Blog

Fall Updates

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Sep 23, 2020

Fall is here and Park City is full of amazing color. This week we look at the new SLC airport terminal, Utah's economy, and the end of walk up ticket sales at some of the local ski resorts.

Utah's economy is ranked the best in the nation during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to 24/7 Wall Street, a website that analyzes and reports on economic data according to Fox13 - Salt Lake City.

Fox13 reports that Utah's low unemployment rate when compared to the rest of the country as one of the reasons the state is in the first position. While the rest of the country has seen unemployment rates reach double digits, Utah had the lowest unemployment rate in the country for the month of July, and currently, 4.5 percent of workers filed for unemployment.The site also stated that Utah's economic growth is one of the strongest in any state in the country, even before the pandemic hit. Utah also has a low poverty rate, being one of only seven states with less than 10-percent of the population below the poverty line.

Salt Lake City International Airport is undergoing a $4.1 billion renovation project, according to USA Today. Concourse A is part of the first phase of the renovation project, while the second concourse is set to open in October, and the rest of the rest of the new airport is scheduled to be completed by 2024, added the report. The US carrier says the airport’s new Salt Lake City Airport includes convenient amenities designed to enhance the overall travel experience. Last week, Delta flew its first flight out of the new Salt Lake City International Airport, which underwent a billion-dollar renovation recently, on Tuesday. The debut flight departed for Atlanta from the airport’s new 900,000-square-foot Concourse A.“This day has been years in the making,” said Bill Wyatt, executive director of Salt Lake City Department of Airports. “To say we are excited to be here today is an understatement. After six years of construction and many more years of planning, we are proud to open the first new US hub airport in the 21st century.” Read more about the new Salt Lake City airport on Business Traveler's site.

The Salt Lake Tribune reports that Solitude Mountain Resort and Deer Valley Resort have become the latest Utah ski areas to take walk-up tickets off their menus. Both resorts are owned by the Alterra Mountain Co., which on Monday revealed some of the COVID-19 precautions it would implement across its 15 destinations throughout the United States and Canada. In addition to ending walk-up tickets, Alterra will put caps on daily lift tickets — sold online — and prioritize season-pass holders. Resorts are also creating more grab-and-go food options and more outdoor seating to encourage social distancing and will be limiting interactions on lifts and gondolas.

Deer Valley has long capped the number of skiers it allows daily. Solitude, on the other hand, has been seeing a noticeable influx of visitors since joining the Alterra family prior to the 2018-19 season. Solitude will not turn away season-pass holders but will limit sales of online, single-day lift tickets if large crowds are anticipated. The protocols apply only to resorts owned by Alterra and not those on its Ikon Pass, one of the two major multi-resort season passes on the market. Brighton, Snowbird and Alta — all of which allow limited days to Ikon Pass holders — are in the process of creating their own COVID-19 regulations.

Vail Resorts announced similar changes two weeks ago, including at Utah’s Park City Mountain Resort. In addition to ending walk-up lift tickets and prioritizing season pass holders, Vail will limit chairlifts to riders who are within the same ski party or to small groups of individuals. Perhaps most ground shaking is its plan to limit capacity by requiring all visitors, even season pass holders, to use an online reservation system to hold their spot on the mountain.

Solitude is slated to open the season Nov. 20, Alta plans to follow Nov. 21 and Deer Valley is scheduled for Dec. 5. Snowbird and Brighton have not announced their opening days.

Featured Properties

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Sep 16, 2020

This week we are showcasing a few of our featured properties, please let us know if you have any questions or would like more information. Have a wonderful week.

No alt text provided for this image
This lot is located on an EYE-BROW of Glenwild Drive to provide privacy and safety, with golf, mountain and ski views right next to common land. The Glenwild Golf Course has been rated number one by Golf Digest since 2002 for Private Clubs in Utah and you may join the private club as a golfer or as a social member, or not at all. Glenwild is a gated community ideally located 9 Miles from Park City Old Town, and 33 minutes to SLC International Airport, and of course only a few minutes to the Park City's highly ranked ski resorts.

Vacant Land in Glenwild 18 - 0.89 acres Park City, UT 84098 - CLICK HERE to see more.

No alt text provided for this image
Homeowners and architectural enthusiasts will appreciate the use of light, flow, vistas and even acoustics in every space of this efficient and thoughtfully designed home. Floor to ceiling windows overlook 780+ acres of Toll Canyon green space, invite the outdoors inside with automated moving glass walls opening to a private shaded patio/deck with water-feature and breathtaking views. Automated screens ensure uninvited guests won't crash your party. Maintaining a light footprint, a NERVE exclusive DC lighting system runs cooler with long-life LED's, indirect LEDs highlighting elegant architectural features. Nature provides 4 seasons of comfort with integrated passive solar warming on sunny winter days; and automated solar shades reduce heat in the summer. Lower-level walkout invites you on journey through the Route 66 themed Arcade. Next enter virtual reality in the NERVE golf / sport / racing simulator. (available to purchase) From playground to world-class cinema; experience the 25 seat private theater boasting a 20ft 4K HDR image, a 27 speaker Dolby Atmos system & D-Box Motion. Drawing on decades of experience, the REPOSE team enhances your lifestyle through fully automated smart homes that are timeless in design, style, and always trendsetting. Greater than the sum of its parts, a REPOSE lifestyle build emanates energy efficiency, serenity, relaxation and comfort.Call Ramon for your very own private tour of this extraordinary new home and be prepared to be WOWED!

Single Family Home in Pinebrook Park City, UT 84098: 7 bedrooms, 8.00 bathrooms - 8549 square feet on 0.80 acres. CLICK HERE for more information and pictures.

No alt text provided for this image
This beautiful home with views of all three ski-resorts, the Uinta's and the valley. Owners will enjoy top-of-the-line appliances, dramatic floor to-ceiling stone fireplaces, radiant heat, Space Pac air conditioning, wine cellar and cigar room- reclaimed barn wood floors, floor to ceiling custom library, 2 outdoor fountains, even an espresso machine installed just for guests on the lower level and this is just to name a few of the incredible features this home affords. Conveniently positioned off the master suite is a study-office, which could be also used as a nursery. This is the perfect retreat to unwind with some of the most amazing scenery, Creston music system, vantage lighting system, new restained exterior, alarm and lots of storage.

Single Family Home in Glenwild 18 Park City, UT 84098: 5 bedrooms, 8.00 bathrooms, 7909 square feet on 11.05 acres. CLICK HERE to see the 3D tour.

No alt text provided for this image
Review the plans for this gorgeous Mountain Contemporary Home Designed by Otto Walker Architects, which captures the beauty of Glenwild Golf Course and Park City Ski Mountain all in one exceptionally planned home. This custom home to be built specifically for you, construction to start after you meet with the builder once the owner is under contract. The home offers main floor living with floor to ceiling windows, large game/family room. This home was Meticulously planned out in every detail, from how the rooms capture the views, to how the home flows from room to room...the great room and kitchen area are simply great for families and guest entertaining. The family room is just magnificent in every detail from the bar to the overhead glass catwalk and gorgeous fireplace and of course floor to ceiling windows.

Single Family Home in Glenwild 18 Park City, UT 84098: 5 bedrooms, 7.00 bathrooms, 7807 square feet on 1.09 acres. CLICK HERE for more information and photos.

Snow In Park City

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Sep 09, 2020

The first snow fall in Park City was only a light dusting, but with cooler temperatures on the horizon we are excited for Fall. This leads us to - Great News! Park City is planning to open on November 20th and is shooting to be open everyday this winter. Of course many safety precautions will be in place to ensure a fun and safe season.  Read more about their winter operating plan here. 

Park City is full of events and activities - here are a few of the local events happening this week. Park City Film, Dragonfli Media Technologies and the Utah Olympic Park continue their Twilight Drive-In at the Utah Olympic Park this Friday, September 11th at 7:30 pm and Saturday, September 12th at 7:45 pm. Friday's film will be "Up' rated G and Saturday's film will be "Caddyshack" rated R. Tickets are $30 per car - for more information visit parkcityfilm.org and utaholympiclegacy.org/park-events.

Looking to stretch your legs - The Park City Museum is hosting guided walking tours every Thursday and Friday at 2 pm. Tickets are $10 each and tours are appropriate for those 13 and older. The tours last an hour and a half and an optional $22 ticket price gains you access to the Park City Museum. The tour groups meet in front of Grappa Restaurant - 151 Main Street. For information on tickets visit parkcityhistory.org .

Help the community - Recycle Utah, Summit LAnd Conservancy and Park City Municipal are planning a special project for this year's National Day of Service on Friday, September 11th. The cost is free, but sign-ups are appreciated via Sign Up Genius. Meet up spots are at the Park City Bandstand, 1354 Park Avenue and along the Rail Trail behind White Pine Touring, 1970 Bonanza Drive.

Visit Park City is a wonderful resource for events happening in and around the Park City area. As Summit County and Park City continue to be in a low-risk phase - Park City asks that all residents and visitors follow social distancing protocols including the new health order mandating the use of face coverings/masks in a variety of public locations. Park City restaurants, bars, hotels, and recreational areas are still open and following safe business practices to protect the health and welfare of our guests and staff. For details please visit the travel update page on Visit Park City's website.

Have a great week, Ramon and Judy

Home Updates

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Sep 02, 2020

This week we are looking at mudroom updates and things to check when you are buying a home - whether it is your first home or fifth home. Before we get into our weekly blog we wanted to share that Visit Park City is a great site to see what is happening in and around Park City. Summit County and Park City continue to be in a low-risk phase and our town asks that all residents and visitors follow social distancing protocols including the mandating the use of face coverings/masks in a variety of public locations. Park City restaurants, bars, hotels, and recreational areas are still open and following safe business practices to protect the health and welfare of our guests and staff.

Having a place like a mudroom to sanitize before heading inside is also high on buyers’ wish lists thanks to the coronavirus pandemic.) Here are 6 Mudroom Mistakes That Might Be Costing You a Sale, According to Experts by Wendy Helfenbaum.

Things that don’t belong there have piled up - don't make your mudroom a catch-all.

Fast fix: Mudrooms are transitions between outside and inside the home, so think about what you need to accomplish here, and then clear out the room. Common functions include storage for shoes, jackets, school backpacks, hats, purses, towels (if you have a pool) and bags.

The room is serving multiple purposes, but nothing’s clearly defined - Few homeowners can devote an entire room to jackets and boots, it’s important to establish functional zones.

Fast fix: Install cabinets for pantry items and a tall tower or wall hooks for brooms to help keep organized and add a deep work sink. Remember that you’re showing buyers how they can use the space to add organization to their day-to-day living.

You have too much open storage - Sure, hooks are awesome, but must we see every. single. thing.

Fast fix: Hide as much clutter as possible, get lockers or cubbies for each family member with doors that close or get built-ins made. If they get untidy inside, no one can see it.

There’s nowhere to sit down - getting out is simpler when you’re not balancing on one foot.

Fast fix: Benches are a beautiful thing that also add hidden storage.

You’ve forgotten about furry family members - ideally their belongings should be stored in the mudroom so buyers who aren’t pet lovers won’t be turned off by messy dog or cat dishes on your kitchen floor.

Fast fix: Keep their food, water, treats and even their bed in the mudroom, if space allows add a low bath or shower for dogs, too.

It doesn’t match the rest of your house - Your mudroom shouldn’t be an afterthought.

Fast fix: Give the mudroom a fresh coat of paint that coordinates with the rest of your home. And don’t forget good lighting.

Looking to buy your first home or know someone who is - here are 7 Things I Regret Not Checking on Before I Bought My First House by Jennifer Billock. Here are a few things to watch for when making a first home purchase.

From the windows… Make sure all the windows open and close properly and are in good condition. This is especially important in the wintertime in colder climates. When people tend to keep windows closed all the time, it’s easier to forget to check if they’re functional.

To the walls - Beware of wallpapered homes. If you don’t want wallpaper, you’ll have to spend a ton of time removing it. Also, be mindful of how high the ceilings are. You may love cathedral-height walls, but it’s going to cost a lot to air condition and heat the space.

And also to the floors - Especially if the home you’re buying is old, check the floors. You want them to be stable without any softness or bounce to them that could indicate a larger problem. The floor might be damaged underneath rugs and furniture as well, so don’t feel bad about asking someone to check or lifting up the edge of a rug yourself.

Water issues - Water damage is sneaky and can show up places you don’t expect - look up at the corners and edges where the wall and ceilings meet, and do that in closets as well. Also look for water damage under sinks, around radiators, among the plumbing, on wood beams, around gutters, or anywhere else water might cause damage. And then check the water pressure in the sinks, tubs, showers, and hoses to ensure it’s all in working order.

Electrical work - It’s always important to check the electrical panel to make sure the electric has been recently updated.

Structural problems - this includes the roof, the walls, supporting beams, and the basement. Check for cracks, sagging spots, missing shingles, and water leakage around the foundation of the home.

The neighborhood - It’s not in the house, but make sure to check out the surrounding neighborhood, potential loud neighbors, rush hour traffice and how far it is to a grocery store.

Staying Safe On The Trail

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Aug 25, 2020

Park City’s 400 miles of trails are a tremendous recreational outlet, they also crisscross wildlife habitats and migration corridors. Jane Gendron shares Tips for staying safe and protecting Summit County’s resident animal friends in the Summer/Fall 2020 issue of Park City Magazine. Just around the next switchback could be a moose, deer, elk, or fox—maybe even a black bear, bobcat, or cougar - what do you do when you encounter wildlife on the trail? Here are tips on what to do if you’re lucky enough to meet a wild animal in its native habitat.

