Get access to everything we publish when you sign up for Outside+.
Getting There To make the 30-mile drive from the Salt Lake City Airport to the areas, take 215 south and then east to the 6200 South exit. Go right at the light and follow the signs. Shuttles: Lewis Brothers (800-826-5844), All Resort Express (800-457-9457) and Canyon Transportation (800-255-1841).
When To Go January, February and March are your best bets for big, fresh powder.
Sleeping In Lodging options in Big Cottonwood Canyon are limited, so book early if you want to stay slopeside. Solitude (800-748-4754) has 90 rooms between the Inn at Solitude and Creekside Condominiums. At Brighton, The Brighton Lodge (800-873-5512) has 20 basic rooms and the Silver Fork Lodge & Restaurant (435-649-9551) has eight rustic rooms. Salt Lake City and neighboring Sandy have thousands of rooms.
Dining Out At Brighton: Molly Green’s offers reasonably priced fare in a classic A-frame setting. At Solitude: St. Bernard’s is upscale with European-style specialties; Creekside Restaurant serves pizza, pasta and salad. And don’t forget the Silver Fork Lodge & Restaurant, on the canyon’s main road, for hearty breakfasts and excellent fireside dinners.
Kicking Butt The aptly named Elevator Shaft is worth the 25-minute hike to the top of Brighton’s Mt. Millicent.
Kicking Back At Brighton, enjoy local micro-brews and a game of pool at Molly Green’s. At Solitude, although the Powderhorn Lodge condos won’t be ready until June 2000, the Thirsty Squirrel bar is scheduled to open midwinter in the lodge.
Activities Solitude’s Nordic Center is Utah’s oldest and features more than 20 kilometers of groomed trails for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.
Don’t Miss The Solitude nightly excursion on cross-country skis to a nearby yurt for a five-course dinner (801-536-5709). Book early: It’s the canyon’s most coveted reservation.
Vital Stats Solitude has 63 designated trails, about 1,200 acres of in-bounds terrain, seven lifts and a 2,047-foot vertical drop. Lift ticket: $39 Season Pass: Not available Call (800) 748-4754 or log onto www.skisolitude.com. Brighton has 64 designated trails, 850 acres of in-bounds terrain, seven lifts and a 1,745-foot vertical drop. Lift ticket: $35. Season Pass: $895. Call (800) 873-5512 or visit www.skibrighton.com.
Utah’s Other Canyon
Utah’s Other Canyon: Mountain Tour, Solitude
Utah’s Other Canyon: Mountain Tour, Brighton
Utah’s Other Canyon: Solitude Village Update