A Brave Ski Mom Interview with Eric Wagnon, National Skiing Writer for Examiner.com and the father of two rippin’ boys.
Why Park City Mountain Resort?
Park City has a lot going for it, from a family perspective. There is a ton of good intermediate terrain. The ski school caters to families and the town has charm and character, and for those not so keen on skiing, shopping. They also have the on-mountain alpine coaster and a nearby tubing hill. Park City Mountain Resort provides a total vacation experience.
Let’s talk about the ski school. What makes it special?
Last season, my kids participated in the Signature Program. First of all, PCMR makes it really easy for parents. In Signature 3, which serves younger kids up to age 5, parents simply drop their kids off. The ski school takes care of getting the equipment, which means parents don’t have to go through the whole rental shop process. Kids are dropped off at 9:00 and picked up at 3:00. While you have to pay for this convenience, it makes it easy for the parents to enjoy a full ski day.
What would you change at Park City Mountain Resort to make it even better for parents?
While I think the Signature Programs are great, I also think they are missing ½ day ski school. Sometimes a 1/2 is nice for families that want some lessons but also want to ski together.
Any “secrets” to share?
One thing that is really fun are the Adventure Alleys, which are marketed to kids, but fun for all skiers. These are little, easy trails through the trees. Some of them are banked and groomed. They aren’t for beginners, but they are fun for families who like winding through the trees. The Adventure Alleys give you a different, fun experience and they are much safer than simply popping off into glades. Look for them on the trail map.
Any advice for families coming to Park City?
If you want the total ski vacation experience, definitely stay in the town of Park City as opposed to out by the Canyons or up at Deer Valley. Staying in town gives you the ski town experience.
In addition, you can ski at Park City much less expensively if you stay in Salt Lake City. Salt Lake is only 30-40 minutes by car. On our last visit we stayed at the Baymont Inn for $65 a night. $65 got us a decent place to sleep, but we were in the city and gave up the quaint ski town atmosphere.
Where do you like to eat at Park City Mountain Resort?
A local recommended Bandit’s BBQ. It was fun. The service was great and it was very family-friendly.
What is your favorite memory of Park City Mountain Resort?
Park City is the first place my five year-old son has skied outside of the midwest. Before we came, he watched a Discovery Channel documentary and was convinced that Park City is on the world’s second highest mountain after Mount Everest!
Park City is nice because you can get rather high on the mountain and still have green runs all the way down. My son was so proud when we calculated that he’d skied 2300 vertical feet in one run.
What is your favorite thing about family skiing?
When your kids smile and you can tell that they are having a good time!
The Brave Ski Mom Adds…
Our brave ski family has skied Park City Mountain Resort and we were very excited about the mountain.
The terrain covers it all: from green groomed runs top to bottom, to amazing expert bowl skiing in Jupiter Bowl and off of McConkey’s, with everything in between. Look for the resort’s Signature Runs. These are specially groomed trails. They are marked on the map and offer the best of the best, especially for intermediate skiers.
And while Eric and I love skiing Park City Mountain Resort, we certainly aren’t experts. For more of the inside scoop, check out the Park City Snowmamas.
Eric Wagnon is a free-lance ski writer. He is the National Skiing Writer for Examiner.com and contributes to various other ski websites. Follow him on twitter @skiingexaminer.
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