Stephanie Nitsch is a wanderlusting traveler, adrenaline junkie and flannel-loving mountain chick based in Park City. She supports her vagabond lifestyle through freelance writing in the outdoor and adventure industries.
The leaves are already slowly changing to a subtle yellowish-green, meaning summer conditions aren’t gonna last much longer. When the summer season comes rolling into Park City, you have to hang onto those warm nights and long days as much as you can – which means there’s a lot of mountain biking to pack in. In response to that, Canyons recently tacked some extra biking hours into the day, every Fridays throughout August until 8pm.
This past Friday, familiar faces popped up in the non-existent lift line, and even though there were a few dozen people riding, Friday night’s extended hours were mellow and low-key (well, not counting the actual adrenaline rush of dropping in and screamin’ down the trails).Many riders I met rolled up to Canyons after work to burn off some energy after a long week in the office and were stoked to log a few hours on their bike. But most – okay, all – were just stoked to be riding until twilight.
To top it off, Mother Nature graced Park City on Friday afternoon with a short rainstorm, giving the dirt a much needed drink and priming the conditions of the bike park for everyone who came up during the extended hours. The passing storm cooled the mountain to a near-perfect temperature, and while we weren’t riding soft, hero dirt by any means, the rain had done enough to settle the dust and give your tires a good bite through berms and corners.
Don’t sweat if downhill biking isn’t your thing, but you’re still itching to hop on your bike. The gondola (and High Meadow lift) run until 8pm and access some of my personal favorite cross-country trails in Park City like Ambush, Rob’s and Colin’s. If you don’t want to waste the remaining daylight hours grinding out a big climb, the gondola cuts out much of the uphill battle. Hop onto the Mid-Mountain intersection at the top of the gondola, and you’ll still manage to log some great miles before sunset.
There are three more nights to get your shred on at Canyons – August 17th, 24th and 31st – so dodge work a little early next Friday and come ride the bike park.