Most animals don’t want to engage with humans, so make them aware of your presence. Always make noise when hiking or biking, and slow your roll around blind turns in the trail. As Scott Root of the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources says, “Never approach or try to touch wildlife.... And don’t ever feed wildlife.” For more information, visit wildawareutah.org.

When you meet a moose: Give moose ample space (at least 25 yards) and leash dogs immediately, as a curious canine can anger an otherwise unperturbed animal. The most aggressive moose tend to be a cow moose with a calf. Don’t try to outrun a charging moose - they can run up to 35 mph; look around and see what you can get behind to separate you and the moose, such as a tree or boulder.

When you meet a mountain lion or cougar: Stop, pick up small children and pets, make yourself look big, and slowly back away. No matter how scared you may be, do not run (you don’t want to trigger that prey-chasing instinct). In the rare case that the cougar won’t back down, throw rocks or other objects to scare it off.

When you meet a black bear: Stand your ground (don’t run or scale a tree), keep calm, and give the bear the opportunity to skedaddle on its own. If a bear attacks, fight back.

When you meet a coyote: Keep your pets close, make noise, and do not run. While making yourself look as big as possible, back away slowly. If necessary, throw rocks or other objects to frighten it away.

When you meet an elk: Give elk, and deer of any species (mule deer are most common locally), at least 25 yards of breathing room. Though elk are unlikely to charge, during the fall “rut” (mating season), males can become aggressive. If one charges, get behind a tree, boulder, or something else solid.

UPDATES FOR THE HOME: After months of quarantine, living spaces are becoming multifunctional - Apartment Therapy shares 6 Up-and-Coming Bedroom Trends Real Estate Agents Love Seeing.

Bedrooms doubling as office spaces - with more people working from home during the pandemic—and likely to continue to going forward—the bedroom can serve as a nice and quiet place to work, Blacker says. “Buyers like to envision how they are going to live in a home, so when you have a work-from-home spot already built in, they can much easily picture themselves living there and working from home.”

Bedrooms doubling as wellness spaces - Don’t want to sleep where you work - try a wellness space with a yoga mat and plants. Some are carving out a fitness space in their rooms with free weights, resistance bands and balance balls. ”

Integrated headboards - show homes for new construction developments often showcase integrated headboards with lighting, often with small task lighting or ambient lights, and are usually connected to the smart home system.

Live, not artificial, plants in the bedroom - adding live, air-purifying plants to the bedroom makes sense as people are spending more time at home and want their bedrooms to feel like a peaceful, clean oasis.

Mixed textures - like wood, fabric, metals, and glass—with a neutral color palette is a trend with matching furniture pieces that look like a set. The trend has staying power because it’s flexible allows and transitions if they move to a home with a different architectural style.

Balconies - after spending months in quarantine, apartment renters and homeowners alike are prioritizing bedroom balconies. This extra space is very appealing to buyers and can add value to a home.

We are on an upgrade roll - here are 7 Timeless Bathroom Upgrades You Won’t Regret in Five Years, According to Pros by Maria C. Hunt with Apartment Therapy. To help decide if your upgrade investments will stand the test of time, top interior designers across the country have shared their tips on the wisest ways to invest when it comes to renovating your bathroom.

Go frameless for the shower - A clunky feature of older shower enclosures is the metal strip that runs around the edges. If you’re updating your shower, leave off the metal frame.

Install an LED mirror - vanity mirrors with LED lights built into the frame add a great clean look for a more modern bath, and it has a feel of sophisticated luxury like you would find in an upscale hotel.

Do a riff on classic subway tile - subway tile is a timeless and traditional choice for the bath and instead of being laid in the horizontal brick pattern, try them stacked or turned on their side vertically.

Add a freestanding tub - the original style of tub since the invention of bathing and you can't go wrong with this statement piece.

Choose a warmer white - off white is more interesting than bright white and it’s not as stark, it feels more forgiving.

Put your tub inside your shower - add a spa-like element to your bathroom by placing the tub inside an extra-large shower enclosure.

Upgrade your shower tile enclosure - little changes to your shower tile can be life-changing: add a little 3 x 3 outcropping or a tiny niche at ankle height so you have a place to rest your foot while shaving in the shower, make the niche to hold your soap and shampoo or add a shelf.

Thinking of Skiing

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Aug 19, 2020

RamonThe weather in Utah has been particularly hot lately, which makes me think of skiing and snow boarding of course. Did you know that Park City, Utah might of had the most unique (and unpractical) ski lift EVER. Matt Lorelli of Unofficial Networks share this article posted in the New York Times on December 13, 1964 sharing details of Park City’s “Skier’s Subway” used to transport skiers through old mining shafts. Check out this incredible footage and first-hand depictions of the Skier’s Subway. I know skiers will get creative for turns, but this is taking it to the next level. The Skier’s Subway didn’t last long, and closed in 1969. The entire journey ended up taking close to an hour, if everything worked properly. The Park City Museum claims that most skiers treated the subway as a novelty and returned to more traditional lifts after one ride.
Still thinking of heat we wanted to share Apartment Therapy's 50 Things to Do at Home in the Summer That Don’t Require Any Outdoor Space. Even though we have miles of wonderful trails and fresh air in Park City, sometimes it is still nice to stay inside as we all keep a little distance.

1. Start an Indoor Herb Garden - if you have a window, you can do that inside. And even if you don’t have good light, there are at-home garden solutions for that, too.

2. Make Over Your Entire Wardrobe - this is actually a great (and productive) way to spend time. Take everything out of your closet and be honest about what you actually need to keep, then donate the rest.

3. Find a New Workout Routine - instead of putting yourself on an at-home workout schedule you hate, make it a goal to try a new, different DIY workout each week. YouTube is great for this.

4. Make a TBR Pile and Commit To It - make (“to be read”) pile for the rest of the summer. Go through the books one by one and donate the ones you know you won’t read again.

5. Start a Virtual Book Club - Gather friends on a video call every few weeks and talk about books, life, or anything in between. It’ll inspire you to read and get you to socialize creatively.

6. Create a DIY Cooking Competition - Choose an ingredient or a flavor category and compare recipes at the end of the evening. The prize can be anything you want!

7. Perfect Your Favorite Recipe - Whatever it is, challenge yourself to perfect making it yourself—no matter how many tries it takes.

8. …Or Work Through an Entire Cookbook - choose a favorite cookbook and commit to making every single recipe in it by the end of the summer.

9. Start a Journal  - Odds are, one day you’ll want to look back on it and see exactly what you were doing, thinking, and feeling.

10. Develop One New Daily Routine - Identify the most unpleasant part of your daily routine and make it better. Try changing your annoying alarm clock out for something more pleasant, or investing in a new workout tool that will improve your exercise routine.

11. Makeover an Entire Room For $0 - Challenge yourself to make it into something better with no money at all. Spending just a few hours of concentrated effort on a room (instead of avoiding it) can make all the difference.

12. Sit Down and Take a “Life Inventory” - Write down a handful of life categories that are important to you (like family, friends, travel, finance, or health) and list some ways you can improve upon the most frustrating parts. Set goals.

13. Create an At-Home Movie Theater - String Christmas lights up, pop some popcorn, order all those weird snacks you only eat at movie theaters.

14. Recreate Your Favorite Date Nights At Home  - Whatever it is, there are ways to do it at home. For example, you can take a virtual tour of a new museum exhibit or take a virtual cooking class together.

15. Create a Documentary Club - Create a list of intriguing and thought-provoking documentaries and host a virtual club where you and a few others get together and discuss the films.

16. Learn a New Language - You might not be able to go there right now, but you can at least use the extra time to learn a few key phrases (or more than that, if you’re feeling ambitious) to use when you do go there.

17. Organize Your Fridge or Pantry Once and For All - Invest in a few affordable storage solutions and create the dream fridge or pantry you’ve always wanted. And if you don’t want to spend any money, then get creative.

18. Switch Up One Space in Your House Entirely - Make your guest bedroom the office or your main bedroom the guest bedroom. Move your dining room to your living area.

19. Find a Pen Pal - Whether it’s someone you’re dating, an old friend, or a distant relative, find yourself a summer pen pal. Just think of how interesting the contents of those summer 2020 letters will be to look back on in 10 years!

20. Start Something From Scratch - When’s the last time you started something from scratch? This can be a recipe, or a brand new arts and crafts project, or anything at all.

Click here to read all 50 ideas - have fun!

Luxury Travel Magazine shares the summer activities still happening at The St. Regis Deer Valley (SRDV).  Hotel guests are returning for the Resort's many exciting outdoor activities including hiking for all levels with trailheads on the property; mountain biking on Park City’s 325 miles of trails; Blue Ribbon trout fishing; golfing at outstanding nearby courses with tee times scheduled by the St. Regis Concierge; touring Park City's historic Main Street, lined with award-winning restaurants, pubs, boutiques and galleries; enjoying a world-class luge run (yes, even in summer) at Utah Olympic Park; horseback riding; relaxing at the Resort’s two-tier infinity pool or working out at the state-of-the-art Athletic Club.  Guests can also indulge their senses at the Resort’s Remède Spa in its pristine and relaxing private treatment rooms.

The Resort's family activities include Geocache Treasure Hunts, an exciting and captivating journey for children and adults alike, taking guests through the trails of Wasatch Valley in search of buried treasure; and the daily S’mores Tradition and the Champagne Sabering Tradition. The Resort's four outstanding dining venues are open with generously distanced seating.

RIME at The St. Regis Deer Valley is open daily 7:00 AM-9:30 PM.

Mountain Terrace is open daily from 11:00 AM-3:30 PM and 4:30 PM-9:00 PM.

Brasserie 7452 is open daily from 11:00 AM-3:30 PM and 4:30 PM-9:00 PM.

The St. Regis Bar & Lounge is open daily from 11:00 AM-3:30 PM and 4:30 PM-9:00 PM.

Sprucing Up Your Home

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Aug 12, 2020

This week we are looking at how to spruce up your bedrooms and living room for potential buyers. Even if you are not looking to sell at this moment, these tips can brighten and lighten your mood. Do you have an empty wall in need of some love, check out What’s New on Park City’s Gallery Scene with Park City Magazine. Park City’s art scene is gaining global momentum, especially with a few new galleries on the proverbial block. Before summer ends, take time out to stroll around and enjoy all this colorful town has to offer. The Park City Gallery Association continues to host the monthly stroll from 6-9 pm on the last Friday of each month—with social distancing protocols in place; currently, masks are required indoors in Summit County. Visit pop-up gallery, CREATE PC (825 Main St), rotating work from local artists and doubling as a cooperative artist studio and retail gallery.

Are the bedrooms in your home putting potential buyers to sleep—and not in a good way? Here are 4 Bedroom Mistakes to Avoid When Selling Your House, according to Wendy and the Team at Apartment Therapy. From nurseries to kids’ rooms, guest bedrooms and main suites, it’s important to showcase sleeping areas as relaxing refuges from everyday life. Here’s how to transform these spaces so buyers can picture themselves having sweet dreams in your house.

Your bedroom is the designated dumping ground - Put a hand up if your bedroom features things like: abandoned exercise equipment, a “home office” corner that’s really a folding table strewn with papers and an outdated desktop computer, piles of clean laundry you haven’t had time to fold, or tired bedding from when you first moved in. Ditch the clutter and attract buyers with a commanding focal point, like an awesome headboard or accent wall. Low-profile bed frames can help make a room feel bigger. You also shouldn’t shower or use the ensuite restroom within a few hours before an open house so they can be show-ready.

Your nursery doesn’t deliver - Just because a baby sleeps here doesn’t mean this bedroom should look cramped and boring. Stick to gender-neutral paint colors and steer clear of decals on the walls, which can feel cumbersome and permanent. Buyers who don’t have children might want an office or TV room instead of a nursery, so appeal to the space’s potential by tricking the eye into thinking it’s bigger.

Your kids’ bedrooms look like a kaleidoscope - If your child’s room contains several toppling towers of toys, buyers will assume your house doesn’t have adequate storage. That means stashing games, stuffed animals and toys in baskets that can be stacked in the closet. Limit furniture, and avoid bright colors like hot pink and lime green too.

Your guest room has no glam factor - It’s natural to want your in-laws to have plenty of space if they’re restless sleepers, but cramming in a bed that’s too large for the room is a big no-no. Less is more, so organize and purge any unnecessary household items, and use all-white bedding, which is easy to clean and looks inviting. In all bedrooms, avoid staging the bed against a window; have room to walk on either side.

Your bedrooms are not the only thing buyers are looking at, here Antonia DeBianchi shares 6 Tricks Home Stagers Use to Make Your Living Room Feel Way Bigger. If you love entertaining, a cramped living room can put a damper on your hosting plans.Even though it can feel impossible, there are ways to maximize space in a small living room. While you’re spending extra time at home these days, take a minute to employ these home stager-approved tricks to make your living room look bigger.

Spring for a large area rug - A small rug in the middle of the room makes a tight space feel smaller. Keep it with a five-inch border around the room and keep the pattern simple with a seagrass or stripe pattern. Anything too busy will cause mental clutter.

Trick your windows into looking taller - Curtains will heighten the room and make the whole room look bigger. Depending on ceiling height, always mount your curtains above the casing or molding—never on them. Take your window game one notch further by mounting a mirror across from it. Its reflection will open up the room as if there’s another window.

Ditch lighter paint swatches  - If you thought lighter colors made rooms look bigger, think again. Darker colors like navy blue add depth to a living room and make it come alive. Balance the dark walls with neutral-light upholstery. If you’re not ready to take the leap, experiment with an accent wall.

Think vertically with wall shelving - Using hanging wall shelves or bookshelves reduces floor clutter. But be wary of overcrowding. If you’re filling [the shelf] up with books, make sure you’re breaking it up and putting in some accessories and matching baskets can hide all your storage while still looking neat.

