At Goldminer’s Daughter Lodge, we can tell you time and time again what sets us apart from the different lodging options you may be considering, but hearing it from visitors who have stayed with us for years feels a little more authentic, not to mention we just love hearing and sharing their extraordinary stories.
Rick Danielson first skied Alta in 1965. At the time he was in high school in Salt Lake City and skied Alta on a $5 lift ticket with the Deseret Ski School. Years later, once his children were old enough to start to enjoy skiing he and his daughter Leslie began an annual ski vacation from Seattle to Utah that continues today, 24 years later. Originally, the annual father-daughter ski trip was three to four days, but it has since grown to seven to eight days.
For the first few years, Rick and Leslie’s annual ski trip was in Park City. Once Leslie had her ski legs, she and Rick were both ready to head to Little Cottonwood Canyon. After their first visit to Goldminer’s Daughter Lodge, they knew they had found their Alta home.
Of course, we have to ask what it is about Goldminer’s that has kept them coming back for so many years, and like we’ve heard before it is both the unique experience and the people that make Goldminer’s so special for them. Skiing in Alta is an unbeatable experience, and Goldminer’s is a catalyst attached to Alta. “We don’t need to consider another lodge…none have the ambiance or the proximity to the Collins chair that GMD offers,” says Rick. “Year after year, we enjoy all that only GMD and Alta can offer.”
Rick and Leslie cherish the low-key atmosphere of Alta. They’ve done the ski town ski vacation. Alta is more of what they look for in a ski destination, and GMD is their Alta home. It’s hard to beat walking out of the front door and having the Collins lift at your doorstep.
For a few years, they would rent a car to get to Alta, but they quickly realized once they had arrived at the Lodge, there wasn’t a need to get behind the wheel. The ski shop is under the same roof, and the food at the lodge is fantastic. Rick and Leslie tend to stick close to home during their Alta vacations. They love sitting in the dining room as a storm comes through enjoying the feeling of anticipation for the next day.
When Leslie was 21 Rick gave her the option to do something else, but she quickly turned him down in favor of continuing their annual Alta tradition. About five years ago, Leslie married a very accomplished skier. They eventually decided to invite her husband, but only for a few days. Two years ago, Leslie had a daughter and had to cut her trip short by a few days, but she’s still made it out each year for their annual trip. Rick looks forward to having his granddaughter join them once she gets a few years older.
Rick encourages parents to take advantage of ski school as their children are learning to ski. Early on in Leslie’s ski career, they would ski the first day together, and Leslie would take a private lesson the second day. They continued this schedule for the first eight years of Leslie’s ski career. With 24 years under his belt, we’d have to say Rick likely knows a thing or two about a father-daughter ski vacation.
We are so happy to have been able to serve as Rick and Leslie’s Alta home for all these years, and we look forward to hosting them for years to come.