Spring: a melancholy time of year for any ski or snowboard fanatic. As the frozen water we've enjoyed all winter long begins to rapidly melt and succumb to gravity, the realization that winter is waning cuts deeper than our snowfall totals.
There is one way to beat the strain of shifting seasons and that is by fully indulging in the spring skiing and shredding scene at Snowbird. With Utah's longest season, Snowbird offers up snow-covered slopes much longer than any other Ski Utah resort around. Should the snow conditions hold, Snowbird typically operates well into May or June. In the event of a banner year, expect to see bedecked skiers and snowboarders gleefully lapping the Little Cloud chairlift on the 4th of July.
For the 20 | 21 season, looks like we'll be skiing throughout May! Snowbird plans to spin lifts daily through May 9th, then Friday-Sunday and Memorial Day on May 31st, conditions permitting. Be sure to check their Mountain Report webpage for current conditions, lift closures, and updates.
If you're feeling a little melancholy about winter's departure, here are FIVE reasons to cheer up and head to The Bird for some spring skiing.
#1: Spring is a Great Time to Learn at Snowbird
Forget chilly temps, thick jackets and snug mittens. April and May are the absolute best time to learn how to ski or snowboard. Just book a lesson with Snowbird's awesome Mountain School. April is typically a warmer and sunnier month to head up the canyon and if you are just learning, it will be a far more pleasant experience if you aren't battling the cold or struggling to figure out how to layer for success. This is especially true for young children. If you are wanting to teach kiddos, spring is the absolute best time to do so. They will be far more successful when there are fewer people and warmer temps.
Snowbird Mountain School begins to wind down in mid-April. Beginning April 11th, private lessons remain available into May with advance booking. Be sure to call ahead and reserve a spot. Conditions and staffing may dictate availability so it's best to reserve well in advance. More info here.
#2: The Legendary Spring Dump(s)
Deep, thick, spring dumps happen every spring, sometimes in sequence. When it isn't sunny and beautiful up at Snowbird in April or May, it's dumping! You can't really go wrong. Like clockwork, winter refuses to quit and there's at least one solid storm cycle or two, or three, in April, May, June...even July! This April, Snowbird has racked in 51" of powder. Many folks give up skiing and snowboarding for golf, mountain biking, or warmer weather sports but it's important to remember that April is often a banner month in terms of powder storm skiing. It's important to set out early in the day! As the sun rises earlier and reaches a higher zenith in the sky, the snow can get hot and thick by midday. In this case, the early bird definitely gets the worm!
#3: Patio + Aprés
A quintessential ingredient of a successful spring ski or snowboarding day involves a healthy dose of sunshine. (Don't forget your sun safety tips!) Luckily, Snowbird has ample space to safely accommodate sun seekers during the Covid-19 pandemic. Grab a beer downstairs in General Gritts or head to the patio and hit The Birdfeeder or The Forklift, snatch a table and enjoy watching the tram climb and descend on its mighty cables. One of my favorite spots is the swanky, slopeside patio at the new SeventyOne restaurant. Fire pits, jaw-dropping views, and hearty, homemade fare make this a wonderful and south-facing spring sun basking spot.
Remember, Snowbird is still practicing responsible Covid-19 protocol so please mask up when occupying public spaces if you're not actively eating or drinking and practice social distancing.
#4: The Wiggle & The Wave
Each year as the season begins to wind down and the snow softens to the texture of warm butter, die-hard shredders and skiers will all work hard to carve out the "Wiggle" in the bowl behind the Little Cloud Chairlift off the Road to Provo cat track. This lengthy whoop-de-whoop is not for the faint of heart. For tips on how to SURVIVE the wiggle - click here!
Careening around corners in soft slushy snow in the sunshine is a quintessential sensation of spring at The Bird. The bravest spring riders may even opt to hit the wave, a big, natural terrain feature near the wiggle where riders often execute huge, jaw-dropping maneuvers. If you are not planning to hit the wave, give this area a wide berth as the landing zone can be huge and folks hitting the wave are traveling at a high rate of velocity and the takeoff is blind.
#5: Sun's Out | Guns Out & The Costumery
In case you hadn't noticed, most skiers and snowboarders are a group of people that fail to take themselves too seriously. Spring at The Bird often involves the baring of tender winter skin to soak up the sun's long-hidden rays. Expect to see short jorts, crop tops, animal onesies, tees and wacky costumes. Groups of friends and locals will often use any excuse to dress up in their favorite retro one-piece, wacky overalls or vintage ski gear. It's a sight to see and you can't beat them so you may as well bust out that bedazzled windbreaker and join in the fun.
Snowbird's 2020-2021 Spring Skiing Lifts Schedule, Operating Hours and Pricing