Reduce furniture—and buy proportional pieces - Minimizing furniture is key. Hiding an ottoman under a coffee table or bringing in chairs from your office when you need extra seating helps make way for necessary furniture. To make a less obstructive walkway try investing in coffee tables with softened curves. And as for patterns, the more simple the upholstery, the bigger the room will feel.

Invest in lots of lighting - Make sure that you have ambient lighting, put a lamp in the corner to compliment overhead lighting.

Stay well and have a great week.

Camping and Cocktails

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Aug 05, 2020

Judy and I enjoy camping and wanted to share a great article by Adventure Mom for Ski Utah in Camping at Utah's Ski Resorts. There are several ski resorts in the Utah area that provide camping opportunities for those who would like to spend time outdoors while enjoying nature and the stunning scenery. Check out the following resorts for an experience of a lifetime.

Beaver Mountain, located in Garden City, Utah, is a popular place for skiers and camping enthusiasts alike. Many choose to visit Beaver Mountain because of its beautiful scenery and all that is offered to them, including a spacious RV park with access to fire pits and large picnic tables, campsites for those who want to sleep in tents, and even lodges for those who prefer staying indoors. Amenities includes shower/restroom facilites, OHV trails, full service 30 amp hookups, free WiFi and much more. Bear Lake is a short 20 minute drive from Beaver Mountain and offers water sports activities and famous raspberry milkshakes. Make sure to complete your reservations in advance.

Alta Ski Area, just outside Salt Lake City, is one of Utah’s most scenic ski resorts that offer camping. Many amazing hikes to lakes and viewpoints can be found near the Albion Basin Campground as well as some mountain bike trails. The Albion Basin Campground is where all of the fun camping takes place in the summer months. In order to book with the Albion Basin Campground, you’ll need to go to Recreation.gov. Please remember dogs are not allowed in Little Cottonwood Canyon, a protected watershed area. In addition to camping, numerous lodging options are also available. You can book your reservation at one of several spots open for summer or simply visit them for a night off of cooking by the campfire.

The Redman Campground between Brighton and Solitude Mountain Resort is just a few miles up Big Cottonwood Canyon. There is much to do and see in the area, such as fishing and hiking. The area is known for its scenic views and a massive elevation of 8,300 feet. In addition to going on hikes and fishing, guests may enjoy riding bikes on the trail while exploring the area and taking photos of nature’s beauty and the amazing wildflowers during peak summer months. Plan to leave your furry friends behind on this trip — dogs are not allowed in Big Cottonwood Canyon, a protected watershed area. Reservations for the campground are available and you can bring a tent or your RV to camp here.

The Spruces Campground, located on Big Cottonwood Canyon Road in Salt Lake City, Utah, is a kid-friendly spot with an elevation of approximately 7,500 feet. Make sure you make plans to leave the pups behind for this one, too — Spruces is part of the Big Cottonwood Canyon protected watershed area. It is the perfect spot for those looking for a comfortable and convenient place to set up a tent or park their RV for a camping extravaganza. There is plenty of space available for RVs to park next to tents. Guests can book a reservation for as low as $26 per night.

The Mount Timpanogos Campground at Sundance Mountain Resort is well-known for its surrounding beauty because it is in the Wasatch Mountains in Utah County, Utah. It is a great place to visit when you want to experience a stunning scenic view surrounded by aspen and fir trees. Those who come to the campground will often have picnics, go on hikes, ride their bikes on the trails and even indulge in activities at Sundance Mountain Resort just down the road. It is a great spot for those camping in RVs and tents. Its recreation sites are standard non-electric and RV non-electric. Activities at Sundance during the summer include scenic chairlift rides, zipline, horseback riding, fly fishing, art classes, music and more. Guests can make reservations online. A stay at the campground will cost as low as $24 per night. If you’d like to reserve a campsite call 1-877-444-6777 or you can click here to make those reservations on-line.

While you are out camping make sure to check out the stars. If you are up for a road trip, her are Bradley O'Neill's Best Places in the U.S. to See the Stars. Here’s Discover Blog's list of the best locations for stargazing in the US. They range from the solitude of US National Historical Parks to towns, cities and historical places that are members of the International Dark Sky Places.

Chaco Culture National Historical Park, New Mexico - This remote park is a prehistoric archaeological site and on clear nights you can appreciate the starry skies as our ancestors did thousands of years ago. The Chaco Night Sky Program runs between April and October and features astronomy workshops for everyone from school children to astronomers.

Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah - One of the things that will instantly grab your attention upon arrival to Bryce Canyon is how dry and pollution free the air is. This combination makes it among the darkest places in the country. The week of and prior to the new moon are the best times, but thousands of stars still twinkle on moonless nights. Check the Astronomy and Night Sky Programs for events.

Devil’s Tower National Monument, Wyoming- The landscapes of Devil's Tower are as ethereal as you are likely to experience and you’ll feel like you are sat on a far-off planet when stargazing here. Go in the summer for the best chance of seeing the Milky Way curve over the centerpiece monolith.

Flagstaff, Arizona - Flagstaff has the honor of being the first city to become a designated International Dark-Sky City. It even has its own dark sky preservation program, called Flagstaff Dark Skies Coalition. Simply by standing on an unlit city street you’ll have a good chance of viewing hundreds of constellations and the Milky Way. If you take your astronomy more seriously then pass by the Lowell Observatory for a guided tour.

Headlands International Dark Sky Park, Michigan - While the Headlands may not compete with some of the more remote parks, its location on the northwestern shores of Lake Michigan serves up a different perspective. Besides the stars, watching the full moon illuminate the lake is unforgettable. And there’s the added bonus of being able to witness the enchanting Northern Lights. Just keep an eye out for updates on the park programs and events.

Joshua Tree National Park, California - After a spectacular sunset, countless stars, planets and meteorites begin to appear above the park’s high and low desert landscape. There’s superb stargazing to be enjoyed around the nine campgrounds. Visit in November for the Night Sky Festival.

Mauna Kea, Hawaii - Lauded by astronomers as one of the world’s best stargazing destinations, the visibility is helped by an inversion cloud layer that protects the summit from the damp sea air. You can hike or drive by 4WD to the summit, where international astronomy teams conduct research round the clock. The Maunakea Visitor Information Center runs free programs without the need to go all the way to the top.

Cocktail Time - the Park City Area Restaurant Association is hosting its 16th annual summer cocktail contest now through the end of the month. The contest, which was started in 2004, normally runs in July, but was pushed back to run Aug. 1-31 due to the coronavirus. Visit parkcityrestaurants.com to see the 2020 Summer Cocktail Contest participating restaurant and bars and vote for your favorite. The participants share their recipes so you can try the cocktails at home too.

710 Bodega

Alpine Pie Bar

Billy Blanco’s

Blind Dog

Butcher’s Chop House

Eating Establishment

Flanagan’s on Main

Grappa Italian Restaurant

Hearth and Hill

High West

O.P. Rockwell

Royal Street Cafe

Silver Star Cafe

Squatter’s Roadhouse Grill

Waldorf Astoria

Wasatch Brew Pub

 

Outdoor Dining

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Jul 29, 2020

Judy and I have enjoyed eating dinner out on our deck this summer, but sometimes we still like to get out. This week we are sharing the outdoor dining options in Park City and the surrounding areas. And, as with all public gathering places these days, please wear a mask, maintain social distancing and stay home if you are feeling sick.

The Park City Restaurant Association has lots of information about dining in Park City as well as a current list of all open establishments (over 50 are open now) - click here to see them. While restaurants are following guidelines to ensure that dining in a Park City restaurant is safe; some businesses are taking additional steps to protect our community further by including additional social distancing measures, arriving at a specific time or the adoption of no walk-in policies.

Main Street in Historic Park City is also a little different this summer as Sundays are now car-free. The Historic Park City Alliance announced car-free Main Street Sundays will go through September 6, 2020. The 0.8-mile stretch of shops, cafes, bars, and restaurants invites merchants to expand into the street to welcome visitors to the district. Cars will be prohibited on the street from 11:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m. On-street dining, shopping, and experiences will vary each week.

There are many beautiful places in Utah with outdoor dining options and Melissa Fields of Ski Utah shares some of the other Utah mountain towns and resort restaurants serving up great food—with a side of fantastic views—on outdoor patios for the 2020 summer season in Bluebird Day Summer Dining.

Little Cottonwood Canyon  - At Alta Ski Area, The Snowpine Lodge's Gulch Pub patio is open daily from 12 a.m. - 8 p.m. Wednesday - Sunday. The Alta Lodge will open for Saturday lunch (dine-in and take-out, noon - 2 p.m.) on August 1; Sunday Brunch service begins on August 2 (9:30 a.m. - 2 p.m., reservations required).

Down canyon at Snowbird, the patios at Snowbird SeventyOne and The Forklift are open daily. Or head into the Snowbird Center to grab a sandwich from Snowbird General Gritts, a pie from Tram Car Pizza or coffee and housemade pastry from Baked & Brewed to enjoy on the ‘Bird’s large Plaza Deck.

Big Cottonwood Canyon - The iconic Silver Fork Lodge and Restaurant located just 1.5 miles west of Solitude in Big Cottonwood Canyon, is open daily for the summer season (8 a.m. - 8 p.m.). Dine inside the restaurant or on the lodge’s large back patio. Or grab food to-go from the Silver Spoon Food Truck, parked in the lodge’s upper parking lot Wednesday through Sunday (noon - 7 p.m.).

Millcreek Canyon - The rustically charming Log Haven serves dinner nightly on its cool and verdant patio surrounded by the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest. 

Park City - While several restaurants operate seasonal patios along Park City’s Historic Main Street in warm weather months, on Sundays this summer, the entire thoroughfare is dedicated to walkers, cyclists and outdoor dining. During Car-free Sundays, cars are prohibited on Park City’s Main Street from 11 a.m. - 10 p.m. through September 6, 2020. On-street dining, shopping and experiences will vary each week.

At Deer Valley Resort, the deck is open (8 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.) at the Deer Valley Grocery ~ Café—as is Pebble Beach, the stand-up paddleboard beach and pond located adjacent to the café’s deck. On June 26, the patio Royal Street Cafe opened for the summer season (11:30 a.m. - 3 p.m., daily).

Sundance Mountain Resort is serving up tasty meals at the Foundry Grill by reservation only with plenty of outdoor seating, as well as grab-and-go options from The Deli and Foodtruck on the lawn. Snag a table and enjoy a sandwich with breathtaking views of Mount Timpanogos. 

Over in the Heber Valley, the same culinary team responsible for Tupelo Park City, is opening Heber City’s newest eatery, Afterword. There, local producers will be highlighted in a farm-to-table experience on Afterword’s spacious patio.

For hungry hikers, climbers and bikers traveling to or from the 450,000-plus-acre High Uintas Wilderness (located east of Kamas along the Mirror Lake Highway), a stop at Samak Smokehouse & Country Store for a sandwich, stickie, smoked trout or cold drinks (and Uintas Recreation Passes) is de rigueur. For those looking to stick around awhile at this Wasatch Back institution, check out the Smokehouse’s Summer BBQ, held outside on the lawn next to the smokehouse on Sunday nights (5 to 8 p.m.) through Labor Day weekend.

Whether you are dining at home or at your favorite local restaurant - our friends at Alpine Distilling have wonderful, locally crafted spirits that are an expression of the rejuvenative effects of time spent outdoors. When Alpine Distilling isn’t making hand sanitizer to help combat Covid-19 they’re busy crafting award-winning spirits that capture the taste of life in a mountain town. Alpine donates a percentage of proceeds to the Park City Swaner Nature Preserve, the Utah Olympic Park, and many other local nonprofit organizations and community initiatives.

Alpine Distilling specializes in botanically-inspired spirits, gin, and spiced bourbon. Their unique Preserve Liqueur was inspired by sunset at the Swaner Nature Preserve and encapsulates notes of blood orange, black tea, raspberry, lemon balm, and ginger. This inspired liqueur just earned Double-Gold Medals at both the World Spirit Awards and London’s Women Wine & Spirit Awards. Their Alpine Gin also scored Double-Gold at London’s Women Wine & Spirit Award. Try this lovely recipe tonight:

ALPINE DISTILLING'S THYME TO PRESERVE

  • 1.5oz. Alpine Gin
  • 0.5oz. Preserve Liqueur
  • 0.75oz. Fresh Lemon Juice
  • 0.5oz. Cane Syrup
  • 2-3 Sprigs of Freshly Cut Thyme
  • 1-2 Lemon Slices
Preparation - Add all ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice. Cover and shake well until chilled. Double strain over fresh ice and garnish with lemon slices and a fresh sprig or two of thyme.

Getting Outside

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Jul 21, 2020

This week we kick off with What’s Open at Park City’s Resorts and Action-Sports Playgrounds from Park City Magazine by Jane Gendron. The Covid-19 protocols and safety guidelines are in place. Here’s the plan for Park City’s mountain playgrounds.

Deer Valley Resort Chairlifts open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, now through September 7; then, Saturdays and Sundays only through September 20. After a thrilling descent on a mountain bike or a picturesque alpine wander, grab a bite and drink on the deck of Royal Street (11:30 a.m.–3 p.m.) or the Silver Lake Snack Shack (11 a.m.–5 p.m.)—or watch the paddleboard action from the deck of Deer Valley Grocery Café (8 a.m.–3:30 p.m.). Lodging properties are open, parking is available at Snow Park Lodge, and pre-purchase of lift tickets is advised.

