We get it, snowshoeing is basically just hiking in winter, but the additional gear and layers make it feel like a truly outdoorsy adventure that we absolutely love. From the workout to the lookouts, Utah is a playground of trails and vistas suited for snowshoers, ranging from the trail-map-toting resort goer, to the trail-making pioneer.
Here are five of our favorite spots across Utah, to strap on our snowshoes, grab our ski poles, and march into the woods.
Over five miles of mapped trail lead to and from Solitude Mountain Resort, just 30 minutes from downtown Salt Lake City in Big Cottonwood Canyon, one of the snowiest canyons in North America. The snowshoe trails parallel and traverse 12.5 miles of Nordic Ski track, all leading to gorgeous views of a wintery Silver Lake, a popular destination in the summer for hikers and trout fisherman, sitting high in the Wasatch at well over 8,000’. Grab a mile here and there or head out for the whole adventure. Group rates, guided tours, and rental gear are all available at the resort base.
For snowshoers who enjoy more of a ‘choose your own adventure’ experience, we recommend paying the $3 entrance fee and heading up Millcreek Canyon, just minutes outside Salt Lake City at the base of the Wasatch Mountain Range. With four trailheads off the main canyon road and the freedom to bring your four-legged friends along for the trek, we love this all-levels option.
Millcreek Canyon is also a great stop for families with kids of all ages. Park just south of the winter gate and don’t forget the sled. The road is wide and well-groomed for snowshoers and skinners and after a casual hike up, the kids will love sliding back to the car.
Just up the I-80 lies the international destination of Park City, UT, home to nearly 700 acres of beautiful single-track available year-round. Aptly named Round Valley, this preserved open space offers miles of looping trail interwoven amongst Nordic skiing and Fat Tire Biking. Yet despite its popularity, we never get tired of snowshoeing against the panoramic backdrop of America’s largest ski resort, Park City Mountain and the iconic and picturesque Deer Valley Resort.
With multiple trailheads from every side, Round Valley is truly a journey of your making. Whether you want fresh powder and rolling switchbacks or wide-open views and a casual stroll, there are few places with more accessibility, and parking is free!
For amazing views of frozen waterfalls, mountain peaks, and proximity to lunch with no shortage of ambiance, snowshoeing at Sundance Mountain Resort is our version of a perfect date night. Wind through six miles of wooded Aspens and evergreen Pines offering peek-a-boo views of both Mt. Timpanogos, Utah’s second highest mountain in the Wasatch Range, and Stewart Falls, one of the region’s most popular summer hikes. Snowshoes are full-day rentals so take your time, take your camera, and take someone with you.
When we think of snowshoeing, southern Utah doesn’t always come to mind. But winter doesn’t have to end in Northern Utah. Throw your gear in a snow-friendly vehicle and head south to Cedar Breaks National Monument, just 20 miles outside Cedar City and less than 10 minutes from Brian Head Ski Resort. Make your own trail and test your lungs at 10,000’ in one of Earth’s natural amphitheaters. While the park is open to visitors year-round, the public facilities are closed in winter. Be sure to pack plenty of food, water, and warm clothing. Trails may not be visible with the lower foot traffic so this is truly an experience for the trained snowshoer who is looking to hike in, hike out, and make way for a snowmobile or two. But once you’re in, savor the views of winter in the West.
Searching for more ways to keep your body moving in the winter? Check out our favorite off-mountain activities and winter hikes.
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