By Jerry Warren, Sundance director of mountain operations, utahvalley360.com
Getting the most of the Sundance skiing experience.
With so much variety, that’s a tough thing to pin down. However for me, I love to ski in the mornings. Nothing is more beautiful than the morning sun off Timp. It seems that the light comes from two directions — the sun in the east and Timp to the south west. Also, in the morning, you either get the fresh new snow or the fresh new grooming. I like to rip on either.
As great as the front mountain is to ski, I like to work my way to the back mountain. I like to warm up a bit with some easy slower skiing and rather than riding two lifts in a row to get to the top of the back mountain, I get off Ray’s lift at Ray’s Summit, which is the top of the front mountain. I ski Ray’s ridge to “Lone Pine” run. This is a nice groomed run to the east and around the front mountain to the base of the back mountain and Flathead lift. From there it’s up Flathead lift and over to “Bear Claw” run for some of the best groomed advance/intermediate terrain on the planet. You can’t find a better place to warm up and “get back on em.” I usually ski a bit slower at first, arm a little wide, using somewhat exaggerated movement. This wakes up all body parts that I will need to be ready for the next fun run, and in preparation to ski more dynamically.
At the bottom of “Bear Claw” run, I get on Arrowhead lift that takes me to the top of our skiing mountain and Bear Claws cabin — right out of the old West, a great place to stop for fuel. If it’s a bit cold, I may grab a quick hot chocolate, but usually I’m excited to drop right into “Bishops Bowl.” This run usually gives me the choice of an advanced groomed run on the east side, or powder and such on the west side. This is one of the most exciting big bowls I have skied and this very dramatic view is in all directions — from Utah County to Deer Creek Reservoir to the northern Wasatch range and around to Timp.
I like the statement, “The better you get the better it gets.” As I still continue to work on getting better, I find that the great variety of skiing terrain at Sundance takes away all excuses — and I find I’m getting a little better still. If I want to test my ability on the very steep, it’s “Red Finger,” or to lay the skis over into a deep carving action on the groomed, it’s “Bear Claw” or “Amy’s Ridge.” My love of skiing is as strong now as ever and I plan on this being a big part of my life for years to come.