Snowbowl is a mixed bag. Here's why:
-close to town
-relatively cheap (in the broad scheme of things)
-very interesting terrain when the snow is there
-great backcountry access
-family hill vibe
-expensive pass for a family ski hill
-monopoly on the close Missoula ski market, so they get away with moves they couldn't if there were other options (management, pricing, strange practices and backwoods mentality)
-south facing, so when the melt comes, it hits hard
Especially coming from Alta, you'll find it pretty quaint and somewhat lesser in the snow departments. Does that make it bad? No. Snowbowl is far more of a "soul of skiing" experience than Alta at this point in their development.
If you like to ski in the backcountry and tour for your goods, Missoula is just as good as Bozeman. If you're headed to school just to ski, MSU is the better pick. However, some programs are far better at one school or the other, so make those choices carefully (don't go to MSU for writing, for example).
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