Country Club Skiing At Snowbird

This Week:

  • Skiing Snowbird while NO ONE was allowed up the road to the resort.
  • Getting wrapped up in more terrible public transit experiences.
  • Was this the end of my ski season?

April 2023


Where In The World Was I?

  • Salt Lake City, UT
  • ⛷️ Solitude
  • Sandy, UT
  • ⛷️ Snowbird
  • Salt Lake City, UT


We finally made it back to Utah and the snow started falling. OpenSnow was calling for pow days Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.

My sights were set on skiing Snowbird. That was the objective.

I just kept having visions of face shots of Utah blower pow while skiing down Restaurant Roll.

This turned into a logistical challenge as I only had 2 days left at Snowbird. But what I didn’t know is, none of this turned out to matter… More on that later.

Sunday night, UDOT notifies that both canyons (Big Cottonwood Canyon and Little Cottonwood Canyon) will be closed for avalanche mitigation Sunday night into Monday, which was to be expected.

Calling An Audible

But what WASN’T to be expected was waking up Monday morning to see that SR190 (BCC to Solitude/Brighton) was OPEN.

I initially thought, “ahhhh nah I wanna ski SNOWBIRD, not Solitude.” But, after some back and forth, I called an audible and went up to Solitude to ski the pow.

Conditions: About 4″ of fresh on top of some nice and crusty sun-baked hardpack.

It was decently tracked up by the time I got up there, but I think it was still worth it. I was able to score some nice soft turns and immediately thought “ahhh how I missed that super soft Utah snow.”

I decided to call it after a couple runs once the main bowl got tracked up. The rest of the runs we’re pretty mixed – dense, choppy, dust-on-crust, etc.

The Mistake…

The next day, Snowbird reports 31″, but LCC was still closed for avalanche mitigation so I was more or less in “waiting” mode. I hit Honeysuckle (in Sandy, UT) in the morning.

However as I was eating my lunch I thought, well, BCC is open and Solitude/Brighton got 17″ and it’s still snowing, so what if we tried to score some afternoon pow turns?

So, at about 1:30pm, I drove over to the Park & Ride

2:15pm – Hopped on a bus

3:15pm – Arrived at Solitude, boots in skis, on the chairlift

It took a bit longer than I expected to get up, despite pretty much no traffic.

The Summit lift was running, but was scheduled to close at 3:30pm. I raced to get up there, but didn’t make it…

All the other lifts closed at 4pm so I had less than 45min to ski.

I got about 3-4 runs in. My first run, the snow was actually quite decent where I went down. However, I wasn’t warmed up or anything so it was pretty rough 😅

4pm – Finished, unclipped from my skis and stood by the bus stop in quite a long line for the bus down

Here’s where things went downhill VERY quickly (or actually, not very quickly, lol). I’ll make it short and sweet for ya…

4:45pm – Got on a bus going UP despite the bus driver yelling at people to not get on 😅

5:15pm – Arrived back at the same bus stop I was previously waiting at

6:45pm – Made it back to my van

Almost 3 HOURS later I made it back to my van.

I rode public transit for almost 4 HOURS to ski for just 51 minutes.

In retrospect, not worth it. I didn’t have any issues getting down the previous Solitude day because I left at ~12pm, not 4pm with everyone else.

I think I’ve described my frustrations with the public transit in other posts so I’ll just defer my thoughts to those 😂

The only additional observation I want to make is that, disregarding all politics and financial complications, it seems the rewards/incentives are not aligned. As a rider of public transit, I seem to be punished (waiting hours for buses, full buses I can’t get on, etc.) for taking public transit which, from the canyon’s perspective: helps free up canyon traffic, reduces traffic incident probabilities, reduces emissions, etc. etc.

Waiting… And Waiting…

So after that experience, I was like “alright we’re just gonna wait until LCC opens to ski Snowbird.” They ended up with over 5 FEET of snow during this storm.

Little did I know, “just gonna wait until LCC opens” wasn’t that easy.

The canyon was still closed since they closed it Sunday night. By Wednesday, I thought for sure they’d open it… but nope.

I waited in line for about an hour Wednesday only to dip out after hearing from the police blocking the canyon that they were told it wouldn’t be open today.

Each day I was constantly checking UDOT’s Twitter seeing if they had an ETO. I kept battling the decision of whether or not I should wait in line just in case they open it.

The uncertainty was killing me. I could do stuff while waiting there, but it just felt like I was wasting my time if they didn’t end up opening.

