Ogden, Utah, is perfectly positioned for adventure, set at the foot of the Wasatch Mountains and on the shore of Great Salt Lake, the city’s roads end at National Forest lands and the suburbs stop at craggy foothills. To jump from lively city life to outdoor activities is only a matter of stepping outside. Adventures are endless, but here are 8 of the must-do’s for getting out around Ogden.
1. Ski Utah’s Famous Powder
Snowbasin Resort and Powder Mountain are the two major ski resorts near Ogden, and both are home to the "Greatest Snow on Earth"—deep, fluffy powder that piles on the slopes of the Wasatch every winter. Snowbasin’s former olympic venue deals a challenge to expert skiers, but offers plenty of terrain for all experience levels as well. Powder Mountain’s claim to fame is more than 8,400 acres of inbounds skiing, making it the largest resort in North America. Beginners and families with kids will love the more mellow runs of Nordic Valley, a third resort that resides in the Ogden Valley.
2. Hike the Skyline Trail
The mountains that give Ogden’s incredible backdrop are a chain of peaks that rise to more than 8000 feet of elevation. Two summits really rise above them all, Willard Peak and Ben Lomond at well over 9,000 feet tall. One epic trail follows the entire ridgeline and climbs to the top of the Northern Wasatch. This is the Skyline Trail. Great for hiking and mountain biking once the snow has mostly melted, the trail extends north and south from North Ogden Divide, both directions featuring a set of steep switchbacks before gaining the rolling, high-altitude ridgeline and commanding views over both sides of the range, Salt Lake Valley to the west and Ogden Valley to the East.
3. Find the Falls on the Waterfall Canyon Trail
Just outside of town, mountain snowmelt feeds a 200-foot cascade in the aptly named Waterfall Canyon. Beginning from trailheads at the top of 27th Street or 29th Street, a family-friendly trail leads to the falls. The way features brilliant spring wildflowers and views over Ogden on the gradual ascent into the canyon. Once inside the tight gorge, the path steepens but soon rewards with the huge waterfall at the end.
4. Cross-Country Ski at the Foot of the Wasatch Mountains
Nordic ski, snowshoe, and fat bike trails open up as soon as the snow falls at North Fork Park near the town of Liberty. A network of groomed tracks wind through fields and forests at the base of the most impressive mountains of the Northern Wasatch, dealing great scenery and a workout to boot. You can rent equipment or bring your own, and lessons are available to help build skills.
5. Cruise Along the Bonneville Shoreline Trail
Bonneville Shoreline Trail runs the length of the Salt Lake Valley at the foot of the mountains. The section over Ogden grants great views over the city and the lake. Rolling terrain, proximity to town, and plenty of trailheads to choose from make this the perfect choice for hiking, biking, and trail running to start or finish the day. Junctions with other trails around Mount Ogden Park and up shorter canyons such as Taylor Canyon or Jump-Off Canyon give options for longer adventures.
6. Swim or Paddle in Pineview Reservoir
In Ogden Valley lies a large lake with calm water, surrounded by the peaks of the Wasatch Mountains. Pineview Reservoir has sandy beaches, boat launches, great fishing, as well as wetlands and meadows with great opportunities for spotting wildlife. Multiple campgrounds and day use areas give lots of options for access. This is the perfect spot to relax and cool off when the snow is gone and the summer gets hot.
7. Mountain Bike at Wheeler Creek in Ogden Canyon
Most trails around Ogden are open to mountain bikes, but Ogden Canyon has some of the best. Begin at Wheeler Creek Trailhead on the wide trail that gently ascends the canyon, then choosing your adventure once the canyon forks at Art Nord Trailhead. From here, single track trails travel through open meadows, deep forests, over creeks, and around alpine ponds to connect more amazing riding at Snowbasin Resort to the south, or Ogden Canyon Overlook and Sardine Peak to the north.
8. Rock Climb at 9th Street Crag
Ogden is central to tons of climbing on the wild and varied rock of the Wasatch, and some of the best crags are located right next to town. Most easily accessible is the sport climbing at 9th Street, named for the road you take to get there. The wall rises right over town, making for awesome views. A variety of difficulties cater to all abilities and south-facing aspect makes it suitable for most of the year.
Originally written for Utah Office of Tourism.