Within 15 minutes of my first ever mountain bike ride in Park City, Utah, I was hunched over a popped tire, gasping for air as I watched my local friends laugh as they flew by… and we weren’t even on the trail yet.
To reach our desired path we had to jump a small street curb and immediately navigate up a narrow, rocky passage. I inevitably failed miserably by not getting enough air and pinching my back tire against it, instantly deflating the tube. The sad thing was, it came as a relief because my lungs were already screaming from the short, uphill trek to the trailhead itself.
A local friend doubled back to help swap in a new tube as I panted uncontrollably and kicked myself for being so out of shape. In between short breaths and long gulps from my camo pack, I gained a whole new respect for Park City locals. No matter the time of year, these guys utilize the incredible Wasatch Mountains as their personal playground and are ridiculously fit as a result.
Although, most people recognize Park City for Sundance and ski slopes, it’s these super active locals that make it such a great stop on my Great American Road Trip*. Unlike most of Utah, the LDS Church doesn’t cast its heavy shadow over the city, which provides a different vibe and community than elsewhere around the country. There’s a great art and music scene, the food is top notch and bars are plentiful.
Luckily for me, I stayed with some local friends who gave me the inside scoop on all things “townie” in Park City. I compiled a list below of everybody’s favorite spots beyond Sundance and winter resorts so next time you’re in Park City you can make the most of it… just make sure to train first!
The Best of Park City:
Best Things To Do:
- Outdoor sports are the greatest aspect of Park City, hands down Bike, ski, board, snowmobile, fish, golf, go nuts.
- Visit the Park City Film Series at the Park City Library every weekend (except July-Aug).
- Shop and eat at the Park Silly Sunday Market on downtown Main Street, every Sunday from June until September. It’s pegged as “An ecofriendly open air market, street festival and commUnity forum where neighbors and friends come together to celebrate our commUnity of fun and funky Park Sillians.”
- The Olympic Sports Park has a ton of epic activities from bobsleds and alpine slides to zip-lines and freestyle long jump shows.
- “Best of the Fest” where Sundance Institute presents complimentary screenings of award-winning films following the Sundance Festival to Locals in Salt Lake, Park City, Sundance Resort, and Ogden.
- Canyons Resort Spring Gruv Spring Festival is the ski resort’s annual celebration of Spring and the end of ski season. Checkout the video below.
Best Deals in Town:
- Like I said the music scene is crazy and almost every night throughout the summer there are free outdoor concerts around the city.
- All the buses in Park City are free.
- Park City’s newspaper, the Park Record, offers 2 for 1 coupons at a ton of great restaurants around the city, and you can bring your own wine for a small ‘corking’ fee.
Best Happy Hour: Ah Sushi
Best Yoga: The Shop (they have heated floors)
Best Ice Cream: Cold Stone at Redstone
Best Pizza: Davanza’s – Great pizza and the word on the street is if you order a certain type of pizza you can purchase something to make you hungry for even more pizza.
- No Name for the bison burger
- The Downstairs for a younger, easier crowd
- High West where they make their own whisky and the Dead Man’s Boot
- The Spur for cougar hunting