At first glance Woodward Park City can seem a bit intimidating. I get it. The jumps and halfpipe can probably be seen without visual aid from the International Space Station. And there’s a stream of videos from Woodward out there on the internet showing shredders of all disciplines effortlessly tossing progressive tricks into the stratosphere. First impressions can be misleading, however. Yes, you will probably be sharing the slopes with a bonafide X-Games medal contender, but Woodward Park City isn’t just for pros. It might just be the best resort for beginner skiers and snowboarders in the whole state.
It may sound counterintuitive that the very same mountain can be a training ground for the world’s best ski athletes as well as a perfect place for never-evers to step into skis or strap into a snowboard. But Woowdard Park City’s facility and the programs are designed for approachable, safe progression at every level, and the location and layout are amazingly convenient. Whether you’re looking for a place to teach your kids to ski or snowboard, are a beginner yourself or are looking for some instruction to take your skills up a notch, Woodward Park City is ready.
As anyone who has ever skied with kids knows—whether that’s a toddler or a 36-year-old who gets particularly cold and cranky—the clock starts ticking the moment you get out of the car. We’re contending with cold fingers, itchy ski socks and an uncontrollable hankering for chicken nuggets, and with every passing minute the threat increases. Woodward Park City’s location just off I-80 past Parley’s Summit sets it apart when skiing with young, aspiring shredders.
You won’t have to battle powder-panic traffic winding up canyon roads or peak season traffic snarls. Woodward’s parking lot is on the frontage road just a half-mile from the exit in Jeremy Ranch, and the chairlift accessing their entire Mountain Park is just steps away from there. You’ll be out of the car, boots on and riding the lift in minutes. No long walks or lift rides to get to beginner terrain. If you have 90 minutes before a Chernobyl-style meltdown with your four-year-old, you’ll be able to spend 80-85 minutes of it teaching them the joys of skiing and riding rather than trying to impart the character-building lessons that come with waking in ski boots.
Have multiple kids with you who ski at different levels? No problem. At Woodward Park City, skiers and snowboarders all ride from the same area, regardless of skill or experience. The magic carpet and beginner learning area is right next to the Hot Laps Chairlift, which accesses terrain for everyone from beginners to those X-Games athletes. You’ll be able to manage the whole crew without having to worry about traversing the whole mountain on six different lifts to keep everyone happy. Take the extraneous hassles out of skiing and snowboarding with kids, and you’re much more likely to end up with a fun day on the slopes where the takeaway is, “How soon can I waste an expensive college degree by skiing every day?” rather than, “Winter sports are cold and wet. Why don’t we live on a beach?” And that’s the whole point, isn’t it?
Woodward Park City is the perfect launching pad for beginner skiers and snowboarders, whether kids, overgrown adult children or anyone in between. The benefits of the aforementioned convenience is difficult to overstate for any beginning skier or snowboarder, and Woodward’s 3-Hour Ski and Snowboard Lesson Packages are an unbeatable value, especially for people who are new to the sport.
Starting at just $79 per day—prices adjust based on availability and capacity—and including equipment rental and a lift ticket, these ski lesson packages are an incredible deal in a world where three-digit price tags on lift tickets are commonplace. Never-evers can start out in the beginner zone to learn the basics of balance and turning before stepping it up to smaller features in the Progression Parks and eventually to the Peace Park and Main Line. All of this, of course, with Woodward’s top-level coaching helping you tick every box to safely progress with all the requisite skills. Private lessons are also available for people who want a bit more personalized instruction.
The Lesson Packages are the perfect way to get your edges hooked into skiing and snowboarding. For all cringe-worthy jokes you hear about how difficult it is to teach partners and kids to ski and snowboard, there’s a kernel of truth to the belief that family or relationship dynamics can impede the process, and very importantly, make it less fun for everyone involved. And unless you’re a certified, trained ski or snowboard instructor, I’d bet you aren’t a certified, trained ski or snowboard instructor.
Get started the right way, and it will pay dividends down the line regardless of whether your goals are to end up on an Olympic podium or just be able to enjoy more of the mountain on your next ski and snowboard vacation. All the little details like tracking down suitable gear are taken care of and rolled into a program that’s ready to help you have fun and get better from the jump. That’s doubly true when you pair a lesson package with one of Woodward Park City’s flexible membership options—which include a 15% discount on lesson packages— so you can spend more time on the mountain and reinforce what you’ve learned.
No matter what type of skier or snowboarder you are, you can always get better and learn something new. For beginners, the benefits of professional instruction and regular mountain access are clear, but unabashedly mediocre among us can benefit from measured progression while trying to recapture the glory days with tricks we daydreamed about while reading Freeze Magazine (RIP).
One of the best things about Woodward’s membership options is how flexible they are to work for any type of skier or snowboarder. Visiting for a few weeks or more? Grab a 1-Month Pass to squeeze in as many laps as you can, and sign up for a lesson or two along the way to pick up concrete skills and master them on your own. You get 30 days of unlimited access to the mountain park and indoor Action Sports Hub Sessions for an incredible price ($58 for ages 1-3, $115 for ages 4-6 and $229 for ages 7+). Local or in town for most of the season? Sign up for an All Access Membership (three-month minimum) for an even better value ($35 per-month for ages 1-3, $70 per-month for ages 4-6 and $139 per-month for ages 7+).
Regular access to Woodward Park City is guaranteed to improve your skiing and snowboarding, especially when you take advantage of their instruction. If you want to safely progress and have fun doing it, there’s no better way and no better value. As an added benefit, memberships also include access to tubing park sessions in case you want to take a little break from skiing and snowboarding.
Convenience, value and measured progress are all vital for beginner skiers and snowboarders. You’ll get all that and more at Woodward Park City, with the facility and programming to progress to the top of the sport if that’s your goal.
I’ll be taking my 2-year old to Woodward this winter to begin indoctrination into the virtues of skiing. When my wife takes over the duties of holding her upright and convincing her that yes, this is actually fun, I’ll probably take a lap through the Main Line to remind myself of just how mediocre I really am before heading into the lodge, which is right at the base of the chairlift, for some food from The Hive Cafeteria or The Grind Cafe. The Grind Café even has a full-service coffee bar along with a selection of beer, wine and specialty cocktails in case the parents need reminding that yes, teaching your kids to ski or snowboard is actually fun. Don't worry too much about my daughter. I promise I'll get her some professional instruction as soon as her abilities exceed the ability of my extensive selection of pocket snacks to keep her smiling.