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The Green Scene

Park City - an Eco-Friendly Mountain Town

The Green Scene

Park City - an Eco-Friendly Mountain Town

By Jane Gendron

When world-renowned snow gives way to high country warmth, Park City transforms into a green-hued playground. For starters, 400 miles of hiking and biking trails weave through aspens groves, conifers, and alpine meadows, filling grateful lungs with sweet-scented sage and evergreen. Preserving that green scene for both moose and mountain biker has become a local priority, making Park City a place where eco meets action – both in terms of extraordinary recreational opportunities and innovative environmental stewardship. Think e-bikes, open space conservation, and net-zero carbon emission goals. As a result, tapping into the local green scene has never been easier or more fun.

 

Ditch the car: step, pedal, e-bike or hop the bus

Much of Park City is walkable and bike-able thanks to designated lanes, paths, trails and underpasses. Getting around town without leg-burning effort is also possible. Share one of the city’s e-bikes (available for pick up and drop off at locations throughout town, from Kimball Junction to Old Town). Or take the bus. The convenient – and free – transit system has been whisking tourists and locals around town for decades. In addition to biodiesel buses, the city recently stepped up eco-efforts by introducing electric buses to the fleet. The full skinny on walkability/bike-ability (including maps), bike share and bus information is available at ParkCity.org. And while you’re wandering or cruising, soak in the public art scene at PCscArts.org or stroll the area’s fine art galleries.

Get out there

Connect with nature or discover a heart-pumping workout by hitting the trails. Thrilling – as well as Zen-like – adventure can be found on an award-winning trail system which caters to all levels of hikers, mountain bikers and equestrians. Beginner/casual hikers and bikers often opt for the relatively flat paved trails, such as the Rail Trail or McLeod Creek, and work up to the undulating, dusty single track of Round Valley. For a bit more of an adrenaline rush, the mountainous climbs and descents throughout the greater Park City area (particularly on the slopes of the ski resorts) include wicked views, gladed and wild flower-strewn escapes as well as technically challenging terrain.

Cool off and get a little exercise at neighboring Jordanelle State Park via kayak, swim or stand-up paddleboard. And for the peace-seeking angler, spectacular fly fishing on the nearby Provo and Weber rivers means plenty of solitude for casting a line – and even encountering the occasional moose or Red-tailed hawk.      

 

Hit the Market(s) – silly and otherwise

Zero waste and zany (in the best sense of the term), Park Silly Sunday Market is an open-air, festival-like gathering that packs lower Main Street every Sunday from early June to late September with an ever-evolving selection of artisans, entertainment and eats – from veggie stands and beer gardens to opera singers and country bands. The goods are hand-crafted and sustainable, everything from cheese boards made from recycled liquor bottles to whacky hats. For another sampling of close-to-homegrown eats, check out the weekly Farmers’ Market (Wednesday at the Silver King parking lot of Park City Resort); and keep an eye out for beside-the-road farm stands, selling everything from sweet peaches to pine nuts.  

 

Revel in the Open Space

Open Space preservation has led to the protection of several swaths of wild places – and the habitats, view corridors and watersheds they encompass. One of the newest members of the open space gang is Bonanza Flat, 1,350 acres straddling Guardsman Pass, where gorgeous alpine lakes, meadows and aspen groves are accessible via hiking trails.

Closer to Interstate 80, Swaner Preserve and EcoCenter is a unique 1,200-acre, wetland-filled preserve and LEED Platinum-certified building, which houses hands-on exhibits and is itself an example of eco-construction. This base camp for all manner of environmental learning and activity offers everything from guided hikes and talks to summer camps and an indoor, ecosystem-themed climbing wall. Be sure to look for elk and Sandhill cranes, whether biking and hiking north of the interstate or peering out over the grassy wetlands from the eco-center’s observation deck.

Of note: The rules on bike access, dog walking and other motorized and non-motorized activities vary at different open space locations. Be sure to take note of signage regarding regulations.

 

Celebrate faster… higher… stronger…greener

Utah is once again an Olympic hopeful, promising to throw its hat in the ring for another Games – most likely in 2030. This time around, there’s a sustainable angle to the bid, which makes a visit to the 400-acre, action-packed, Utah Olympic Park - site of the 2002 bobsled, luge, skeleton and ski jumping events and current training ground for the elite and novice athletes – the perfect homage to sport and Mother Nature. Warm weather happenings range from free, self-guided hiking and museum exhibits to fee-based attractions, such as the zip line, bobsled or Saturday freestyle show (where aerialists perform jaw-dropping tricks as they launch off jumps into the newly revamped splash pool).

