The wonderful thing about Utah’s hiking trails is that there’s something for everyone. Are you really out of shape? Do you use a wheelchair, cane or walker? No problem. There is a Utah trail for you. Unless you’re allergic to sunlight and fresh air, I promise that you’ll find a hiking trail on this list that you’ll love. Take a look…then make plans to hike at least one of these easy trails this spring!
1. Bonneville Shoreline Trail, Multiple Locations Along the Wasatch Front
The Bonneville Shoreline Trail will eventually reach from the Utah/Idaho border all the way south to Nephi. Currently, it's about 100 miles long and you'll find sections from Cache County to Utah County. This section, from the Avenues neighborhood in Salt Lake City to Parley's Canyon, is particularly popular. It's about 22 miles long and is mostly flat, so it's an easy hike for most people. Dogs area also allowed on this trail, which offers pretty wildflowers and fabulous views of the Salt Lake Valley.
2. Mesa Arch, Canyonlands National Park
To reach Mesa Arch, you'll walk just .3 miles on a fairly level path. It's a very popular trail, so you won't find much solitude here, but the view is well worth the extra company. For some incredible photographs, visit Mesa Arch early in the morning to catch the sunrise.
3. Silver Lake, Big Cottonwood Canyon
Silver Lake is about 14 miles up Big Cottonwood Canyon. It's a .9-mile loop that's almost completely ADA accessible. A boardwalk surrounds most of the lake - the rest is hard-packed dirt and easily navigable, though there are a few spots on the far side of the lake that have some rocks and tree roots.
4. Tony Grove Lake, Logan
This pretty trail makes a 1.5-mile loop around the lake. You'll see pretty wildflowers and will probably encounter some adorable wildlife (squirrels and chipmunks, for instance). It's a great hike for kids and is rated as easy.
5. Lower Emerald Pool, Zion National Park
When the weather is nice, this trail is an easy stroll that takes you right under a pretty waterfall. The trail starts at Zion Lodge and is about two miles long. If you're up for a little bit more elevation gain, continue along past the middle pool and to Upper Emerald Pool. This trail can be slippery in rainy or cold weather, so check with the park rangers before you go.
6. Cascade Springs Interpretive Trail, American Fork Canyon
The Cascade Springs Interpretive Trail is ADA-accessible and is just .7 miles long. It's a pretty hike that takes you past the springs, which create tons of tiny waterfalls. It's fun for even the smallest children, and is accessible for wheelchairs and strollers.
7. Timpanogos Cave, American Fork Canyon
This is the most strenuous hike on the list, but it should be on your list if you're interested in a little challenge. The entire trail is paved, but the switchbacks up the mountain can be steep. However, at the curve of every switchback, you'll find a bench to sit on to rest for a bit. And while you're resting, the views of American Fork Canyon are spectacular. Take this hike in the spring or fall before the temperature heats up, and take plenty of water. The hike is only 1.5 miles to the top.
8. Grotto Falls, Payson Canyon
Grotto Falls is not ADA-accessible, but it's a fun trail for families with kids, and it's an easy hike for most. The trail is just .06 miles out and back, and ends at a beautiful little waterfall. Dogs are allowed on this trail, too!
9. Birdsong Trail, Ogden
Birdsong Trail is a 2.6 mile loop and you can bring your pup, as long as he's on leash. The trail winds through the trees, past six springs and a pond. Along the way, you'll see tons of birds and wildlife.
10. Grosvenor Arch, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
While some of Utah's beautiful arches require a strenuous hike, the trail to Grosvenor Arch is ADA-accessible and just .2 miles long. The trail takes you right up to the arch, which is actually a split arch with two windows.
11. Riverside Walk, Zion National Park
Riverside Walk is an ADA-accessible trail in Zion National Park that takes you along the canyon and the Virgin River. Take the shuttle to the Temple of Sinawava stop (the last shuttle stop), then stroll along the trail for one mile until the trail ends at the river. From there, you can walk through the water in the river at the beginning of the Zion Narrows Trail - at that point, the trail is no longer wheelchair-accessible, but if you have kids with you and it's hot, they'll definitely love to continue on for a bit in the cool water.
Even easy hikes require a little bit of preparation. Make sure you’re wearing appropriate footwear, and that you bring plenty of water. Ideally, you’ll hike with at least one other person. If you go alone, make sure you let someone know when and where you’re going, and when you plan to return. Thunderstorms can be deadly while you’re hiking – some areas are prone to flash flooding; others put you at risk for lightning strikes. Take a few precautions before you head off to hike, and you’ll be fine.
Once you’ve tackled some easy hikes, you might be ready for something a little more strenuous.