Park City Mountain - Park City base activities are open Thursday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–8 p.m., and Sunday, 10 a.m.–7 p.m. Buckle up for some mountain adventure via the alpine slide, mountain coaster, and lift-served hiking and biking courtesy of Crescent and Pay Day lifts. For to-go eats, swing by Jupiter Java, or time your visit for the Wednesday Farmer’s Market in the Silver King lot, noon to 5 p.m. The Extreme Zip is part of Utah Olympic Park’s Jumpside pass, a two-hour unlimited ticket to activities located near the Nordic jumps; a Trackside pass accesses the ropes courses and airbags near the bobsled track.

Utah Olympic Park 9 a.m.–6 p.m. The UOP is leaping into action with a Jumpside Pass and a Trackside Pass (starting July 4), accessing two-hour unlimited sessions on the activities near each location. Jumpside—in the environs of the Nordic jumps—means access to Extreme tubing, the alpine slide, Extreme Zip, Freestyle Zip, and Discovery ropes course. Trackside is focused on everything near the bobsled, including the lofty Summit and Canyon ropes courses and the airbag jumps. Pay for two-hour increments between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m., or just check out the interactive Alf Engen Ski Museum and Eccles Salt Lake 2002 Olympic Winter Games Museum free of charge.

Woodward Park City 10 a.m.–8 p.m. Action sports campus Woodward reopened in May for scooter, skateboarding, and BMX; and the much-anticipated lift-served downhill mountain biking came online in mid-June. Adrenaline-fun seekers are also allowed indoors for parkour and trampoline sessions (in limited numbers). Plus, there’s a multi-action-sport camp (5 or 10 days) for kids ages 6 and up, July 6 through August 14.

Utah is an amazing place to watch the evening skies. Shermans Travel even added the Utah skies to 9 Incredible Stargazing Destinations Around the World. Teresa Bitler shares in this article the Utah’s International Dark Sky Parks. Most Americans live in an area where they cannot see the Milky Way due to the light pollution -- but that's not an issue when stargazing in Utah, which has 15 certified International Dark Sky Parks. This includes Canyonlands National Park, Capitol Reef National Park, Goblin Valley State Park, Dead Horse Point State Park, Antelope Island State Park, Steinaker State Park, Cedar Breaks National Monument, Natural Bridges National Monument, Hovenweep National Monument, Rainbow Bridge National Monument, and Dinosaur National Monument. Judy and I are getting out to see the stars.

Looking to get out on the water - here is the The Insider’s Guide to Four Park City Area Reservoirs: For details about camping, which is available at all four reservoirs, visit stateparks.utah.gov/activities/camping. Here are the four Wasatch Back reservoirs closest to Park City—Deer Creek, Echo, Jordanelle, and Rockport.

Deer Creek - With stunning views of Mount Timpanogos and hugging the road between Heber City and Sundance Resort, Deer Creek Reservoir is about as accessible as it is scenic. It took 17 years to build the Deer Creek Dam and Reservoir, completed in 1955 as part of the Provo River Project. But only fishing was allowed there until 1971, when the state park opened. Now, in addition to boating, swimming, fishing, and camping, Deer Creek is home to the Uinta Kiting kiteboarding school and Zipline Utah’s Screaming Falcon zipline tour.

Get there: Deer Creek Reservoir is 23.5 miles from Park City via US 189/US 40 toward Charleston/Sundance Resort. Day-use fees are $10 per vehicle (up to eight passengers), Monday through Friday; $15 on the weekends. Dogs are not allowed in the day-use areas. 435.654.0171

Echo - Echo Reservoir (filled by the Weber River since 1931) transitioned from privately run to Utah’s newest state park in 2018. The 18-site campground at the reservoir’s south end, which was closed all last summer for renovations, will open this summer and has been renamed Dry Hollow (to dissuade its previously raucous reputation, perhaps). New flushable toilets and shower facilities are scheduled to open this summer as well; portable bathrooms will be used until they are completed. For a truly adventuresome day, ride the 28-mile length of the Historic Union Pacific Rail Trail from Park City to Echo Reservoir.

Get there: Echo State Park is 27 miles from Park City. Take Interstate 80 east to the Coalville exit. Follow the Echo Dam Road along the east side of the reservoir to the state park. The day-use fee is $6 per passenger vehicle (expect an increase when the restroom facilities are complete) and $4 for a walk-in/bicycle. 435.336.9894

Jordanelle - Like Deer Creek, the Jordanelle is fed by the Provo River. The Jordanelle Dam, constructed from 1987 to 1993, holds 320,300 acre-feet of water, which covers the former small towns of Hailstone and Keetley. The Jordanelle State Park opened in 1995. Anything you can do on the water goes there: Park City SUP, the Park City Rowing Academy (801.245.9351), and Park City Sailing all are based at this reservoir. At the Hailstone area, the marina offers all sorts of watercraft rentals (jordanellerentals.com). Eschew the crowds by hiking or pedaling the 15-mile Perimeter Trail, a dirt two-track running along the northern and eastern shores, connecting Hailstone to quieter Rock Cliff recreation area (home to the nature center).

Get there: The Hailstone entrance ($15 admission per car) is 6 miles from Park City along US 40 toward Heber City. The Rock Cliff entrance ($10 admission per car) is 22 miles from Park City via US 40 to River Road/SR 32 east toward Francis. 435.649.9540  

Rockport - You’ll find many of the same amenities offered at Jordanelle, but with a fraction of the people, at Rockport. Until 1952, when the Bureau of Reclamation began buying the property there to build the Wanship Dam, 27 families lived on the land now occupied by the reservoir. Before the area was flooded, some of the town’s buildings were moved to the Pioneer Village at Lagoon Amusement Park. Now at the marina and convenience store, you can rent jet skis, power boats, paddleboards, kayaks—even inflatable water trampolines. Along with boaters and beach-goers, Rockport’s cold water temps provide an ideal fish habitat, making it popular with anglers as well. An unusual amenity is the 3-D archery range: targets that look like mountain lions, bears, and turkeys along the Lakeview Trail.

Get there: From Park City, take SR 248 to Brown’s Canyon Road. Head left on SR 32 at Peoa and follow the signs to the state park. Daily admission to the state park is $12 per car (up to eight people). 435.336.2241 

Mortgage Rates & Economic Updates

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Jul 15, 2020

This week we will start our blog with the current conforming and jumbo mortgage rates for Utah as shared by Josh Mettle followed by the golfing options in Park City and few ideas for freshening up your home's curb appeal.

The Conforming rates are based on a $300 loan amount and 65% loan to value and the Jumbo rates are based on a $1,000,000 loan amount with a $1,250,000 purchase price.

Loan Type Interest Rate APR    
30-yr fixed Conforming 3.25% 3.378%
15-yr fixed Conforming 2.75% 2.981%
 
Loan Type Interest Rate APR    
7/1 ARM Jumbo 3.00% 3.096%
30-yr fixed Jumbo 3.125% 3.219%
15-yr fixed Jumbo 2.875% 3.045%
In more home news - CoreLogic released home appreciation figures for May, showing that prices rose 0.7% from April to May and 4.8% when compared to May of last year and inflation continues to remain tame. At the wholesale level, the Producer Price Index was down 0.2% in June after rebounding in May, coming in much lower than expectations.

CoreLogic also noted that a lot of the demand was pent up from spring to summer with elevated unemployment, and that purchase activity and home prices could fall off once summer ends. It remains to be seen if this latest forecast will prove true, or if the surge in sales and appreciation levels off less steeply, which could still allow for home price gains over the next year.

Now for golf - there is no shortage of golf courses in the Park City area to enjoy. The Park Record has put together a list of all the local golf courses - from public and municipal courses to private clubs there is something for everyone.

Park City Golf Club (public) 1541 Thaynes Canyon Drive, Park City 435-615-5800 18 holes, par 72 $24-$70 This scenic municipal course offers lessons, leagues and a pro shop. Reservations can be made seven days in advance.

Canyons Golf Course (public) 3636 Willow Draw, Park City 435-615-4728 18 holes, par 70 $30-$150 This course features more than 550 feet of elevation change, including 270 feet on Hole 10 from tee to green. Group and individual lessons available.

The Outlaw Golf Club (public) 990 Longview Drive, Hideout 435-901-4227 9 holes, par 30 Located in the eastern foothills of the Jordanelle Reservoir, at the Outlaw, players can enjoy views of the glistening waters of the Jordanelle and the towering mountain peaks.

Soldier Hollow Golf Course (public) 1370 Soldier Hollow Drive, Midway 435-654-7442 Silver Course: 18 holes, par 72 Gold Course: 18 holes, par 72 $40- $50 Silver is the tamer of the two courses, slightly shorter with wider fairways, while the Gold has narrower, more undulating fairways, tee shots requiring longer carry and trickier greens.

Wasatch Mountain Golf Course (public) 975 West Golf Course Drive, Midway 435-654-0532 Lake Course: 18 holes, par 72 Mountain Course: 18 holes, par 71 $45-$50 Wasatch Mountain’s two courses offer serious variety, from the Lake’s gentle terrain to the Mountain’s dramatic elevation changes and potential wildlife sightings.

Mountain Dell Golf Course (public) Interstate 80, Exit 134 in Parleys Canyon 801-582-3812 Lake Course: 18 holes, par 71 Canyon Course: 18 holes, par 72 $13- $58 This Salt Lake City-run municipal course offers a variety of affordable amenities, from lessons to play-until-sunset twilight rates.

Jeremy Ranch Golf & Country Club (private) 8770 Jeremy Ranch Road, Park City 801-531-9000 18 holes, par 72 Membership required Nestled in Upper East Canyon of the Wasatch Mountains, Jeremy Ranch is the only Arnold Palmer Signature Course in Utah.

Park Meadows Country Club (private) 2000 Meadows Drive, Park City 435-649-2460 18 holes, par 72 Membership required This Jack Nicklaus Signature course has been called one of the best courses in Utah and Park Record readers have selected its Hole 15 as the best in Park City multiple times.

Glenwild Golf Club (private) 7600 Glenwild Dr., Park City 435-615-9966 18 holes, par 71 Membership required This course features a meandering creek with a series of lakes and shot values that enhance its playability and scenic appeal.

Promontory (limited public availability) 8758 N Promontory Ranch Road, Park City 888-458-6600 Pete Dye Canyon Course: 18 holes, par 72 Nicholas Painted Valley Golf Course: 18 holes, par 72 Limited open play at Pete Dye Canyon Course, $100-$250 Membership required at Nicholas Painted Valley Golf Course Dye Canyon rewards accuracy and takes dramatic advantage of the rugged terrain, while the links-style Painted Valley rewards the ability to hit the ball an incredible distance.

Talisker Club, Talisker Tuhaye Course (private) 9875 N. Tuhaye Park Drive, Kamas 866-253-8538 18 holes, par 72 Membership required Tuhaye is set against spectacular long-range views of Mount Timpanogos, Deer Valley’s ski runs and the shimmering waters of the Jordanelle Reservoir.

Victory Ranch (private) 7474 Victory Club Drive, Kamas 435-785-5030 18 holes, par 72 Membership required The course features 400 feet of elevation change but of all the vistas on the course, the 360-degree panoramic view from the championship tee box on the 17th hole is the real jewel.

Red Ledges Golf Course (private) 205 Red Ledges Blvd., Heber City 877-733-5334 18 holes, par 72 Membership required In addition to the 18-hole Jack Nicklaus Signature Course, Red Ledges boasts a family-friendly 12-hole Golf Park, with optional oversized cups and a layout that encourages bounces toward the hole.

We will wrap up this week's blog with 3 Tips to Glam Up Your Curb Appeal from Realtor Magazine. Curb appeal is even more important as more home buyers shop for homes from a distance and narrow the lists of which homes they want to view in-person. Here are some of their ideas to boost your curb appeal:

Pay attention to the driveway and walkways. You can take steps to make even concrete look good. After all, the driveway and walkways are what lead the eye toward a home’s front door. Any cracks or weeds popping up can present an eyesore. Patch the concrete with caulk and finish a concrete driveway and walkway with a clear, glossy sealer.

Fix up the garage. The garage is often an after-thought but it takes up a big portion of a home’s curb appeal, try painting the garage doors the same color as the home’s trim. Garage doors with a row of windows filter in more light and make it feel part of a home. Garage window kits are available for many models. You can swap out existing panels and add glass inserts.

Paint the front door. Peeling paint or rusty hardware on the front door isn’t very welcoming to a potential home buyer. If you’re going to spend money on one thing to add curb appeal, make it a new door. Front doors with glass inserts can help create a more welcoming space. But for homeowners looking to save, a fresh coat of paint may suffice.

Summer Highlights

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Jul 08, 2020

This week we are reviewing the top questions of home Buyers and Sellers during these changing times, outside activities that give space and some great alternatives to the top national parks.

Navigating the real estate market was already intimidating, but in this uncertain time, we all have even more questions about how to do it. Vince Malta who is president of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) has channeled his 43 years of experience to offer advice about buying and selling in this strange new environment. We are sharing the top four questions of the article, click here to read all twenty-five.

1. Is now a good time to buy? Every person who dreams of owning a home has to answer that question individually based on a variety of factors — ranging from their personal financial picture to what’s available in their market to how long they plan to stay in one place.

While searching for and buying a home during the COVID-19 pandemic presents some challenges, with mortgage interest rates at an all-time low, for some it may be an ideal time to buy. Thankfully, the real estate industry has quickly adapted to the current circumstances and is leveraging technology that allows buyers to continue their home search virtually and close transactions using safety precautions or remote online notarization.

One of the biggest challenges buyers have faced in the last several years is a shortage of inventory. With the health crisis and stay-at-home orders, some sellers have pulled out of the market or delayed listing their properties, which only exacerbates the inventory challenge.

