Park City Mountain Introduces Paid Parking

It’s pay day at Payday Express. Park City Mountain is introducing paid parking at the Park City base area for the 2022-2023 ski season, and I’m certain everyone is going to be extremely chill about it. I’m kidding, of course, as people will most assuredly lose their minds. Hear me out though, because (ducks head) I actually think it’s a good idea. I’m not normally one to defend corporate ski profiteering—and this is most certainly an instance just such a thing—but when a change like this has positive unintended consequences for the community then consider me a bloodthirsty capitalist!

First, the details. Every day this season from December 12 to April 2, it will cost $25 to park in the lots at the Park City base area. Reservations are required with full prepayment. If you carpool with four or more skiers, it’s free to park, but you’ll still need a reservation. If you duck out of work early and show up after 1:00 p.m. it’s free to park. You can hold up to 10 parking reservations per account at any time, meaning if you live with multiple passholders you can get wildly creative and hoover up most of the days you’ll end up going to the hill.

Park City is predicting an 11% decrease in parking demand at the base area. It’s certainly going to keep me from parking there. After all, $25 is a lot to pay to park, but there’s good news: you can avoid paying the fees while helping sort out lingering community issues at the same time. You may have heard ski traffic is kind of a nuisance around here. In fact, it pretty much drives all conversation relating to the community. Carpooling with four people takes those pesky single-occupancy vehicles off the road, reducing congestion, lessening your carbon footprint and allowing you to park for free. That’s seems like a good deal all around.

 Are you one of those no friends on a powder day people? If so, you might be out of luck on the carpool front—and you should probably adjust your attitude because skiing with friends is more fun and if nobody saw you do what you’re bragging about they’ll never believe you anyway—but there are ample public transport options available. Park at the Jeremy Ranch or Ecker Hill park and ride and hop on the High Valley Transit Green Line to skip the frustrating traffic snafus in Kimball Junction, and mindlessly scroll Instagram on a free ride right to the base of Park City Mountain.

The only way we fix ski traffic is if we stop driving so many cars to the hill. Don’t give the resort an extra $25. Take the free bus. It’s free. And it even works if you’re going to the Canyons Base Area or Deer Valley, where parking is still free. Time to be part of the solution. It’s free.

Daily Lift Ticket Caps Are Coming

Paid parking isn’t the only way Park City Mountain is aiming to curb crowds. The resort will be limiting daily lift ticket sales. It’s another calculated move intended to increase advance pass purchases, but if it has the added effect of helping reduce lift lines, locals will likely be for it.

Tony Gill
Tony Gill
Tony Gill is the outdoor and Park City editor for Salt Lake Magazine and previously toiled as editor-in-chief of Telemark Skier Magazine. Most of his time ignoring emails is spent aboard an under-geared single-speed on the trails above his home.

Similar Articles

Most Popular