Updated: Sep 10
Aspen grove provides a winter playground for just about anyone, from the casual snowshoer to the adrenaline hungry telemark skier. It is located up Provo canyon where the winter maintenance stops on Highway 92. For those of you who like to use your GPS the location of the parking lot at Aspen Grove is at N 40 24.727′ and W 111 36.313. The elevation is approximately 6890 ft.
Trail to Cascade Springs
The trail to cascade springs is a popular one with snowmobilers, skiers and snowshoers.
This trail begins as the parking lot and then heads north as it begins the climb up to cascade springs. Since this is an actual road in the summer time, the trail is usually wide and well traveled, almost giving the appearance as if it were groomed.
Many snowshoers will start on the road and then cut off the trail to explore side hills while snowmobilers will typically follow the road all the way to the springs. Cross country skiers can often be found on the cascade spring trail as the traffic creates almost a groomed path for them to ski up. Telemarkers can use the trail to switch back up the hills and then from the top ski straight down the mountain for an exhilarating rush.
One of the trails to the top of Timpanogos also starts from the Aspen Grove Parking, and many winter summit attempts begin here. Caution should be exercised here as this trail goes right through a frequent avalanche slide path. If you are going to be going up Timpanogos or just snow shoeing a little ways closer to the mountain, beware of the slide path and check the avalanche conditions before you go at the Utah avalanche center website http://utahavalanchecenter.org/ If the danger is high you can always snow shoe east of the parking lot through some beautiful meadows that will take you closer to Aspen Grove Lodge and Sundance.
Aspen Grove is also a great place for snow shoeing at night. For the night snowshoer it provides a quiet solace and a beautiful star show. Throw a full moon into the mix and it makes for quite an adventure. The really nice thing about snowshoeing at night here is that it is very hard to get lost, even if you don’t have a GPS. Sundance Ski Resort and the Aspen Grove Lodge are well lit enough that they are visible from just about anywhere. So if you do get a bit turned around or lose your track coming back, just do what they tell you in the movies and head toward the light.
It can be a great date idea if you think a little bit of exercise, a quiet setting to evoke good conversation and a breathtaking view of the mountains below and the stars above is right for you. If you are a little leery about going into an your not familiar with at night, both Sundance and Aspen Grove Lodge provide guided night activities which can be found on the provided links.
Night Activities at Sundance http://www.sundanceresort.com/explore/wnt_nordic_fullmoon.html\
At Aspen Grove Lodge http://aspen.byu.edu/ski/
While many people refer to this area as Aspen Grove, the name actually comes from the private lodge that is located just below this area and just above the Sundance Ski Resort.
Aspen Grove borders the national forest on the South side and state land on the North side. Translation south of the road and toward Timpanogos is National forest where no motorized vehicles or snowmobiles are allowed, state land north of the road snowmobilers are welcome to ride.
So if you are looking for a place where you can escape the smoggy air in the valley and do a little skiing, snow shoeing, snowmobiling or whatever else you like to do in the snow give the Aspen grove area a try. As always feel free to leave any questions or comments at the end of this blog or send me an email at DustinACook@gmail.com. And don’t forget to get outside and have some fun!