Take a Walk

A few weeks ago I had to be at the Recreation Center for the City Wellness Screening. Rather than jumping in my car and driving the 5 blocks I headed out on foot. Within seconds I found myself lost in the magic of spring air, green lawns, historic homes and the solitude of no interruptions. Only 5 short blocks later I felt like I had just returned from a vacation. If I had law making abilities I’d mandate that we all had to take a walk everyday. I may not be able to make it a requirement but I’d like to encourage everyone to take a walk in an area of our city that is new to them.

Hopefully to inspire you, here are my favorite walks in the City:

Rock Canyon – Rock Canyon Trailhead is located at the end of North Temple Drive in Provo. The trail is 6.2 miles from the trailhead to Rock Canyon Campground on Squaw Peak Road. Provo City maintains the trailhead and the United States Forest Services (USFS) maintains the trail. Along Rock Canyon Trail there are numerous rock climbing areas. For more information about rock climbing the the Rock Canyon area, please visit Mountain Project. For information on the Rock Canyon Trail please visit Forest Services.

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Provo River Parkway –  This trail spans a total of 30 miles starting at Utah Lake up into Provo Canyon. The trail within Provo City limits is approximately 7.5 miles and the time to travel the trail within Provo is about 4 hrs. The trail is accessible at various point within Provo. Two main access points are the Geneva Road Trailhead at Geneva RD and 350 N, and the Lakeshore Trailhead located near the intersection of Lakeshore DR and 470 N.

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Lovers Lane – The trail begins behind The Courtyard at Jamestown at 3352 N 100 E. It follows below the old canal and meets up again behind the Jamestown Retirement Center. The trail continues behind residential areas crossing the road at 3700 N and picks up again on the other side at a white picket fence. The trail continues behind more residential areas ending at the Walden School for Liberal Arts.

This one is a well kept secret but perfect for a hot afternoon because of the shade. A full map is available.

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Center Street – I love to wander up and down Center Street. I’m always inspired by the temple, Nu Skin’s gardens and our many shops and restaurants.

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Photo by: Daniel C. Rivera

 

Utah Lake Shoreline Trail – This trail takes you through Despain Ranch, an open pasture land on the eastern shore of Utah Lake and provides open natural vista for visitors. As part of the eastern shore of Utah Lake, the pasture land and wetlands near the trail attracts a variety of shorebirds and other wildlife species. The preservation of this critical open space will ensure that current and future generations will be able to enjoy an important part of the eastern shore of Utah Lake in an open and natural setting. The property provides a buffer for the tail and other recreational uses. To learn more about about the preserved open space and Despain Ranch, click here.

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Airport Frontage Road – This is a really fun and unique trail that offers an interesting view of the Provo Airport with a great view of the mountains to the East and also a beautiful close up view of Utah Lake. View map of trail here.

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Bonneville Shoreline Trail – This trail follows the shoreline of the prehistoric Lake Bonneville and spans a total distance of about 100 Miles from Cache County to Santaquin, UT. The proposed plan is to increase the trail length to 280 miles from the Idaho Border to Nephi. The trail length through Provo is 6.8 miles and follows along the base of the Wasatch Mountain Range, in the foothills bench formed by the ancient lake, and through some local neighborhoods. Access to the trail can be found at several trailheads. For a description of the sections of the Bonneville Shoreline Trail in Provo, please visit the BST Website.

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Big Springs Trailhead – is accessed at the parking lot at Big Springs Park. The trail is one of Provo’s longest and most beautiful trails extending through Big Springs Canyon and meets up with Rock Canyon Trail. It is accessible to hikers, bicycles, and horses. The trail is named after the natural springs found about 1.8 miles into the trail. It is a beautiful place to stop and rest. At this point there is also an access point at which you can make a loop back to the trailhead. After heading up the trail about 1.5 miles, you will find the Big Springs Campground which is available by reservation only, from July through September. The trail from Big Springs Park to the Rock Canyon/Dry Fork trail is 5.8 miles and will take between 2-4 hours.

