Recommended hikes around Utah County

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The outdoors are easily accessible in Utah County for those who desire to explore. Popular hikes and trailheads include Silver Lake, near Tibble Fork Canyon; Kings Peak; Mount Timpanogos; and Mount Nebo.

Silver Lake is a common favorite among many Utah citizens. The four-and-a-half-mile trail is located near Alpine and is accessible from March to November.

“Silver Lake is one of our family favorites,” said former BYU student Kimberly Pearson. “It’s so beautiful, and it’s not too difficult, since it’s only about five miles.”

Silver Lake is also one of the few lakes near Utah County where swimming is allowed. This seems to be the main attraction because hikers are allowed to cool off in the water after treading a few miles.

“My favorite hike is probably Silver Lake up American Fork Canyon,” said Utah local Brighton Thorn. “You go past Tibble Fork to the left, and you take a dirt road up to the reservoir. The trail can get a little steep and rough at times, especially in hotter weather. It’s such a pretty hike crossing rivers and lots of aspens, and the higher you get, the view of the lake just gets prettier. The lake is absolutely gorgeous, and the best part is that you can jump in after a sweaty hike.”

Not only are hikers allowed to jump in the lake for a swim, but the trail is also dog- and camp-friendly. The last three miles of the trail are unpaved and can be a bit more difficult.

“Silver Lake is absolutely beautiful, and I would definitely recommend it,” said former BYU student Zoe Johnson. “When we did it, people took their dogs. It’s definitely a hike, so pack a lunch and carry plenty of water. It was about two and a half hours round-trip.”

Utah County’s proximity to the Wasatch Front makes it an ideal location for those wishing to take on a more difficult trail.

Kings Peak is a common choice for a more advanced hike. The peak is 13,528 feet and includes open valleys, lakes and meadows. There are no required fees or permits to camp or park.

“For some more difficult hikes and for those who like to conquer peaks, Kings Peak is a multiple-day hike where you will need to backpack in your equipment,” said former BYU student Michael Goodman.

The most popular peak that does not require camping is Mount Timpanogos. At 7,000 feet, it is the second highest mountain in the Wasatch Range. The 12.7-mile Aspen Trail leads up the mountain.

“Mount Timpanogos is an eight-hour hike for average hikers and does have a good elevation gain of several thousand, which gets some elevation sick for just a day hike,” Goodman said.

Mount Nebo is the highest peak along the Wasatch Front. It surpasses Mount Timpanogos by about 179 feet, reaching 11,900 feet. Hikers complete the 8.4-mile trail in six to eight hours on average.

“Mount Nebo is near Payson and is actually higher up than Timp, but the hike is easier,” Goodman said. “It’s very beautiful and a lot less popular than Timpanogos.”

Since these peak trails are longer and fairly more difficult, hikers are recommended to take more supplies.

“On each hike you will need a small backpack with a few liters of water and snacks like bananas,” Goodman said. “Definitely bring sunscreen. Also, pants or tall socks are needed to avoid scratches on your ankles.”

Former BYU student Maren Madsen had a recommendation for footwear on the peak hikes. “If you have good hiking sandals, like chacos, wear them, because then you can get your feet wet at the falls without struggling with your socks.”

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