Big Cottonwood Canyon
If you think Utah is a desert, you’re in for a surprise in the nearby Wasatch Mountains. Big and Little Cottonwood canyons offer classic alpine experiences—hiking and biking through aspen-shaded trails, fly fishing and chairlift rides with spectacular views. But you can also choose to be pampered at one of the world-class resorts.
EAT & DRINK
At Solitude Resort, Honeycomb Grill, (skisolitude.com), offers dynamic, contemporary American cuisine using fresh, locally-sourced and sustainable ingredients, along with a cocktail list. The best part? Mountain views. For breakfast or an apres-hike refueling, try Haus Pizzeria & Creamery, (skisolitude.com), for fresh coffee or espresso, pastries or a pizza. If the kids need a good- camper reward, order hand- packed ice cream cones.
No better way exists to enjoy the Wasatch Mountains than to hike or bike them. Solitude Village offers high-altitude mountain biking via the Sun- rise chairlift. Featuring over 20 miles of tree-lined trails, Solitude has some of the most scenic and accessible single track in Utah. Sunrise chairlift operates three days a week, but guests are welcome to pedal up seven days a week during daylight hours. The Brighton area offers hiking for all levels of athleticism. Silver Lake has a trail and boardwalk around it, perfect for an easy walk, duck feeding, birdwatching and trout fishing (with a license). Cecret Lake offers a moderately challenging hike (kids can handle it) up to a newt- lled alpine lake. For the more hardy, a hike to Lake Blanche in the middle of the Twin Peaks Wilderness is a must. Informa- tion on hikes is available in town at REI and Kirkhams or at the info HQ at Silver Lake. Pack plenty of water!
The mouth of Big Cottonwood Canyon is served by the I-215 Belt Route and Wasatch Boulevard.
WHAT THE LOCALS KNOW
If camping is your thing, two national forest cozy wooded campgrounds are available, including Tanners Flat and Albion Basin campgrounds.