SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News) – Tuesday, Nov. 17 is National Take a Hike Day. Utahn’s are lucky to live in a place where there is no shortage of hiking trails to enjoy, even as the winter months begin. Check out these hiking trails varying in all difficulties that are beloved by Utahn’s from all over the state:
Angels Landing-Zion National Park
Angels Landing is arguably one of the most renowned and beloved hiking trails in the state. With striking views once you reach the summit, Angels Landing has made its way on to many Utahn’s bucket list. According to Utah.com, the 5-mile round-trip trail is strenuous and is very steep with exposure to long drop-offs along the trail. The last section of the trail is a route along a steep, narrow ridge to the summit in which hikers hold onto chains drilled into the red rock. The best time of year to hike the trail is in the Spring, Summer, and Fall. If hiking the trail in the summer, do so in the early morning before it gets too hot.
Buckskin Gulch-Near Kanab
Buckskin Gulch goes through a beautiful slot canyon near Kanab for about 15 miles. According to Utah.com, the hike is not a technical hike but is rated as strenuous because of its length. While the hike can be done in a day, it is recommended that people make it an overnight backpacking trip. Permits are needed to hike Buckskin Gulch. Since it is a slot canyon, be aware of the weather to make sure no rain is in the forecast that could cause flash floods.
Snow Canyon State Park-Washington County
Snow Canyon State Park near St. George has a hike suitable for every age and level of hiker. Whether it’s a mild .3 mile hike to Jenny’s Canyon or the 11.4 mile Snow Canyon Loop Trail, there is plenty within the state park to keep hikers of all types entertained while enjoying the stunning red rocks. The state park is opened year-round.
Delicate Arch-Arches National Park
Arches National Park is home to one of Utah’s most recognizable symbols-The Delicate Arch. The arch is 46 feet high and 32 feet wide which makes it the largest free-standing arch in the park. To see the arch up close and personal, hikers must make the 3-mile roundtrip hike. The trail is rated as moderate on alltrails.com and is accessible all year long. While it is accessible throughout the year, park rangers frequently rescue people who underestimate the trail’s difficulty. When hiking to the arch in the summer, be aware of the high temperatures. When hiking the trail in the winter months, be conscious of ice.
Ensign Peak-Salt Lake City
Ensign Peak is famous for giving people amazing views of the whole Salt Lake Valley and being an easy hike to access when coming from downtown Salt Lake City. The trail to the overlook is .8 miles out and back and is suitable for all skill levels. The trail is accessible year-round. Ensign Peak is where Brigham Young and seven other pioneer leaders climbed to two days after initially arriving in the Salt Lake Valley in 1847. From Ensign Peak, the pioneers laid out in their minds the city they intended to build. At the summit, there is a monument that was built in 1934 to honor the early pioneers.
Wind Cave-Logan Canyon
The Wind Cave Trail is a popular hike located on the north side of Logan Canyon. The trail leads to a delicate triple arch and a natural cave made of limestone. The area is commonly referred to as the ‘Witch’s Castle’ as well. The hike starts about 5 miles up Logan Canyon near the Guinavah-Malibu Campground. The cave is about 1,000 feet above the highway so the trail is steep. The hike is a 4-mile out and back trail and is rated as moderate on alltrails.com.
Mt. Timpanogos-Utah Valley
Mount Timpanogos towers over Utah Valley and many of the valley’s residents have the goal to summit it at least once in their life. Standing at 11,749 feet, the hike to the summit of the mountain is about 8 miles (depending on which trailhead you depart from). The hike is rated as difficult and can only be hiked from around June through October. Over 4,000 feet of elevation are gained during the hike. Hikers looking to conquer the mountain depart from either the Timpooneke Campground in American Fork Canyon or from Aspen Grove near Sundance Ski Resort in Provo Canyon. Hikers hike up the backside of the mountain until they reach the summit with spectacular views of Utah Valley.
Donut Falls-Big Cottonwood Canyon
Donut Falls is easily accessible to people living in Salt Lake County and is a hike the whole family will enjoy. The easy 3.5-mile out and back trail leads to Donut Falls where kids of all ages will enjoy splashing in the water. The trailhead for this hike is located 9 miles up Big Cottonwood Canyon near the Mill D Trailhead. Hiking to Donut Falls is best in the summer.
Little Wild Horse Canyon-San Rafael Swell
Little Wild Horse Canyon is a slot canyon hike located in the San Rafael Swell near Goblin Valley State Park in south-central Utah. The hike can be completed in a loop which is 8 miles long. Hikers can enter through Little Wild Horse Canyon and then cross over and descend out of Bell Canyon. Many hikers though will simply hike up Little Wild Horse Canyon for as long as they feel comfortable and then turn around and exit the slot canyon the same way they entered. Most of the hike is in a narrow slot canyon which sometimes forces people to turn sideways to slip through the tight rocks. Be aware of the weather conditions so flash floods do not pose a risk. The trail is rated as moderate.
Bloods Lake-Guardsman Pass
Bloods Lake is an easy 1-mile hike located near the Guardsman Pass Road. The lake is perfect for a summer day and even has a rope swing to help you cool off. According to Utah.com, the parking lot at the trailhead of the hike is shared with several other hikes and fills up quickly. It is suggested that hikers get to the trailhead early to avoid crowds and to find a parking spot. This hike is kid-friendly and pet-friendly. The trail is not accessible from November to April due to the Guardsman Pass Road being closed for the winter.
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