Hiking Trails Of Salt Lake City

From The Book
"60 Hikes Within 60 Miles Of Salt Lake City"
Author: Greg Witt

Other Sources Also Used
Salt Lake Magazine: Wasatch Mountains


Hiking Boot Foot Print


4,301 Feet



Ten Essentials
Of Hiking

Easy Doughnut Falls
1.4 Miles Round Trip
2 Hours

June 12, 2012
Elev Gain: 7,493 + 337
Height = 7,830
Stewart Falls
3.6 Miles Round Trip
2.5 Hours

August 5, 2020
Elev Gain: 6,889 + 310
Height = 7,199
Cecret Lake
1.7 Miles Round Trip

October 1, 2021
$10 Entry Fee
Elevation: 9,875

Moderate Grandeur Peak
5.4 Miles Round Trip
4 Hours

May 5, 2012
Elev Gain: 5,912 + 2,387
Height = 8,299
Lake Blanche
5.8 Miles Round Trip
5 Hours

August 31, 2013
Elev Gain: 6,240 + 2,670
Height = 8.910
Brighton Lakes
4.5 Miles Round Trip
3.5 Hours

October 6, 2012
Elev Gain: 8,762 + 1,200
Height = 9,962

Difficult BroadsFork Twin Peaks
9.8 Miles Round Trip
10 Hours

June 7, 2014
Elev Gain: 6,240 + 5,090
Height = 11,330
Mount Olympus
7.0 Miles Round Trip
7 Hours

October 20, 2020
Elev Gain: 4,966 + 4,060
Height = 9,026
Mount Timpanogos
14.8 Miles Round Trip
11 Hours
Elev Gain: 7,360 + 4,389
Height = 11,749
Lone Peak or Pfeifferhorn
10.0 Miles Round Trip
9 Hours
Elev Gain: 7,698 + 3,628
Height = 11,326


SUP Locations In Utah
Great Salt Lake
Highland Glen Park
Jordanelle Reservoir
Lake Powell
Utah Lake State Park

Highland Glen Park
28 Miles / 52 Mins
East of Thanksgiving Point

East Canyon Reservoir
35 Miles / 47 Mins
$20 Park Fee

Manila Creek Pond
32 Miles / 35 Mins
Flotation Devices?


Black Ridge Reservoir
17 Miles / 26 Mins
Jordanelle State Park
39 Miles / 37 Mins
Camping / Closes at 10pm
Dogs Allowed On Leash
Deer Creek Reservoir
52 Miles / 52 Mins
State Park Camping $15
No Dogs In Day Use Area
Tibble Fork Reservoir
34 Miles / 48 Mins
Entrance Fee $6
Dogs Allowed
Water Below 50 Degrees

Utah Health Advisory
Algae Contamination Warnings

Blackridge Reservoir
Deer Creek Reservoir
Highland Glen Reservoir
Jordanelle Reservoir
Manila Creek Pond
Pineview Reservoir
Rockport Reservoir
Tibble Fork Reservoir
Utah Lake

Mileage Distances from Taylorsville Home - Elevation 4,295'
0 Miles
15 Fwy & 6200 E
9.2 Miles
Big Cottonwood Canyon
10.8 Miles
Donut Falls Road
19.7 Miles
Brighton Ski Resort
25.4 Miles

Hiking Comparison Chart - Taylorsville Home - Elevation 4,295'
Grandeur Peak
5.4 Miles
4 Hours
Elev Gain: 5,912 + 2,387
Height = 8,299
Mt. Olympus
7 Miles
7 Hours
Elev Gain: 4,966 + 4,060
Height = 9,026
Broadforks Twin Peaks
9.8 Miles
10 Hours
Elev Gain: 6,240 + 5,090
Height = 11,330
Mount Timpanogos
14.8 Miles
11 Hours
Elev Gain: 7,360 + 4,389
Height = 11,749