2. Is now a good time to refinance? Historical data, going back 50 years, shows that mortgage interest rates have never been lower. So, it sure sounds like a good time to consider refinancing, but this is a question to discuss with a lender or qualified financial planner.

If you do decide to refinance, be prepared: Lenders I’ve talked to are managing a high volume of applications, so you’ll need patience — along with outstanding credit. More than 2 million borrowers have sought forbearance on their mortgage payments as a result of the current situation. Some lenders have responded by tightening credit standards, including raising minimum credit scores. So make sure your financial house is in order, you’re continuing to pay bills on time, and you’re keeping debt manageable.

3. What is the best place to find information about how COVID-19 is affecting the home-buying process in my area? Realtors® can provide insights into how your local market is affected by COVID-19 and can help you understand how stay-at home orders, and other local, state and federal government actions and recommendations, are impacting the home-buying process.

4. Is it currently more of a buyer’s or seller’s market? Is COVID-19 shifting these? Every market is different, so it’s a good idea to speak with a Realtor to learn what’s going on in your area. That said, in the past few years, many areas have been experiencing inventory shortages, in part due to insufficient home building and increased tenure in home. On a national basis, a thriving economy combined with low interest rates and limited inventory have led to 97 straight months of home price increases. Generally, low inventory and increasing prices indicate a seller’s market, but historic low interest rates have helped keep homes affordable for buyers in most markets.

NAR data shows Realtors® are experiencing significant slowdowns in their business as a result of COVID-19, but that hasn’t necessarily shifted the market to a buyer’s market. In fact, the national median existing-home price for all housing types in March was $280,600, up 8% from March 2019.

To read the entire article "Everything You Need To Know About Buying and Selling a Home in This Pandemic" - click here.

The Middle Provo River is one of Utah’s finest blue-ribbon fisheries, stretching from Jordanelle to Deer Creek Reservoirs. Great public access is only a 15-minute drive from Park City. Take UT-224 out of Park City to US Hwy 40 East, travel nine miles, and turn right at the light at River Road. Two fisherman’s access areas are right there (one on the right, one on the left) with parking, portable restrooms, and lots of other fishers to swap tales with. You’ll catch brown, cutthroat, and rainbow trout on this beautiful, braided section of river, with lots of easy spots to fish from shore or by shallow wading (depending on water flow). Flies and lures only. Best bets: PMDs, caddis in the evenings, and grasshoppers in late summer.

Then visit Back 40 Ranch House Grill and take in the beautiful, pastoral views of the Heber/Midway Valley while sipping nothing but the water from their own artesian aquifer, but … with so many farm-to-table, locally sourced ingredients, you’d be remiss if you didn’t order, say, the smoked jalapeño cheddar burger made with beef from the Circle Bar Ranch two pastures away and artisan cheddar from nearby Heber Valley Cheese.

Each summer, Jans Mountain Outfitters hosts, beginner fly-casting lessons at the ponds at lower Deer Valley (next to the gazebo). You don’t need a reservation, but call ahead to confirm and let them know you’re coming so they can bring enough rods (bring your own if you have one). Typically, you’ll end up with a group of 8 to 10 new anglers perfecting their “10 o’clock, 2 o’clock” casting technique. Then, book a guided trip with the fine folks at Jans or Trout Bum 2 for a true fly-fishing experience on a local river.

Then visit Deer Valley Grocery Café. Sit on the outside deck and check out the duckies and stand-up paddleboarders floating by. DVGC also carries gourmet to-go items if you want to pack a picnic. 2250 Deer Valley Dr, 435.615.2400, deervalley.com

Known as an “urban fishery” since the Weber River runs parallel to I-84 and I-80, a lot of the Weber is private access only, but anglers can enjoy several nice stretches of tailwater with lots of brown trout and mountain whitefish. Try the Creamery Lane access in Coalville (20 minutes from Park City). From I-80 east, take exit 162. Travel west on Icy Springs Road (SR-280) for 0.2 miles. Turn left and travel south on the frontage road that parallels I-80 for approximately 1.3 miles. Cross over Hobson Lane and continue traveling south on the frontage road for an additional 1.4 miles to reach this access point. Flies and lures only.

Follow with the family-friendly Taggart’s Grill is located in a log house nestled in a beautiful canyon between Morgan and Henefer. Taggart’s doesn’t take reservations, so expect a bit of a well-worth-it wait.

Before You Go you need a License to Fish. Anyone older than 12 must purchase a license to fish in Utah. Purchase one at any of our local fly-fishing shops, Walmart, by downloading the Utah Hunting and Fishing NICUSA app, or online at wildlife.utah.gov. Nonresident three-day license, $24; Utah residents, $16.

Find Fishing Buddies- Join High Country Fly Fishers (highcountryflyfishers.com), the local chapter of the national Trout Unlimited organization, and be privy to monthly activities including fly-tying classes, guest speakers, women’s-only events, group fishing outings, social hours, conservation activities, and more.
Support a Cause - The 5,000-member-strong Utah Stream Access Coalition works to “promote and assist in all aspects of securing and maintaining public access to Utah’s public waters and streambeds per Utah law.” (utahstreamaccess.org)

We wrap up this week's blog with a snippet of the The Salt Lake Tribune's article, 11 great alternatives to the top national parksThe glories of the national park system draw hundreds of millions of visitors each year, even in normal times. But in this upside-down year, with the pandemic still limiting much travel in and outside the United States, it’s likely that the National Park Service’s 419 sites, 62 with a “national park” designation, will attract even more people looking to get away.

For potential park-goers who wish to avoid these crowds (and this season, who doesn’t?), one strategy is to skip the Grand Canyon, the Great Smoky Mountains and the other top 10 parks that typically receive the majority of visitors. There are alternatives that are still awe-inspiring for your summer and fall fresh-air retreats, ones that offer many of the Top Ten’s sights, sounds, wildlife and activities.

South Carolina Congaree, instead of Great Smoky Mountains - Congaree, a park named after the original Native American inhabitants, was created in central South Carolina to preserve 15 different species of trees that are the tallest such specimens anywhere. These includes the most statuesque loblolly pine in the world, towering 167 feet above the surrounding tupelo forest. Tree lovers know Congaree, with only 159,445 visitors last year, as the Redwoods of the East — this year it’s worth forgetting about nearby Great Smoky Mountains and its 12 million-plus visitors.

Arizona Petrified Forest, instead of the Grand Canyon - In east-central Arizona, 110 miles from Flagstaff, the Petrified Forest adjoins the Painted Desert, 7,500 square miles of badlands and hills tinted lavender and red by Triassic Age strata. The annual visitation of this park is one-tenth that of the nearby Grand Canyon. The Petrified Forest, a drive-through park, holds the greatest and most spectacular concentration of fossilized, coniferous tree logs in the world. Once a lush and subtropical climate, the forest of 200-foot-tall trees was buried by volcanic ash and preserved 225 million years ago.

Utah Canyonlands, instead of Arches - Instead of ogling the sandstone formations in traffic-jammed Arches, opt for a wilderness desert experience amid the reddened Wingate sandstone in Canyonlands. Canyonlands is southwest of the tourist mecca of Moab, Utah. Most visitors take the Island in the Sky scenic drive out to spectacular overlooks, but otherwise the 527-square-mile park has few roads.

Minnesota Voyageurs National Park, instead of Glacier Bay - If you haven’t seen the Northern Lights, never mind Alaska. Instead, grab a camera and a paddle and head to Voyageurs National Park, named after the French Canadian canoeists who plied these waters three centuries ago. This park of lakes is 40% water and adjoins another 10,000 square miles of aquatic wilderness. Its remoteness, flanking the Canadian border in northern Minnesota, enables incredible stargazing opportunities all year long and an estimated 200 nights of Northern Lights (even in summer).

Colorado Great Sand Dunes or Black Canyon, instead of Rocky Mountain - Colorado’s Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve features the highest dunes on the continent, towering 755 feet above the surrounding trails. These are set in an otherworldly catchment basin, below the 14,000-foot high Sangre de Cristo Mountains, some 200 miles south of Denver. All trails and most of the campgrounds are now open, along with overnight backcountry access, but the visitor center remains closed.

Texas Big Bend or the Guadalupe Mountains, instead of a trip to Mexico - This park in West Texas, which opened for day use June 1, lies along the namesake curl of the Rio Grande, marking the Mexican border. At this renowned dark-sky park, you can count more than 2,000 stars — 10 times the number typically seen above most cities — surrounding the canvas of the Milky Way. During the days, especially when temperatures cool in the fall and early winter, enjoy 150 miles of trails throughout the park. You might be joined by a bird watcher or two, who roam Big Bend’s 1,200 square miles to spot more than 400 avian species, more than in any national park.

Nevada Great Basin, instead of the Grand Circle - The “Grand Circle” marketing campaign pushed Utah’s national parks to record-setting visitations in recent years, but Great Basin — a few miles over the border in eastern Nevada — got left out of the loop. The 121-square-mile park is named after the enormous basin it sits in (spanning nearly all of Nevada, it is 20 times larger than the park), which pulls all water underground so that it can’t reach the ocean and other waterways.

California Lassen Volcanic, instead of Yellowstone or Yosemite - In place of the crowded Yellowstone geysers or Yosemite mountains, a panorama of wildflowers, volcanic peaks and steaming fumaroles can be seen at Lassen Volcanic, 180 miles north of Sacramento. The 30-mile park highway reopened in late May, along with most of the trails and overnight backcountry camping. The still-smoking, glacier-clad Lassen Peak is one of only two volcanoes in the contiguous 48 states that erupted in the 20th century (Mount St. Helens erupted 40 years ago last month). Today, more than 100 years after magma first flowed from the Lassen Peak, amateur volcanologists can delight in finding the remains of the four types of volcanoes: shield, cinder cone, strato and plug.

Washington state North Cascades, instead of Mount Rainier - Although still emerging from snow banks and currently open for only day use, North Cascades is typically one of the less-visited parks of the entire parks system, seeing less than 3% of Mount Rainier’s yearly traffic. Adjoining the Canadian border, 120 miles northeast of Seattle, this wilderness has only 6 miles of internal roads — all unpaved — and stretches over 1,000 square miles. It boasts 312 glaciers (12 times Mount Rainier’s), as well as more than 500 lakes and a lush carpet of old-growth evergreens. From its dry ponderosa pines in the east to the temperate rain forest in the west, this is landscape of tremendous biodiversity.

To read the entire article, Click Here.

Outdoor Adventures

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Jul 01, 2020

The 2020-2021 ski season at Deer Valley Resort is starting to warm up in the heat of the summer. The Park Record has shared that Deer Valley sees ‘pent-up demand’ as it readies for a socially distanced ski season

The leader of the resort in a recent appearance during a City Hall-hosted online event said Deer Valley is taking lodging reservations for the next ski season from people in various parts of the U.S. Todd Shallan, who is the president and chief operating officer of Deer Valley, said the top five states for reservations are California, New York, Texas, Colorado and Utah. Shallan added that a business plan relying on regional crowds is not sustainable in the long term.

He predicted there will be crowds at Deer Valley for the ski season made up of local people and skiers from out of town. He also acknowledged there will be limitations based on capacity and ensuring social distancing.

“We will certainly prioritize season-pass holders and will certainly prioritize, you know, local guests as much as we possibly can. But we still have a bunch of lodging in this community that needs to be filled,” Shallan said. “And there’s a lot of people that depend on out-of-town visitors in our community, and our business community. So, there’s got to be a mix of both in order for all of us to be successful.”

Shallan said season-pass sales for the upcoming ski season are strong, which he described as a “great indicator” of the winter. He said lodging reservations for the ski season are also strong and another indicator for the winter. “We know there’s a lot of pent-up demand. We just want to make sure that we accommodate that demand as safely as we can,” he said. Shallan described that Deer Valley has not crafted the detailed plans for the ski season yet even though there are many questions about the season, such as the possibility of limiting capacity and social distancing. “We need to learn from the Australian resorts and how they’re managing crowds,” he said. Click here for the full article.

Jenni’s Trail - Distance: 5 miles. Beginning at the base of Park City Mountain Resort, Lower Jenni’s Trail is popular among runners who love tough steep climbs and exhilarating descents. Pass through scrubby shrubs and aspen stands while winding underneath ski lifts and up to the Jenni’s Trail sign at a fork in the trail. From here, continue up or speed downhill back to the base, winding through the forest as you hear the screams of Alpine Coaster riders racing down the mountain. Starting at 6,900 feet and topping out at 8,200 feet, this trail can be run uphill or down, but be aware that the path is shared with uphill mountain bikers.

Armstrong Trail - Distance: 6 miles. Find fantastic views of town and moderate climbs on this dirt trail above Silver Star Café. It’s also an uphill-only mountain bike trail, so you won’t have to worry about speeding cyclists crashing into you during your ascent. Park at Silver Star and follow the signs leading to Armstrong for a three-mile run. Continue to HAM and Spiro Trails for a roughly six-mile loop, ending back in the parking lot. Or, if you’re running out of daylight and just need a short 3-miler, turn off of Armstrong after 1.5 miles (before you reach HAM) and loop down Dawn’s Trail.

Round Valley - Distance: 30 miles of trails. The rolling hills and valleys of this preserved open space northeast of Old Town make it a go-to for locals. With over 30 miles of trails spread over 700 acres, there are soft dirt doubletrack and flowing singletrack paths for every skill level. For easy access, start and end at Quinn’s Trailhead--near bustling Kearns Boulevard. Thanks to its lower 6,500’ elevation, Round Valley is the best place for early spring and late fall trail runs if you’re looking to avoid muddy, snowy slogs. Of note: the area is popular with mountain bikers and off-leash pups are welcome and abundant.

