For the second season at Park City Mountain, options for expert skiers and riders heading up into Jupiter Bowl to catch some steep-and-deep will be fewer.
Leasing negotiations between Vail Resorts, owner of Park City Mountain, and property-owner Silver King Mining Company have stalled, according to both sides, meaning the 115 acres of Scott's Bowl, West Scott's Bowl, Pinecone and several nearby runs will be roped off for the foreseeable future.
Therefore, once sufficient snow has fallen to open up the resort's highest terrain, closure signs will be up on skier's left at the top of Jupiter chair. Two Cooks and Constellation runs have been roped off with “stop” signs. The closure means no access to the upper portion of Pinecone Ridge or backcountry off the north side of the ridge, according to mountain officials.
All the terrain to skier's right off the Jupiter lift to the ski area boundary off McConkey’s Express will be open as usual, said mountain management.
A 14-year lease between Silver King Mining and previous owners of Park City Mountain expired before last season, and negotiations with new owners Vail Resorts have apparently gone nowhere.
The Utah mountain's silver mining history has resulted in patchwork ownership and leasing all over. Park City, former The Canyons and neighbor Deer Valley all sit on privately owned land – an anomaly in the West where the vast majority of skiable terrain sits on land permitted by the U.S. Forest Service.
Land ownership is complicated between Jupiter Peak on the Park City side along the ridgeline to Ninety-Nine 90 Peak on the Deer Valley side. In fact, the Jupiter lift and a portion of the Jupiter Peak terrain is owned by Deer Valley – now controlled by Vail Resorts' rival Alterra Mountain Co.
In fact, it was lease dispute between former owner Powdr Corp. and Talisker Corp, owner of neighbor The Canyons, that eventually led to the purchase of both Park City Mountain and The Canyons by Vail Resorts in 2014. Vail connected the two resorts with a gondola over lower Pinecone Ridge, and renamed it Park City Mountain Resort.