During prohibition, you’d be hard pressed to find a western town that was as wild as Ogden, UT. The city backed up to northern Wasatch was built on opium trade, brothels, and booze.
Ski Hill Shoutout: Beaver Mountain, Utah | ‘All Ski, No Resort’
Nowadays, the small city retains the same wild west feel just without the prostitutes and dens of ill-repute. Add in some of the best ski hills, a vibrant nightlife, not to mention the ‘Greatest Snow on Earth’ and Ogden is easily in the running for ‘Best Small City For Skiers/Riders In The USA.’ Here are the reasons why…
5) Chutes, Steeps, and “Powder Maniacs”
Three ski areas are within a 35 minute drive of downtown Ogden and they are all special for their own reasons. For skiers who dig steeps, Snowbasin is about as good as it gets in the Wasatch with way smaller crowds and better amenities than those found in Little Cottonwood Canyon.
For those quirky powder hounds whose personality is as big as their skis, the upside down Powder Mountain is not to be missed. PowMow even claims to be the biggest ski area in North America with its 8,464 acres of skiable terrain and although not all of that land is completely lift-accessed (they rely heavily on cats to transport skiers)– the ski area is technically the largest ski area in North America and almost double the size of Whistler Blackcomb!
4) 25th Street
Whoever said Utahns don’t party obviously never hung out on 25th street on a Friday night. Ogden’s downtown thoroughfare is the centerpiece of the town’s nightlife and used to house those dens of ill repute we mentioned earlier. Nowadays, those dens are not so dark. These days a variety of modern eateries and old school watering holes serve up local beer, distilled spirits, and some of the best pizza west of the Mississippi.
3) Snow Business
Thanks to the low-cost of living and its proximity to rad mountains, Ogden is becoming a center of the American ski industry. Brands like Amer Sports (Salomon, Atomic, Arcteryx) and a multitude of others are moving into the Ogden Valley, bringing with them jobs and upward mobility. Why work to ski when you can ski to work?
“When we came to Utah, Salomon wasn’t as known for its trail-running products. I credit the trail system above Ogden for helping push that aspect of our line. Our employees talk more about the trails than the skiing, although they love that too, but I didn’t expect that. There are a dozen trailheads right near our office.” – Mike Dowse, Amer Sports
2) Cost Of Living
With costs of living in a 1 bedroom place in Jackson and Aspen going for over 1.2k/month on average, it’s hard not to think ski bumming is a priced out dream that disappeared years ago. Not the case in Ogden, where the average rent for a 1 bedroom is a mere $577/month. Add in a ski pass at PowMow for $725 (*adult) and all of a sudden there’s money left to blow on new skis.
1) ‘The Greatest Snow On Earth’
“The Greatest Snow On Earth” is the Utah slogan and the slogan doesn’t just apply to the Cottonwood Canyons. In fact Ben Lomond, the northern Wasatch’s most prominent peak just beyond the Powder Mountain boundary regularly records the deepest snowpack in all of Utah. Compared to their neighbors down south, the ability ability of Ogden residents to find untracked days after a storm is unmatched in the state.