Photos and story by Josh Segovia
The long-anticipated Brian Head Resort opening weekend for winter enthusiasts throughout Utah made its debut with tons of stoke to go around the mountain. It definitely didn’t hurt that a winter storm brought lots of coverage to much of the state earlier in the week, and Brian Head Resort, which had the deepest base of all, made for a great start this winter season (thanks, El Niño).
As an avid snowboarder myself, I wasn’t gonna pass up the opportunity to experience the first day of lift operations and scratch that itch. By the time I arrived, the lifts were running and the parking lot was definitely starting to fill up. Plus the weather was blue skies, and with two of the main lifts running including the Giant Steps quad chair, you had many choices of terrain to explore, including some pow stashes and the Bypass Terrain Park with many jib features. After the lunch hour, the clouds started to move in, and the wind picked up with many deciding that it was a good enough first day. The fog rolled in, reaching the base, and the weather visibility turned poor, but not to fret as night skiing kicks in at 4:30 to 9 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and is quite the experience in itself.
A good place to unwind if you’re staying up is none other than Last Chair Saloon—serving burgers, salads, and sandwiches along with a full bar and average resort prices—accompanied with a great view of the skiers making their way back down the hill. A great lodging option, which I took advantage of myself, is The Grand Lodge, offering great pricing, proximity, and all the modern amenities you would need to unwind including an indoor heated pool and indoor and outdoor spas. Leany’s Steakhouse serves breakfast and dinner next to the main lobby, and The Lift Bar & Patio restaurant includes a full bar as well as lunch and dinner options late into the night. Accompany this with a couple of pool tables, three fire pits, and live music most Friday and Saturday nights, you can see why it becomes the popular hangout spot in town. Saturday brought the next wave of enthusiasts, and the conditions stayed bluebird, which made for a great time for all the athletes and spectators at their annual rail jam.
All in all, the resort and its employees offer a very welcoming vibe along with discounted tickets until more terrain opens on the Thanksgiving weekend. All lifts will be operational by the Christmas holiday. You can bet that I will be back to make more turns and memories just like many of my friends and new faces did this weekend. I’d like to give a special thanks to public relations coordinator Mark Wilder for the invite as well as the good folks at The Grand Lodge for helping a ski bum as myself get the season started off on the right foot! See you on the hill! For more information and to plan your next trip in southern Utah, visit brianhead.com and grandlodgeatbrianhead.com. Find more by following Josh Segovia on Instagram.