Stewart Falls Hike

Trail Head: 40.4043, -111.605

Difficulty: Easy

Length: About 3.5 miles out and back

The recommended trail starts at Aspen Grove, along the Alpine Loop Road. To get to the Alpine Loop Road, take 189 from Provo, UT through Provo Canyon. Right after the tunnel, make you first left has if going to Sundance.  Aspen Grove is past Sundance.   Parking at Aspen Grove requires an entry fee of $6 for a three-day pass which is paid at a toll booth on the Alpine Scenic Loop. Several trails start here so pay attention to the signs as you might not want to start up the 14 mile hike to the top of Mnt Timpanogos. The Stewart Fall trail is easy to find as you stay to the left at the trail head markers. It is wide and well-maintained, and most of the trail is walking through the trees resulting in a lot of shade to help you out during the warmer days of summer.  It is a very popular hike, so start early.  

There is a ton of vegetation along both sides of the trail, including a large patch of stinging nettle about two-thirds down the trail.  Watch your little ones and always stay on the trail. The only wild life I have seen on the trail is squirrels, chipmunks, and birds. The trail is highly trafficked resulting in the bigger animals staying clear of the area.  If planning on taking a shower in the waterfall, don't be surprised at how fast it takes your breath away as the water is freezing cold.

Battle Creek Falls Hike

Trail Head GPS: 40.363, -111.70082 

Located in Pleasant Grove, Utah, this easy and fun hike is perfect to take the family or young scout groups on.  The trail head is located next to the Kiwanis park at the end of E 200 S.  There is a large dirt parking lot where the road ends.  The trail is well groomed and very wide for those larger groups that explore this awesome hike.

As you near the waterfall you will start to hear and see it through the trees.  At this point of the trail you will also notice that the elevation of the trail will incline quickly.  Total elevation change on this hike is roughly 375 feet. But don't worry, the hike is downhill the whole way out and will pass quickly as you walk back to your car.

Watch the little ones around the top of the waterfall if you choose to make the climb up to the top as it is a tall drop off.  Continuing on this trail will eventually lead to multiple other hikes that lead you through the Mt. Timpanogos area.

Battle Creek Falls

Red Reef Hike

With waterfalls, swimming holes, and ancient pictographs, it’s no surprise that the Red Reef Trail is one of the most popular hikes in the St. George area.

At just 1.5 miles round trip, this trail is excellent for everyone in the family, including children and beginners.

Trailhead

The Red Reef Trail begins near Campsite 2 in the Red Cliffs Campground, just before the road crosses Quail Creek in the Red Cliffs Recreation Area. Red Cliffs is located about 15 miles northeast of St. George.

Directions from St. George

Take Exit 22 off of I-15.

Turn south onto Old Highway 91 and continue south for about 2 miles.

Turn right at the signed junction for Red Cliffs Recreation Area.

Continue under the freeway then turn left and follow the road into the Red Cliffs Campground.

Directions from the North

Take Exit 23 from I-15.

Turn left off the exit, then right onto Main Street/Old Highway 91.

Continue south for 3.5 miles to the signed junction on the right.

Continue under the freeway then turn left and follow the road into the Red Cliffs Campground.

Parking at the trailhead requires a $5 day use fee per vehicle. Parking spaces are very limited, making access difficult on busy weekends. The BLM may even turn cars away during peak usage due to lack of parking.

NOTE: The freeway underpass used to access Red Cliffs will not accommodate vehicles taller than 11’9”.

The Hike

The Red Reef Trail begins by traversing a sagebrush-covered bench above Quail Creek before dropping down to the watercourse. The trail follows the creek for a short distance before a well-worn path appears on the left. This leads to the upper falls and moki steps, but it is worth following the stream another 150 yards to the base of the lower pools and waterfall (37.228237,-113.410511).

Beyond the lower falls, keep an eye out for a large alcove on the right (37.229305,-113.410987). Most hikers pass by this, but it makes a great side trip if you have the time. This alcove, likely once used by ancient Native Americans, contains at least two pictographs. Appreciate the rock art without touching it so that it can be preserved for future generations. Do not add to graffiti on the walls.

The canyon narrows just beyond the alcove. Those trying to keep their feet dry might have a tough time as the trail approaches a few more pools and small waterfalls. Just to the right of the upper falls there are deep steps cut into the rock face that are commonly known as moki steps. You can use the moki steps to access the more difficult sections of the canyon above, but for most, this is the turnaround point of the family friendly section of the Red Reef Trail.

Relax at the pools and enjoy the scenery before returning the way you came. Round trip mileage is approximately 1.5 miles.

Rules and Regulations

A day use fee of $5 per vehicle is required. Pay fees at the self-pay station near the entrance to the campground. You may use Federal Inter-agency Annual, Access, and Senior Passes for day use fees. Stop by the self-pay station for more information. 

All pets must be on leash no longer than 6 feet.

No littering.

Pack out what you pack in.

Special Considerations

Quail Creek has high potential for flash flooding. Do not enter the canyon if it is raining, if the creek is flowing swiftly, or if there is a high chance of precipitation. If you notice a sudden change in water clarity or flow, seek higher ground.

The depth of the pools can vary, especially after flood events. Never jump into a pool without first verifying depth.

Area: Red Cliffs

Nearest Town: Washington, UT

Difficulty: Easy*

Distance: 1.5 miles round trip

Dog Friendly: Yes, leashes required

Optimum Season: Year round

Latitude: 37.224395

Longitude: -113.406284

Usage: Heavy

Credits

This trail guide  by Backcountry Post.

