Horsetail Falls |

Utah County

Hiking Horsetail Falls - Utah County Hiking Horsetail Falls
Utah County

Overview | Getting There | Route | Photos | Maps | Comments

Overview

RATING: Easy/Moderate Hike
MAPS: LEHI, UT; TIMPANOGOS CAVE, UT

Thu

84 | 65

Fri

83 | 65

Sat

80 | 64

Sun

77 | 62

Mon

75 | 61

View Full Weather Details
SEASON: Late Spring, Summer, Fall
GEAR: Standard Hiking Gear
WATER: Bring All You Need

Thu

84 | 65

Fri

83 | 65

Sat

80 | 64

Sun

77 | 62

Mon

75 | 61

View Full Weather Details
Horsetail Falls - Utah County

Horsetail Falls - Utah County

One of the more popular hikes in Utah county. Horsetail Falls is a lovely oasis on a hot day. It is easy to see why this hike is popular! The hike, ambling up an old road, is mostly shaded on a well travelled and easy to follow trail. The falls themselves are idyllic and make a magnificent spot for a lunch or snack break. Though many recommend this as a family friendly hike, I would point out it has about 1500 feet of elevation gain in the 2.25 miles to the falls. That is pretty steep! My 5-year-old would not enjoy it, but may in a couple of years.

Finally, the falls can be a crowded place on weekend afternoons. If looking for solitude, I’d recommend an early start. One weekend morning, it surprised me to see only one other person at the falls that left soon after I arrived. By the return hike, however, dozens more were heading up!

Note: Dogs are allowed on the hike, and you are likely to see quite a few.
Lone Peak from near the trailhead.

Lone Peak from near the trailhead.

Getting There

The trailhead is the Deer Creek/Dry Creek/North Mountain Trailhead that is located northeast of Alpine. To get there, take exit 283 from I-15 and head east on Triumph Blvd. Follow Triumph Blvd for 0.6 miles and turn right on UT-92. Continue on UT-92 for 5.1 miles to 5300 West. Turn left (north) onto 5300 West and follow it 1.8 miles, staying straight at the traffic circle, to 200 North.

Turn right on 200 North, then left in a couple of blocks at 200 E St/Grove Dr. Follow Grove Drive for 1.8 miles. It takes a sinuous path, so pay attention at junctions. At 1.8 miles, Grove Drive reaches a T. Go right, following Grove Drive an additional 0.7 miles to its end at the trailhead just inside National Forest Service Land. There is a parking area at the trailhead, but not restroom.

Dramatic cliff near the falls.

Dramatic cliff near the falls.

Route

From the trailhead, follow the wide trail as it heads up Dry Creek Canyon. The wide, rocky trail has occasional braiding and side trails. Stay on the widest, most used path heading uphill, and you will head in the right direction.

About 0.45 miles from the trailhead, the Phelps Canyon trail leaves on the right. You may not even notice it. The narrow trail is inconspicuous, but had a wooden post denoting it in the summer of 2022. If you notice it, simply stay left on the main Dry Creek trail.

About 1.8 miles of steep hiking from the trailhead is a small side trail to a large rock about 50 feet off the main trail. In 2022, there was a small Observation Rock sign at this junction. The rock gives a view up to Horsetail Falls and is worth the very short detour to see.

From Observation Rock, continue up on the main trail. About 2.1 miles from the trailhead is a major junction. This is an important landmark. Stay left at this junction, but then immediately look for a social trail leaving on the left down a steep section. It is a well used social trail and very obvious. There is often a rope here to help people up and down, though should not be needed by most. Follow the social trail as it weaves through trees, then over to the base of Horsetail Falls.


Maps

Route / 4.37 miles / Elevation Range 5,656 - 7,255 ft.
Printable Maps:
Trailhead

12T 436414mE 4481600mN

N40° 28' 58" W111° 45' 01"

Phelps Canyon Jct

12T 436857mE 4482043mN

N40° 29' 12" W111° 44' 42"

Observation Rock Jct

12T 438331mE 4483036mN

N40° 29' 45" W111° 43' 40"

Major Jct - Left

12T 438494mE 4483303mN

N40° 29' 53" W111° 43' 33"

Social Trail To Falls

12T 438491mE 4483321mN

N40° 29' 54" W111° 43' 33"

Horsetail Falls

12T 438358mE 4483366mN

N40° 29' 55" W111° 43' 39"

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