OUTDOORS & RECREATION

UTA park and ride buses popular with skiers

Jan 11, 2024, 6:59 PM | Updated: Jan 12, 2024, 9:43 am

SALT LAKE CITY — The snow keeps coming, and a lot of powder lovers are packing the canyons to get fresh tracks. It also has a lot of skiers packing on buses to caravan up to the resorts.

On Thursday, Utah Transit Authority ski bus operator Joshua Memea said his weather wish happened.

“For me, seeing the white stuff is like Christmas Day,” Memea said. “Seeing the people, that’s what I love the most is having people on my bus. Having it being full, even better.”

Most of his trips up the canyon have been packed as skiers anxiously awaited powdery conditions.

“With our park and rides being as full as they are, especially on the fresh powder days, I definitely see the frustration in feel the frustration, but that’s where I think my personality comes in and being able to show the people ‘Hey, we’re going to get to you guys. We’ll get you guys up to the mountain safely,’” Memea said.

Ski resorts prepare for influx of snow and people

He said that with resorts cracking down on parking, coupled with the desire to keep Utah’s air clean, riding a bus up to a resort has gained in popularity.

“This year alone, we’ve definitely seen an increase versus with our snowfall last year and the crowds then,” Memea said. “Definitely an increase in people at the park and rides and at our stops.”

Memea also reminded drivers that safety is always first.

“This year, as an operator, from my perspective, I feel like the flow is a lot better. The reservations definitely has helped us get people safely up the canyons and just keep the flow going,” he said.

Drivers need to be aware of how big those buses are.

“Our buses, you know, do not stop on a dime. So we need the room to to come to a safe. Stop,” he said. “Our buses are full,l so there are a lot of people standing on our buses. So if we have to break hard, you know, they’re there may be a chance for an injury. Just give us the room that we need to work.

Riding the UTA bus up or down the canyons costs $5. If you have a season pass to any of the resorts, it’s free of charge. You can get more information by visiting the UTA Ski Service website.

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UTA park and ride buses popular with skiers