Historic Rail Trail - Distance: 28 miles. During Park City’s silver mining boom, a Union Pacific railroad line connecting Coalville to Park City was used to transport coal and ore. But when the boom went bust, the railroad was abandoned and fell into disuse. In the 1990s, an ambitious project was proposed to turn it into Utah’s first non-motorized rail trail. Today, this unpaved, historic path welcomes runners, cyclists, and hikers on its 28 miles as it passes through Park City, along the river, and to active farmlands and tiny towns before ending at Echo Reservoir—an idyllic place for a post-run swim. 

Mid-Mountain Trail - Distance: 26 miles. The iconic Mid Mountain Trail bisects Deer Valley and both sides of Park City Mountain at an elevation of 8,000 feet, and it isn’t just for the mountain biking crowd. Head out on foot, running through fir forest and aspen stands with views of mountains and town below. The best starting point for an out-and-back run is Deer Valley’s Silver Lake Lodge. Head down the mountain just right of the Sterling Express Lift to catch the trail and run until you’re ready to turn back.

For more off-road options, check out the Mountain Trails Foundation map, available at local retailers and online. 

Looking to get away - Outside Online has shared 8 of Their Favorite Adventuremobile Rental Companies. Vanlife has become the new norm, but if you don't have enough to buy your own, these companies have you covered.Tent camping isn’t always relaxing and Outside has found that an interest in vanlife among campers grew from 8 percent to 14 percent in 2018. Here are there top picks:

Red Rocks Base Camps - Located in Moab, Utah, this delivery service will tow a cozy teardrop to the campsite of your choice.

North Shore Vans - Owner Chris Detchon retrofits his fleet with beds and kitschy Hawaiian style, then sends you off with beta on how and where to camp respectfully on Maui.

VanGo Durango - VanGo ­offers Volkswagen EuroVans to ex­plore the San Juan Mountains of Colorado or the deserts of the Four Corners.

Outdoorsy, RVshare, and Campanda - Like Airbnb for RVs, vans, and trailers, these sites let you rent privately owned camp­ing vehicles, though quality can be a bit of a gamble.

Explore Rentals - This Bozeman, Montana, outfit rents AWD and 4WD setups like the Tacamper, a Toyota Tacoma with a superlight pop-up over the bed.

Escape Campervans - These artist-painted vans are available from 13 locations in the U.S. and Canada.

AlaskaVans - Take one of these spacious, built-out utility vans oceanfront camping on the Kenai Peninsula or into the mountains of Denali National Park.

Home Buying

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Jun 23, 2020

Homebuyers will ‘gobble up’ houses for sale this summer, according to Barbara Corcoran, host of ABC’s Shark Tank and founder of the Corcoran Group, an New York City-based residential brokerage firm as interviewed by Yahoo! Finance.

Before the coronavirus pandemic, the U.S. did not have enough homes for sale to meet demand. But with sellers slow to re-enter the market because of the nationwide lockdowns and demand higher than ever, the U.S. has become an even more competitive market, said Corcoran.

For the week ending June 13, inventory was down 27% compared to last year, according to Realtor.com. Inventory hit a 25-year low in December 2019, with moderate improvement at the beginning of 2020. But it plunged when the pandemic hit the U.S. in mid-March and sellers pulled their homes off the market, according to an analysis by Odeta Kushi, deputy chief economist for First American Financial Corporation, a a Santa Ana, California-based provider of title insurance, settlement services and risk solutions for real estate transactions.

The coronavirus forced Americans to work from home and redefined how Americans see their home. Some Americans are now looking for new homes with bigger yards, home offices and more square footage, after spending months in lockdown. Studies also show that more buyers are now looking to the suburbs for their next home, according to Redfin. Plus, mortgage rates hit an all-time low this week, incentivizing even more buyers into the market.

When more people want a product than the market can supply, the price goes up. Home prices already rose to an all-time high before the pandemic, as homes in the U.S. sold for an average $384,900 in the first quarter of 2020 — well above highs before the Great Recession, which reached an average of $322,100 in its peak, according to the Federal Reserve of St. Louis.  With heightened demand, homes in the U.S. could get even more expensive this summer, according to economists.

Looking to shop outside - the Park City Farmers Market has opened at Park City Mountain Resort’s Silver King Lot. The market will follow COVID-19 guidelines to ensure the safety of the patrons as well as vendors according to the Park Record's Scott Iwasaki. The Farmer's Market will be open Wednesdays, 11 a.m.-noon for senior citizens; noon - 5 p.m. for general public at the Silver King parking lot at Park City Mountain Resort. The market will start with 20 vendor tents that will be 10 feet apart and will have at least two workers each. Handwshing stations will be setup and all vendors will be wearing gloves. parkcityfarmersmarket.com

The Salt Lake Tribune has shared that Ski resorts are gearing up for summer season with new features — and new rules to deal with COVID-19. It’s been a quiet three months in the mountains since COVID-19 caused Utah’s ski resorts to shut down their lifts and cordon off their restaurants in mid-March. Now those wilderness areas are beginning to show signs of life. Woodward Park City, which opened for some indoor sports on May 22, now is also allowing indoor trampolines and parkour and will open its rental shop. Sundance broke out its zip lines, stable, spa and lodging. Utah Olympic Park, though technically not a resort, opened June 4 with tubing and an alpine slide.

Summer has become an increasingly important season for resorts across the country, even before COVID-19 hit. According to the publication Ski Resort Management, revenue for resorts in the summer of 2016 was nearly twice what it was in 2007. During that time, the number of summer visitors rose nearly 45% , even as the cost of a summer visit went up nearly 30%.

This year, however, a successful summer could be critical to a resort’s survival. Consider that most ski areas this year closed prior to spring break, one of their three most lucrative times in the winter season. Those concerns have kept some resorts from jumping into the pool this summer. Solitude Mountain Resort, for example, has made some lodging available but otherwise has announced no plans to reopen.

SUMMER IS IN SESSION

A rundown of what area ski resorts are offering — or not offering — this summer:

Alta • Access to more than 13 miles of hiking trails will open on June 27; lodging expected to open July 1; Albion Basin campground opens July 17.

Beaver Mountain • Hiking and OHV trails open; camping for RVs only.

Brian Head Resort • Activities (disc golf, the zip line, archery, bungee trampoline, climbing wall, avalanche tubing and mountain biking) open Friday through Sunday starting June 26.

Brighton • Hiking trails to open after snowpack melts; Brighton Store is open.

Cherry Peak • All summer operations and concerts postponed.

Deer Valley • Lift-served biking, hiking, scenic rides and some restaurants open daily starting June 26.

Eagle Point • Self-accessed hiking and biking trails open; Canyonside Lodge opened Friday; Mountain Archery Festival scheduled for June 26-28.

Nordic Valley • Summer operations postponed.

Park City Mountain Resort • Alpine slide, mountain coaster, scenic lift rides, hiking and bike haul, and some restaurants scheduled to open Thursday-Sunday starting July 2.

Powder Mountain • Wolf Barn Short Track trail is open; other trails will open as snowpack melts.

Snowbasin Resort • Lift-served mountain biking, hiking and scenic rides via Needles Gondola, mini golf (limited to groups of six or fewer), and dining and mountaintop yoga at the Needles Lodge scheduled to open Saturdays and Sundays starting June 27.

Snowbird • Open daily for summer activities (aerial tram, alpine slide, mountain coaster and Chickadee chairlift), with some restaurants and lodging. Mountain biking off the tram on the Big Mountain Trail remains closed.

Solitude • Summer operations postponed.

Sundance • Open daily for summer activities (chairlift rides, hiking, mountain biking, zip line and stables), with some restaurants, lodging and the spa also open. Reservations required Friday through Sunday.

Utah Olympic Park • Open daily for alpine slide, extreme tubing, zip lining and ropes course in two-hour increments. Alf Engen Ski Museum and Eccles Salt Lake 2002 Olympic Winter Games Museum open and free, but masks are required.

Woodward Park City • Indoor and outdoor parks for wheeled sports, including scooter, skateboarding and BMX, and lift-served mountain biking open daily for a limited number of guests. Trampolines, parkour, gym floor and indoor airbags along with rental shop and food service also available.

Source: Ski Utah

Utah Strong

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Jun 17, 2020

The Park Record has shared that Deer Valley announced their plans to open for summer June on 26th, offering lift-served mountain biking, hiking and scenic chairlift rides, albeit with significant protocols in place to guard against the spread of COVID-19. The resort indicated in a press release it will take “extensive measures to comply with COVID-19 cleaning, operating procedures and guidelines” and will adhere to the safety mandates imposed by Summit County. It will also limit the number of guests allowed on the mountain at any one time, with day lift tickets being sold on a first-come, first-served basis. The resort will allow outdoor dining at three restaurants this summer — Deer Valley Grocery-Cafe, Royal Street Cafe and Silver Lake Snack Shack.

Judy and I truly enjoy living in Utah and were excited when we read Why you should bet on Utah right now, a story by Peter Reichard. As the nation struggles to recovery from the COVID-19 economic decline, Utah is poised to make a strong comeback. Any major economic crisis has a tabula rasa effect, with businesses, investors and individuals pausing to consider big changes. Some will roll out a map of the United States to seek greener pastures. Some of them will decide to place their chips on Utah. Many current Utah residents will just double down. This makes sense, because this state is among the safest of bets. Here are 10 reasons why.

1. Utah has strong social capital.

2. This remains the land of opportunity. Research from Harvard economists put the Salt Lake metro as No. 1 in the nation in terms of intergenerational upward mobility.

3. Utah is a safe port in stormy waters. Utah offers predictability, stability and a business-friendly policy environment and transparency.

4. We have a smart, young population. Not only is Utah the nation’s youngest state, it is also one of the most highly educated, per capita — providing a highly skilled workforce for businesses looking to relocate or expand. A recent Forbes analysis put Utah at No. 1 in the nation for entrepreneurs.

5. We’ve taken hits and are standing tall. Utah had the lowest proportion of unemployed as a percentage of its workforce by mid-May.

6. We’re planning smart and thinking big. At the dawn of the crisis, the state launched the Utah Leads Together effort. There was no infighting or chaos, and planners immediately recognized the need to form a baseline plan, then adjust to a rapidly changing situation.

7. We have a diversified economy. The latest analysis using the Hachman Index of economic diversity put Utah at No. 1 in the nation.

8. Small businesses (and lenders) are taking care of business. Survey data collected by the U.S. Census Bureau reveals Utah small businesses have been the least affected in the nation. As of May 16, Utah ranked No. 1 in federal Payroll Protection Program loans as a percentage of payroll.

9. We aren’t shooting ourselves in the foot. Other state governments have become engulfed in paralyzing political division and crippling financial mismanagement. Utah has managed its finances and public pensions fairly well, and has managed to get important things done.

10. The quality of life is excellent. Utah is situated in a Goldilocks location — not too cold and not too hot with low humidity. It’s one of the sunniest places in the U.S., with endless opportunities for exploration across four seasons — from National Parks to ski resorts. And there is still a comparably reasonable cost of living. Article - peter@utahfoundation.org.

No alt text provided for this image
Judy and I are happy to represent home buyers and sellers in Utah. We are happy to announce our recent closings: 9528N Red Hawk Trail (lot) Preserve - listing, 11572 N White Tail Court (lot) Soaring Hawk - buyer, 429 Piney Drive (single family home) Oakley - listing, and 2752 High Mountain Road #407 (condo) Apex - buyer. Reach out today if you are looking to sell your current home or to find your new home.

rgomez@bhhsutah.com - www.realtorramoninparkcity.com

Weekend Adventures

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Jun 12, 2020

Looking to get out this weekend, KPCW has shared that E-Bikes Are Back For The Season. In perhaps another sign of “reopening” in the Park City area, the county’s bike share program has returned for another season. The 2020 program comes with improvements and measures for sanitation. There are 200 bikes and 19 stations available.

In response to the glitches and problems last year, the county hired a local project manager, who has worked with the vendors over the winter to make improvements. The operators are sanitizing the bikes on a regular basis. But they’re asking the public to take precautions also as they will not be cleaning the bikes between every single use.

You can register for the program at “summitbikeshare.com”  An annual pass for local residents and employees, will cost $90. They’re also offering a free one-month pass to local workers who were on the ground during the coronavirus outbreak. There’s a single-ride pass, and that’s $3 for 30 minutes. Every minute over 30 minutes is 15 cents a minute. When you have an annual pass, your rides are 45 minutes long before you need to dock.

Want to travel a little further and see as many national parks as possible in one giant road trip? The Discover Blog share the best road trips in each state, click here for the whole article. The trip from Moab in the east to Kanab in the south will make sure you don't miss out on those spectacular landscapes you've yet to explore. Red-rock formations galore and riveting red sunsets make this road trip one to remember for the rest of your life. Along the way, make plans to stop in Arches National Park, Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, Grand Staircase–Escalante National Monument, and the North Rim of the Grand Canyon.

We wrap up this week's blog with an article from RISMedia in the Top 10 Markets for Millennials During the Pandemic and Salt Lake City makes the list. The National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) recently ranked the top metros for millennials amidst the pandemic, taking into consideration the following: housing affordability, local job market conditions, the millennial population in the area, and available inventory across the largest 100 U.S. metros.

These are the top 10 markets with favorable conditions for millennial homebuyers during the pandemic:

1. Austin-Round Rock, Texas

2. Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas

3. Des Moines-West Des Moines, Iowa

4. Durham-Chapel Hill-Raleigh, N.C.

5. Houston-The Woodlands, Texas

6. Indianapolis-Carmel-Anderson, Ind.

7. Omaha, Nebraska/Council Bluffs, Iowa

8. Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, Ariz.

