THE BEST WAY TO SOLITUDE
Many airlines (including American, Alaska, Continental, Delta, Frontier, Hawaiian, United, US Airways and Southwest fly nonstop from LAX to Salt Lake City. Also, Southwest and Delta fly from Burbank. Solitude lies in Big Cottonwood Canyon, neighboring the Brighton Resort, about 35 miles southeast of the Salt Lake City airport. For a fee, resort-area lodgings can arrange ground transport. If you rent a car in winter, it's probably worth the extra cost to pay for four-wheel drive.
The Inn at Solitude, 12000 Big Cottonwood Canyon, solitude, UT; 877-517-7717, 800-748-4754 or 801-536-5721; www.skisolitude.com. Set in a small neo-Bavarian village, it has 46 rooms, WiFi, heated pool. Guests get access to Club Solitude, which has a big fireplace and game rooms and screens movies. Winter/holiday rates $269-$449 per night, less in November, early December and April. One recent special offered two free nights at the inn to any couple (or family) buying three days' worth of lift passes. Summer rates $165-$205.
Solitude condos, 12000 Big Cottonwood Canyon, Solitude UT; 800-748-4754; www.skisolitude.com. The Crossings, Powderhorn Lodge, Eagle Springs and Creekside vacation rentals are arrayed around Solitude Village with a combined 212 units (studios to 3-bedrooms), including some townhouses and vacation homes. I saw three condo units, which looked stylish and comfortable. Winter and holiday rates for condos are $260-$835 nightly, less in November, early December and April. Summer rates; $125-$280.
The Silver Fork Lodge, 11332 E. Big Cottonwood Canyon, Brighton, UT; 888-649-9551; www.silverforklodge.com. Eight rustic rooms and a restaurant that serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. Room rates $145-$200 nightly.
WHERE TO SKI
Solitude Ski Resort, 12000 Big Cottonwood Canyon, Brighton, UT; 801-534-1400 or 800-748-4754; www.skisolitude.com. Includes 65 named runs on 1,200 acres. Base elevation 7,988; top elevation 10,035; 500+ inches of snow per year. Adult daypass $68 (or $78 for a combined Solitude-Brighton pass). Twenty percent beginner, 50% intermediate, 30% advanced/expert.
Brighton Ski Resort, 12,601 Big Cottonwood Canyon, Brighton UT; 800-873-5512; www.brightonresort.com. Old school family-friendly resort includes 66 runs on 1,050 acres. Base elevation 8,755 feet; top elevations 10,500; 500+ inches of snow per year. Adult day pass: $62 (or $78 for Solitude and Brighton). Children 7 and under ski free. Night-skiing begins in mid-December. Also terrain parks and half-pipe.
WHERE TO EAT
Kimi's Mountainside Bistro, Solitude Mountain Resort, 12000 Big Cottonwood Canyon Rd.; 801-536-5787; www.kimismountainsidebistro.com. Upscale slopeside dining. I had two flavorful soups (one chanterelle mushroom, one roasted chicken and poblano chili), a good peppercorn beef, a tasty salad with goat cheese, apples and walnuts. Dinner entrees $17-$28.
St. Bernard's at the Inn, Solitude Mountain Resort, 12000 Big Cottonwood Canyon Rd.; 801-536-5508; www.skisolitude.com/dining/st_bs.php. The fanciest restaurant in the village. I only had a chance to eat breakfasts there, but they were good. Dinner entrees: $29-$36.
The Silver Fork Lodge, 11332 E. Big Cottonwood Canyon, Brighton, UT; 888-649-9551; www.silverforklodge.com. Eight rustic rooms and a restaurant that serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. I had a good penne pasta lunch there. Dinner entrees: $11-$31.
TO LEARN MORE
Ski Utah: www.skiutah.com