So long, carbon. Hello, fun.

As Park City moves toward its net zero carbon goal by 2022, the innovative city- and community-led initiatives for protecting the green scene continue. For more eco-infused fun (and serious, earth-friendly information), check out the happenings at Summit Land Conservancy,  Recycle Utah and Utah Open Lands, the three local non-profits consistently rallying around the green scene… Hops hunting, anyone?

VisitParkCity.com     PCscarts.org  

 

Retreat Yourself

  • Posted On: Jul 9, 2018 at 10:10 AM
  • Category: General Interest, North, South

H2O Round-Up!

  • Posted On: Jul 6, 2018 at 09:25 AM
  • Category: General Interest

SALT LAKE CITY: Wasatch Front’s Urban Heartbeat

  • Posted On: Apr 16, 2018 at 08:45 PM
  • Category: Destinations, General Interest, North
Allow us to introduce you to a mini metropolis that thrives with the good life at the base of canyons with mountains that soar above 11,000 feet: Salt Lake City – population 190,884 in the city proper; 1,153,340 people living in the greater SLC metro area.

The Utah Food Scene

  • Posted On: Apr 16, 2018 at 08:39 PM
  • Category: General Interest
If Utah cuisine makes you think about mayonnaise-based casseroles, Diet Coke, and smorgasbord food buffets, you’re so right–it’s all true. But, and this is a huge but, Utah’s food scene has truly grown up as world-renowned chefs and savvy foodies have discovered Utah’s friendly cost of living and killer access to the outdoors–it’s a lifestyle that the most creative and innovative minds have made home for business and family.

Utah Rock Art and Where to Find It!

  • Posted On: Apr 16, 2018 at 08:23 PM
  • Category: Destinations, General Interest, North, South, State and National Parks

Provo - A Revived Downtown

  • Posted On: Apr 16, 2018 at 12:47 PM
  • Category: Destinations, General Interest, North
Downtown Provo has seen a renaissance with new restaurants, community events and fun attractions. In fact, it was recently named one of the coolest downtown's in America by Expedia. So what makes Downtown Provo so cool?

Mountain Town Mecca– Park City

  • Posted On: Apr 16, 2018 at 12:36 PM
  • Category: Destinations, General Interest, Kids, North
With the snow-melt comes the quieter side of this mountain town, but the word is out and now the streets that were once vacant during the “mud season” (the term the locals use to describe the time between being able to ski and when the trails dry out enough for summer pursuits) are now bustling with action. With average summer temps in the 80’s, zero humidity and a town that sits at nearly 7,000 feet in elevation, this is the perfect summer getaway.

Discovering Ogden

  • Posted On: Apr 16, 2018 at 12:04 PM
  • Category: Destinations, General Interest, Kids, North
From the days when it served as “Junction City” and transcontinental railroad passengers filled the streets, to its days as a venue for the Olympic Winter Games, Ogden has always had a diversity and a vibe that led the New York Post to proclaim it, “The OTHER Utah.”

Heber Valley: An Insider’s Guide to Utah’s Switzerland

  • Posted On: Apr 16, 2018 at 11:54 AM
  • Category: Destinations, General Interest, North, State and National Parks
We’ve been living the dream since we ditched city life eight months ago and moved to the Heber Valley, an outdoor playground with bubbling hot pots, bucolic farmlands, five golf courses, three Utah State Parks, 2002 Olympic Nordic skiing venue Soldier Hollow, three sparkling reservoirs and a Swiss-themed mountain hamlet. The valley is chiseled by the Provo River, a blue-ribbon fly-fishing destination with easy access to the Wasatch and Uinta Mountains.

Park City’s Gold Level Riding

  • Posted On: Apr 16, 2018 at 07:44 AM
  • Category: Destinations, General Interest, Kids, North
With over 400 miles of trail in Park City it can be a bit overwhelming to pick a ride, let alone pick an appropriate ride for you, your family or friends. With summer officially here, now is the perfect time to highlight some rides in the Park City area that may help you plan your next adventure.