The Carterville Road Trail – can be accessed at 4800 N behind the Ancestry and Vivint buildings. The trail follows along the border of Provo City and Orem City passing under 4480 N connecting residential and business areas. It continues on through residential areas where the last leg of the trail runs through private property. The gates to this part of the trail are closed at 10:00PM. It ends at the joining of Carterville Road. Trail Map

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Bicentennial Park Boardwalk – Bicentennial Park is a beautiful outdoors recreation area in southern Provo, but what most people don’t know is that it houses a wetland area and natural springs complete with an incredible boardwalk. Specifically designed to help you get closer to nature, this is one local treasure you won’t want to miss! Bicentennial Park is located at 1440 S. 1600 East in Provo. You can find the boardwalk at the southeastern end of it.

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Indian Road Equestrian Trailhead – The name “Indian Road” was chosen to designate a pre-settlement route that Native Americans took while traveling to and from Provo Canyon. The trail meets up with the Bonneville Shoreline Trail and the Length from the trailhead to that point is 2.15 miles. The duration is approx. 1-2 hrs and is classified as moderate to difficult. The trailhead is located just southeast of the Gillsepie electrical substation near 5500 N Canyon Road. The site now includes restrooms, picnic areas, horse trailer parking, and equestrian features including water trough and hitching rails.

The Slate Canyon Trail – crosses paths with the Bonneville Shoreline Trail and can is located off of Slate Canyon DR.  At the summit of Slate Canyon Dr there is a sign for the Bonneville Shoreline Trail. Enter and stay right on the gravel road until you reach the parking lots and the sign for the Bonneville Shoreline trail. The Slate Canyon Trail heads east and the Bonneville shoreline trail heads north. The trail is approximately 3.7 miles where it connects into the Slide Canyon Trail. Provo City maintains the trailhead and the National Forest Service maintains the trail.

*No doubt I’ve offended someone by leaving their beautiful part of the city off my list. Let me know what I’ve missed and I promise to try it out!

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  1. Cool Chris

    I agree, leaving from the City Center on foot for a meeting at the County Health Dept allows me to walk along 100 south past the Provo City Center Temple Fountain where families are gathered and celebrating a wedding. The downtown environment is a great place to take a stroll to a meeting or lunch. Its not the length of the walk that is beneficial, it is the ability to enjoy outside air during the work day.

  2. Great list. I love these trails. Thanks for sharing Mayor Curtis. I’ll need to try the Indian Road Equestrian Trailhead.

    Another trail that is really short but very pleasant is the boardwalk at Bicentennial Park.

    1. John

      Seth, thanks for the suggestion! I agree, the boardwalk at Bicentennial Park is a beautiful walk and I think a lot of people don’t realize it exists. I’ve added it to my list.

  3. Aaron Skabelund

    Thanks for encouraging another form of active transportation! Here is another place to walk, though it is short and may be short-lived. North Independence Avenue deadends at a dirt road that runs below the west side of the Grandview Hill between the hill and 1-15. This is a great path to walk and jog on. (Not so good for bicycling, at least in the fall because of goat heads.) At one time, Councilman Van Buren proposed that the path be made a permanent multi-use path. I think that would great, in part because it would give the school kids in that new townhouse neighborhood off the hill just north of 820, a safe way to walk to Westridge. Apparently the dirt road is on the city’s master plan for an extension of Independence, but if that happens, I hope we will make it a complete street that accommodates and is safe for pedestrians and bicyclists.

  4. Brenda Svendsen

    Great list and thanks for the details & links!
    Appreciate all you do!

  5. Ginger

    Yes, yes, yes! What a great compilation of local trails. Truthfully, there are two I haven’t done and I will be doing them now that you’ve created this list.

  6. Steve

    Thank you for identifying these great trails. As a non-Provo resident, but one who lives in south Utah County, I often visit Provo for shopping, dining, and entertainment. I’ll certainly keep these in mind as I look for activities in the area.
    That said, I do have to plug the Spanish Fork River Trail as a lovely venue well. Something to remember if you happen to come south.

  7. Aaron Skabelund

    One more I cannot resist mentioning: the path around one of Provo’s best public spaces, Lions Park, that is exactly 2/3 of a mile long. A great loop for doing one or more laps while walking, jogging, for little kids on bikes.

  8. Katie Olson

    Any advice on finding the Lover’s Lane entrance? I could only find a few signs for a private lane.

    1. John

      Hi Katie,

      You can access the path on the south end from 175 E (there is a small parking lot) or from the north end on 3700 N. You can also google “Lover’s Lane, Provo” and you can see a few other access points where the path meets up with a neighborhood or parking lot.

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