The Ten Essentials of Hiking Safety
One of the first rules of hiking is to be prepared for anything. The simplest way to be prepared is to carry the "Ten Essentials." In addition to carrying the items listed below, you need to know how to use them, especially navigation items. Always consider worst-case scenarios such as getting lost, hiking back in the dark, broken gear (for example, a broken hip strap on your pack or a water filter that gets plugged), twisting an ankle, or a brutal thunderstorm. The items listed below don't cost a lot of money, don't tqke up much room in a pack, and don't weigh much, but they might just save your life.
Page Index
The Ten Essentials
  1. Water: durable bottles and water treatment, like iodine or a filter
  2. Map: preferable a topo map and a trail map with a route description
  3. Compass: a high-quality compass
  4. First-aid kit: a good-quality kit including first-aid instructions
  5. Knife: a multitool device with pliers is best
  6. Light: flashlight or headlamp with extra bulbs and batteries
  7. Fire: windproof matches or lighter and fire starter
  8. Extra food: you should always have food in your pack when you've finished hiking
  9. Extra clothes: rain protection, warm layers, gloves, warm hat
  10. Sun protection: sunglasses, lip balm, sunblock, sun hat

Broads Fork Twin Peaks
or Salt Lake Twin Peaks

Round Trip Mileage: 9.8
Round Trip Time: 10 Hours
Elevation Gain: 6,240 + 5,090
Book Page Reference: 133
Map Reference Number: 29
Difficulty Rating: Difficult

Page Index
Additional Information
  • Confusion: There are three Twin Peaks in Salt Lake County.
    1. Smallest: 2 miles north of the University of Utah.
    2. Broads Fork Twin Peaks: Described in this section.
    3. Highest: American Fork Twin Peaks is located on the ridge between Little Cottonwood and American Fork Canyons.
  • The trailhead also serves Lake Blanche.
  • You can combine three summits on this trail: Twin Peaks, Sunrise Peak and Dromedary Peak.
  • Views of Dromedary Peak to the south and the higher Sunrise Peak (also called O'Sullivan Peak) to the right.
  • Marmots are abundant in this area and moose are often sighted.
  • Eastern summit = 11,330 feet (2 feet higher than the Western summit)
  • Twin Peaks Climbing Web Site
Summit Panorama View From the Top of Dromedary Peak

Trail Head Information (Web Site)


Broads Fork Twin Peaks, more frequently referred to simply as "Twin Peaks", is the highest and most prominent mountain on the eastern skyline behind Salt Lake Valley. With an elevation of 11,330 feet (east summit) and 11,328 feet (west summit), the Twins rise nearly 7,000 vertical feet above the valley floor.

The most commonly used ascent route is via Broads Fork, a class 3 climb of 5,100+ vertical feet with some scrambling and exposure. More difficult routes can be found in Broads Fork, as well as Deaf Smith Canyon, Ferguson Canyon, Tanners Gulch, Stairs Gulch, and Lisa Falls. The center of the Twin Peaks Wilderness Area, the peaks here are some of the most rugged to be found in the Wasatch. Needless to say, the summit views of Salt Lake City and the surrounding Wasatch Mountains are excellent.

Getting There

The Broads Fork trailhead is four miles up the Big Cottonwood Canyon road (UT-190). Get there by either Taking I-15 to I-215 east at about 60th south, or take I-80 east to Wasatch Boulevard. The parking lot fills quickly in the summer months.

Access to Deaf Smith is difficult and threatened by homeowners. The trail starts at the end of Golden Oaks Drive (just off Wasatch Boulevard) at a dirt road. Try to park in a manner that does not distrub the home owners.

Summary of Routes

Broads Fork Twin Peaks offers a variety of route options, ranging from relatively straight-forward 3rd class scrambles, to exposed 4th class ridges and steep spring snow climbs. Below is a brief summary of some of the more commonly ascended routes. Refer to the route pages for complete details on these routes.

The standard and by far the most popular route on the mountain. Even so, this is a challenging route which involves over 5,000 vertical feet of elevation gain, and an exposed 3rd class scramble.

Map Page: 134

This is the crux of the standard route.

Summit June 7, 2014

Grandeur Peak

Round Trip Mileage: 5.4
Round Trip Time: 4 Hours
Elevation Gain: 5,912 + 2,387
Book Page Reference: 89
Map Reference Number: 18
Difficulty Rating: Moderate

Page Index
Additional Information
  • Easy access and great views in all directions.
  • Only eight parking places available at the trailhead. Best to park on the shoulder of Mill Creek Canyon Road and walk through the Church Fork picnic area to the trailhead.
  • Grandeur Peak summit elevation: 8,299
  • Views: The Salt Lake Valley spreads out below to the west, and Mount Olympus lies at the front of the next ridge to the south. Behind you, to the northeast, are Mountain Dell and Little Dell reservoirs.

