An alpine ski area located in the Big Cottonwood Canyon
History of Solitude Ski Resort
One of the top snowboarding and skiing resorts
Solitude Ski Resort is an alpine ski area located in the Big Cottonwood Canyon of Utah. The resort has been a popular destination for skiers and snowboarders since its opening in 1957. The resort offers a variety of terrain, from beginner to expert and everything in between.
The history of Solitude Ski Resort began with the vision of Robert M. Barrett, who dreamed of building a ski resort in the Wasatch Mountains that would offer a unique experience. At the time, there was only one other ski area in Utah - Alta Ski Area - and the competition for space and resources was fierce.
In 1956, Barrett purchased land at an altitude of 8400 feet in the Big Cottonwood Canyon, eventually becoming Solitude Ski Resort. The property had a long, winding road that led to the top of the mountain, which provided ideal terrain for skiing. With this purchase, Solitude Ski Resort was born.
Barrett began construction on the resort in 1957 and by December of that year, it was open to the public. It boasted four ski lifts - two T-bars, one J-bar, and one chairlift - as well as a lodge area. Initially, only three runs were available for skiers and snowboarders to enjoy.
The early years of Solitude Ski Resort saw great success. Thanks to its convenient location and Barrett’s dedication to making the resort a top-notch skiing destination, skiers and snowboarders flocked to the area. The resort was able to expand quickly, adding more runs, lifts, and amenities over time. By 1965, the resort had grown to nine runs and seven lifts.
During the 1970s, Solitude Ski Resort continued to expand. The resort added two more chairlifts as well as a base lodge at the bottom of the mountain where skiers could rent equipment and enjoy food and beverages. In addition, snowmaking capabilities were also installed in order to guarantee a good skiing experience regardless of the snowfall.
Gary DeSeelhorst Ownership
In the late 1970s, Gary DeSeelhorst purchased Solitude Ski Resort and began a new chapter in its history. He was dedicated to making the resort the premier skiing destination in Utah. Under his direction, the resort continued to expand with more lifts and runs - eventually reaching a total of 15 lifts and 45 runs by 1992. In addition, he introduced a new snowmaking system that allowed the resort to produce more snow in less time.
DeSeelhorst also made improvements to the base area and added additional amenities for visitors. He built an outdoor ice rink, a tubing hill, a ski school, restaurants, and bars. These additions helped make Solitude Ski Resort one of the top ski resorts in the Intermountain West.
Alterra Mountain Company Ownership
In 2018, Solitude Ski Resort was purchased by Alterra Mountain Company and became part of the Ikon Pass. Since then, the resort has seen improvements, including new lifts, runs, terrain parks, restaurants, and more. The resort also offers a variety of amenities such as ski-in/ski-out lodging options, après-ski activities, and a variety of other activities.
Modern-Day Solitude Ski Resort
In recent years, Solitude Ski Resort has continued to improve and expand its offerings. The resort now offers over 50 runs spread across three peaks, four terrain parks, and a tubing park. The base village has also been completely remodeled with new restaurants, shops, and lodging.
In addition to skiing and snowboarding, visitors can enjoy a number of other activities such as snowmobiling, sleigh rides, and Nordic skiing. In the summer months, guests can take advantage of the resort’s hiking trails and mountain biking paths.
Today, Solitude Ski Resort is one of the most popular ski destinations in Utah and remains a favorite among locals and visitors alike. With its incredible terrain, convenient location, and variety of activities, it’s no wonder why Solitude Ski Resort continues to draw skiers and snowboarders from all over the world.