I started riding at stevens pass in 1999. Personally I like the fact that there is only 2 high speed quads. I've ridden crystal, and it gets tracked out so fast, it sucks. The only real fun there is the backcountry when the lifts that access it are actually open. They are always breaking down when I go to crystal.
I also like the fact that stevens grooms the backside right at dusk. If the powder falls that night, it covers the groom and leaves nothing but a heavenly layer of white fluffy goodness. If you are desperate for perfectly groomed easy runs stay on the frontside groomers. the backside has more of a solitude feel with slower lifts and shorter lines. Which means it'll get tracked out less and keeps the people that can't wait for bliss away.
The other thing I love about riding stevens is the varied terrain. Unlike crystal, there are also trails everywhere between the trees and powder stashes hidden even on some of the really bad snow days. The side trails are off of intermediate to expert runs. Varying the terrain that you can learn on. If the snow gets bad, they have done an awesome job at expanding the terrain park. so when you can't hit up natural hits, jumps and cliffs, you can tear up precision made jumps, rails and the half pipe.
Another great feature at stevens is all the natural rock out-croppings. You can start learning to drop rocks from 3ft to over 20ft right off or not far from the trails. There's gaps and natural hits everywhere. If you get board start looking for side trails or go play in tye bowl or big chief bowl. Your imagination is your only limitation. There's also a fairly decent backcountry, from corona bowl out-of-bounds, the back of Cowboy mountain, or Heather Ridge across the highway. Overall i love this resort, the variety keeps me coming back.