Map Page: 90

Doughnut Falls

Round Trip Mileage: 1.4
Round Trip Time: 2 Hours
Elevation Gain: 7,493 + 337
Book Page Reference: 125
Map Reference Number: 27
Difficulty Rating: Easy

Page Index
Additional Information
  • Doughnut Falls is unique -- a waterfall that plunges through a hole in the rock and into a grotto.
  • Although a popular family hike, climbing up to the falls may be too hazardous for children younger than age 6.
  • Animals include: moose, beaver, fox, squirrels and chipmunks.
  • Hidden Falls is on the canyon road up and only 100 yards from the road.

Map Page: 126

Lake Blanche

Round Trip Mileage: 5.8
Round Trip Time: 5 Hours
Elevation Gain: 6,240 + 2,670
Book Page Reference: 129
Map Reference Number: 28
Difficulty Rating: Moderate

Page Index
Additional Information
Lake Blanche Web Site       /       View Topographical Map       /       August 31, 2013 Hike Info
  • Quartzite formations and possible avalanches.
  • The parking area at the Mill B South Fork trailhead holds 24 cars, but you can also park along the road.
  • Swimming is not permitted in watershed lakes.
  • Two smaller lakes, Lake Florence and Lake Lillian, provide a better chance for wildlife viewing.
  • The trailhead also serves Broads Fork Twin Peaks.
    You can combine three summits on the Twin Peaks trail: Twin Peaks, Sunrise Peak and Dromedary Peak.

Map Page: 130

Personal Photos
August 31, 2013

Brighton Lakes

Round Trip Mileage: 4.5
Round Trip Time: 3.5 Hours
Elevation Gain: 8,762 + 1,200
Book Page Reference: 155
Map Reference Number: 35
Difficulty Rating: Moderate

Page Index

Lake Catherine
Additional Information
  • Author's Pick for Best Lake
  • Also on this trail: Lake Mary, Lake Martha, Lake Catherine & Dog Lake.
  • Brighton was Utah's first ski resort in 1936.
  • Trailhead sign is in front of the lift at the southeast edge of the parking lot.
  • Lake Catherine is named after William Brighton's wife.

    • Map Page: 156

      Lake Mary - October 6, 2012

      Lake Martha - October 6, 2012

      Lake Mary Panorama - October 6, 2012

Mount Olympus

Round Trip Mileage: 7
Round Trip Time: 7 Hours
Elevation Gain: 4,966 + 4,060
Book Page Reference: 109
Map Reference Number: 23
Difficulty Rating: Difficult

Page Index Official State Website

Summit Web Page for October 20, 2020

Additional Information
  • The trailhead parking area accommodates just 18 cars.
  • Purple quartzite slabs.
  • It's a steep, demanding trail capped by a Class 3 scramble to the rocky summit.
  • How you handle the trail's first 100 yards best predicts whether you'll make it to the summit.
  • Rattlesnakes appear fairly often, both on the trail and on the lower sections of the summit scramble.
  • No exceptionally difficult or technical movements are required.
  • The summit of Mt. Olympus consists of an enormous rockpile of angular quartzite boulders.
  • Do not attempt the summit if there is any chance of lightning or rain.
  • Descending from the rocky summit is generally more dangerous and more time-consuming than the climb up.

Map Page: 110


Round Trip Mileage: 10
Round Trip Time: 9 Hours
Elevation Gain: 7,698 + 3,628
Book Page Reference: 171
Map Reference Number: 39
Difficulty Rating: Difficult

Page Index
Additional Information
  • Also known as Little Matterhorn.
  • Named in honor of Chuck Pfeiffer, an early leader of the Wasatch Mountain Club.
  • An early start will give the best opportunity to spot moose and deer.
  • Trail passes Red Pine Lake.
  • Before ascending the final 500 feet to the summit, you need to traverse a 100-yard long, knife-edged, boulder-capped saddle.
  • The early Mormon pioneers quarried the brilliant quartz monzonite stone that graces the summit for the building of the Salt Lake Temple.

