Saturday, November 11, 2017

Springhill Geologic Park

Springhill Geologic Park is a small trail system located in North Salt Lake. There isn’t a whole lot to it, but it does allow dogs and has a pretty nice view of the valley below. I stumbled upon this while looking around for something easy to do with our dogs, and well it does win for that. Our dogs do love hiking with us, but I have noticed they can’t go for very long, and if it is hot they need access to water. So, this late in the season it was a great choice.

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Quick Details:

Length: About 1.1 mile loop.
Difficulty: DR3. Super easy.
Elevation Gain: About 200 feet.
Restroom: No
Dogs? Yes, leashed. Please clean up after your furry friends.

To Get Here:

From HW 89 in North Salt Lake turn east on Center St. Turn right on 350 east. Then left on Springhill Dr. Take that to the small parking lot at the end.

Tip: if for some odd reason that is full, go back to 350 east and go south a little ways to a small circle at 200 s. This will add a little bit of walking and some extra elevation gain, but not much.

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The Trail:

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It’s not immediately clear where the trail is from this parking lot but we went towards that small stream and then left and eventually hit a gravel path. We noticed on the way down if you cross the stream (easily done without getting wet) you will hit the gravel path sooner.

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And the park/trail system.

I thought those rock outcroppings were the geologic feature for the geologic park, however after some digging I learned the geologic feature is a slow moving landslide that damaged 12 homes and Springhill Dr. The city used disaster funds to remove the road and homes, and build this little park around 2012. That is actually fascinating and awesome to hear that some good came from something so destructive. You can read more about that here (external link).

There is another slow moving landslide not too far from here that rapidly moved not too long ago. You can see some pictures of that from my Tunnel Springs trip.

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Faint trail.

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The rock formations.

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Mickey checks out the little spring.

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Pretty flower. This is not a normal flower we see along trails and now that I know there used to be houses here.. I kind of wonder if this is leftover from an old garden.

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The park below. Also already a nice view of the valley.

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Climbing one of the mounds.

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Looking out the other mounds. This is why I assumed they were the geologic feature they are kind of weird.

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View.

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Looking back towards the big one.

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Smaller ones.

After the weird mounds you will come to a trail split. It is a loop so either way is fine, we decided to go right.

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Looking down at the mounds again.

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Eventually you will come to a dry stream bed.

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Leaf littered hillside.

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And another great view of Antelope Island.

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The trail switchbacks in and out of the little culvert a few times.

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Looking at the park below. I wasn’t looking for it at the time, but from my pictures I can’t tell there is a slide here at all.

Springhill Geologic Park

Panoramic from the top of the hill.

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The trail at the top and the peaks beyond. I like the you can see the Bonneville Shoreline.

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View of the park with the mounds.

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Antelope Island again.

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Back down to the mounds.

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The stream from the small spring.

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One last look at the park.

I found an old article that showed what it looked like before all the houses were demolished. It’s kind of crazy to think there used to be a neighborhood here.

Well, there isn’t much to this trail but it was a good choice to get the dogs some exercise and nature. Plus the view from the top is kind of nice. Now that I know why this park exists, it makes it even better. However, again not much to it. Going with 5 out of 10 squirrels.

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As for difficulty, the elevation gain is mild so it is fairly easy. DR3.

Dogs are allowed, leashed. Please clean up after your furry friends.

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Sunday, November 5, 2017

Adams Canyon

Adams Canyon is a pretty canyon located in Layton. The main feature of the trail is a stunning ~40 foot waterfall. It can be a bit tough in area’s but is a great, beautiful trail. We have done this trail several times, but I still enjoy returning to it.

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Quick Details:

Length: 2 miles to Adams Waterfall, 4 round trip.
Difficulty: DR4 a lot of up and some boulder scrambling.
Elevation Gain: About 1600 ft.
Restroom: No.
Dogs? No. Big Cottonwood Canyon is watershed.
Other Info:

To Get Here:

Take HW 89 in Layton.If heading north turn on 1200 North, then immediately turn right again, continue to where the rd. starts to curve left and you will see a large dirt parking lot on the left.

If coming from the north, they have put in a barrier and you will need to travel beyond 1200 north, and do a U-Turn back to it.

The Trail:

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The trailhead and parking lot. We were crossing our fingers we didn’t get rained on too bad. Lucky just a few sprinkles.

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The first half mile is up these sandy switchbacks. It’s kind of rough but not too bad.

