SOME OF THE BEST HIKES IN UTAH!
The Narrows, Zion National Park
I’ve heard it called the “Pocket-sized Grand Canyon, Not so much a trail as it is a lot of wet hiking and some deep wading. The kids’ll love this one. If you’re claustrophobic, though, the high, narrow walls of the canyon, carved by the virgin River, may bother you. The walls will sometimes close in to within 20 feet of each other and the tops are out of sight at over 1,000 feet. Hike as long or short as you want. No elevation gain.
Most people who hike the Narrows take the Riverside Walk to the Gateway, and begin hiking upriver into the canyon. In 4 hours or so you can round trip to the narrowest part of the Canyon. In summer, the water is generally warm, but you’re shoes are going to be constantly soaked..
Angels Landing, Zion National Park
The best views in Zion National Park are 1,500 feet above the valley floor, on a five-mile, strenuous hike. Don’t take young kids. The final half-mile section of the trail features cliffs and steps where you best hold onto the chains that have been installed for safety. Afraid of heights? Don’t go. The NARROW ridge at the top is scary!
You can beat a lot of the crowds by hiking early in the morning. See http://www.americansouthwest.net/utah/zion/angels_landing.html for a description.
Delicate Arch, Arches National Park
Nice family hike to the natural arch that is associated with most of Utah’s advertising and promotions..
But don’t stop there, Arches National Park preserves over two thousand natural sandstone arches, in addition to a variety of unique geological resources and formations. In some areas, faulting has exposed millions of years of geologic history. The extraordinary features of the park, including balanced rocks, fins and pinnacles, are highlighted by a striking environment of contrasting colors, landforms and textures.
Navajo Loop Trail, Bryce Canyon National Park
An easy loop from Sunrise Point, down through a narrow-walled alley they call "Wall Street." A lot of weird formations. Moderate elevation change. Lots of tourists, but great pictures.
Goblin Valley State Park
No trails, just wander around through the weird shapes and formations. I mean...really weird. State Park site is: http://parks.state.ut.us/parks/www1/gobl.htm.
Actually one of Utah’s short peaks at only 11,750. This is a long hike, probably an over nighter, and you need to be in shape. The half way point is Emerald Lake, a glacier fed lake at the foot of the Peak The nearest town is Aspen grove. Go to http://www.utahtrails.com/Timpanogos.html for a description.
Notch Peak, House Range
The western face of Notch Peak is the desert equivalent of Yosemite's El Capitan. It rises vertically almost 4,450 feet and is one of the highest cliffs in North America. Rock climbers consider the face one of the finest and most challenging climbs in Utah.
Actually only a 9,700 foot peak, but the view from the top will tighten your sphincter because of that 4,450 foot drop to the north and west. Fifty miles from Delta. There is a 3,000 foot elevation gain and it’s about 5 miles one-way.
Go to http://gorp.com/gorp/location/ut/ww_saltlake7.htm for a description. Some guys who’ve hiked it have this web page with a lot of images: http://dave.crockett.net/notch.htm.
Frary Peak, Antelope Island
This trail opened in 1999. This is on an island in the Great Salt Lake and in the midst of a Great Basin Valley, not too many miles from about a million people.
Four miles to the top, an elevation gain of 6,500 feet. An incredible view of the Great Salt Lake. The peak is closed from April to the first of June for Big Horn Sheep lambing season. The peak is in a State Park. Stay AWAY from the buffalo!
Check this site for directions: http://www.climb-utah.com/WM/frary.htm.
Lots more Utah trails
See this web site: http://www.utahtrails.com/.