9. Portland, Oregon/Vancouver, Wash.

10. Salt Lake City, Utah

“Nationally, millennials make up the largest share of homebuyers and these metropolitan areas, in particular, offer great opportunities to realize the dream of homeownership,” said NAR President Vince Malta, broker at Malta & Co., Inc., in San Francisco, Calif. “As states and cities begin to reopen, millennials will play a significant role in the housing market’s recovery.”

Heading Outside

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
Jun 03, 2020

Summer is upon us, so use this time to explore your child’s interests, and incorporate some real life lessons that can’t be taught in classrooms. With a number of national parks and campgrounds closed due to the pandemic, many family camping trips are canceled for the time being. But, there are still ways to take your kid on that camping excursion by crafting the perfect indoor or outdoor adventure. Vivian Chung of the Adventure Blog for Staycation shares How You Can Still Take Your Kids on That Camping Trip.

First, set the scene by pitching your camping tent in the backyard, or by clearing the living room or basement and setting up a pop-up tent for the kids there. Cozy up the spaces by padding them with blankets and pillows.

Now, take this opportunity to teach your kids about the local wildlife you might encounter on a camping trip and how to behave around them on a hike through the forest. To get the ball rolling, check out National Geographic Kids on YouTube, where your child can view short videos to learn about the wildlife and critters that live outdoors, and what their role is on this planet. Go out into the backyard afterwards, and try to identify some of these critters with your kids. The younger ones will also love a scavenger hunt using stuffed animal versions of the wildlife you just discussed.

Part of the fun of camping is being able to make your meal and eat it outdoors. This can easily be recreated in your backyard or on your patio using a camp stove, which will also shake up the dining routine a bit for the kids. End the meal by making s’mores for a fun dessert, a recipe simple enough for kids to take part in and assemble too.

Encourage your child’s love of learning by exploring the curiosities of the night sky together. You can also use your indoor fireplace, or build one by gathering branches for the base and crumpling up yellow, red, and orange tissue paper for the flames. Round out the night by singing campfire songs, or by reading camp themed bedtime stories.

Planning to really get outside and visit one of Utah’s National Parks - read this before you go. Michael Alpiner of Forbes has shared - Arches National Park Opens At The End Of The Covid-19 Curve. One of the country’s most impressive natural wonders is once again open for visitors. With over 2000 natural stone arches, soaring pinnacles, gigantic fins and balanced rocks, Arches National Park reminds us that the natural world can create landscapes of beauty, not just invisible malignancies. Lodging, commercial campgrounds, restaurants and activities are allowed with respect to recommended guidelines. Arches National Park began its phase one opening on May 29th with access to roads, hiking trails and viewing areas, though campgrounds, backcountry camping and fiery furnace access remained closed. All safety practices are being implemented in the park, even though social distance seems easy to accomplish in a park as vast as Arches.

Moab Adventure Center, a full-service resource for the adventure-minded, suggests three guided park tours to encourage the housebound into the outdoors. The daily morning and sunset tour showcases the work of 150 million years. Tour rates are $89 for adults and $79 for ages 5 to 12. A third tour offers an aerial tour of the park. Leaving mid-morning, the half-hour flyover views formations such as Courthouse Towers, North and South Window Arches, Delicate Arch, Devil's Garden, the Colorado River, Fisher Towers, and Castle Valley. Youth two and under fly free on a parent's lap. Tour rates are $109 for adults and $55 for youth 3 to 12.

The Adventure Center also arranges full and half-day Colorado River Tours along the southern border of Arches National Park via raft. A half-day morning tour showcases the mild to moderate rapids under a background of red rock cliffs, spires and buttes. Rates are $74 for adults and $64 for ages 5 to 12. Another half-day option comes with a BBQ lunch. Rates are $89 for adults and $79 ages 5 to 12. A full day on the river, with lunch, is a memorable seven-hour excursion. Rates are $109 for adults and $79 for age 5 to 12.

Along with the escape one gets from the grandeur of nature, a restful and comfortable accommodation is yet another way to return to a sense of normality. The Gonzo Inn, located in Moab, five and a half miles from Arches National Park, offers a “dessert chic vibe” in their 43 condominium style rooms. The proximity to raw nature does not distract from the rustic luxury these accommodations provide. Their deluxe suites have whirlpool tubs and fireplaces, yet all rooms have private patios and views of the Red Cliffs. In respect to the safety of its guests and staff during the pandemic, the ownership has suspended maid service and breakfast.

Not looking to travel far, The Park Record shares that Park City has approved Main Street pedestrian days, which is seen as a step toward economic recovery. Park City will invite shoppers, diners and revelers onto the Main Street asphalt this year on certain days. Cars will not be welcome on those days. The Park City Council on Thursday unanimously approved a street closure along Main Street from 11 a.m. until 10 p.m. on Sundays from June 14 until Sept. 6. Main Street will instead become a pedestrian zone on those days in an effort to attract customers at a time of economic uncertainty caused by the spread of the novel coronavirus.

The Historic Park City Alliance, a group that represents the interests of businesses along Main Street or just off the street, supported the decision. The organization sees the pedestrian zone as something that will advance its own recovery blueprints for Main Street.City Hall staffers explained that a turnaround will be put in the Brew Pub lot toward the southern end of Main Street in an effort to keep drivers from heading into the neighborhood.

There was also brief talk about the difficulty of measuring the success and about the possibility of the city councilors conducting walk-throughs of the pedestrian zone to gather information once they launch. The elected officials plan to review the pedestrian zone in early July and again in early August.

Leaders created the weekly pedestrian zone as the summer-tourism season arrives. The supporters of the change along Main Street say the pedestrian zone will provide more space for social distancing, something that could be attractive to people who remain hesitant about returning to places where there could be crowds. The pedestrian zone will involve two stretches of road encompassing most of the commercial section of Main Street. One will run from Heber Avenue south to the Brew Pub lot while the other will run from Heber Avenue north to 9th Street. The cross streets of Heber Avenue and 9th Street will remain open to traffic.

The Sunday timing of the pedestrian days is significant after the cancellation of the Park Silly Sunday Market this year based on concerns about the sickness. The Silly Market draws large crowds on Sundays in the summer and early fall. It is centered on a car-free lower Main Street and extends to several locations on upper Main Street. It is expected that the pedestrian days this year could draw some of the people accustomed to heading to Main Street on Sundays for the Silly Market. More details about the operations of the pedestrian zone are expected to be publicized as the first Sunday approaches.

Home Mortgages

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
May 26, 2020

This week we are reviewing mortgage applications, remodeling regrets and 5 Spectacular Road Rides in and around Park City.

Buyers are reemerging in the housing market much faster than anticipated and Realtor Magazine shares that Mortgage Applications Continue Surprising Rebound. Mortgage applications are often an indicator of future home buying activity, and applications for home purchases have increased for five consecutive weeks. After increasing 6% last week compared to the previous week, applications for home purchases are now just 1.5% lower than a year ago, the Mortgage Bankers Association’s seasonally adjusted index shows. The rebound is significant considering purchase volume was down 35% annually just six weeks ago as the U.S. ramped up its battle against the COVID-19 pandemic.

Record low mortgage rates and strong pent-up demand are bringing home buyers back to the market as states begin to reopen. The average contract interest rate for the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage decreased from 3.43% to 3.41% last week (with 0.33 points on the loan). Refinance applications, meanwhile, are falling. Applications for refinancings dropped 6% last week and reached the lowest level in activity in more than a month. However, refinance applications are still 160% higher than a year ago as homeowners continue to lock in lower rates.

Realtor Magazine has another great article in Homeowners’ 5 Biggest Remodeling Regrets. Remodeling any aspect of a home can be a big job and a lot can go wrong when owners aren’t adequately prepared. Houzz, a home remodeling website, asked a panel of renovating experts the most common remodeling blunders they see. Here are a few of their responses.

Not budgeting properly. Underestimating the costs of a project can be a dire mistake that could leave homeowners either with an unfinished property or having to incur a financial loss. Have a detailed budget so you don’t run out of money. Remodeling experts advise always including a 10% to 20% buffer in the budget for any unexpected costs when tackling a remodel.

Assuming DIY will save you money. Remodeling experts call it the “DIY trap,” and rookie remodelers are especially prone to it. It’s not always cheaper to do a project yourself. It may not look right and could take triple the amount of time to complete than if you would have just hired a pro. “Limit your DIY tasks to things such as painting and simple landscaping jobs, and dedicate your time to project managing the renovation,” experts told Houzz.

Selecting the cheapest contractor. Another common pitfall is to go with the cheapest quote from a contractor. You don’t want to have to redo poor work. Don’t just focus on the affordability of a contractor’s quote but evaluate fully what it specifies, experts recommend. Gather quotes from at least three contractors and compare them in detail. Also, evaluate the quality of their work through project photos and professional recommendations.

Failing to describe what you want accurately. Know exactly what you want before you start and use the right words to describe it. Create idea books; search online for ideas online or in magazines; and have a specific list of layouts and finishes you desire. Become familiar with the proper terminology of those looks and finishes so you communicate them correctly to the pros, the experts recommend.

Not researching the material options. In the same regard, choosing materials often requires some homework. Builders or contractors may fall back on the same materials they always use, but that doesn’t always mean those are right for the project. “Spend time researching the various materials options available—including looks, price, pros and cons, sustainability, durability, and which ones are best suited to your location, and take this information to your builder,” Houzz notes. “Armed with this knowledge, you can decide together the most suitable materials and finishes for your project.”

View more common remodeling mistakes at Houzz.com.

Thinking about a bike ride, the team at Park City Magazine have a new article that we wanted to share - Biking Guide: 5 Spectacular Road Rides in and around Park City.

Empire (a.k.a. Guardsman) Loop - Length: 35 miles - Start on Kearns Blvd (Hwy 248), heading east toward Kamas. Take in some jaw-to-the-floor views—and steep uphill—with this heart-pumping, grueling ride. Head out of town on Highway 248 toward pastoral Kamas, approximately 14 miles. Roll past some pastures, and turn right onto Lambert Lane, then right onto Hill Top Road, then right onto SR 32, which turns into River Road after crossing Hwy 40 (look for fly-fishermen as you near the Provo banks). Then, turn right onto Pine Canyon Road and dig in for a serious climb, skirting Wasatch Mountain State Park and up to Guardsman Pass. When the road comes to a T above Midway, take a right and ascend to the summit overlooking Deer Valley Resort’s chutes, the state park, and beyond. Take a breath in the thin air (well above 9,000 feet at this point) and then start the fun descent down Hwy 224 (Marsac Avenue), either continuing to Old Town via the fast mine road or taking Wheaton’s Way connector (on the right, just before the old silver mine) to switchback down Royal Street and return to Old Town via Deer Valley Drive.

Brown’s Canyon Loop - Length: 30 miles - Start on Kearns Boulevard (Hwy 248), heading east toward Kamas. Roll into rural Summit County as you hop off of Highway 248 onto North Democrat Alley (2000 W) via a left turn, a quieter cruise (i.e., virtually no traffic). You will encounter a small section where asphalt gives way to some packed road base, but the majority is hard surface with more cows and horses than vehicles along the way. Turn left onto Wooden Shoe Lane into Peoa (keep an ear out for a concert in the park), which turns into SR 32. Turn left up Brown’s Canyon and pop back onto busy Highway 248 for the return to the “big” city.

Old Ranch Road/Home Depot Loop - Length: 15–16 miles, depending on route. From Old Town, head north on Highway 224 and turn right onto Old Ranch Road, shortly after passing the Canyons base of Park City Mountain. Quick with relatively limited elevation gain, this close-to-town loop is perfect for getting acquainted with the local landscape. Weave through Old Ranch Road—past neighborhoods, alfalfa pastures, and horse property—turn right at the frontage road (Highland Drive), and then turn left to cross over Highway 40. Take a right in front of Home Depot on the frontage road back to the intersection with Highway 248, and turn right to head back into town. Or, get away from vehicular traffic and do not hop over Highway 40, instead taking Highland Drive to the paved Silver Quinn’s Trail. Continue on the trail system past the Park City Ice Arena and under Highway 248, and turn right onto the Rail Trail—thereby staying on trails rather than heavily traveled road back into town.

Weber Canyon (out and back) - Length: 60 miles or more, depending on how far out one rolls. Start on Highway 248 and take Brown’s Canyon to Wooden Shoe Lane, which turns into Rob Young Ln (W 3700 N). Then, turn left on SR 32 and continue straight through on N New Lane, and turn right on Weber Canyon. This tree-lined country ride leads to Smith and Morehouse Reservoir, part of the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest land, which means the occasional camper may overtake a Weber Canyon–bound cyclist. But for the most part, this is peaceful pedaling. Once you arrive at the Smith and Morehouse turnoff, the rest of the ride is hard-packed gravel.

Wolf Creek Pass (out and back) - Length: 80-ish miles. Park at the South Summit Aquatic Center in Kamas (or ride there via Highway 248 and SR 32 through Kamas for extra miles). Think sunflower-strewn meadows and backside views of the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest. Start this adventure on Lower River Road to Woodland, then take a right at the red church onto Bench Creek Road, and continue onto SR 35 to Wolf Creek Pass. Crank those pedals a total of 50 miles to Hanna, or keep going. The road is paved all the way to Duchesne, 30 miles farther.

Before you go - Mountain weather is changeable, so layer up. Take altitude into consideration; don’t be afraid to stop for your oxygen-depleted lungs’ sake or to make way for a moose, and bring plenty of water and snacks to avoid bonking. Grab a Mountain Trails Foundation (mountaintrails.org) map, available at most sports retailers and coffee shops (or online) to plot your route, or download Trailforks or MTB Project apps for real-time GPS guidance. And consider purchasing a copy of Park City’s Prime Cuts 3, the newest edition of the go-to trail guidebook by longtime local riders Paul Boyle, Mark Fischer, and Charlie Sturgis (available at local retailers).

