If you're in Park City or don't mind a scenic canyon drive from Salt Lake to your mountain biking trails, the Mid Mountain Corridor is a great place to play. The trail has enough variety to appeal to beginners and hardened singletrack experts alike. If you are a beginner, however, be careful which section you decide to tackle. You’ll probably want to stick to the area between Deer Valley and Park City Mountain Resorts.
What Makes It Great
No matter how you approach it or how far you ride, the Mid-Mountain trail is a blast. The full trail, from Silver Lake Lodge at Deer Valley to Pinebrook near Interstate 80, is between 25 and 30 miles. It crosses three different ski resorts. Although the trail (headed north) drops in elevation, you still wind up climbing over 3,000 vertical feet in spurts over the course of the trail. The trail is mostly smooth and flowy, but there are some sections, especially in the Iron Mountain area, that are sure to shake you up a bit, even on a longer-travel trail bike. Most locals will say that the Mid-Mountain trail is an easy ride. Bear in mind, they’ve probably ridden the trail a ton of times and in their minds it IS easy. The truth is, the Mid-Mountain trail is a workout in either direction for any rider.
There are a bunch of different ways to access Mid-Mountain. You can climb Armstrong, Spiro, or Crescent Mine Grade, ride the Mid-Mountain out to the Canyons, then ride Highway 224 back into town. For a shorter loop during the summer you can park at the Park City Transit Center, take the bus to Silver lake Lodge, then come down Spiro or Crescent Mine Grade at the Park City mountain Resort. The ride back to your car is quick and painless. If you have access to another car you can set up a shuttle from the Silver Lake Lodge at Deer Valley or from the top of Empire on Guardsman Pass. This last way is definitely the most fun. The first couple miles are fast, flowy downhill that can’t be accessed except from Guardsman Pass.
If you're looking for a longer day on the bike, connect over to the Wasatch Crest Trail for a long, winding adventure or strike out on one of the many fast, fun trails that splits from the main trail. Utah Mountain Biking has some good, detailed notes for side trails, and the International Mountain Biking Association has a great overview of the main trail.
Before you go, grab breakfast at The Bridge Cafe and Grill in downtown Park City. Their Brazilian-influenced menu is so delicious - you'll have a hard time making up your mind. If you need a recovery meal after the ride, we absolutely recommend High West Distillery. Not only is it the only place you can buy liquor every day of the week in Utah and Utah's only whiskey distillery, High West has amazing food.
Who is Going to Love It
While advanced riders will be better-equipped to enjoy full 20+ mile ride on the Mid-Mountain Trail, beginners and intermediate riders can find shorter ways to loop some of the trail’s more mellow sections.
Directions, Parking, & Regulations
The best places to park for the Mid-Mountain Trail are at the ski resorts—Deer Valley, Park City, and Canyons. Parking there is free and plentiful. The main trailheads are at the far ends of the trail, although there are access points all along the way. The trail doesn’t close, and night-riding with headlights is a very popular activity in the area.