Rediscovering Park City … in the Summer

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Those runs you careen down on your skis or snowboard during Park City and Deer Valley winters?  They are just as fun in the summer, whether on a mountain bike (a little fast for me) or on your own two feet.  We’re spending three weeks in July getting a taste of all the area has to offer in the summer, and having a blast.

In fact, biking and hiking are only two ways of getting down the trails at Park City — ziplines, an Alpine coaster and an Alpine slide are options as well.  Purchase tickets for single rides (which are pricey) or buy an all-day Alpine pass and take advantage of not only those but many other activities for families, including minature golf.  Purchase your all-day Alpine Pass online by 10 p.m. the night before for a 10% discount.  For shorter lines try going early, or midweek.

The ride to the top for the Alpine slide is leisurely  … but that leaves plenty of time to soak in the scenery.  And get your Go Pro ready to record the action as you prepare to zoom your way downhill.  Or clip your phone to your shirt and record a video to make sure your downhill slide is recorded to show off to your friends later.  Kids and adults alike love the ride, and one good and somewhat unique feature is that each cart is individually controlled by you, the rider.  So push the lever back to brake if you feel you’re going too fast, or forward to enjoy the full experience … you have complete control over the speed.  I recommend that you go for it — the  carts will stay on the track so let go and have a great trip down.

After you tire of the slide make your way a few yards over to the Alpine Coaster, also at the Park City base and included in the all-day pass or as a single-ticket ride.  We have to return to try the coaster, as despite clear blue skies the ride was halted for a 30-minute wait because of a lightning strike within 10 miles.  And then 29 minutes into our wait what occurred but a second lightning strike — thus re-setting the clock for another 30-minute wait.  Not wanting to spend any more of our afternoon in line, we headed downhill for dinner.  Fortunately, even though they didn’t have to, the resort refunded the cost of the all-day pass and charged us only for what we actually had been able to ride, and the restaurant gave us a discount as well, to ensure everyone left feeling good about the experience.  We did!  Below is a photo of some people who were able to enjoy the Alpine coaster, which we look forward to enjoying next week.

alpine coasterThe next day, as we headed out on another adventure we couldn’t help but notice a large Farmers Market in the Cabriolet parking lot.  Despite having a full refrigerator back at our townhouse, I couldn’t resist stopping by.  And I’m so glad we did.  We picked up onions too beautiful to resist, and corn that cooked on the grill that night per a Bobby Flay recipe (10 minute salt water soak) was the most delicious corn on the cob I have ever had.  We rounded out the veggies with some garlic scape pesto, grass-fed beef, beefsteak tomatoes and lemon pepper seasoning, all of which I can highly recommend.

The Park City Farmer’s Market takes place at Park City Resort Canyons (Off Highway 224) every Wednesday from 12-6 pm, starting the first Wednesday of June until the last Wednesday of October each year. Each week you’ll find a huge assortment of fresh local goods from Utah Farmers and vendors, usually organic.  It’s a don’t miss!

farmers market

Thursday we headed out for some easy hikes (or walks, which is more my speed).  Using our Alpine Pass a few days earlier we had riden the Gondola at Canyons Village up to a few trails, but this time we were looking for walks that did not require riding a lift (or a very long and steep climb uphill).  In the Bear Claw area we found Rob’s Trail, which was a great choice with moderate incline and plenty of shade.  We stopped after a mile but there are many options for longer hikes through a variety of connected trails, with good maps located at trailhead to point you in the right direction.

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Sunday morning was dedicated to “white water rafting” — although “white water” is somewhat of a misnomer — on the Weber River.  It’s Class II, mainly, so no wild rides, but very fun for everyone and a great way to spend a few hours in nature.  We went with All Seasons Adventures and they did a great job of ensuring everyone stayed safe while having a great time.  Sunday afternoon the Weber River fills with tubers, which makes maneuvering a raft quite the challenge, so we recommend the morning trip or going on another day.  The guides played Tuber Bingo, looking for the predictable “Rafter Walking Back” after someone tries to ride an inflated porpoise or swan down the Class II drop and ends up with mouths full of water (in addition to the porpoise and swan we saw a giant inflated duck that the man was somehow admirably managing to stay upright on).

all seasons rafting

Of course, our favorite way to start and end every Park City day is sitting on our deck, enjoying the sounds of the creek while we barbecue some fish or burgers (and Farmers Market corn!) and wind down with a glass of wine.   And then a stint in the jacuzzi on the deck, watching the squirrels and counting the stars and our blessings each night.

We hope you’ll make plans to visit the Park City area this summer or next.  And if you do, you’ll find either of our two townhouses comfortable, welcoming, and conveniently located to every place you want to go.

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