While in Utah, my second winter adventure was Snowshoeing at Solitude Mountain. (The first was Snowshoeing at Sundance Mountain).
When you first hear: “Solitude Mountain,” you think it will be peaceful and quiet. It was anything, but the mountain was packed full of people. Luckily, despite the downhill ski centers all being crowded, the Nordic and Snowshoeing center was not.
I barely saw anyone on the trails while Snowshoeing at Solitude Mountain.
About Solitude Mountain:
Solitude Mountain is a ski resort located in the Big Cottonwood Canyon. Funny enough, does anyone remember when I was supposed to run Big Cottonwood Marathon but got hurt the week before? Same spot and just being there makes me realize how downhill it really was. Anyway, Solitude Mountain is located 30 miles southeast of Salt Lake City in the Wasatch Mountains. There are 66 trails covering 1200 acres.
Next to Solitude Mountain is Brighton Ski Resort which means you have two ski resorts and a lot of; people. While the name says Solitude, you might not find the Solitude you are looking for unless you are at the Nordic Center.
The history of Solitude Mountain is interesting as it was first developed for skiing by uranium tycoon Robert M. Barrett. Barrett created his own ski resort after being denied the restrooms at Alta Ski Resort. (restrooms were for patrons).
Snowshoeing at Solitude Mountain:
Solitude Resort has its own Nordic Center with parking. You’ll have to meander what feels like hundreds of cars to get there, but there was plenty of parking for the Nordic Center when we arrived. (There appeared to be zero parking for downhill at either resort).
There are plenty of nordic sport options at the Solitude Nordic Center, including snowshoeing, skate, and classic cross-country skiing. There are over 13 cross-country skiing trails that cover 20k. The snowshoe trails cover about 10k. None were closed for avalanche danger when we arrived, so that was nice.
Snowshoeing at Solitude Mountain Quick Facts:
Base Elevation:7,988 feet
Summit elevation: 10,035 feet
Snowshoeing at Solitude Mountain Gear Used: Snowshoes (rental)
While heading out for Snowshoeing at Solitude Mountain, I thought to myself: “this is my easiest snowshoeing trail yet.” The first half mile goes around the lake, and you get a gorgeous view of the mountains. Instead of covering 2 miles in 90 minutes, I could cover 3.
I took the Silver Lake Loop, which, as the name suggests, goes around the Silver Lake. It’s about 1k and has barely any elevation change.
I met with the cabin loop (1.5k), which went around the cabins. At first, I thought I might be trespassing on someone’s property, but as I continued Snowshoeing at Solitude Mountain, I realized I was just on the trails. The cabin loop begins to go downhill, and I thought: “well, I’ll be coming up eventually.”
As I continued Snowshoeing at Solitude Mountain, I pressed my luck and took the Creek Loop, which goes down the village and is 2k. The Creek Loop just keeps going down and down. I knew it would be a brutal climb and probably one of the more challenging snowshoeing loops I’ve done. I turned around about 50 minutes into my Snowshoeing at Solitude Mountain at headed back to where I came. Climbing back up the Creek Loop is tough. You gain about 400 feet of elevation over 1-2k. I fell over a tree branch once but made it back to the start in around 1:38. It started heavily snowing towards the end of my snowshoe trip, and it got cold!
In all, I enjoyed my Snowshoeing at Solitude Mountain. You can make it extremely easy and family-friendly at the Silver Lake Loop, or you can take some more intense trails. You aren’t limited to one or the other. It’s one of my more favorite snowshoeing loops.
Other Snowshoeing adventures:
Questions for you:
Have you been snowshoeing at Solitude Mountain?
Have you been snowshoeing?