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Brighton Ski Resort. The smallest of the Cottonwood resorts just outside Salt Lake City, Brighton is nonetheless a favorite among serious snowboarders, parents (who flock to the resort's ski school), and some extreme skiers and riders. There are no megaresort amenities here, just a nice mix of terrain for all abilities, and a basic lodge, ski shop, and ski school. The snow is as powdery and deep as nearby Alta and Snowbird, and advanced (and prepared) skiers can access extensive backcountry areas. There's something for everyone here—at a fraction of the cost of the bigger resorts. Brighton has popular children's programs. 8302 South Brighton Loop Rd., Brighton, UT, 84121. 801/532-4731, 855/201-7669 (SNOW), or. www.brightonresort.com. Lift tickets $68. 1,745-ft vertical drop; 1,050 skiable acres; 21% beginner, 40% intermediate, 39% advanced/expert; 5 high-speed quad chairs, 1 triple chair.
Solitude Mountain Resort. Offering Big Cottonwood Canyon's most intense ski experience since 1957, Solitude Mountain Resort has grown into a European-style village with lodges, condominiums, a luxury hotel, and award-winning restaurants. Downhill skiing and snowboarding are still the main attractions, with steep, pristine terrain in Honeycomb Canyon attracting the experts, and a mix of intermediate cruising runs and beginner slopes beckon the less adventurous. Day guests will enjoy relaxing after a hard day on the slopes at the comfortable Solitude Mountain Spa. 12000 Big Cottonwood Canyon Rd., Solitude, UT, 84121. 801/534–1400; 800/748–4754; 801/536–5774 Nordic Center; 801/536–5777 snow report. www.skisolitude.com. Lift tickets $74. 2,047-ft vertical drop; 1,200 skiable acres; 20% beginner, 50% intermediate, 30% advanced; 3 high-speed quad chairs, 2 quad chairs, 1 triple chair, 2 double chairs.