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Five great early winter hikes in Salt Lake City

Tuesday November 12, 2013


Mount Van Cott ranks as my favorite place to take in a view, in peace.
We've already had a good amount of snowfall on the Wasatch Mountains covering some of the higher trails that I haunted throughout the hot summer months. I'm not giving up hiking just yet however. Now is a perfect time to hike some of my favorite trails along the "Front Range" of the Wasatch. These are also great hikes for early spring before the high trails clear.

These five trails are located just minutes from downtown, and are low enough to remain snow-free into early winter. Because these hikes in Salt Lake City they are so convenient, I frequent them after work and even at night. They mostly face west, making ideal sunset hikes. Yup, these are the trails you'll see me post sunset photos of on Instagram. I know them well, so I usually don't use a headlamp at night, but you may want to stuff one in your pack. An added plus on these trails is that dogs are allowed.

I've written about several of these trails in the past, so look for links to those posts in the descriptions.

Mount Van Cott

I love this hike because of the views at the summit and how the terrain slopes just right to lie down for a brief nap (with scenery).  It is one of the less used trails near the city, an therefore allows for some quiet and meditative moments. The trail winds uphill, steeply, from the Jewish Community Center just minutes from downtown. The final half-mile or so crosses a pretty meadow before rising to the summit.

Trailhead: Take 100 North east to the University Hospital. Look for the Jewish Community Center on the left and turn in. The substation is behind and a little to the right and has several parking spaces for hikers/bikers.

More beta: This trail is very open and exposed to the elements, which means it can be hot in the summer and could cool off quickly during other seasons. Pack plenty of water and layers in addition to your regular hiking basics.

Read more about this and another four hikes....



Sunsets on Mount Wire are stunning!