Special thanks to Scott House of White Pine Touring, Charlie Sturgis of Mountain Trails Foundation, Ben Liegert of Snyderville Basin Recreation, Todd Henneman of Storm Cycles, and Chris Erkkila of Deer Valley Resort for sharing trail- and road-riding expertise.

Outdoor Living

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
May 20, 2020

Spring is in full swing and this week we look at ways to spruce up your outdoor living space, easy bike rides around Park City and why you shouldn't lowball on an offer during the pandemic.

Whether you’re living in a small apartment or a tiny house with an even smaller outdoor space to match, there’s a good chance your place doesn’t come with a sprawling backyard that’s large enough to fit a pool, garden, outdoor pizza oven, and playground for the kids. Apartment Therapy asked multiple design experts to share their best tips for decorating a small outdoor space. Here are there 7 Design Tricks That Will Make Your Small Outdoor Space Feel So Much Bigger.

1. Take a Seat - No matter how small your outdoor area, you’re going to want to create a sitting area or else you won’t take full advantage of the space. Choose a petite table and loveseat or chairs that will instantly turn the little space you have into an outdoor retreat.

2. Get Your Green On - when it comes to decorating an outdoor space is to rely on plants to add color and life to the overall design. Make a selection of your favorite flowers, potted plants, and ferns to diversify the space and create that outdoor oasis you’ve always dreamed of. To create an oasis, try to cover the outdoor area in as much greenery as possible. A surrounding of greenery is not only beautiful but provides a relaxing environment.

3. Gravitational Glow When decorating your small outdoor space, lighting is a very important element. Wall lights are your best option as they create an elegant ambience without taking up space.

4. Bottoms Up - If you plan on entertaining, pick up a bar cart/console table. It’s multipurpose and mixed-use, as it’s a great way to lay out food and drink, but as the night progresses, it can double as a spot for people to set their drinks down before they go inside and/or where you set up a portable music player.

5. Strategic Stackin’ - When debating deep seating or dining, I tell clients you can eat on a couch, but you can’t lie on dining chairs. Tucking a sectional into a corner is the best way to maximize on floor space. Look for furniture with light-colored cushions, skinny frames, and high skirts.

6. Optical Illusion - Make a small outdoor space seem so much bigger by painting it all white. You can even go for a monochromatic color scheme with all-white cushions, a white outdoor rug, and white metal pieces. Add in mirrors and large-scale plants to create the illusion of a larger space.

7. The Right Rug -Use an area rug that fits the entire space to make it feel intentional and like an extension of your interiors.

Now is the time to get outside and biking around Park City is on our list as we get some fresh air. Park City Magazine shares their Biking Guide: 5 Easy Rides for Cruising Park City’s Trails.

The Historic Union Pacific Rail Trail - Length: 28 miles (one way). Roll onto the trail from Old Town via the Poison Creek Trail (and the underpass below Bonanza Drive), or park at the Prospector Trailhead. Enjoy Utah’s first nonmotorized trail, designated a state park in 1992, which now travels where rail once carried coal and silver ore across the county. Today’s trail runs through wetlands as it meanders through Wanship and Coalville, ending at Echo Reservoir.

McLeod Creek Trail - Length: 4 miles. From Old Town, hop aboard the paved path alongside Highway 224, or start at the McPolin Farm Trailhead. Or reverse the ride and start in Kimball Junction or at the Willow Creek Trailhead. Cruising from town toward Kimball Junction, this wide, initially paved trail rolls alongside its bubbling namesake, past the iconic white barn (McPolin Farm), and then veers right behind Temple Har Shalom onto packed dirt, past an interactive musical sculpture, through a shady, rural stretch, and across Old Ranch Road to Willow Creek Park, where playgrounds, sports fields, and picnic tables make for a family-friendly destination.

Round Valley: PorcUclimb-Downward Dog Loop - Length: 7-mile loop. Park at Quinn’s Trailhead for Round Valley’s 700 acres of sagebrush-scented, preserved open space contains a delightful web of trails, leading to a vast array of rides. This loop starts with a wide, flat trail and gradually adds some slightly narrower trails, with a wee helping of learner-friendly, directional switchbacks thrown into the mix. Begin on Fast Pitch, connect to Ability Way, take a little uphill on Matt’s Flat to the hilltop at Seventy 101, then switchback up PorcUclimb (uphill only), take a right onto Nowhere Elks at the top, then look for the Downward Dog descent (downhill only) all the way until it intersects with Matt’s Flat singletrack, and ride back to Ability Way via Matt’s Access Trail, left on Ability Way Connector to Fast Pitch, then back to Hat Trick.

Trailside Loop - Length: 1-mile loop. Start at Trailside Park, adjacent to the bike park. This is an extremely beginner-friendly loop conveniently located next to the all-levels, skills-honing bike park (see article on Bike Parks). This subtly graded singletrack curves through sagebrush-covered terrain, allowing for ample visibility as newbies get into the dirt-riding groove.

RTS - Length: 2.5 miles. Park at RTS trailhead on Olympic Parkway located on a 316-acre swath of open space just below Utah Olympic Park’s ski jumps, RTS is ideal for beginners. Gently sloped switchbacks—sans loose rocks—allow for a pleasant roll through open aspen groves and meadows. RTS is also a great launching point for the progressively more challenging terrain of BLT, OMH, and BYOB, and you can access significantly more advanced riding along conifer-topped loops across Olympic Parkway.

Before you go - Grab a Mountain Trails Foundation (mountaintrails.org) map, available at most sports retailers and coffee shops (or online) to plot your route, or download Trailforks or MTB Project apps for real-time GPS guidance.

It’s no secret that COVID-19 has totally upended the U.S. housing market. According to a recent survey by the National Association of Realtors, interest in buying a home has sharply declined. That’s to be expected, as the Labor Department reported that more than 26 million people have filed for unemployment benefits since the middle of March. Apartment Therapy has another great article this week in Here’s Why You Shouldn’t Lowball an Offer on a House During COVID-19.

When it comes to negotiating, it’s still all about location, location, location. Since real estate transactions tend to be a result of major life decisions, he says there will still be people who need to either sell or buy—or both. If homes in the area are selling for the asking price, a low offer is probably a bad idea. In fact, when buyers start with an insultingly low number, she says the sellers may not respond at all—and if they do, the buyers have no negotiation leverage. Crisis does not bring down property values, high interest rates do.

Inventory is low, which works in a seller’s favor - Sellers know they have the upper hand. On the other hand, it appears that some buyers are quite enthusiastic.

Mortgage defaults are making sellers less likely to budge- There’s one other reason sellers may not be feeling pressure to lower their asking prices. With banks rolling out mortgage forbearance programs, most sellers are not in immediate danger of losing their home or desperate to accept a lowball offer. The Federal Housing Finance Agency recently announced that after the forbearance is over, homeowners with mortgages backed by Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae will not have to make lump sum repayments. Instead those amounts will be added to the end of the loan’s life.

But don’t abandon negotiating altogether - When considering a lowball offer, do your research to see if you or your realtor can discover any details that might motivate the seller to move forward despite the loss of financial gain they originally anticipated. It’s always wise to negotiate. It may be possible for a buyer to get an extended closing date in-line with their needs, or a buyer could make a lower offer with a quick close. Another option would be to make a low offer, but take the property ‘as-is,’ meaning the seller would not have to make repairs that could take time and cost money, especially given many states’ stay-at-home orders for nonessential employees.

Bouncing Back

By Ramon Gomez, Jr.
May 13, 2020

Judy and I hope you and your families are well and safe. We continue to limit visits to the grocery store and the office and we always have our face masks. So, we were excited to read in Yahoo! Finance that Salt Lake City was one of the cities positioned to bounce back from the coronavirus pandemic based on Moody's Analytics. The analytics analyzed U.S. metro areas capabilities for a strong recovery post-coronavirus using two primary factors: population density and educational attainment. Click here for the full article.

Thank you Vail - the Park Record has shared that Vail Resorts has announced credits for 2019-20 passholders and a new insurance program for next season. Vail Resorts announced updates to its season pass program for next ski season in response to the coronavirus pandemic, offering credits for 2019-2020 passholders and launching a new insurance program to protect against any lost dates in 2020-2021. People who had an Epic Pass during 2019-2020 will receive a minimum 20% credit toward a 2020-2021 pass, the company said. Those who used their pass fewer than five days will be eligible for higher credits, meanwhile, topping out at an 80% credit for people who didn’t use their pass at all. People who purchased an Epic Day Pass will receive credit for unused days.

Additionally, everyone who buys a pass for the 2020-2021 season will receive free pass insurance through a new program called Epic Coverage, which allows for refunds in the event of resort closures, including closures related to the coronavirus. The program also allows for refunds due to other circumstances included in the company’s typical pass insurance, such as an injury that prevents a passholder from skiing.

Ready to get back on your mountain bike? Check out these tips and tricks to get back in the saddle again in Park City Magazine's article: Back in the Saddle Again. Ease into the saddle and prep for the mountain biking season now with these great tips:

Start slow. Give yourself some space and expect that you’re going to be slow on your first ride out and find a trail that’s not challenging for your first ride back.

Re-train your vision. Without even realizing it, when you’re in mountain bike shape, your eyes naturally look far ahead to anticipate the terrain and any obstacles. Over the winter, it’s easy to lose that skill, when you’re getting back into riding, try to look ahead a little bit more than you naturally would. It takes self-control to do this, and to anticipate what’s coming up.

Loosen up. No matter what you’ve been doing over the winter, riding always feels different, see if you can loosen up on the climbs and the descents.

Start with an athletic stance. When you get tired—which can happen quickly during the early season—your posture is one of the first things to decline. Start the year with good habits and think about holding an athletic stance with your core tight, your spine strong, and your neck up.

Turn your fear into excitement. If you’re a bit more skittish on technical sections than you were last year, try to put your nerves to good use. Tell yourself, ‘I’m not nervous,’ ‘I’m excited to be on my bike".

Just get on a saddle. If the trails are still too muddy, grab your road bike and to get used to being back in the saddle.

Don’t forget a maintenance check. Whether it’s you or your trusty mechanic, do a thorough check of your bike before hopping on. Check the bolts with torque wrench, clean and lube the drivetrain, and test the front suspension. And, of course, put air in your tires, but maybe a little less than you think.

A reminder: Wait until the trails are dry. Riding muddy trails ruins it for everyone else for the rest of the season. Where to find trail updates: Check the Mountain Trails Foundation’s website and Facebook page for the latest trail conditions; Basin Recreation also frequently updates the status on its Instagram and Facebook pages.

Looking for something fun to do tonight, here are 11 Ideas For a Fun and Perfect Date Night In from Apartment Therapy. You don’t have to spend a lot of money or make an entire meal from scratch if that’s not your thing, so maybe this translates into planning a surprise activity for your significant other, or treating them to a special gift that they’ve always wanted. Whatever you choose to do, the point is to set aside specific time to have a date—no movie tickets, fancy restaurant reservation, or bar hopping required.

1. Do a Giant Puzzle Together - Pop some popcorn, open a couple bottles of wine, and put on your favorite music when you two sit down to do a jigsaw puzzle. It’ll kill some serious time, and you’ll work together in a way you probably haven’t before (unless you just happen to be really into puzzles).

2. Have a Book Club Date - If you and your partner find yourselves reading much more than usual, then choose a book you both like and make a goal to read it by the end of the week or month (depending on just how fast you’re reading these days). Make a date of sitting down to discuss the book together—maybe even watch the film version of the book if possible.

3. Sit Down and Create the Ultimate To-Do List  - What are those things you’ve always wanted to do around the house but just haven’t? Write it all down together and check things off one by one each weekend—it’ll keep things fresh and make you feel like you’re prioritizing doing more than just watching Netflix (though that’s fun too).

4. Create an At-Home Movie Theater  - If you love (and miss) going to the movies, then make a point to plan an at-home movie theater style date. Think ahead and order groceries like popcorn, candy, and soda and set up a cozy spot to watch as many new releases as possible.

5. Have a Bake-Off - With only the ingredients you have in the house, challenge each other to a bake off and then judge the results together. Bonus points if you have episodes of the “Great British Bake Off” playing in the background throughout.

6. Take a Dance Lesson …via YouTube, of course. Get some exercise in and learn a fun new dance from the privacy of your own home. Film the final results and send to your friends and family if you’re feeling really confident.

7. Have an Arts & Crafts Afternoon - Pull out the paper, glue, scissors, and markers and create something fun—maybe a banner with an encouraging message to hang in the window or just greeting cards for each other.

8. Create an At-Home Olympics  - Create a series of fun (and kind of ridiculous) games and have an at-home Olympics. Think of this like that episode of “The Office”. If all else fails, you’ll laugh a lot.

9. Have a PowerPoint Party - Challenge each other to create a PowerPoint on virtually anything. Surprise each other with your topic and give a quick, fun presentation. This is also fun to do as a Zoom activity, if you want to invite more people!

10. Throw a Wine Tasting Party for Two - host a tasting in your living room (or on your couch, in bed, whatever!). Maybe even watch a few videos with tips from sommeliers to learn a thing or two.

11. Paint Something Together … anything! Whether there’s a piece of furniture you’ve been meaning to refinish, a wall that you’ve always wanted to spice up, or you just want to get artsy with a canvas, painting together can be as fun as it is rewarding. And odds are, if your home is anything like mine, you have 200 half-used cans of paint in the basement just waiting to be used.

 

 
 
Existing user sign in: 
Forgot Password?