Map Page:

Mount Timpanogos

Round Trip Mileage: 14.8 Miles
Round Trip Time: 11 Hours
Elevation Gain: 7,360 + 4,389
Book Page Reference: 202
Map Reference Number: 46
Difficulty Rating: Difficult

Timpooneke Trail #1

Timpooneke Trail #2

Timpooneke Trail #3

Utah Hiking Guide

Hiking Menu
Additional Information
  • Author's Pick for Best Summit: Mount Timpanogos
  • Summit Elevation: 11,749 (2nd Highest in Wasatch - Mt Nebo = 11,928)
  • The most popular hiking destination in Utah.
  • Two trailheads lead to the summit.
    Timpooneke Campground in American Fork Canyon recommended.
  • 4.4 miles to Timpanogos Basin from Timpooneke Trail
  • Best to start your hike before dawn.
  • Option: Leave a car at each trailhead and hike up the Timpooneke and down the Aspen Grove.
  • The parking lot fills up by 7am during the summer. Best to hike midweek.
  • A B-25 airplane crashed near the trail in 1955.
  • The word Timpanogos comes from the Timpanogots tribe who lived in the surrounding valleys from AD 1400. The name translates as "rock" (tumpi-), and "water mouth" or "canyon" (panogos).
  • A 14-mile (23 km) round-trip hike, with almost 5,300 feet (1,600 m) of elevation gain.

Mount Timpanogos is the second highest peak in the 160 mile long Wasatch Range - a prominent, 11,752 foot summit behind only Mount Nebo, which is 176 feet higher. The mountain dominates the skyline west of the cities of Orem, Pleasant Grove and American Fork, and can be viewed from the east via the scenic Alpine Loop Road, along which are two trailheads for paths to the summit. Both routes are long, strenuous and steep, gaining over 4,000 feet, yet the summit is a very popular destination, in part due to the proximity to major cities, and is reached by dozens of people each day during busier times of the year. Melting snow usually allows ice-free access by late spring, and the slopes remain clear until November. The hike is one of the best in all Utah, owing to the grand views, the abundant wildflowers and the varied scenery, which includes woodland, riparian valleys, grassy basins, limestone ridges, tundra slopes and a glacial lake.

The most popular route to the summit is the Timpooneke Trail, starting along a short, paved side road to the Timpooneke Campground, at elevation 7,370 feet. This path climbs the Grand Staircase, a major canyon that gains height via a series of flat benches and steep slopes, ending at Timpanogos Basin, a sheltered, grassy bowl home to numerous wildflowers in summer, and a herd of mountain goats. Here (after 4.4 miles) the path splits, and one branch ascends further, up and along a ridge to the summit (6.5 miles), while the other crosses the basin to a junction with the Mount Timpanogos Trail, which to the east climbs over a low pass, descends past scenic Emerald Lake and continues down another big valley to the alternative trailhead at Aspen Grove, 6.5 miles further south along the Alpine Loop. In the other direction, this path reaches the summit in 1.5 miles, a total of 6.9 miles from Aspen Grove. The link path across the basin allows hikers on the Timpooneke Trail to visit both the summit and the lake, a 5 mile partial loop after the lower, one-way section.

Comparing the two routes to the summit, the Timpooneke Trail is busier, 0.4 miles shorter, generally less steep, and encounters better scenery, though does not visit the lake, while the Mount Timpanogos Trail is a little less popular, passes less varied scenery, and is steeper in some sections.