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Couple of flowers still hanging on.

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They added a little monument with information for Elias Adams, whom the canyon is named after.

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You get a small break from the switchbacks, and then get to do some more. If you are interested in the lower waterfall, you will go right here. Otherwise, stay on the main trail towards the switchbacks.

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Adams Reservoir.

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Looking up into the canyon.

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Couple leaves still hanging on.

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Some crepuscular rays (or sun beams as they are more commonly called).

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Near the mouth of the canyon the trail connects with The Bonneville Shoreline Trail for a short time.

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The canyon again.

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Oh cool, they have added a sign. This is where you will depart the BST and continue up the canyon (go left).

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If you hit that bridge, you missed the turn.

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Most of the leaves are on the ground, but still a few hanging on.

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I like the way the leaves are caught in this pine tree making it look like a Christmas tree.

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The creek.

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And again.

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Looking downstream.

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Gnarly looking tree.

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Mossy rock.

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The creek again. Once you enter the canyon, the trail stays pretty close to the creek for the most part.

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Red.

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Nice little waterfall.

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Hey, the sun came out for a minute.

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Someone has hung some birdhouses in a few spots along the trail that say: ‘In memory of Kitty Purcell’. I did a little googling and found she was someone who died before her time in a car accident, but didn’t really cover why the birdhouses are here. I assume she loved the trail, and birds.

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Mountains above.

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Probably one of the biggest trees I have ever seen in Utah.

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The first creek crossing. This one has a good bridge.

Just a heads up, shortly after the bridge the trail starts to get a little rough.

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Looking back at the bridge.

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Another birdhouse.

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The first rock outcropping obstacle. There are 3 ways across it. You can climb up a little and across. Or there is a thin ledge across the middle, or, if the creek is low enough you can bypass it entirely. I prefer the last option.

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Little waterfall.

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Here you can see the middle option. It is passable, but I am not a big fan of it.

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Check out the burls on this tree.

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Nice little waterfall. This is not the main waterfall, keep going.

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There is a rock leaning against the hill that offers a nice alcove next to the waterfall. You used to be able to get in without getting too wet, but the water course seems to have changed a bit. Still neat.

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The creek above the waterfall.

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The 2nd rock outcropping obstacle.

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This is the only part of the trail that I absolutely hate and kind of struggle with. Although, I think I may have found a way around it on the way down, but I would have to look into it more.

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Another nice little waterfall. Again, not the main one, but you are getting really close.

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A little closer.

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Getting close, I can see the cliff alcove.

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The creek.

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In order to actually see the waterfall you have to cross the creek. It’s not so bad right now, but can be a bit much during run off.

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We made it to the waterfall! Even at the end of the water season it is pretty impressive.

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Slimy wall.

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The waterfall again.

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The deep channel it comes out of.

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We actually got a few minutes alone to enjoy the waterfall.

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The way the waterfall is set in the deep canyon it is normally kind of hard to photograph being partly shaded and partly full sun. But with a nice overcast day it’s a little better.

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Vertical panoramic.

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After relaxing and enjoying the waterfall for a while it was time to head on back.

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The creek below the falls.

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One last look.

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Leaves stuck to a rock.

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Bend in the canyon.

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The little waterfall alcove again.

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And the little waterfall next to it.

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Dripping moss.

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Nice little cascade.

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Clear little pool.

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Triple waterfall.

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A look out of the canyon.

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Nifty peaks.

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The creek.

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Canyon walls.

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Another birdhouse.

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The creek.

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Some color up on the hills.

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More crepuscular rays.

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I like the way it acts like a spotlight.

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A little closer.

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Panoramic view of the valley below.

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Jerusalem Cricket. I had heard we had these in Utah but this is the first one I have ever seen. I don’t think I every really need to see another They are kind of scary.

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Some snow on Ben Lomond.

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Adams Reservoir and Holmes Creek Reservoir.

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Flowers.

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I like the coloring of these leaves.

I always have a good time on this trail, even with the couple of barriers that are a bit of work, and the long climb. Today was absolutely a perfect do to do it. With it being overcast the wide open switchbacks weren’t so rough, and the waterfall was better to photograph. There also weren't as many people today as there normally is. 9 out of 10 squirrels today.

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As for difficulty, there are some long sections of UP and a couple barriers, plus having to cross the creek to see the waterfall. Going with a DR4.

Dogs are allowed, please remember to clean up after your furry friends.

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