High fives and paws up all around! In a unanimous vote Park City’s City Council recently put the bark in Bark City and approved two off-leash areas within the city. The first is a 1,400 square acre area of Round Valley, a popular recreation location for both people and the dogs that love them. (This location is just across 248 from the planned Park City Heights neighborhood). Now, dogs can run freely next to their hiking, biking or skiing counterparts with no hindrance of leash laws.
The second off leash location is the field next to the Park City Library. Also a popular dog frolicking area, now half of the field will be open to off-leash dogs. The best part of the library location is the coffee shop situated just a few steps away. Dog owners can sip a hot caffeinated beverage while they play frisbee with their pup. Officials have said that signs have been ordered and will be posted in the two areas soon.
Know Before You Go
Designated off-leash areas are not without rules. Dogs must be under “voice and sight control” at all times, and owners must carry a leash and waste bags. Owners are responsible for picking up after their pets and not letting dogs chase other dogs, people or wild life. Another item to note is that not all of Round Valley is open to dogs off-leash.
There will be a concerted effort on behalf of the Mountain Trails Foundation, Summit Land Conservancy and Utah Open Lands to educate folks on the rules of the off-leash areas.
Off Leash Opposition
There is a local and vocal opposition to the new off-leash areas. The main those concerned is for the wildlife. Deer, elk and moose inhabit the area, as do other animals, and a run in with a dog could be fatal to either side, especially in the winter when large animals are searching for food. Another concern is of a different type of visitor, those from Salt Lake City and other communities that are drawn to Round Valley specifically to recreate with their dogs, perhaps overpopulating the trails and the area.
Hopefully Parkites, Barkites and visitors will regard the off-leash areas as a privilege for all to share. Please clean up after your pet and be respectful of all other trail users. Let’s keep the wag in everyone’s tails and have a safe and wonderful time enjoying ourselves out there.