: 0.16 mi

Ideal for beginners. It’s located right next to the Cliff Lodge and even has its own run (super nice if you’re still struggling with your lift-dismount skills). The riding is mellow and the views are rad.

Intermediate: Chip’s Run (Blue)

Top: 10,919 ft

Bottom: 8,159 ft

Vertical drop: 2,759 ft

Length: 2.74 mi

The easiest way down from the top of the tram also happens to be a perfect blend of terrain without anything that might get non-experts in trouble.

Advanced: Great Scott (Double Black)

Top: 10,719 ft

Bottom: 9,797 ft

Vertical drop: 925 ft

Length: 0.37 mi

Steep, consistent and intimidating. Tough enough to keep testing Snowbird regulars, but long-time skiers and riders or first-time Snowbirders can navigate it too.

Keep life interesting.