Though Park City is renowned and beloved for its alpine skiing, there are plenty more ways to enjoy the snow if the thought of whizzing down a mountain at 20 mph (or faster!) is not for you.
Here are a few of them:
Nordic (Cross Country) Skiing
Did you know that cross country skiing is way, way older than Alpine skiing? It’s 22,000 years old, to be exact!
Here are a couple of interesting facts about cross country that is sure to get you started in this fun, invigorating leisure activity.
- It burns more calories per hour than any other sport. ‘Nuff said.
- Apart from the initial investment, it’s free! Explore endless trails without spending any additional money.
- It’s a great way to connect with friends and family. Unlike many sports that leave you too winded to talk, cross country skiing has you gliding along while enjoying easy conversation.
Two free trails in Park City are Basin Recreation and Round Valley.
The biggest difference between cross country skiing and snowshoeing is that snowshoeing has a much smaller learning curve. With cross country skiing, you’ll have to learn the appropriate gait and movement. With snowshoeing, it’s far more similar to just walking or hiking.
A few fun facts about snowshoeing:
- While not as old as cross country skiing, snowshoeing can trace its roots back about 5,000 years to central Asia.
- Snowshoeing is considered a form of hiking. Practitioners of this activity say, “If you can walk, you can snowshoe.”
- It’s an excellent cardio workout, burning as many calories as cross country skiing.
- There are numerous trails in Park City to enjoy snowshoeing.
For a fun and thrilling way to enjoy the beauty of the Park City area, rent a snowmobile and have an adventure as you view the peaks and valleys in our area! There are several outfitters in Park City who can get you started. Check out Backcountry Snowmobiling in Coalville, in a private, rural canyon minutes from Park City. Thousand Peaks Snowmobiling, in Oakley is about 20 minutes from Park City and Rocky Mountain Outfitters is in the Weber Canyon area.
While perhaps not exactly an alternative to downhill skiing, the thought of ice skating conjures up such lovely thoughts, like Christmas time, festive music and hot chocolate. If you’ve ever enjoyed the movie Serendipity, then ice skating surely holds a special romantic spot in your heart. The Park City Resort Center Ice Rink is open to the public and offers all-day passes and skate rentals.
Though snowbiking is not as well know as some of the other winter activities listed above, it’s growing quickly in popularity. As Park City is a haven for mountain biking, thanks to its 400 miles of maintained trails, it only stands to reason that enthusiasts don’t want to give up their beloved sport when the snow starts falling.
Enter the fat tire bike, more commonly known (and probably more PC) as a snowbike! These are high performance bicyles with special oversized tires to easily get you through snowy terrain.
If you’d like to try your hand at this new-ish sport, you can rent a snowbike at one of several outfitters, such as Pedego Park City, Storm Cycles, or Jans Mountain Outfitters. Either take an experienced guide along or simply get their tips for the best trails.
You thought tubing was just a summer sport, didn’t you? It brings up mental images of bathing suits and rivers. Well, here’s a whole new way to think of this fun sport!
This family-friendly activity consists of a giant inflatable ring, a rope tow and an exhilarating ride down the hill! It’s perfect for both kids and kids-at-heart.
Give it a try at Gorgoza Park or Soldier Hollow.
However you decide to spend your outdoor time on your Park City vacation, we hope it creates wonderful, lifetime memories for you and your loved ones.