Log Haven is a popular restaurant located in Millcreek Canyon, Utah. Built in 1920, this log cabin hideaway was built as an anniversary gift for L.F. Rains' wife. Logs were shipped from San Francisco to SLC and hauled up the four miles by horse-drawn wagon. It was built at the base of cliffs and two small waterfalls. It was then used as a summer home for the family but when the Great Depression hit, an insurance executive named Gleed Miller bought the home and made additions to the home, also adding in an ice skating pond and stable. During the late 1980s it fell to despair - flash forward to the mid-90s and Margo Provost purchased the home and renovated it into a historic retreat and restaurant.
Clayton Peak (10,721 ft) is a fun local peak located at the top of Brighton Ski Resort in Big Cottonwood Canyon. It's right on the ridge of the watershed, so if hiking this route, dogs are not allowed. However, dogs can make the summit from Bloods Lake Trailhead, and going that way is allowed for them. This time, however, my friend and I decided to hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort. I hadn't hiked this route in over four years so it was time to revisit this trail.
Desolation Overlook is a popular trail located in Millcreek Canyon that can be hiked year round. I love taking the dogs up here for a great view of the canyon and valley in the distance. The trail is on the north slope, so it is very shaded, and in winter, can be very icy. Be sure to wear microspikes in Winter to keep from falling. The trail makes its way up the side of the mountain using long switchbacks. This trail is accessible year-round, with my favorite being Fall.
Scout Falls is a waterfall located along the popular Timpooneke Trail in American Fork Canyon, which eventually leads to Mt.Timpanogos. Many people chose to only hike 1.5 miles to Scout Falls then return to their car for a short yet scenic hike. This hike is very gradual and is great for dogs off leash as well as kids.
Monument Peak (10, 452 ft) is the the Carbon County High Point, and for those working on the Utah County High Points (CoHPs), this one is the easiest since you can drive to the summit. It's located along the Wasatch Plateau, and because its simply a drive, it should be combined with other CoHPs such as East Mountain and South Tent Mountain. There is nothing special about this peak except for the fact that you can see three CoHPs from the summit. The best time to drive here is in late Summer to Fall when the road is completely dry.
East Mountain (10,743 ft) is the Emery County High Point, and is one of several peaks along the Wasatch Plateau. The hike itself is straight forward, following a well-worn trail used by horses, hunters, and hikers. The main reason why people hike to this peak is for checking off the Utah County High Points (CoHPs) list. It's one of the easier CoHPs, and is often combined with Monument Peak, South Tent Mountain, or all three in one day. For our trip, we only did East & Monument on the same day since I had hiked South Tent Mountain a month earlier. From the summit you can see three CoHPs. Camping is plentiful and the drive is scenic. Both dogs and older kids can hike this route.
The South Ridge of Mt.Superior is a popular class 5 scramble to reach the summit. You can hike this on an actual trail this route, however the appeal of taking the South Ridge is that is offers a more challenging & technical approach. The South Ridge of Superior is considered a "Wasatch Classic" scramble with a lot of exposure and big views. It is highly recommended that if this is your first time taking this route, to go with someone who knows the way and can also help coach you through tough and exposed spots.
Sulphur Creek is located in Capitol Reef National Park and provides a beautiful water hike through a narrow canyon, with subway-like channels, cutting through layered, orange and red sandstone. It's considered the "Subway" or "Narrows" of CRNP, though really it lives up to its own name. The water is rarely more than ankle deep and there are three waterfalls that you can easily bypass, one forces you to slide down it's 5 foot drop!
Mount Superior (11,040ft) & Monte Cristo Peak (11,132 ft) are two classic and iconic Wasatch Peaks that every peak bagger should summit. Both peaks dominate the Little Cottonwood Canyon Ridge, and are focal points to the north when skiing at Alta or Snowbird. Both Mt. Superior and Monte Cristo are summited year round - in the winter by backcountry skiers, and in the summer by hikers looking for a fun little scramble.
Death Hollow is located in Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument, just outside of Escalante, Utah. The first 6 miles of the trail follows the Boulder Mail Trail - the old route, that even up until 1924, the mules would carry mail on from the residents of Boulder, UT to Escalante, UT. Boulder, UT is right along Highway 12, which wasn't even paved until the 1970's, was the last area in the US to gain automobile access! No matter how much this area has changed due to technology, you'll immediately find yourself in the backcountry and won't see people for days. Over our 3 day adventure, my friend and I only saw two other people the entire time.