Skiing & Snowboarding, Uncategorized, Winter

Epic Pass Road Trip: Sun Valley, Snowbasin, and Park City

Sun Valley (and its sister resort in Snowbasin) are yet again one of the dozens of ski resorts around the world that are part of the Epic Pass family. The Epic Pass offers unlimited or limited, unrestricted riding at over 40 mountains for $999*. Here at Sun Valley, the Epic Pass is good for seven days of skiing or snowboarding with no blackout dates (after seven days, use your Epic Pass for 50% off lift tickets for the rest of the season!). There are other Epic Pass options. For all the details head here.

The best part about using your Epic Pass at Sun Valley & Snowbasin is that you won’t need a reservation to ski here. With the two resorts being partners and not owned by Vail Resorts, they are not required to follow the same protocols that the other Vail owned resorts have instituted. For more information on Sun Valley’s winter operating procedures, head here.

With our freshly minted Epic Passes in hand, we’re all-in for an Idaho-Utah Epic Pass road trip. Are you game? Here’s how you do it.

*As of September 2020. Price subject to change.

Day 1: Fly to Sun Valley

  • Flying into Sun Valley is a breeze, with daily nonstop flights from San Francisco, Seattle, Los Angeles, Denver, and Salt Lake City. Rent a car at the airport (we recommend an SUV with plenty of room for your skis!), or, if you’re booked in the Limelight Hotel or Sun Valley Lodge, you can arrange a shuttle to pick you up.
  • If you get a morning flight to Sun Valley, you can be carving up the slopes within an hour. Get your wits about you with an easy run on Upper and Lower College before venturing out to Seattle Ridge, Christmas Ridge, or the Bowls.
  • Once the lifts stop running for the day, head to Warfield Distillery and Brewery for an après drink by the fire, then walk to the Ketchum Grill for traditional Western dishes with a twist.
  • Get some rest…you’ll be lined up for first chair in the morning!

Day 2: Ski Under Bluebird Skies

  • Grab a quick breakfast at the Konditorei—a resort staple for a hearty meal and strong coffee—before strapping on your skis or board for a day of riding. Be sure to check out the hidden gem of the Frenchman’s and feel the burn on a top-to-bottom Warm Springs run. It’s a rite of passage.
  • Make your way to Seattle Ridge for lunch…you won’t regret either the tasty dishes or the panoramic views.
  • When your legs call “uncle” for the day (which can be surprisingly early, given the lack of lift lines and uncrowded slopes at Sun Valley), Apples, at the base of Warm Springs, is a local’s-favorite spot for cheap beers and ski-town vibes.
  • Check out Asian-fusion restaurant Rickshaw for dinner, and if you’re still full of energy, slip into Whiskey Jacques for music, dancing, and general mayhem.
Epic Pass Road Trip - Sun Valley, Snowbasin & Park City
Photo Courtesy Sun Valley Resort // Photographer Hillary Maybery – Athlete Lucy Sackbauer

Day 3: Drive to Snowbasin Resort

  • Snowbasin is Sun Valley’s sister resort in Huntsville, Utah, and also a member of the Epic Pass. Snowbasin has 3,000 skiable acres and 3,000 vertical feet, along with the luxurious lodges and restaurants you’ve now come to love about Sun Valley.
  • The drive is about 4.5 hours…a quick jaunt by Mountain West standards…but if you need a break, take a side trip to Antelope Island to check out the Great Salt Lake, and see wild buffalo roaming the shores.
  • Make a quick stop in Ogden for lunch (we recommend the Philly cheesesteak at Pepito’s) then grab a room at the Atomic Chalet in Huntsville for easy access to Snowbasin.
  • Hit the slopes right away to get the most out of your time here. For your first afternoon, hop on the Needles Gondola to access the intermediate runs on the face of Demoisy Peak and Needles.
  • Enjoy an après drink at Earl’s Lodge before heading to dinner at Carlos & Harley’s in Eden. 
Epic Pass Road Trip - Sun Valley, Snowbasin & Park City
Photo Courtesy Snowbasin // Photographer Cam Mcleod – Athlete Heidi Webb

Day 4: Two Resorts in One Day…You’ve Got This

  • Spend your morning at Snowbasin (expert skiers and riders won’t want to miss the bowls off Strawberry Peak) and grab an early lunch at on-mountain Needles Lodge before departing for Park City.
  • It’s a little over an hour to Park City, and the drive through the mountains is plenty beautiful. Check into the Marriott Mountainside to be right at the bottom of the ski lift, as well as in the historical part of this picturesque town.
  • If you have any legs left (you do, don’t you?), head up the Crescent Express at Park City Resort (where Epic Pass holders have unlimited access all season) to access the black diamond runs of Shaft and Silver King, or glide over to the King Con area for intermediate trails. Stop at the 3 Kings on your way back to the hotel to test your mettle at the pipes and terrain park.
  • Enjoy dinner at elegant farm-to-table restaurant Handle Park City and then enjoy a nightcap at local’s favorite High West Whiskey. Maybe grab a bottle to take home? You certainly wouldn’t be the first one.
Epic Pass Road Trip - Sun Valley, Snowbasin & Park City
Photo Courtesy Park City Resort

Day 5: Exhaust Your Legs at Park City

  • It’s your last day of skiing and riding…why not go big? Warm-up with a run on Chicane off the Red Pine Gondola, then hop on the Jupiter Double chair to access Park City’s steep glades and chutes.
  • Stop for lunch at the Summit House, then explore more of Park City’s terrain before packing up for the airport. Don’t miss your flight…but, don’t miss a moment of skiing, either! You have to time it juuuuuust right.
  • It’s a 45-minute, easy-peasy drive from Park City to the Salt Lake City airport. After you’re checked in and waiting for your flight, enjoy a delayed après beer at Squatters Pub in Concourse C.
  • Sleep on the flight home. You’ve earned it. Congrats on completing your Epic Pass Road Trip!
Epic Pass Road Trip - Sun Valley, Snowbasin & Park City
Photo Courtesy Park City Resort // Rob Bossi

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