Just got back from 4 days in Utah boarding. I went with a buddy and his wife, my wife, and my daughter. Got a brother-in-law that lives in Layton, about an hour or less from all the resorts. My wife has 6 brothers and sisters and they always seem to make their way to my house to stay, so I told her we would be staying with them for a cheap vacation whether they like it or not.
Went to Snowbird, Park City, and Snowbasin. First two days were just OK, second two were awesome! Park City was first, but the snow was just alright and a little thin. A good warmup though, and intro to boarding in the west, which I have never been to before. My 8 year old was doing great too, tearing up the blue runs on skis. Wife was not as thrilled, sticking to one green run going 1mph for an hour then in to the lodge to have a drink.
Second day at Snowbasin was pretty cool for me, having never boarded in real powder. Very different than regular groomed trails, and felt I needed to learn how to board all over again. Fell about a hundred times. It was raining at the base, but up top it was just thick and heavy snow. What an experience though. A learning experience.
A good solid day though with tons of fun. Next day was Snowbird, and that was interesting. That place is the real deal. Tons of black and double black diamond runs and very little else. Even the main center green run had a cliff to get on to it and was pretty steep for a green. My kid was freaking a little too. Foggy as hell and couldn't see ten feet in front of you. Snowing like crazy and it was heavy again, so it was tough boarding. This was my toughest day. I fell no short of a thousand times. One digger on a double black was over a ten foot rock that I didn't see because of the fog. Caught me by surprise and I went over it face first as I was trying to stop. I just went "poof" in the powder, not hurt a bit. Very freaky not being able to see though. All I could see to get a reference was the tops of the trees right in front of us that I definitely wanted to avoid hitting. In the trees was better visibility by a little, but the open sections you couldn't see anything except white. I debated between the danger and visibility and danger seemed like more fun, so we stayed in the trees on the black runs. It was my first experience with real powder on steep stuff, and surprisingly I wasn't scared to fall, unlike last year at Sugarloaf in Maine which was a sheet of ice and hurt like hell to fall. Powder almost feels exactly like water, being "in" it instead of "on" it. It took some getting used to. Snowbird was the real deal for sure. Our favorite place was Snowbasin, and we hit that up on the last day again. A little lighter powder this time, and I had my best day boarding. We found a double black with untracked snow and just kept hitting it all day snaking through the trees every run. Awesome day. Perfect finish to a great vacation. I feel wasted though, boarding from 9 to 5 every day and crashing that much. I need to rest up for Big Sky Montana now in two weeks. I have another friend we can mooch off of there.