Monday, September 18, 2017

Hiking the Horse Flat Trail, American Fork Canyon

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Hiking the Horse Flat Trail, American Fork Canyon
The Horse Flat Trail in American Fork Canyon starts from the Summit Trailhead, and passes through several meadows, large Aspen groves, and shaded areas before finally reaching the overlook. This trail is really well shaded, and is perfect during Fall when all the Aspen trees are changing colors. Temperatures are also cooler in Fall - when the valley can be in the 60s, the top of the Alpine Loop Road can be in the 40s. Keep in mind that the Alpine Loop Road is only open during from late June to the end of October, or whenever the first snow arrives. This trail is great for dogs off leash, and even kids can hike this route.


Enter American Fork Canyon from either entrance (Provo Canyon or Lehi area), and drive to the top of the Alpine Loop Road. Park at the Summit Trailhead. There is one restroom. 

Here is a driving map, coming from SLC.


Distance: 3 miles RT
Elevation gain: 675 ft
Time: 1-2 hours
Dog Friendly? Yes, off leash
Kid friendly? Yes
Fees/Permits? There is no permit, but there is a fee for accessing American Fork Canyon. $6 for a 3 day pass or FREE if you have an annual National Park Pass or annual American Fork Canyon pass.
Hiking the Horse Flat Trail, American Fork Canyon
 The Lame Horse Trail starts from the Summit Trailhead, at the top of the Alpine Loop Road.
Hiking the Horse Flat Trail, American Fork Canyon
 Follow the signs for Horse Flat. 
Hiking the Horse Flat Trail, American Fork Canyon
 You will pass several meadows.
Hiking the Horse Flat Trail, American Fork Canyon
 Charlie loves it when we get to hike together as a family.
Hiking the Horse Flat Trail, American Fork Canyon
 At the trail split, stay straight. 
Hiking the Horse Flat Trail, American Fork Canyon
  You will come to another meadow.
Hiking the Horse Flat Trail, American Fork Canyon
The third large meadow and my favorite becuase the views open up. This meadow would be a great place for a short, easy backpack overnighter. There is no water source. 
Hiking the Horse Flat Trail, American Fork Canyon
The last 1/2 mile climbs uphill.
Hiking the Horse Flat Trail, American Fork Canyon
 The views open up again, this time to the East and South. 
Hiking the Horse Flat Trail, American Fork Canyon
 Once you reach the ridge, this is the overlook of the Primrose Cirque and East-facing side of the Mt. Timpanogos area. You may even be able to see hikers below the ridge hiking up. From this point, you can actually see the white Timp tower.
Hiking the Horse Flat Trail, American Fork Canyon
Charlie enjoys his view!


Horse Flat Trail map




Hiking Mt. Timpanogos from Aspen Grove

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Hiking the Horse Flat Trail, American Fork Canyon

5 comments:

  1. Your photos look like the Horse Flat Trail not Lame Horse, not sure though, see: https://caltopo.com/m/919G

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    1. Interesting...we followed the sign that said Lame Horse Trail right at the beginning of the trail, but on your map you call the blue line Horse Flat, then (orange) Primrose Overlook trail. There was no trail split that followed your purple line. No signs anywhere for Horse Flat. Weird! -Alicia

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    2. Doing some more research, I think you are right! Those signs are confusing, because it never has a sign branching off for the Lame Horse trail. I've updated my post, thanks! -Alicia

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  2. Nice to see a hike that doesn't have me gasping for breath...haha! So very good to see Charlie back on the trail. A happy, healthy puppy:) Love that orange and black shirt!

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