Monday, April 18, 2016

Heugh's Canyon Waterfall

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Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah
 Heugh's Canyon Waterfall is a "local's secret" - you won't find very much info on these waterfalls. This canyon is situated between Big Cottonwood Canyon and Mt. Olympus, making this a dog friendly hike. The trail starts from the elite Cove Canyon neighborhood on the East side on Wasatch Blvd. 

I can't believe I have lived in Utah for almost three years, and I just heard about it last week! It's my new favorite after work hike. It's very forested (not what you think of if you've hiked Mt. Olympus), it follows Heugh's Creek, in Spring several flowers are blooming, you won't see many people (I passed two people), and it leads to a gorgeous waterfall. At only a few minutes from SLC, this canyon makes you feel like you are in the Pacific Northwest, away from the city bustle. At only 2 miles round trip, kids and families visiting would even enjoy this hike. 

Head south on Wasatch Blvd from 4500 South. Turn left onto Canyon Cove Drive, then an immediate left turn onto Oak Canyon Drive. You should see two brown TH signs. At the 2nd brown TH sign is where you will want to park. The road leading up to the trail is private, and no parking is allowed. You will have to park on Oak Canyon Dr, and walk up the road, then awkwardly cut through a neighbor's driveway to get to the trail. 


Distance: 2 miles RT (from the TH, not parking area)
Elevation gain: 1,042 ft
Time: 1-2 hours
Dog friendly? Yes, off leash
Kid friendly? Yes
Fees/permits? None

Here's a driving map
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah
Driving map, plus where to walk up the road and where the actual trail starts.
 2nd TH sign. This is the area you will want to park, then walk up this road to the right.
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
 Walk up the private road. Charlie knows we are about to hike - he's giving me that certain smile. Dogs need to be leased on the road, but are allowed off leash once on the trail.
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
 Cut across the neighbor's drive way to the dirt path. This is where the trail starts, but you won't see any official TH signs.
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
 As you walk up the trail in the first few minutes you will hear the rush of Heugh's Stream. The trail starts out in lower shrub coverage, and immediately starts to gain elevation.
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
 This is a great hike for dogs since they can drink out of the stream. Please be a responsible dog parent and bring doggie poop bags with you (and carry them out!).
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
 Several flowers were blooming. My best guess on this purple flower is an Annual Honesty.
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
 There were TONS of yellow Glacier Lilies
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
Remnants of the old water pipe can still be seen. 
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
 The trail started to open up a little.
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
 Cross the first stick bridge.
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
 About 3/4 of the way to Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, you will see this old structure. I can't tell how long it's been there, but it looks like it's been used not too long ago.
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
 Cross the 2nd bridge. Right after this bridge, the trail gets even steeper.
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
 Once you get to the boulder field, look to your right (where my arrow is pointing) and you can start to see the top of the falls. 
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
 Heugh's Canyon Waterfalls looks cool from a distance, but you can also get to the base of it. Simply cut down and across the boulder field, to the left of the falls. Be careful on which rocks you step on - they aren't always in a solid position. After a rain, they may be slippery too.
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
 Once at the bottom of the boulder field, just follow along this rock wall. If you hike here after a big rainstorm (as I did), there's no place to step on that will keep you dry. Either bring water shoes or be ok with your hiking shoes getting wet. I fell in twice, but thankfully my Salomon Speedcross 3's dry pretty quick. I also recommend bringing a waterproof phone case. I dropped my iPhone while trying to take a selfie with Charlie. Thankfully I had my OtterBox on and nothing was damaged, but it did need time to dry out the auxiliary insert.
Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Utah, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
 At the base of the falls. It was raging!
Hiking to Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Salt Lake City, Utah
A few months later (June) when the waterfall had slowed down - we hiked up in our swimsuits and played in the falls! Just be careful the rock was really slippery.
Hiking to Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Salt Lake City, Utah
Heugh's is also a great winter hike!



Heugh's Canyon Waterfall trail map. You can see that the trail cuts over the boulder field, then over to the waterfalls.
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Hiking to Heugh's Canyon Waterfall, Salt Lake City, Utah