Park City, Utah is a prime destination full of all the winter activities you can think of. Spring and summer also offer plenty of popular and fun events once the snow clears and open up the mountains for hiking. Not every Park City visitor wants to explore the basic tourist destinations; some wish to look for something more individualized. Here are some free off the beaten path activities in Park City that you should check out during your next getaway.

Kayaking on the Water

Most vacationers think of the various winter sport activities in Park City when trying to find activities. While most vacationers are carving down the snow-covered mountains during the winter, the landlocked water and beach are open during the summer. Kayaking and paddle boarding can be enjoyed by the whole family; take them down the beautiful stretch of water that also showcases the Historic Main Street. This is one activity that is not first thought of by typical vacationers in the area. The Jordanelle Reservoir is another great location to get out of the city and enjoy kayaking and paddleboarding.

Scenic Chairlift Ride

The Deer Valley chairlifts are used frequently during the winter months, bringing skiers up the mountain for each run. During the spring and summer months, the chairlift can be used for a free ride that showcases the beautiful mountains in the area. Rides are free for those who decide to hike up the mountain and rest their legs for the ride down. Let your family enjoy the beautiful outdoors with this unique free activity.

Blood Lake

Don’t let the name scare you away. Park City offers amazing hiking trails in and around the area. Get off the beaten path with a hike around Blood Lake hiding away at an elevation over 10,000 feet. This hike is a moderate trail, so younger children may be best off avoiding this trail. Explore the 2.1 miles of lightly traveled wilderness with views that are unbeatable.

Snowshoe Adventures and more Activities in Park City

While the previous activities in Park City have all been summer activities that explore the lesser-known areas for visitors, you can still have a fun off the beaten path outing with your family during the winter months. Pick up your pair of snowshoes and explore the snow-covered terrain while everyone is busy using the ski lift. You and your family can enjoy some privacy while you get views worth remembering.

My first visit to Deer Valley stands out in my memory; everything was hunter green and gleaming gold. It was like leaving Sherman Oaks and traveling to Beverly Hills, all the cars and people and outfits just seemed sparklier. Spending the day at Deer Valley was more like an excursion than our normal ski day at Park City Resort where we just walked across the parking lot from Shadow Ridge Resort with our ski boots on and our skis and poles in hand. Everyone could ski for however long they wanted and walk back.

Deer Valley Resort

A Beautiful Day in Deer Valley

For a day trip to Deer Valley, we traveled with our after-ski boots on, ski boots in hand and had to board the bus. Getting the skis to fit in those little slots on the outside of the bus felt more challenging than a rubix cube. I always thought it was worth it but not everyone agreed. There was more coordinating and more hassle and we usually waited for each other in the lodge at the end of the day. Remember this was before cell phones and texting, we just had to use our eyes and find each other. I figured an extra hot chocolate in those gorgeous rooms with all the nice people around was pretty fantastic.

My favorite part was that all the runs were groomed. Every slope was ready for me. I just never liked all those bumps and moguls as a kid. It seemed to add a level of “excitement” that I just did not know how to appreciate. Some in my family thought groomed runs were boring, but to me it was like smooth white heaven. I could have gone every day.

Deer Valley Difference

I loved the staff at the bottom of the hill in their dark hunter green sweaters who were ready to pick up the skis and help you inside the lodge. To me it was like living on Rodeo Drive and we were suddenly movie stars. Maybe my early exposure to life in the Deer Valley lane led me to living for years on a Cruise Ship like Julie McCoy on the Love Boat. Personally, I am ready for another day at Deer Valley.

About Lisa Niver Rajna

About the Author: Lisa and George Rajna met online in 2007 and started traveling together internationally almost immediately. By 2008, they had quit their jobs, rented their condo and left for a year on the road. After eleven countries, twelve months, losing sixty pounds and getting engaged underwater, they returned to Los Angeles. On July 1, 2012, the next year long adventure began in Indonesia, Thailand, Myanmar and now India.