Timpooneke Trail
  • Tiring but spectacular trail to the top of Mount Timpanogos; one of the best hikes in all Utah. The path climbs a succession of basins and steep slopes, then follows a ridge to the summit. Another branch crosses a pass to pretty Emerald Lake, then descends to an alternative start point at Aspen Grove
  • Length: 4.4 miles to the junction in Timpanogos Basin, then Emerald Lake 5.6 miles, or the summit 6.5 miles
  • Elevation change: 2,830 feet, 3,110 feet, 4,380 feet
  • Difficulty: Strenuous; steep, and often exposed, so quite hot in summer
  • Type: One way
  • Usage: Medium to high
  • Season: Late spring, summer, fall
  • Trailhead: Timpooneke, along a short side road, or Aspen Grove, on the Alpine Loop
  • Rating (1-5): ★★★★★

Map Page: 203

Stewart Falls

Round Trip Mileage: 3.6
Round Trip Time: 2.5 Hours
Elevation Gain: 6,889 + 310
Book Page Reference: 210
Map Reference Number: 48
Difficulty Rating: Easy

Official Web Site Page Index
Additional Information
  • Author's Pick for Best Waterfall
  • Over 200 Feet Tall
  • U.S. Forest Service fee access area.
  • Recent avalanches resulted in the loss of many lives.
  • The Sundance chairlift takes hikers and mountain bikers from the base elevation of 6,100 feet to the summit at 7,150 feet in a matter of minutes. From the summit, a pleasant downhill stroll leads to Stewart Falls at 6,800 feet, then back to Sundance.
The trail is well marked and easy to follow. The descent from the ridge down to the base of the falls is quite steep (youngsters should be held in check at that point) but this is a great family hike. Summer is a good time to make the trek, and fall is even better because colored leaves are magnificent.

Optimal Season: Early Spring to Mid Fall.

Aspen Grove
The recommended trail starts at Aspen Grove, along the Alpine Loop Road. Several trails start here so pay attention to the signs. The Stewart Fall trail is easy to find. It is wide and well maintained. Parking at Aspen Grove requires an entry fee of $6 for a three-day pass, which is paid at a tollbooth on the Alpine Scenic Loop.

Base of Falls
From Aspen Grove, the trail meanders southwest to the ridge above the falls, providing fantastic viewpoints all along the way. From the ridge you can clearly see the falls. But don't stop there. Follow the steep trail down the ridge to the base of the falls. On a hot summer day it is fun to get right into the waterfall spray. It is ice cold and feels great.

Sundance Resort
Guests at Sundance Resort can hike to the waterfall via a shorter trail from the chalets. Ask directions to ascertain the route from where you will be staying. Parking is free at the Sundance Ski Area and lift tickets to Ray's Summit can be purchased at the resort. Adults are $11 and children 6-12 are $9. Children five and under ride for free.

Map Page: 211

Cecret Lake

Distance from Home: 27 Miles / 46 Minutes
Round Trip Hiking Distance: 2 Miles
Round Trip Hiking Time: ? Hours
Elevation of Taylorsville: 4,295'
Elevation of Cecret Lake: 9,875' / Hiking Gain 300'
Difficulty Rating: Easy
Official Web Site
Travel Guide Web Site
Page Index
Additional Information
  • Best Wild Flowers - Best to visit between July and mid-August.
  • The trail starts at the west side of the Albion Basin Campground, at the top of the Little Cottonwood Canyon Road. It is well-marked and easy to find.
  • The trail runs west from the campground. It climbs a gentle slope, with about 300 feet of elevation gain. Along the way, there are interpretive signs with information about the basin, its plants, animals, and geology.
  • From the lake, you can return the way you came, or explore the area. Swimming is not permitted in the lake.From Cecret Lake, it is a moderate-strenuous hike to the top of Sugarloaf Peak.
  • The mosquitoes are out in full-force around sunset.
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Manila Creek Pond

Distance from Home: 32 Miles / 35 Minutes
Official Web Site
Adventure Family Web Site
Page Index
Additional Information
  • RULE #1: No boats, tubes, floatation devices in pond.
  • RULE #2: No swimming outside beach area.
  • RULE #3: No fishing from beach area. All animals prohibited.
  • A City Park in Pleasant Grove
  • No natural shade as the park.
  • The sign for park rules says that no flotation devices or boats are allowed on the pond, but we saw both.
  • There is no lifeguard on duty.
  • There are restrooms, but no showers.

Take State Street into American Fork and head north on 1100 East (the road that passes American Fork Hospital). This road turns into 900 E after you pass the LDS Mt. Timpanogos Temple. Take your 1st right after the temple (1100 N). This changes to 3300 N. Follow past two blue silos and turn turn right onto 900 W. The parking lot is on your left. The official address is 900 W 3300 N Pleasant Grove.

