Tidal Wave trail at Deer Valley Resort.

Image: Eric Schramm

Not feeling the uphill? Let the resorts do the heavy lifting. Grab a chair (or gondola) ride and hang onto your helmet for a flowy, potentially gnarly, high-octane descent. Deer Valley Resort has enlisted Gravity Logic to craft four flow trails within the past four years; Park City Mountain no longer boasts a bike park per se, but the downhill options are bountiful on both the Park City base and Canyons Village sides (we’ve noted just a sampling here).

Deer Valley Resort spins its bike-access lifts June 14–Sept 2 daily, plus weekends through Sept 22 (weather permitting).
Park City Mountain runs bike-related lift/gondola operations June 14–Sept 2 daily, plus Thursday–Sunday through Sept 29 (weather permitting).

Undertow

Length: 2 miles
Find it: Ride from the top of Homestake Express chairlift, accessed via Silver Lake Express from Deer Valley   Resort’s Snow Park base.
Freshly built for summer 2019, this intermediate flow bridges the skill divide between green-level Holy Roller and the more advanced Tidal Wave. Expect big berms and rollers (no big jumps), as the machine-built flow trail “surfs the grade down the mountain,” as Chris Erkkila, Deer Valley’s ski patrol and mountain biking manager, puts it. The ride travels wall-to-wall, crossing meadow-like Solid Muldoon and Success ski runs along the way.

Tidal Wave

Length: 2.2 miles
Find it: Ride from the top of Sterling Express chairlift, accessed at Deer Valley Resort’s midmountain.
Expect a “hootin’ hollerin’ good time,” according to Deer Valley’s Chris Erkkila, on this coaster through the mountains. As the name implies, the trail swirls riders through big berms and rollers and over 58 medium-size (15- to 20-foot) tabletops. As with all of these flow trails, keep the roll going and allow gravity to be your friend—or get out of the way. Of note: While in the area, consider a jaunt to Flagstaff Loop for a bit of off-the-beaten-path (relatively speaking) terrain and killer views.

Holy Roller

Length: 4 miles
Find it: Ride from the top of Sterling Express chairlift, accessed at Deer Valley Resort’s midmountain.
Rated “green” but designed for cyclists somewhat familiar with mountain biking (i.e., not complete newbies), Holy Roller twists and turns via wide, bench-cut trail. No jumps, no big features, but the smooth roll can involve an uptick in momentum, preparing riders for the next step up in downhill thrills, such as Sunset and Nail Driver (also downhill-only options at Deer Valley).

Tsunami

Length: 1.3 miles
Find it: Ride from the top of Sterling Express chairlift.
Expert only. Seriously. The ride kicks off with a behemoth jump line. Think tabletop jumps spanning 24 feet from lip to crest. For the rest of the yeehaw-inducing flow through aspens and conifers, expect minimal pedaling and minimal braking in this all-out, high-adrenaline descent.

Mojave to Mid Mountain to Crescent Mine Grade

Length: 4.5 miles
Find it: Take Crescent chairlift from Park City Mountain base.
All the fun with none of the uphill grind. Hop off the chair and onto downhill-only Mojave for 1 mile of flowy rollers and berms, dropping 380 feet through aspen groves. Then, turn left onto Mid Mountain until you meet Crescent Mine Grade via a short stretch of service road. Take a hard right onto CMG, and wind the remaining 2.9 miles (CMG) through open, wildflower-strewn meadows (a.k.a. ski runs), steadily descending back to the base. Don’t forget to pause (off to the side of the trail, of course) for views of Park City and beyond.

Ricochet

Length: 4 miles
Find it: Take Red Pine Gondola from Park City Mountain’s Canyons Village and pedal a smidge uphill to Ricochet access trail.
Suck up the brief uphill start, pedal roughly a mile on Mid Mountain, then 0.3 mile from the ridge to Holly’s. Next, jump onto Ricochet for an advanced intermediate, flowy, downhill, joyous plunge into the forested wonderland. Cruise through shaded berms, hit a few drops, and savor the ride back to the resort base.

East Canyon Creek into Bob’s Basin

Length: 8–10 miles, including all four downhill trails
Find it: Park at East Canyon Creek Trailhead and ride The Graduate and Fink Again Trails to access the downhill-only options, or pop into this park-like haven as an offshoot from Flying Dog or Glenwild rides.
Alas, no chairlift in this neck o’ the woods (well, sagebrush), but Bob’s Basin runneth over with downhill thrills worthy of the brief jaunt to access them. Much less jam-packed—and machine-coiffed—than its in-town brethren, this quad-trail collection includes Crazy Eights, Team Cutthroat, The Dropout, and Ant Farm, each roughly a mile of descent, without a killer return climb. Enjoy the 220 acres of Rasmussen open space—the yellow June blooms before midsummer heats sizzles—and test those skills on berms, rollers, and jumps.

Before you go

Mountain weather is changeable, so layer up. Take altitude into consideration; don’t be afraid to stop for your oxygen-depleted lungs’ sake or to make way for a moose, and bring plenty of water and snacks to avoid bonking. Grab a Mountain Trails Foundation (mountaintrails.org) map, available at most sports retailers and coffee shops (or online) to plot your route, or download Trailforks or MTB Project apps for real-time GPS guidance. And consider purchasing a copy of Park City’s Prime Cuts 3, the newest edition of the go-to trail guidebook by longtime local riders Paul Boyle, Mark Fischer, and Charlie Sturgis (available at local retailers).

Special thanks to Scott House of White Pine Touring, Charlie Sturgis of Mountain Trails Foundation, Ben Liegert of Snyderville Basin Recreation, Todd Henneman of Storm Cycles, and Chris Erkkila of Deer Valley Resort for sharing trail- and road-riding expertise.

(See individual bike option articles divided by levels of expertise.)

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