Sunset Arch & Moonrise Arch are two arches located within Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument (GSENM) off Hole in the Rock Road. They are both located in an area that does NOT have an official trail so being able to navigate a GPS is necessary. That being said it is pretty straight forward, and this easy hike is great for small children, dogs off leash, and those wanting to see something cool without the hard effort most hikes in this area require.
Devil's Garden is apart of Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, and is home to Metate Arch as well as hoodoos. Not to be confused with The Devils Garden Loop Trail in Moab, this area is only 640 acres and is part of a Wilderness Study Area, for the purpose of possible wilderness designation; however, wilderness status was not recommended by the BLM back in 1991. One of the reasons state was that the existing roads, parking lot, picnic tables, and port-a-potty are all in close proximity to a natural area. The second reason was the likelihood of several groups of people coming to this area at the same time to the same formations (all of which are within a 2 minute walk from the trailhead). Both of those reasons diminish the wilderness experience of solitude.
The Emigration Canyon Ridge sits directly in the middle of Parley's Canyon and Emigration Canyon, on the East side of SLC. The trail starts from the Little Mountain Summit, which is a popular spot for road cyclists and runners to end their day. This ridge is a rarely hiked and very few know the peaks, yet anyone who drives through Parley's Canyon has been just below the trail. The Emigration Canyon Ridge provides access to Dale Peak (7,367 ft) and Perkins Peak (7,491 ft). Hiking the ridge is very easy - no scrambling or technical skills are needed and it provides amazing views of the surrounding mountains and other ridges.
Here are my top 7 Reasons Why Winter is the best season to hike in Utah! Ever considered winter hiking? Summer trails are full with people hiking, but winter? You'll see half the people. Yes, it's cold. You'll get a little wet from snow. But so what - that's what layers are for!
Silver Lake in American Fork Canyon is a beautiful high alpine lake that sits just below the Little Cottonwood Canyon ridgeline on the south side. This moderate trail slowly gains elevation, so it's not super hard to reach this awesome destination. The trail passes by some boulders, crosses a stream, climbs up 3-4 long switchbacks, and finally reaches the lake after only 2.2 miles (one way).
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 Primrose Overlook.
South Mountain (11,817 ft) is located on the very South end of the LaSal Mountains just outside of Moab, Utah. This is one of the easiest peaks to summit in the LaSals at only 7 miles RT. The LaSal Mountains are the 2nd highest mountain range in Utah, behind the Uinta Mountains. South Mountain is accessible by a trail half of the way, and then the second half is off trail but is easy hiking across the high alpine terrain. The trail itself is mostly exposed, with no water source. Start hiking early in the morning to beat the afternoon thunderstorms that occur almost daily in this mountain range. The best time to summit is Summer and Fall (typically late June to the first snowfall in October). Call the LaSal Ranger to make sure LaSal Pass is open before planning your hike here.
Mt.Moriah (12,073 ft) is located within Mount Moriah Wilderness in Nevada. This peak is often overlooked by its neighbor to the South, Wheeler Peak, in Great Basin National Park. But that is what I loved about this area - we passed very few people on the roads, and literally no one on the trail! Mt.Moriah is very remote and 4WD and high clearance is needed to reach the trailhead.
Ski Lake is located in between Victor, Idaho and Jackson Hole, WY, and sits at an elevation of 8,650 ft. Locals says this is the easiest alpine lake to hike to in the area at only 4 miles RT! The trail is very mellow and great for all ages, including dogs off leash.