Totally Tubular: Mountain Bike Parks in Cedar City

Posted: May 06, 2022 | Author: Southern Utah University | Read Time: 4 minutes

Student mountain biking in Cedar CityTime to torque those tires and trek the terrain. The great outdoors of southern Utah is full of places to discover, especially if you’ve got a mountain bike. So if taking on the elements with your two-wheeled toy is your thing, here are some of the best mountain bike parks in Cedar City, starting from closest to furthest away from Southern Utah University’s campus.

Mountain Bike Parks in Cedar City

Red Hills and Thor’s Hideout

2 miles from SUU Campus, 5-minute drive

Just outside of the borders of Cedar City is a range of trails within the foothills. The Red Hill and Thor's Hideout areas to the east feature 13 miles of trails ranging from intermediate to difficult. These trails are often accessible year-round, though that does depend on the winter weather. The always popular Thor’s Hideout (difficult), as well as several connected trails like Ghost Flats #7 (difficult), Lightning Switch (intermediate/difficult), and Red Hollow Trail #3 (difficult), are located here. And on the other side of the same hill is the intermediate/difficult Razorback #5.

Travel slightly north and you’ll find the lone 13th Hole Trail (intermediate). This trail features a zigzagged loop that can be traveled in either direction.

Iron Hills Trail System

1.2 miles from SUU Campus, 4-minute drive

Between the peaks of Cedar Mountain and Square Mountain, you’ll find the Iron Hills Trail System. With 22 miles of trails ranging from easy to difficult, this area is great for all riders. The widely-known C-Trail (difficult), a fast downhill ride with challenging switchbacks is located here, along with the Highlands (intermediate) and Greens Lake (intermediate) trails. C-Trail would be better suited for the more experienced rider, while the other two take a moderate understanding of biking to conquer.

To the southwest comes the easier trails. The smaller, switchback-oriented trails of Jolly Giant (easy/intermediate), Junior Giant (easy/intermediate), Lichen It (intermediate), and Lava Flow (intermediate/difficult) create a super-agile and adrenaline-surging experience for the mildly experienced riders willing to take them on.

For those seeking the challenge of all challenges, the very short and daring Boulder Dash (very difficult) combines large, dark-colored rocks with a downhill extremity that should only be attempted by the most experienced mountain bikers.

For the endurance riders, Turnpike Trail offers a 4.4-mile ride that connects the Southern View and Shurtz Canyon trailheads. Alternatively, riders can connect Lava Link (intermediate/difficult), Black Ops (intermediate/difficult), and the end of Turnpike Trail to reach Shurtz Canyon.

Mountain Bike Parks in Southern Utah

Three Peaks Trail System

10.9 miles from SUU Campus, 16-minute drive

Just northwest of Cedar City is the always entertaining Three Peaks Trail System. This area features 29 miles of mountain biking trails ranging from easy to difficult.

If you’ve just recently gotten into the mountain biking scene, Three Peaks is the best place to start due to its entry level trails. The Practice Loop (easy/intermediate), which includes riding tips for beginners, is a great place to start. And once you are comfortable you can take one of the other nearby starter trails like Outer Limits (easy/intermediate) and Sweet Pea (easy/intermediate).

The number of trails in this region is plentiful, and there are many variations of biking trails to try. Long circled trails such as Three Peaks Loop (intermediate), Big Hole Loop (intermediate), and Race Course Loop (intermediate) help a new rider get into the correct pace for biking. Some shorter, intermediate trails include Earl’s Trail, Lost World, Petrified Whales, and Jumbled Jonah. After you’re comfortable, Three Peaks features a more challenging trail to attempt, Hoover Junction (difficult).

Brian Head Resort

31.9 miles from SUU Campus, 38-minute drive

Just off the parking lot of Giant Steps Lodge, you’ll find a plethora of easy to intermediate trails at Brian Head Resort. The resort offers 63 miles of trails, many with breathtaking views. Just keep in mind that most trails are accessed by lift or shuttle.

If you’d enjoy a more family-oriented path, ride along on the 3.8-mile Color Flow trail (easy/intermediate). For the more intermediate-level trails in the area, check out Little Glitter, Marathon Trail, or the longer Timberline Trail.

Overall, Brian Head is one of Cedar City’s best nearby attractions. Not only do you have the breathtaking greenery in the spring and summer, but as soon as the snow starts to fall, you’ve got gorgeous slopes ready to be shredded as well.

Be Safe on the Trail

All things considered, mountain biking in southern Utah is still an extremely intense activity. Be sure to wear the proper safety gear such as helmets, knee and elbow pads, and sunscreen as you take on the trails in the area. Most importantly, always bring a friend in case something happens to you. We want all our T-Birds to have a great time in our backyard in the safest ways possible.


Learn more about mountain biking in southern Utah and the mountain bike parks in Cedar City by visiting the southwest Utah area on MTB Project.

Tags: Outdoors Student Life

Related Posts