Thursday rolls around and I just accepted that I would’t get first in line and went back to Honeysuckle.

On another note, I spent a lot of time at Honeysuckle in Sandy. Love that place, it’s a FANTASTIC coffee shop.

Friday? Nope. Still closed and still waiting…

I got some laundry done, refilled my propane, did some grocery shopping, made some meals, and took some cool drone shots:

Outputs (✏️ 📈)

Speaking of working at Honeysuckle in Sandy:

  • Business work updates:
    • Strategy pivot to gather feedback based on new timeline/$ requirements
    • Updated API script to pull and save API responses once I lose access
    • Another strategy pivot to finish content strategy PDF before moving to next resource creation
  • Content, content, content
  • First pass of taxes done

LCC Avalanches

As time went on and the canyon stayed closed, UDOT started posting more updates on what was actually going on up the canyon.

Turns out multiple massive avalanches slid and crossed the road. Thankfully the road was closed, but the crews were out working day and night to clear the debris and ensure no further avalanches would occur.

Some of the photos they posted were just 🤯



Friday night, they announced Saturday’s plan for the first uphill travel opening since Sunday evening.

The canyon would be open from 7am-9am, then closed throughout the day (due to high chance of more slides), then re-open from 7pm-10pm.

By Saturday, we’d already had a couple days of warm sunny days, so I knew it wouldn’t be a pow day anymore.

However, I decided I’d go for it.

After all, I was driving around my home. Waiting until 7pm to leave was hardly an issue for me.

And boy was it worth it.

Snowbird Country Clubbin’

There was a decent line of cars waiting when I pulled up around 6:45am, but completely manageable.

Apparently they call Country Club skiing when the resort is open but access to the road is restricted. The resort had opened Monday and Thursday this week despite the road being closed, so some people got mega pow days. Due to the road restrictions Saturday, I think it would also be considered a Country Club day.

And just wow…

I got first tram, quite easily.

In fact, it felt like nobody showed up to ski, despite being a Saturday. And since the road was closed after 9am, there was no surge in crowds around 10-11am like usual. Whoever drove up, was up. Nobody else could come mid-morning.

I had my own chairlift all day, and WALK-ON tram rides all day. Completely unheard of.

I knew the snow would be pretty dense and crusty, so the challenge was to see if I could find any untouched soft stuff left over.

The highlight from the day was off of Gad 2, I stumbled across this tree section that was still untouched and incredibly soft.

The snow there was soooo good. I just farmed that area, lapping it over and over until I was too tired to continue.

It felt like the motto of the day was “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

Those 5 runs were essentially what I was dreaming of in Tahoe – light soft Utah pow turns. Man, that was such a fun time in there.

The rest of the day was a lot of crusty dense sun-baked snow.

I called it at around 2pm and 18k vert for the day.

The rest of the afternoon I just chilled, watched some YouTube, and made dinner.

It felt a bit like a fun shared-experience as everyone else in the parking lot was also just hanging out. People had their camping chairs out chatting, tailgating, sun-bathing, and walking around.

But alas, this is where #vanlife shines. I pretty much had no difference to my life having to wait around until 7pm 🤪

Feeling Accomplished

Although this week didn’t go exactly as I envisioned, I feel like I accomplished what I set out to accomplish.

In Tahoe, I envisioned driving back to Utah to ski Snowbird through this storm and in a way, I did exactly that.

Looking forward from now, it’s supposed to (and already is!) get quite warm the next couple days/weeks with no more pow days in sight. I’m not sure if I’ll have any more ski days in me. Spring skiing just doesn’t come close to those mid-season pow days.

This winter and ski season has been incredible. I’m super happy how it all went and it fills me with gratitude to think that this is what I was envisioning back in the fall and summer of last year.

It feels like the dreams I had of skiing came true.

We made those dreams come true 💪



  1. Todd Gibson

    What kind of skis do you use? id like to do what your doing!lol

    • Peter Meglis

      Yesss it’s totally worth it! This winter was awesome. I rented my gear from Christy Sports this season.

      Nordica Enforcer 104 Free 2019/2020
      Length: 186cm
      Underfoot: 104mm

      Poles: 50″ Rossignol

      (first pair) Head Edge LYT 8, 28.5 / 330mm, 85 flex
      (exchanged for second pair mid-season) Salomon S/Pro R100, 28 – 28.5 / 324, 100 flex

      I’d love to help you out in any way I can, whether that be where to find/rent ski gear, thoughts on this ski gear, van life questions, where to ski, etc. etc. Feel free to drop another comment or send me an email!

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