Summer on the Slopes

  • Posted On: Apr 16, 2018 at 07:30 AM
  • Category: Destinations, General Interest
Utah boasts a global reputation for the finest winter recreation on the planet. But when The Greatest Snow on Earth™ melts, it reveals lush meadows full of wildflowers and miles of scenic trail to be explored. With such easy access, there’s no better way to beat the heat of summer than a quick trip to the mountains. Summer is magical at Utah’s ski resorts, and whether you’re in to mountain biking, hiking, camping, live music, great food, or scenic lift rides, there is something for everyone.

Fly Fishing 411 Quick Picks

  • Posted On: Apr 16, 2018 at 06:48 AM
  • Category: Destinations, General Interest, Kids, North, South
Utah is the second driest state in the US, but in spite of that the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources has done a terrific job of providing both still water and moving water public fisheries. Many fishing opportunities revolve around reservoirs and the tailwaters that flow from them.

5 Best Star Gazing Places in Utah

  • Posted On: Apr 11, 2018 at 09:05 PM
  • Category: Destinations, General Interest, North, South, State and National Parks
Dark skies are as rare as a happy political discussion for most of us urban- and suburban-dwelling citizens, but, lucky for you, Utah’s star gazing access is as quick as an hour away or as a much-needed 4-hour road trip away. Utah is kind that way–she likes to hand out cosmic extravaganzas night after night after night.

Insider's Guide to Cedar City

  • Posted On: Apr 11, 2018 at 08:11 PM
  • Category: Destinations, General Interest, South
Cedar City is no longer just a pit stop along I-15 on your way to St. George or Zion National Park, and hasn’t been for years. Cedar City is a robust and diverse destination with its Shakespeare Festival, bomber mountain biking trails for endless miles, access to jaw-dropping hiking trails, and a food scene that has everything from Peruvian to Thai to Mexican cuisine that no small town should be expected to contain. But Cedar City consistently goes above and beyond expectations. Be prepared to fall in love with your new favorite southern Utah town.

Routes for the Roadies

  • Posted On: Apr 10, 2018 at 07:51 PM
  • Category: Destinations, General Interest, North, South
Utah’s incredible scenery is about as diverse as it gets. From the lush, high-alpine scenery of Northern Utah to the stunning red-rock formations and desert vistas of Southern Utah, there’s no shortage of unique scenery to immerse yourself in – and there’s no better way to do it than on a bicycle.

Road Trippin’ Spring Break 2018-Adventuring in Moab

  • Posted On: Mar 10, 2018 at 12:03 PM
  • Category: Destinations, General Interest, Kids, State and National Parks
Moab is truly an outdoor recreationalists Utopia...hiking, biking, river running, climbing, canyoneering, rockaneering, zip lining, kayaking, paddle boarding, jeeping, skydiving, ballooning…that’s a whole ‘lotta adventure “ing” options – and the BEST part of all is there are professional guides to safely lead, assist and instruct you and your family in whatever kind of “adventuring” you are up for.

Snow Saftey for the Family

  • Posted On: Mar 6, 2018 at 02:00 PM
Backcountry travel in the mountains can be incredibly rewarding, but there are manageable risks that every family needs to consider before venturing out for a day of backcountry recreation. Avalanches and sudden weather changes are always possible, and a little bit of knowledge and preparation will go a long way to keep your family safe while traveling through the backcountry.

Ski Tips from Local Ski Families

  • Posted On: Feb 13, 2018 at 08:25 AM
Life in the mountains and enjoying the outdoors is one of the highest priorities for our family. Whether we’re skiing, hiking or mountain biking, our time on the mountain always brings so much laughter and truly grounds us as a family. We are all so happy when we’re outside!

Bryce Canyon Winter Festival

  • Posted On: Feb 6, 2018 at 03:22 PM
  • Category: Kids
The Bryce Canyon Winter Festival at Ruby’s Inn is the perfect snowy getaway for families and friends alike.

Utah’s BEST…Family Friendly Ski Retreats

Planning a family ski vacation can be a bit daunting for a variety of reasons: it’s too expensive (lodging, lift tickets, food, lessons, travel), unsure of the quality of the kids’ ski programs, and is the terrain family-friendly? These may be just a few concerns at the top of the list. Well, we have two resorts in Utah that are PERFECT for your next family-friendly ski trip.