The nearby Wasatch-Cache National Forest offers plenty of opportunities for outdoor recreation. For camping and other equipment and supplies, stop by Sports Authority, in the Newgate Mall, 36th Street and Wall Avenue (tel. 801/392-5500).
The Ogden River Parkway (www.weberpathways.org) is a 3.4-mile paved, wheelchair-accessible path along the Ogden River, extending from the mouth of Ogden Canyon west to Washington Boulevard. It's excellent for walking, jogging, and bicycling; it also leads to Big D Sports Park (with playground and sporting fields), Lorin Farr Park, and George S. Eccles Dinosaur Park.
East of Ogden are two strenuous road rides. The Trappers Loop Road winds 9 miles along Utah 167 from Mountain Green (exit 92 off I-84) north to Huntsville. This route alternates between wide-open meadows backed by high mountain peaks and tall evergreens and aspens that seem to envelop you.
The second ride, along Snowbasin Road, climbs more than 2,000 feet over 10 miles from Pineview Reservoir. Your efforts will be rewarded with stunning views of the ski runs and towering peaks. Now open in summer, Snowbasin, 3925 E. Snowbasin Rd. (tel. 888/437-5488; www.snowbasin.com), is a mountain-biking destination, with more than 25 miles of trails that gain nearly 3,000 feet in elevation and connect to a network of Forest Service trails. Rentals are available on-site. The resort is open from the last Sunday in June through the first Sunday in October, Friday to Sunday, 9am to 6pm.
You can get additional trail information at the Forest Service visitor center in Union Station -- ask for the Ogden Trails Network brochure. For bicycle repairs and accessories, stop at Bingham Cyclery, 1895 Washington Blvd. (tel. 801/399-4981; www.binghamcyclery.com). In Eden, Diamond Peak Mountain Sports, at the junction of Utah highways 158 and 162 (tel. 801/745-0101; www.peakstuff.com), offers rentals, repairs, and sales of bikes, boards, and skis.
Ogden is a rock-climbing mecca, with many popular routes in the rugged country in and around Ogden Canyon. Waterfall Canyon is among the most accessible destinations. At the Salomon Center, the iRock climbing wall (tel. 801/399-4653; www.irockutah.com) costs $10 adults, $7.50 for kids 11 and under
Brown, rainbow, cutthroat, brook, and lake trout thrive in the waters of the Wasatch-Cache National Forest around Ogden. You might also find perch, bass, catfish, whitefish, and crappie. Popular spots to wet your line are Pineview Reservoir, Causey Reservoir, and the Ogden and Weber rivers. For supplies, licenses, and tips on where they're biting, stop at Anglers' Den, 5296 S. Freeway Park Dr. (tel. 801/773-1166). The shop can also refer you to local guides.
Golfers will find an abundance of opportunities in the Ogden area, which boasts challenging courses with spectacular views of the surrounding mountains. Public courses include the Mount Ogden Golf Course, 1787 Constitution Way (tel. 801/629-0699), an 18-hole, par-71 championship course located on the east side of the city against the mountains, which charges $33 to $40 for 18 holes, cart included; and El Monte Golf Course, 1300 Valley Dr. (tel. 801/629-0694), a scenic 9-hole, par-35 course of rolling hills and old-style greens in Ogden Canyon, with fees of $15 for 9 holes, and an extra $7 for a cart.
For one of the finest practice areas around, try Toad's Fun Zone, 1690 W. 400 North, exit 346 off I-15 (tel. 801/392-4653; www.toadsfz.com), with two 18-hole miniature golf courses (one indoor and one outdoor), a year-round driving range, and a new 9-hole course. An indoor glow-in-the-dark minigolf course is located at Fat Cats in the Salomon Center.
The Ogden River Parkway is great for walking. Several hiking trails are accessible from the east side of downtown Ogden. Indian Trail takes off from the parking area at 22nd Street and Buchanan Avenue, and the narrow path winds about 4.3 miles through thick stands of oak, spruce, and fir trees. The trail offers some of the finest views of Ogden Canyon from above -- particularly of the waterfall at the mouth of the canyon -- before dropping down to the parking area on Utah 39. This moderately difficult trail takes about 4 hours one-way.
A little over a half-mile along Indian Trail, Hidden Valley Trail cuts off sharply to the south. The route is difficult, climbing steadily through the old Lake Bonneville terraces, and is surrounded by dense stands of oak, maple, and aspen. After a mile and a half, you reach a turnaround; from here, enjoy a clear view of the rugged face of Mt. Ogden to the southeast. The hike takes about 2 hours one-way.
An easy 1 1/2-hour hike is the Mt. Ogden Park Trail, linking the parking lots at 29th and 36th streets. It's mostly flat and surfaced with bark chips. The trail follows the east edge of a golf course much of the way, encountering splashing streams and even occasional wildlife. The views are inspiring at sunrise and sunset.
For additional trail information, ask for the Ogden Trails Network brochure at the Forest Service's visitor information center in Union Station or visit the excellent website, www.weberpathways.org.
For custom-guided trail rides, contact Red Rock Ranch and Outfitters, 13555 E. Utah 39 and Causey Way, Huntsville (tel. 866/826-7625 or 801/745-6393; www.redrockranch-and-outfitters.com). A 30-minute children's ride is $20; rates for adults and older children are $30 for an hour, $40 for an hour and a half, and $50 for 2 hours. Ask at the forest information center in Union Station for information on other area outfitters as well as forest and trail maps.
Ice-Skating & Curling
The Ice Sheet, 4390 Harrison Blvd., in the southeast part of the city (tel. 801/778-6300; www1.co.weber.ut.us/icesheet), offers year-round ice-skating, a learn-to-skate program, hockey and figure-skating clinics, clinics on curling (this was the curling venue for the 2002 Olympics), and skate rentals. Call for current rates and schedules.
Willard Bay State Park and Pineview Reservoir are your destinations for boating, water-skiing, and swimming. Also check out the kayak parks on the Ogden River Parkway, Lagoon, and Lorin Farr Park.
Deep snow turns the mountains surrounding Ogden into a winter playground, with four delightful family-oriented ski resorts and seemingly unlimited forest trails for cross-country skiers, snowshoers, and snowmobilers. Red Rock Ranch and Outfitters offers snowmobile rentals for about $140 per day.
An exciting way to ski some of the best snow in the West is to get away from the groomed trails, lift lines, and parking lots and take to the skies with Diamond Peaks Heli-ski Adventures (tel. 801/745-4631; www.diamondpeaks.com), based in Ogden. Helicopters fly you to the tops of several privately owned mountains with no developed trails, just pure snow. One drop plus a full-day lift ticket at Powder Mountain Resort costs $175; a six-run heli-ski tour, with lunch, costs $795.