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Tucked away in a beautiful corner of Midway, Utah, lies Wasatch State Park. This small park is a four-season oasis giving an escape from the busyness of Salt Lake and Park City. Mountain biking, hiking, golfing, camping, and even cross-country skiing can all be done from its boundaries.
I’ve been to this park more than a few times. Its beautiful golf course and campground played host to a family reunion. I always seem to find my way a few times each winter to access its cross country trails.
The golf course is fantastic and and a great play in the mountain air and out of the heat of summer. Be sure to bring extra balls. With the thick growth, hitting one slightly off the fairway can mean saying goodbye to it forever.
Two large cross country loops go around the course and are groomed often (not daily). The loop that starts at the visitor center is beginner and easier than the upper loop up by the Old Homestead. This trail is for more advanced skiers. Rentals can be purchased for a cheap fee at the visitor center.
Some of the Wasatch Mountains most gnarly mountain bike trails can be ridden here. With the road coming over Guardsman pass, it’s easy to drop a car at the visitor center and take another up to the trailheads. The extra car saves you having to bike up the steep trails.
In the winter, many of these trails can be accessed by snowshoes, which can also be rented at the visitor center for a reasonable fee.
There are a few ways to access the park. The main way is off of Highway 40, but if you’re looking for a scenic drive, go up Big Cottonwood canyon over Guardsman Pass (NOT accessible in the winter). Coming this way, you pass several mountain bike and hiking trails. Be sure to have a state park pass if you park at a trailhead.
Just a mile down the road is the Homestead Crater. This underground hot water spring is covered by a 55-foot mound of dirt and is the only warm scuba diving destination in the lower U.S. Definitely worth a visit. If you’re not interesting in scuba diving, you can also book some swim time in the 90-degree water.
Stop at Lola’s Street Kitchen for lunch and order anything with the garlic fries and don’t skip dessert.
If it’s winter, don’t forget to stop at Midway’s Ice Castle (book reservations ahead of time).
If you still have extra energy, keep heading down the road to Soldier Hollow for nighttime tubing and hot chocolate.
If it’s summer, take a lap on the Heber Creeper, a scenic train ride down the canyon.
For an outdoor adventure without ever having to get outside, check out the Lost Gorge Mystery series!