Winter Solstice Road

Fairfield, Utah (Tooele County)
Last Updated: 07/19/2018
3/5 (1 review)
Nearby Trails
Status: Open
Typically Open: Year Round
Difficulty: 2-2
Length: 1.5 miles
Highest Elevation: 6050 feet
Duration: About 30 minutes
Shape of Trail: Connector
Best Direction to Travel: East
Nearest Town: Fairfield
Nearest Town w/ Services: Cedar Fort
Official Road Name: Winter Solstice Road
Management Agency: Bureau of Land Management
District: 5 Mile Recreation Area
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Highlight: Winter Solstice Road

This is a gorgeous trail just west of Utah Lake. You gain elevation quickly and get rewarded with great views. It is a relatively mild trail allowing SUV's of all sorts to reach the mines and enjoy a day away from the city. This trail also serves as a quick emergency exit to the more challenging trails in the network in case you have any breakages, injuries, or other emergencies. Although there are no major obstacles, it is a nice trail to cruise up or down if you are in the area.


Route Information

Technical Rating: (2-2)

Dirt road. Dry, or less than 3" water crossing depth. Some ruts. Slight grades, up to 10 degrees. 2WD under most conditions. Rain or snow may make 4WD necessary. Usually one and a half to two vehicles wide.

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This trail is a bypass for Rattlesnake to get you up to the mines. It is a fairly easy drive up in a little wash with the occasional rock or mini shelf. The trail is short and direct and you still get all of the good scenery of the area. Once you reach the top, there are a number of mines to explore. They have all been covered with a grate but you can see down most of them. This trail can also be run in the winter as long as the snow doesn't get too deep. There is no risk of sliding off of the trail and it's not too steep if you take the easier routes. For an option challenge, try out the mud pit at the trailhead. It does dry up in the summer heat, but from winter until about the beginning of May, it is up to 2 feet of very slick clay-like mud followed by a steep climb.
This trail has heavy traffic. Use caution around blind corners.

Seasonal Information

Spring:Trail may be wet from snowmelt. This is a good time of year to run this trail.
Summer:Trail is usually dry and dusty. It can get hot in the summer months, but there is shade along the trail.
Fall:This is the best time of year to run this trail, but it can be busy on the weekends.
Winter:Trail may be impassable due to snow.


1. Trailhead

The trail starts about half a mile from the air down lot where the road forks. You will know you are on the right path when you pass a large pond/mud pit/dried mud pit (depending on the time of year) on the right (south) side of the trail.

2. Sludge Pit (0.1 mi)

The sludge pit is a bit like sour apple candies. To some, it's just awesome. To many, they will avoid it at all costs. This pit is usually around after the spring snowmelt​ and can fill a little bit after storms throughout the year. During the summer and fall, it can dry up and be nothing more than a dirt hole. If you dare to try this out when it's full, make sure you get a good oomph up the hill or you will just slide back down. This is some slick stuff. The reason so many people avoid it, however, is due to the smell and its stubbornness to be washed off. (Photos 1 and 2 were taken in July and Photo 3 was taken in April)

3. Fun Little Hill (0.9 mi)

This is just a little dirt mount on the right (southeast) side of the trail that you can climb up and over. Its a little intimidating not being able to see the other side when you reach the top!

4. End (1.5 mi)

This is where Winter Solstice Road intersects with Rattlesnake. There are a number of paths to take, but the 3 paths to the uphill/right all meet back up and take you up to Constrictor or toward The Climb, and the trails to the left all meet at the base of the tailings to continue down Rattlesnake.

Directions to Trailhead

Trailhead Coordinates: 40.256603, -112.206397

Starting Point: Lehi, Utah

Begin heading west on 2100 N. Follow until you run into Utah 68. Turn south on 68 and follow a short distance until you intersect Utah 73 (Main St.). Turn west on Utah 73 and drive just under a mile, where you will veer right to continue on Utah 73. Continue for 22.4 miles until the turnoff for the air down lot on the right. From the Provo Valley, take I15 north until exit 279 for Utah 73 (Sunshine Canyon Road) and follow 27.4 miles until the turnoff for the air down lot on the right.


There are many scattered adventurist-made sites with rock fire rings. Fires are usually permitted but refer to the kiosk board at the air down lot for any restrictions. As with any area, please try not to make your own new sites and be very careful when having fires in such a dry area. Clean up and be responsible.
Camping: Winter Solstice Road

Writer Information

TJ Bosworth

Crew Leader - Utah
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Born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah, he's only been off-roading since he was 16 but fell in love immediately. He attended college in Denver for Culinary Arts and Restaurant Management and wheeled in Colorado for 4 years, but ended up moving back home to Salt Lake City. He currently works in an off-road shop and spends his free time doing anything he can to stay busy, which is usually working on his jeep or playing music. Outside of off-roading, he is an avid whitewater rafter and outdoor cook. Camping at least every other weekend in any season is a normal year. The further from civilization, the better. Bring on the memories!


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Trail Reviews (1)

Author: Official Crew
Status: Open
Offroaded on:
This trail remains the same with all of the traffic. Basically just used as the easy way out, nothing special. Hot and dusty in the summer and usually too busy. Only hit one other group today so that was a nice change.