The mountains, the clean air, the intense aerobic activity. Cross-country skiing isn't an alternative to downhill. It's a spectacular way to appreciate your surroundings.
- Even though you're not arcing turns on 30-degree slopes you're still skating under some. Make sure you check with the Utah Avalanche Forecast Center on your way out.
- The Utah Nordic Alliance (TUNA) and the Nordic United Club have beta on cross-country trail conditions and upcoming events.
- Show up to the Winter Trails Day and TUNA Demo Day at Mountain Dell every January for the annual, free beginner lessons and ski demos.
Life comes at you pretty fast when you alpine ski or snowboard. It's just the opposite when you slap on a pair of Nordic skis and beeline for one of the hundreds of trails in the Wasatch. You glide at your own pace with plenty of time to take in your scenery. And all for a lot less than the price of a resort lift ticket.
Where to Go
Utah's cross-country roads and trails ribbon through the Uinta and Wasatch Cache national forests, over BLM land and across the higher-elevation golf courses. Mill Creek Canyon, The Homestead and Soldier Hollow in Midway, White Pine Touring Center in Park City, Mountain Dell Golf Course, Solitude Nordic Center, and Sundance Nordic Center are just a handful of the most popular destinations for skinny skiers.
White Pine Touring Center in Park City - The White Pine retail shop runs the Nordic center surrounding the Park City Golf Course. Three groomed loops present 20 km terrain for all levels of skier. You must purchase a day pass to use the track. Rentals and lessons are offered on site. (435) 649-6249.
Soldier Hollow - Site of the 2002 Winter Olympic Nordic events has 31 km of trails on two loops. (435) 654-2002.
Wasatch Mountain State Park - The Homestead Resort in Midway operates the cross-country concession on their golf course and at Wasatch Mountain State Park; there's 12k of groomed cross-country skiing at the Resort, and 18k with diagonal stride and skating lanes in the park. Nordic ski rentals are available at both sites. (435) 654-1791.
Alta Ski Resort in Little Cottonwood Canyon -There's a 5km groomed track at mid-mountain and a 3km loop near Wildcat. You'll need to buy a Nordic Pass or Track Ticket to get on the Sunnyside Lift. Rentals are available. (801) 799-2293
Solitude Nordic Center in Big Cottonwood Canyon - 20K of classic and skate trails. Call (801) 536-5774 for lessons, rentals and tours. You must purchase a Nordic day pass to use the facility.
Sherwood Hills near Logan - 20 km of trails (5K groomed). Lessons must be booked in advance. Rentals available. (435) 245-5054.
Sundance Nordic Center in Provo - 15k of groomed trails. Lessons, rentals and demos are available. (801) 223-4107.