We visited Salt Lake City, Utah twice this winter. On our first trip, we went cross country skiing at Mountain Dell golf course. On our second trip, we went cross country skiing at Jordan Pines campground. Mountain Dell golf course is located about 20 minutes outside Salt Lake City in Parleys Canyon on I-80. For more information and trail conditions, do a search engine search for “The Utah Nordic Alliance’s latest ski conditions”. Winter sports activities at Mountain Dell include cross country skiing and snow sledding (but not on the groomed trails). Dogs, horses, and other animals are not allowed because the Mountain Dell Reservoir is a source of water for Salt Lake City residents. Further, it is preferred to carry out all trash and to bury human feces six inches deep and 200 feet from water. A parking day pass for $5 or an annual pass for $50-$60 is required to support The Utah Nordic Alliance volunteers who groom the trails on a daily basis. Water and restrooms were not available and cell phone service was strong while in the park.
The ski trails hover at around 5,800 feet in elevation. From the parking lot, we headed southeast on the Main Loop trail. I had not cross country skied in about ten years so everything was challenging.
The hardest part about the main loop was the initial downhill stretch. Other than that, the 1.2 mile Main Loop was easy to manage. What’s more, it provided ample opportunity to improve on my fledgling cross country ski skills.
There was little to no shade on the trails so sun protection is advised.
After completing the Main Loop, we cross skied out and back on the Lollipop Loop. The Lollipop Loop is as easy as it sounds and totaled 0.7 miles round trip.
In sum, Mountain Dell provided a fun and positive beginner cross country ski experience with only a 20 minute drive. Further, it appeared that its more difficult trails would offer a challenge to savvy cross country skiers as well.