Insider's Guide - Winter in Heber Valley

Posted On
Jan 23, 2020
Northern Utah
State Parks

The mystical magic of the Heber Valley is extra extraordinary in the winter. Where else in Utah can you: swim in a geothermal crater; visit an ice castle; take a ride on a holiday-themed historic railroad; enjoy an old-fashioned horse-drawn carriage ride; take a zipline tour; go tubing at a 2002 Olympic venue; enjoy 200 miles of snow-covered groomed trails; meet the cows on a local dairy farm tour; take a snowmobile tour; go ice fishing; go ice skating, shop along the streets of a Swiss village; and then enjoy dinner at locally-owned farm-to-table restaurant? Wow, that’s a lot of options…way more than you can do in one trip. And the best part is that this destination is just a short drive (45 miles) from Salt Lake City.

Stay Warm - One of the most unique experiences in the Heber Valley is the geothermal spring-fed Homestead Crater. The mineral-rich waters of this 55-foot tall, beehive-shaped, limestone formation maintain a consistent temperature of around 95 degrees Fahrenheit.

Work up a sweat - Wasatch Mountain State Park is the perfect family cross-country ski venue. They groom a 1.3-mile section of the golf course and provide inexpensive onsite gear rentals at the Visitor Center. Rentals are $12/adults, $6/kids for cross-country ski packages (skis, boots, poles), and snowshoe rentals are $6/adults and $3-6/kids.

Test your speed on the longest tubing lanes in Utah. Soldier Hollow, a 2002 Winter Olympic Venue, offers 1,200-foot-long tubing lanes. Tubing sessions are scheduled in two-hour blocks and reservations are recommended.  

Take a guided tour - Get your adrenaline pumping on a fully-guided snowmobile tour through the pristine backcountry of Wasatch Mountain State Park with Wasatch Excursions. Or take in the winter sights at a much slower pace with a guided horseback ride. KB Horses is locally-owned and operated offering one to four-hour private custom tours.

For the princess…or prince in the family - May we suggest a horse-drawn carriage ride to the magical ice castle. This, straight out of a fairy tale, adventure is made possible by Rocky Mountain Outfitters and Midway Ice Castles and is sure to be one of those extra-special memorable childhood experiences.

Dinner is served - Dining options are plentiful in the Heber Valley, and the best way to get a true taste of an area is to keep it local. The Back 40 Ranch House Grill is a locally-owned and operated, family-friendly farm-to-table restaurant. For the sweet tooth in the family, be sure to check out the gooey cinnamon rolls at Midway Bakery on Main Street. A few other not-to-miss local favorites are Lola’s Street Kitchen and Dairy Keen – Home of the Train.   

Nighty-night - Overnight opportunities abound – everything from hotels to condos to log cabins. Zermatt Resort located in Midway, is a Swiss-inspired 300-room resort, featuring a full-service spa, indoor swimming pool, family-friendly restaurant, and a European bakery. If a cozy log cabin is more your style, the cabins at Wasatch Mountain State Park are available year-round.


Heber Valley