Best Hikes Near Salt Lake City

Best Hiking Near Salt Lake
Hiking | Shutterstock

Best Hikes Near Salt Lake City

Introduction to Hikes in Salt Lake City

Hey, fellow hiker enthusiasts! Are you ready to lace up your boots and hit the best hikes near Salt Lake City? Home to the beautiful Wasatch Mountains, this city offers a myriad of hikes for adventurers of all levels. With stunning views, impressive peaks, and lush forests, you’ll quickly find yourself in hiking heaven. But before diving into hikes in Salt Lake City, let’s get to know the hiking scene better.

Top Hiking Trails Near Salt Lake City

Ready to get your hike on? Hiking is one of many free things to do in SLC. Here are 10 fantastic trails for you to explore in and around Salt Lake City:

Donut Falls

Treat yourself to a sweet adventure at Donut Falls. This 3.5-mile round-trip hike is easy and family-friendly, perfect for beginners or those looking for a leisurely stroll. The trail features a waterfall that drops through a donut-shaped rock formation. Sounds delicious, doesn’t it?

Lake Blanche Trail

Feeling ambitious? The Lake Blanche Trail is a 6.9-mile round-trip hike that’s considered moderately difficult. Expect stunning alpine scenery, wildflowers, and three glacial lakes as your reward for the challenging climb. Remember to take a selfie with Sundial Peak in the background!

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Lake Blanche Trail – Sundial Peak

Ensign Peak

Ready to hike a trail that’s steeped in history? Look no further than Ensign Peak! This 1.0-mile round-trip hike is short and sweet but offers a fantastic view of the Salt Lake Valley. It’s the same peak where Brigham Young and other early settlers raised a flag, signaling the spot where they would build their new city. So, channel your inner pioneer and get ready to hoist your metaphorical flag!

The Living Room

No, we’re not suggesting you hike to your living room, although that could be an adventure. The Living Room is a popular 2.4-mile round-trip hike that leads you to a unique formation of flat rocks arranged like a cozy outdoor seating area. So bring a book or snacks, and enjoy the panoramic views of Salt Lake City from your new favorite “living room.”

City Creek Canyon

For a hike that feels like a quick escape from the city, check out City Creek Canyon. This 6.0-mile round-trip trail takes you along a scenic creek, through lush vegetation, and past charming picnic areas. The best part? It’s just minutes from downtown Salt Lake City. So, swap your work shoes for hiking boots and get ready for nature therapy!

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City Creek Canyon

Red Butte Garden Trails

If you’re a plant lover, you’re in for a treat with the Red Butte Garden Trails. This 3.0-mile network of trails meanders through botanical gardens, colorful flowerbeds, and serene natural areas. It’s the perfect spot for a leisurely hike, a family outing, or even a romantic date. So stop and smell the roses (and all the other flowers)!

Bonneville Shoreline Trail

Last but not least, we have the Bonneville Shoreline Trail. This whopping 100-mile stretch follows the ancient shoreline of Lake Bonneville. Don’t worry; you don’t have to hike the whole thing! Numerous access points and shorter segments near Salt Lake City offer picturesque views and an excellent opportunity to spot local wildlife. So, channel your inner explorer and get ready to conquer the shoreline!

Bell Canyon Trail

For a beautiful hike, try the 5-mile round-trip Bell Canyon Trail. This moderate trek will take you past a picturesque reservoir, through verdant forests, and up to the breathtaking Lower Bell Canyon Waterfall. Keep an eye out for local wildlife!

Mount Olympus Trail

Channel your inner Greek god or goddess and conquer Mount Olympus! This 7.3-mile round-trip hike is strenuous and best suited for experienced hikers. However, the panoramic views of Salt Lake Valley from the summit are absolutely divine.

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View From Mount Olympus

Grandeur Peak Trail

Last but not least, we have the 6.2-mile round-trip Grandeur Peak Trail. This moderately challenging hike will lead you to the summit of Grandeur Peak, where you can enjoy spectacular views of the Great Salt Lake and surrounding mountains.

What to Bring on Your Salt Lake City Hike

Don’t hit the trails unprepared! Here’s a quick checklist of essentials for your hiking adventure:

  • Sturdy hiking boots
  • Weather-appropriate clothing
  • Plenty of water and snacks
  • Sunscreen and sunglasses
  • Hat or cap for sun protection
  • Hiking poles (if you’re into that sort of thing)
  • First aid kit (just in case)
  • A fully charged phone or camera to document your epic hike
  • A sense of humor and appreciation for nature’s beauty


Safety Tips for Hiking Near Salt Lake City

Safety first, folks! Here are a few tips to ensure your hiking experience is both enjoyable and secure:

  1. Stay on marked trails to avoid getting lost or damaging the environment.
  2. Tell someone where you’re going and when you plan to return. Better safe than sorry!
  3. Watch out for wildlife and give them plenty of space. They were here first, after all.
  4. Avoid hiking alone, especially on challenging trails. Bring a buddy or make friends on the path.
  5. Check the weather before you set out. The only surprise you want on your hike is finding a perfect picnic spot.


Best Time to Hike in Salt Lake City

When it comes to hiking near Salt Lake City, timing is everything. Spring and fall offer cooler temperatures and vibrant colors, making them ideal seasons for hitting the trails. However, if you’re up for a snowy challenge, winter hikes can be exhilarating (make sure you’re prepared for the cold). 

Summer hikes can be enjoyable, but remember to start early in the morning to beat the heat.

Exploring More Trails in Utah

Once you’ve conquered the best hikes near Salt Lake City, you might feel the itch to explore more of Utah’s natural wonders. Consider checking out other trails in the state, such as Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, or Arches National Park. Trust us; you won’t be disappointed.

Wrap Up Your Salt Lake City Hiking Adventure

After a long day of exploring the great outdoors, treat yourself to a well-deserved meal at one of Salt Lake City’s many delicious restaurants. Then, refuel, reminisce about your adventures, and start planning your next hiking excursion.


With its diverse array of trails, breathtaking scenery, and easy access to nature, Salt Lake City is a hiker’s paradise. Whether you’re a seasoned adventurer or a newbie explorer, there’s a trail waiting for you to discover. So, strap on your hiking boots, pack your sense of humor, and prepare for unforgettable adventures in the great outdoors!

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Can I bring my dog on these hikes? 

A: Most trails near Salt Lake City are dog-friendly. However, check specific rules and regulations before bringing your furry friend along.

Q: Are there any guided hiking tours available? 

A: Many local companies offer guided hiking tours, an excellent option for those seeking expert guidance and company on the trails.

Q: Are there any wheelchair-accessible trails near Salt Lake City? 

A: While many trails may not be wheelchair-accessible, some parks and nature reserves offer paved or ADA-accessible paths. It’s best to check with individual parks for more information.

Q: Do I need a permit to hike these trails? 

A: Most trails near Salt Lake City do not require a permit, but some may have fees or specific regulations. Be sure to research your chosen trail beforehand.

Q: How can I prepare for altitude changes on my hike? 

A: To minimize the impact of altitude changes, stay hydrated, pace yourself, and consider spending a day or two acclimating to the altitude before tackling more challenging hikes.

Q: Is there also places to camp in the Salt Lake City area?

A: Yes! There are many camping opportunities in Salt Lake City, Utah.


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