Lower Calf Creek Falls

Trail Head GPS:37.793607, -111.415004

This in n' out 5 mile hike is one that you will remember forever. Wonderful hike for the whole family to take. The entire trail is sand which will slow your pace down, but children 5+ should not have too many issues. Remember, your legs are just a bit longer than the kids so don't rush too fast.  Along the trail there are 14 markers / information stops (Points of interest include; Fremont Indian granaries, petroglyphs, and wildlife).  These work great to gauge your distance as number 14 is the end of the trail where it meets the Lower Falls. The hike, for the most part, follows Calf Creek through a beautiful red rock canyon.  At the end of the trail is the 126 foot Lower Calf Creek waterfall.  The pool is roughly 10-15 feet at it's deepest point and the water feels like one degree above freezing when you first jump in. Pack a lunch and relax on the beach in the middle of a canyon in Escalante, UT.

Parking: Just off of highway 12 near Escalante, UT. The trailhead is located within Calf Creek Campground. Day use parking is $5.00 and overnight camping is $15.00/day. The trail is very popular and parking can become an issue during holidays.  Best to start this hike early morning so you beat the heat and the rush of other hikers.

Willis Creek Hike

GPS: 37.4835815,-112.0969226

Great hike to take the family on. My 4 year old was able to walk 95% of the trail.  There are a couple of spots where the trail is going up and downhill, but for most of the hike, the trail is very easy as it goes along the creek.  At about the 1 mile mark there is a small waterfall that the kids enjoyed.  Great stopping point for a photo, lunch, or nap in the shade.  Along the trail you will have the privilege of walking through three different sections of slot canyons. Take extra precautions during flash flood season, especially through the narrows.  There are no restrooms and no source of clean water.  Remember to always "Be Prepared".

Directions to the Trailhead:

Directions: East Zion to Staircase

From Salt Lake City, travel south on I15 to U-20. Exit on U-20. Turn south on U-89 and follow U-89 to Glendale.

From Las Vegas: Travel I15 to exit 16. Follow U-9 to the south entrance of Zion and through to the east entrance. Take U-9 for 12 miles to Mt. Carmel Jct, where U-89 and U-9 meet. Drive north on U-89 to Glendale.

From Glendale, turn right on 300 N. (Bench Road) Follow the graded dirt road, Skutumpah, into the Grand Staircase. Remember the Grand Staircase is a wild and remote place. The dirt roads may be impassible when wet and there is usually no water, services or cell phone access. Skutumpah is a backway and should only be traveled in dry conditions. Call for road and weather information before travel: 435.644.4680

View

Willis Creek Trail

in a larger map

Pictures

Hike to the Y

Great day hike. From 900 East in Provo turn onto 820 North.  The road will veer to the left and turn into Oakmont Ln. Turn right onto Oak Cliff Dr.  and finally a right turn onto Terrace Dr.  There is plenty of parking and a restroom just north of the Trailhead. The trail is well groomed and is a great workout as you take the switchbacks up 1.4 miles.  There are benches on the corner of each switchback if you feel like you need a rest. If taking younger ones, keep a close eye on them at the top of the Y.  The Y is smooth and steep and would cause some damage if you or your Cub Scout slipped and fell.  The trail is well traveled and very busy on Saturdays. 

View

Y Hike

in a larger map

Mt. Timpanogos via Aspen Grove

Awesome overnight campout!  this trail will make you work.

We arrived at the trail head around 6:30pm and started our assent to the top.  At the trailhead there is a drinking fountain with fresh, cold water... fill everything that you can.  Starting in the evening has it's advantages; The sun is on the other side of the mountain making it a lot cooler to hike in, and it makes for a great stopping point at 10:30 to campout overnight at Emerald Lake.  Round Trip for this hike is a little over 14 miles.  We left Emerald Lake around 4:30 am to make it to the top to watch the sunrise.  After descending the summit we found out that we had close to 50 mountain goats that decided to play at our campsite... awesome experience.  This hike is difficult, but well worth it.  My Boy Scouts did an awesome job and had an experience they will remember for ever. 

Click on "read more" to view pictures and the map.

Grotto Hike - Payson Canyon

Fun and easy hike up Payson Canyon to take the Cub Scouts or Family on.  The hike in and out is a total of .60 of a mile.  Take your swimming suits, a towel, and a lunch and have fun.  There are no bathroom facilities at the trail-head or at the grotto.

Your last bathroom stop before the trail is a few miles down on the left hand side of canyon road across from Maple Dell Boy Scout Camp.   Parking is across the road from the Trail-head.  Zoom in on the map for more detail.

View

Grotto Hike - Payson Canyon

in a larger map

Spring Creek Hike and Overnighter

Even though this Hike is 2.5 miles each way, it is one that will challenge your scouts!  Trailhead is located at 250 S 2080 E, Springville, UT.  Within the 2.5 miles you will experience an elevation hike of almost 1,000 ft.  The campsite is located just off of

Squaw Peak Trail which connects Hobble Creek Canyon with Provo Canyon.  At about mile 1.75 the trail gets really rocky and a bit harder. Expect around 1.5 hours to get to the top and about .75 hours to hike back down. There are a couple campfire pits at the campsite with a fair amount of scrub oak that is ready to burn.  There are no bathroom facilities or running water.  This is a very popular site for deer hunters, so stay clear during deer season.  For those that are unable to make the climb, you can access the site by going up Hobble Creek Canyon and turning on to Left Fork, then left onto Squaw Peak Trail.