'never been to steamboat on a 2 foot powder day' On the contrary, I have. Sure they get tons of snow, and sure some of the terrain is good for a little while. The same with all of the places westbum mentioned. The issue is the SHORTNESS of the vertical. Not necessarily a problem with Silverton and Crested Butte, but Summit County, yes, that's a problem. Utah has long sustained steep runs. They even dump you back out at the bototm of the lift instead of at the top of a long flat traverse.
Westbum also mentioned the backcountry. A majority of the populaiton does not have the knowledge or experience to ski the backcountry. Most people aren't willing to fork over the money to take the classes and buy the equipment to do it safely.
An issue I would like to bring up is crowds. Colorado is fuckin' crowded. I lived in and skied Utah during the winter of 2001-2002, when the Olympics were there. It wasn't nearly as bad at the peak of the Olympics as Colorado is on any given weekend. Given, I skied Snowbasin on the weekends and only skied at Alta and the other more popular resorts during the week. But I've had to stand in half hour liftlines in CO in the middle of the week in the 'off' season.
Drive Right, Pass Left!