by Roots Rated
Northeast Utah is staggeringly gorgeous, and it is easy to see why locals in the Logan area love exploring every corner of their land. The stunning mountains, panoramic vistas, alpine lakes, canyons, and endless chutes to climb up and ski down, will leave you wishing you had endless time to hike, bike, and ski. Take a simple day trip or a multi-day adventure, and experience the beauty of the endless trails, vistas, and the area’s unique formations. In the shadow of the Bear River Mountains and in the heart of the Wasatch Range, you will fall in love with the ruggedness of northern Utah and ignite your adventurous spirit.
In the town of Logan, Al’s Sporting Goods has been providing outdoor recreation gear to the community since 1921. Originally a tackle and bicycle shop, Al’s has grown into a 120,000-square-foot store that sells the best gear in the country. Everything outdoors-related can be found here, including the ever-popular Osprey Atmos AG packs that have been flying off the store’s shelves. The Atmos is ideal to take out in the winter and early spring months, allowing plenty of room for snow gear, extra clothes, and plenty of food and drinks—you’ll be happy you got hooked up with such a comfortable pack when standing on top of Logan Peak, or any of the other amazing summits in the area.
If you are planning on being in the area this spring, be sure to stop by the store when Al’s hosts the Backpacker Magazine Get Outdoor Tour on March 23rd, as well as their annual Outdoor Expo on Memorial Day weekend. They are expecting an estimated 10,000 people to stop by and get info on trails, gear, and the best of nature around Logan. It’s the perfect time to get geared up for your next adventure.
Not far from Al’s, in the greater Logan region, there are a handful of stunning locations to visit. While longer trips to Jackson or the parks and protected lands of southern Utah are extremely popular, you can also stay close to town, and find endless opportunities to sate your wanderlust and experience the ultimate early spring adventure in or below the snowy summits.
Quite possibly the most popular local destination is Tony Grove, which gets you up close and personal to some of the most scenic trails around. It’s a short 19-mile drive out of Logan, and in late spring and early summer, the Tony Grove region is second to none. It’s designated as a US Forest Service Wildflower Viewing Area, and the views and trails in the spring are quite mesmerizing. The easy trails here circumnavigate a gorgeous lake, while other more difficult paths lead to the 45,000-acre Mount Naomi Wilderness and the scenic White Pine Lakes. No matter what the season, the views here are astounding, and the trails are accessible.
Just seven miles east of Logan, one of the more unique, yet awesome, hiking destinations awaits your discovery. The Wind Caves Trail is a 3.7-mile out and back, but has the possibility of adding on more mileage along the way. The trail gains 971 feet before arriving at the triple windswept caves that provide stunning views of the Logan Canyon below. The whole area around the Wind Caves is stunning, and offers numerous options for adventure. The best, aside from the Wind Caves, is Inspiration Point, which has a stunning vista that overlooks what feels like the entire world.
Best explored during spring, the Wellsville Mountains Wilderness, across the valley from Logan Peak, has incredible backcountry skiing and snowboarding. If you have an Osprey Kode pack full of gear and an adventurer’s heart, these peaks will make you happy. Exploring the Wellsville Mountains is pretty easy to do and is a local favorite. The chutes here are extremely steep and not for beginners, but they are perfect if you are looking for a unique and fun experience in great snow on steep terrain. Locals claim that these mountains are the steepest in the Rockies, and looking up from the base, the claim seems legit. If there is no snow, peak baggers and hardcore trail runners will drool over the views, as well as the 17 miles of trails and routes that lead to the summits.
Finally, those looking to stay close to Logan and still enjoy the lingering snow should head up to Beaver Mountain Ski Resort—it boasts an average of 400 inches of snow a year, and has 48 runs and a terrain park. This local favorite partners with Al’s Sporting Goods throughout the year host numerous events and offer occasional days of selling permits down at the store. If you want local flavor and solitude at an incredible ski area, Beaver Mountain has you covered. From the top of the Dream Lift at 8,860 feet, it is easy to see why the greater Logan region makes for a great vacation destination and an ideal place to live.