Winter Adventure Guide: Five things that you can only do here
There’s plenty to do in Park City. Some of it you can only do around here. Whether it’s soaking in an underground hot spring pool, making a bobsled run or tasting locally-produced whiskey, take advantage of what makes us, us.
A Swiss Village over the Hill
With Mt. Timpanogos looming high above and with its distinctive Alpine architecture, you can understand why Swiss immigrants felt at home in the town of Midway. Just a 20 minute drive from Park City, you’ll find an authentic, quaint town with shops and restaurants. And, here, the Homestead Resort has been a gathering place for families since 1886, drawn by the numerous, natural hot springs.
Today the Homestead is a nostalgic, but modern resort. It also features the Crater; a 55-foot tall, beehive-shaped stone cone with a hot spring at its core. The hole at the top allows sunlight to pour down onto the fresh, mineral water pool, which is always around 96 degrees Fahrenheit. Snorkel, float, swim, scuba and just enjoy this relaxing and amazing setting, even on the coldest and snowiest day.
From Silver to Snow at the Park City Museum
In 1868 soldiers found silver on the high ridge above what is now Deer Valley Resort. It was the beginning of what would become one of the richest mining districts in the world. Hundreds of millions of dollars in silver, zinc and lead were pulled from the deep tunnels and shafts, attracting thousands of miners (mostly immigrants) to labor here.
Later, in the 1930s the deep snows started to attract skiers and ski jumpers to the mountains. In 1946 the first lift was built at Snowpark, which is now the base of the Deer Valley Resort. As the mines dwindled, skiing boomed with the creation of what is now Park City Mountain Resort. Deer Valley was created in 1981, and would go on to host the mogul and aerial competitions during the 2002 Winter Olympic Games. Park City Mountain hosted the giant slalom, and snowboarding halfpipe and parallel giant slalom events as well.
The Park City Museum, in the old City Hall at 528 Main Street, is a great place to see the artifacts, hear the stories and learn about both our mining heritage, and town’s rebirth as a winter sports mecca.
Jump and Bob
Just a few miles north of town, the Utah Olympic Park is worth a visit. It was the venue for the bobsled, skeleton, luge and ski jumping during the 2002 Winter Olympic Games, and is still a training site for future Olympians.
Make sure you tour the Joe Quinney Winter Sports Center, where you can trace the history of snow sports in Utah and Park City, and upstairs, see the photographs, medals and costumes from the 2002 Winter Olympic Games. If you’re game, then hop aboard the 4-person Comet bobsled ride, where you’ll race through 15 turns on a 133-meter track of ice to the finish. It’s more than a rush.
Fast and Close
If there’s one thing that sets Park City apart from any other resort town in America, it’s the proximity of Salt Lake City and its international airport. It’s only a 35 minute drive up the canyon, which means that if you’ve flown in by noon, you can be on skis soon.
Or, head to the city after a day on the slopes, and watch a Utah Jazz game, attend the Utah Symphony, visit the astounding Utah Museum of Natural History and enjoy the surprisingly vibrant restaurant and bar scene. Temple Square is also one of the main attractions, and attend a performance by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir every Sunday. The doors open at 8:30 a.m., but come early. The seats fill up fast.
Brews and Spirits
During Prohibition, Park City was anything but dry, and today there’s a burgeoning brewery and distillery industry here. For interesting beers, try the Polygamy Porter from the Wasatch Brew Pub on Main Street, and offerings from Red Rock Brewing at Kimball Junction and Squatters Brewpub.
It’s all copper stills, now, instead of bathtubs, and High West Distillery is a must-visit while in town. Sample some American Prairie bourbon, Double Rye or Campfire at the High West Saloon on Park Avenue, or head to the tasting room at the Blue Sky Resort near Wanship. Now, you can try out the new Alpine Pie Bar on Main Street, and pair distinctive cocktails with fresh-baked treats.
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