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UTAH OFFERS MILES AND MILES OF TRAILS

Summer visitors to this turn-of-the-century mining town are riding more than 100 miles of off-road bike trails at the area's ski resorts and on Park City's Rail Trail.

Deer Valley Resort offers lift-served biking via the Sterling Lift located near Silver Lake Village, mid-mountain at the resort.Twenty-five miles of single- and double-track trails for the beginner to advanced rider open mid-June through mid-September, weather permitting. (For mountain bikers who prefer cycling up the mountain, a trail is open for that purpose at no cost.)

The lift accesses all trails and is open Wednesday through Sunday and holidays, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., weather permitting.

The cost is $14 per person for an all-day pass with a bike or $7 for a single-ride pass. Non-cyclists are invited to take the lift up and hike around the spectacular Deer Valley scenery.

A pass is available for those without bikes for a charge of $6 for a single ride. The ticket office and an adjacent bike rental shop are located at the base of the Sterling Lift.

Deer Valley Resort does require helmets for bikers. A restaurant-McHenrys Grill in the Silver Lake Village is open daily for lunch.

The Park City Ski Area has 17 miles of trail open to mountain biking enthusiasts at no charge. New this year are five designated biking and hiking trails - Silver King Loop, Scott's Pass Trail, Thaynes/Jupiter Loop, Walker/Webster Trail and Wasatch Crest Trail Access. (Lifts are not open to transport cyclists up the mountain at the resort.) A free summer trail map is available at the resort.

This area is unique in that weathered mine buildings and historic relics are visible off of designated biking and hiking trails. The ski area opens King Road each summer, a former mining route, to mountain bikers. The road is accessible from the south-end of the ski area, just up from Main Street's historic district.

Skilled mountain bikers will enjoy the challenge of the Sweeney Switchbacks and the Shadow Lake Loop trails.

Wolf Mountain also offers mountain biking and has prepared its trails with recreational and competitive use in mind. (There is no lift-served mountain biking and there is no fee to use the trails.)

Be aware while riding at the ski resorts that many of the mountain bike trails cross private land. Local officials ask cyclists to abide by the local/private land ordinance and trespass laws so that the land can remain open to recreational use.

All cyclists are encouraged to practice safety and bicycle etiquette when mountain biking due to liability concerns: This includes wearing a helmet and riding only in designated open areas.

Park City's Rail Trail bicycle route opened the Fall of 1992 with 29 miles of trail. Rails to Trails is a nationwide program converting abandoned rail lines for multi-use recreational purposes. The trail is open not only for fat-tire bikes, but for horseback rides and nature walks as well.

On-road cyclists will enjoy scenic rides through Park City's historic district, or on the country roads that meander through farming communities.

The Bicycle Utah Vacation Guide outlines rides not just in Park City but throughout the state. For a free copy of the guide call Bicycle Utah at 801-649-5806.

There are a number of sporting good stores and bicycle shops that rent bicycles and helmets. Prices for bike rentals range from $15 for one-half day to $25 for a full day. A number of local hotels have picked up on cycling's popularity and also rent bicycles to their guests.

A free Park City Bike/Hike Guide, complete with descriptions of mountain bike rides and trail maps, is available at locations throughout Park City and Salt Lake City.