Soar above the din of traffic on I-80 and I-215 for one of the most expansive views in the valley
The din of cars and large trucks hurtling down Interstate 80 or curving along I-215 stands in stark contrast to last year’s relatively calm appearance of the trail winding through the hills above them .
The Parleys Pointe Trail serves as a key link in the Bonneville Shoreline Trail chain which, when the new Grandeur Peak Connector is completed in November, will stretch from H Rock deep into Mill Creek Canyon. Yet he appeared in the foothills last September without much fanfare. Perhaps that’s why the 4.8 mile path is still largely unknown. It doesn’t even have an AllTrails listing yet (although it is on forks).
But that doesn’t mean the trail should be overlooked.
It takes perseverance to get through the opening segments, which include walking along the busy Parleys Trail bike path and a noisy, exposed, and roughly paved road. In fact, for almost the first two miles, it’s hard to enjoy nature with the roar of traffic filling your ears.
However, once you hit the 1.8 mile mark, the hubbub below fades and the beauty of the trail and the sweeping views of the Salt Lake Valley fill the void. The reward at the highest point of the hike, about 3.5 miles away, is a panorama that includes downtown, the Great Salt Lake, the Oquirrh Mountains, Draper, Mount Olympus and, of course, the now-silent highway. that winds through it all. And if this sight becomes rote, bursts of sunflowers appear all along the wide but almost shadowless path.
Utah Trails did much of the heavy lifting to get the Parleys Pointe Trail built after a private developer donated 290 acres to Salt Lake City in 2019 to clear its path. The nonprofit is soliciting donations to pay for planning and environmental reviews that were not covered by grants.
Do you remember that passage about perseverance? This also includes trail access.
The best option would probably be to drop a car off at the end of the trail, which is the Arcadia trailhead on Lakeline Drive, then take another car to the Foothill Drive driveway that leads to Yesco and Tolero Pharmaceuticals. Parking there also works if you only have one vehicle, but it will add another downhill mile to the hike.
From the Yesco driveway, head south on the Parleys Trail cycle path. About 0.7 mile down, just before the pedestrian overpass, the trail signed Parleys Pointe veers left. Travel about another 0.2 mile on an old paved road until the trail turns left again at another trail marker and before long begins a gradual climb.
The trail comes to a fork at 1.5 miles. Take the right branch. Soon the hustle and bustle of highway traffic will subside. After another 2 miles of gentle climbing you will reach the highest point of the hike and a rocky outcrop from which to take in the views. The remaining mile of the hike is entirely downhill. The trail ends at Lakeline Drive, just south of Carrigan Canyon Drive. Anyone wanting extra mileage can follow Lakeline to their north terminus and take the half mile H Rock connector trail to Carrigan Canyon or just return the way they came.
Parleys Pointe Trail
Region: In front of Wasatch
Destination: Views of the Salt Lake Valley
Time: 2 hours, 10 minutes
Elevation Gain: 1,132 feet
Dog allowed: Yes
Wheelchair/e-bike accessible: Nope
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