Snowbasin, UtahBy Chris Owen

Before this year’s installation of the new access road, Snowbasin was an hour or two’s drive from Salt Lake City-which seemed like the middle of nowhere compared to the fifteen-minute jaunt up the canyons to Snowbird or Brighton. But it was worth the drive. This particular mountain has the same great shredding that’s expected from Utah without all of the crowds. There are fast chairs, slow chairs, gondolas, and a tram-the mountain has a ton of terrain to offer no matter where you go. With just a short hike from the tops of chairlifts, you can ride some of the best chutes and cliffs ever. If the snow is good, this stuff rivals just about any line that you can find short of Alaska. Since Snowbasin became host to the 2002 Olympic downhill, some things have changed. The drive is now only a short 40 miles from the Salt Lake City airport. But while the mountain may have a few new buildings and lifts, it’s still run in the same mom-and-pop way that it has been since the first chairlift was installed in 1946. If you’re interested in some of the most fun riding you can get to from the chairlift without the hassle of standing in packed lines, then go to Snowbasin. For more information, visit: www.snowbasin.com.

StatsAverage Annual Snowfall: 400 inchesSummit Elevation: 11,000 feetVertical Drop: 3,240 feetNumber Of Lifts: NineShreddable Acres: 3,200Pipes: NopeParks: NopeLights: NopeNearby Skateparks: Lorin Farr Skatepark

“Snowbasin is the best resort in the U.S.-nobody’s ever there, and it has some of the best lift-accessible terrain you can find anywhere.”-Jason “J2″ Rasmus, Utah critter