Words: Eric Porter
Photos: Tim Zimmerman
Park City is a special place, full of people who love to ride bikes and spend their time outdoors. When I was looking for a new place to live 8 years ago, I came to check out the town and ended up with a lease signed on a house by the end of the weekend. It wasn't what it is now, but I could see the potential. There were a good number of XC trails, a couple DH shuttle trails, Deer Valley had a few trails and the NORBA course, and the city dirt jump park was being built.
Since then, we have seen exponential growth in both the amount of riding available, and the variety. Canyons Resort has come on board with a full on jump trail style bikepark, we have jump/flow trail spots such as Arcylon and Trailside, the DJ park has turned into something pretty amazing, and our XC/All Mtn trail network has exploded. We even have a free city bus system that accesses a lot of the up trails, and on weekends will have busses full of DH bikes shredding laps!
There are a number of reasons for this growth, but the main driving force is a community of bike riders that cares about the future of our trail network, and works their asses off to make the vision become reality. I am constantly blown away by the number of full time trail builders and volunteers we have working nonstop to build fun stuff for my friends and I to ride our bikes on. The best part is that with this growth in riding terrain, the local city government and local businesses have seen a huge increase in their summer revenues, and now everyone is behind making it an even better place to go.
Tim, the photographer for this article told me, "I thought I knew how rad Park City was, but until this trip I really had no idea." Tim has been pretty much everywhere too, and has done a lot of ridiculous stuff that normal people don't do; google him... The best part is Tim only got to scratch the surface of what we have to offer. After all the years I've been here, there are still trails I haven't had the time to ride yet! Bottom line, do yourself a favor and get down here for a bike vacation. Even if you don't like it here (you will like it here), you can cruise 3 hours down to Moab and have a blast there! Better yet, hit both spots in one trip!
| This means a lot. For those who don't know, Park City is the only IMBA Gold Level Ride Center in the world. Not that there aren't other amazing places all over, but this means that Park City has the full variety of trails from beginner to pro level, from XC to DH to Dirt Jump, and has excellent accessibility.|
| Park City is still fairly chill in the summers, compared to the ski season. You can find killer deals right now renting a nice condo like this that includes bikepark lift tickets and everything. Get it while it's good, only going to get busier as the years go on.|
| We woke to snow frosted trees on the first day of our trip to park City at the end of September.|
| This is Doug Dalton's bike. Doug is responsible for a lot of behind the scenes innovations in the bike world, mostly stemming from his time as a World Cup race mechanic for the Cannondale teams, including Myles Rockwell, Missy Giove, Anne Caroline, Cedric Gracia, Aaron Chase, and the list goes on. When those guys needed something for their bikes, Doug would make it himself, giving the team that edge to win. He carries on the tradition of modifying based on need with his moto brush guard setup for the cold snowy days. It may not look cool, but it works!|
| White Pine Touring's Scott House dials in a rental bike for our crew. White Pine offers guided tours of Park City's immense amount of terrain, along with high-performance rentals. During our trip Scott helped make decisions on which trails to ride that would be the most fun and also respect the wet conditions we faced as to minimize damage to the trails.|
Hands down, this was the sketchiest shuttle of the year! Driving up Guardsman Pass with the intention of riding the Wasatch Crest trail, we expected slick roads, but around a steep corner near the top we found ourselves on a sheet of ice from the first part of the storm the night before. It took a team effort to get the van and trailer safely turned around before we hiked on up to the start of the trail.
| Decision making time at the top. We opted for the shorter but equally as fun route down the mountain, which still involved 3k feet of descending on super fun trails!|
| Getting my first pow turns of the year! I love winter almost as much as I love summer, so when the snow starts flying I get fired up about snowboarding and I slash everything in sight! Pretty much got my snowboarding kit in effect, face cover, goggles, gore-tex shell.|
| We had pretty unreal conditions this day, 3 inches or so of snow on top of perfect dirt, so you could slide when you want to and also dig in and hook up when you need to. We chose to ride Pinecone trail instead of the Crest because of the weather. It's pretty much like a pumptrack all the way down with tons of stuff to double up and play on around every corner.|
| As we got lower in elevation the trail was already melted off. This is a fun section of mid mountain trail, just before you get to Canyons Resort. This is a 26 mile trail that stays right around the 8,000' elevation and goes from Deer Valley, through Park City Resort, and on over to Canyons. The ski runs you can see in this photo are at Park City Resort.|
| Another cool section of Mid Mountain trail, ripping through an old Rock Slide.|
| The city is also sometimes known as Bark City. We like our dogs here!|
| Nothing else in the world like an Aspen forest, so beautiful.|
| Scott House leads the Angry Singlspeeder, aka Kurt Gensheimer through a super tacky turn.|
| I always wonder what the story is behind this car. It's at the bottom of a popular trail that finishes in town. Seems like someone drove it up the hill as far as they could and just left it, but I'll bet it's much more interesting than that!|
| I love how orange the scrub oaks turn, looks awesome with the green and yellow aspens and the brown dirt and white snow.|
| Scott House and Sakeus Branson ripping across a fun section of trail in the fog. We pretty much never get fog here so this is a special treat!|
| You can always use #moreberms.|
| One of my favourite parts about Park City is all of the old mining ruins all over the place. I love imagining what it was like back then, those guys were way tougher than us!|
| Scott House is a driving force behind getting our MTB scene in front of the world. He's a great guy and just loves to ride, he's one of many awesome locals that help make all of this possible!|
| This is the goods right here!|
As you can see from the above, we've got things pretty good here in Park City when it comes to trails and going out for an adventure with the crew. There are endless miles of single track and more being built all the time. But there is more to our town then just amazing trails in the mountains, we got sick dirt right in town too. Our ever growing Dirt Jump/Skills park is great for everyone in the community too.
| Down to the dirt jumps, the moisture was perfect for dialling the jumps. Cody Gessel and Garret Holm are a couple of the guys on the dig crew here that keep the place dialled. If you see them, thank them!|
| Showing my little man Owen the ropes at the jumps, he loves it!|
| My older son Milo has been following all the big guys around the park for a couple years, the kids of Park City are pretty lucky to have a city that fully backs dirt jump parks!|
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