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Deer Creek Reservoir

Distance from Home: 52 Miles / 52 Minutes

Official Web Site
Page Index
Additional Information
  • Windsurf, boat, zip line, swim and fish on the cool waters of Deer Creek Reservoir.
  • Life jackets are required for each person on a vessel – including kayaks and stand up paddle boards.
  • Deer Creek State Park is a watershed, thus DOGS ARE ONLY ALLOWED IN THE CAMPGROUND WITH REGISTERED CAMPERS. Dogs are not allowed in the Day Use areas nor are they allowed on boats.
  • Summer rates are $15 per vehicle Monday-Friday up to 8 people-$20 dollars on weekends and holidays; $10 Utah seniors over 62.
  • Camping fees ($15) include one vehicle and one camping unit. Extra vehicle fees apply.

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Tibble Fork Reservoir

Distance from Home: 34 Miles / 48 Minutes

Official Web Site
Trip Advisor Web Site
7 Places To SUP
Page Index
Additional Information
  • Entry Fee: $6/weekend
  • In 2016 it was doubled in size, a sandy beach area was added, and a dock was placed in the middle of the reservoir making it easier to get paddleboards and kayaks out into the water. Get up the canyon early, or make it an evening trip to avoid the crowds.
  • No motor boats are allowed, but you can bring the pups!
  • Temperatures are 30 degrees cooler than Salt Lake City.
  • Flushing Toilets Available.

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Highland Glen Park

Distance from Home: 28 Miles / 52 Minutes

Official Web Site

  • Address: 4800 Knight Ave, Highland, UT 84003
  • Mon - Fri 7:00 AM - 10:00 PM
    Saturday 7:00 AM - 10:00 PM
    Sunday 7:00 AM - 10:00 PM
  • Un-lifeguarded pond-swimming & picnic facilities are available at this family-friendly public park.
  • Water fountains are around but they don't work, bring your own water.
Stream Turbidity Utah Water Watch
Turbidity is the measure of how clear the water is. When measurement levels are high, that means the body of water has extremely clear water. When the measurement levels are low, that means the water is very cloudy.
The highest stream turbidity during water week was in Sevier River, Jordan River, and Bingham Creek, which had a measurement of 15 cm. Water week is held in the spring, typically during spring runoff which tends to make waters murky with mud. The average turbidity level was 43.2 cm, with eight sites having readings of 60 cm. There were seven sites measured this year using a secchi disk instead of a turbidity tube, which is the protocol for measuring lakes, reservoirs, or ponds. The highest measurement being 5.25 meters at Bear Lake, and the lowest being 0.14 meters at Highland Glen Park.

Herald News - March 2011
Maps & Photos
4 Maps / 5 Photos / Popular Times Chart

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East Canyon Reservoir

Distance from Home: 35 Miles / 47 Minutes

Official Web Site

  • Hours: 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Day-use fee: $20.00
Maps & Photos
Maps / Photos / Popular Times Chart

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Jordanelle State Park

From Home: 39 Miles / 37 Mins

Official Web Site
Camping Reservations: 800-322-3770
Email: jordanelle@utah.gov

Camping Available - Closes at 10pm
Dogs Allowed On Leash

Additional Information
  • 2020 Jordanelle Fee Schedule
    Camping Tents, no hookups (McHenry) $35
    Camping Extra Vehicle (all) $20

  • DAY USE-Peak Season (May-October) Per/Day
    Hailstone Day Use $20
    Hailstone Senior Day Use (62+) $10
    Rock Cliff Senior Day Use (62+) $5
    Ross Creek Senior Day Use (62+) $5

  • Trip Advisor This is a really nice lake with gorgeous views and was fairly empty the day we were there. the only thing I'd mention is that if you are planning to paddleboard or boat on this lake, make sure you check the wind!! We tried to paddleboard on a very nice, not windy day and the waves on the lake were crazy and it was really difficult to dig into the water and actually go anywhere.

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Black Ridge Reservoir

From Home: 16.9 Miles / 26 Mins

15000 S Ashland Ridge Drive
Herriman, UT 84096
Phone: (801) 446-5323
Open: 7:30 am to 9:00 pm

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Stand-Up Paddle
In Utah

Web Site
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