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want to stay in Park City + ski Alta/Snowbird- transport?

Washington DC...
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want to stay in Park City + ski Alta/Snowbird- transport?

Planning a ski trip to Utah, trying to figure out where to stay and whether to rent a car. I'd like to stay in Park City and be able to walk to some restaurants and stuff, but I'd also like the option to ski in Alta or Snowbird. Looks like there are no cheap shared/public transport options to get from Park City to Alta/Snowbird (found shuttles that charge $100 each way)- is this true? I think you need snow tires and SUV (which costs about 4 times as much to rent as a regular midsize car) to drive up to Alta/Snowbird, but you could get from SLC airport to Park City with a regular (cheap) car.

So, not sure whether to (1) not rent a car (or rent a cheap one), stay in Park City and ski mostly in Park City/Deer Valley/Canyons; (2) not rent a car, stay closer to Alta or Snowbird, pretty much skip Park City entirely; (3) shell out $100+/day on SUV with snow tires, stay in Park City, have option to ski any of the mountains (this is the most expensive option...).

We are two ~30 y.o. intermediate to advanced skiers, like to go out to eat and check out the nightlife, have no problem walking places.

Thoughts?

Washington DC...
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1. Re: want to stay in Park City + ski Alta/Snowbird- transport?

one more thing-- is it a horrible idea to go to Park City during Sundance (1/16-1/26/2014) if we are mostly interesting in skiing? ie, will everything be more expensive and complicated and dinner reservations hard to come by?

Park City, Utah
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2. Re: want to stay in Park City + ski Alta/Snowbird- transport?

Yes, it is a little challenging shuttling from PC to Little Cottonwood. There is a bus option but it's a bit time consuming. Here's a link to the summer schedule. Winter will expand just a bit. There was a winter route last year that had a little better connection to the bus up to Big Cottonwood. Still, you will need to figure on it being about two hours each way (versus 45-60 minutes by car).

There's no real difference in vehicle needed in PC or Little Cottonwood. If it snows you need more vehicle. If it doesn't, you can make it in a sedan.

You can also rent a car for the day in PC from Enterprise, Budget, Hertz and All Resort.

Sundance is a great time to ski as the slopes aren't crowded at all. Lodging is the biggest issue, although you should be able to find it at the resorts. Restaurants on Main Street are a challenge, especially through first weekend. After that it's not as bad. But there are plenty of other places, especially Kimball Junction, that are not impacted.

Have fun.

Salt Lake City, Utah
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3. Re: want to stay in Park City + ski Alta/Snowbird- transport?

Park City does have three resorts to experience. No car needed. T&C gave a great option for renting a car in Park City for a couple of day trips to Alta/Snowbird. And you can make it to those resorts in a sedan. Plan the trip for when it's forecast to be clear, even the though the best time to be there is on a powder day. It's not fun driving sedans in the canyons with 4WD vehicles and semi trucks speeding around you.

During Sundance the slopes aren't crowded because all of the tourists are film industry types and not skiers and riders. Accommodations may be more pricey especially on the first weekend and restaurants can be packed. But there is also lots of live music from headlining acts, and obviously great indy films to catch. Often the director and actors will do a Q & A at the conclusion of the show.

Park City, Utah
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4. Re: want to stay in Park City + ski Alta/Snowbird- transport?

All Resort no longer rents cars. You forgot to mention Park City Four Wheel Drive Rental.

Plantation Florida
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5. Re: want to stay in Park City + ski Alta/Snowbird- transport?

Stay in SLC and ride the 951 to Alta. Read my TR here for some ideas.

www.nogodforme.com/ParkCityResort2012.htm

Here's the info about the 951, if you stay at the HGI, you can walk to the bus stop.

www.rideuta.com/mc/?page=RidingUTA-SkiService

Rent the car, reserve a mid size, then upgrade to the SUV at the airport. Most of the rental vehicles in SLC are SUVs. If it's snowing, they won't let you drive up to Alta unless you have and SUV with snow tires, that's when you take the 951. Have the correct change.

Doesn't matter if you go during Sundance, doesn't effect the ski resorts. There's a few bars in Park City to check out, but the restaurants in SLC are also great.

Edited: 19 November 2013, 02:44
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6. Re: want to stay in Park City + ski Alta/Snowbird- transport?

Sundance is a great time to ski in Park City (less crowded). Restaurants will be more crowded. However, the latter half of Sundance, things are much less crowded. You may be pleasantly surprised to find you enjoy the energy and excitement of PC during Sundance.

Park City, Utah
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7. Re: want to stay in Park City + ski Alta/Snowbird- transport?

etravel_10 has it right. Sundance is the best time to ski in Park City - the slopes are relatively empty.

8. Re: want to stay in Park City + ski Alta/Snowbird- transport?

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