21: Centerville

29 October 2022: 6 miles official BST. Trailforks hike log

We were supposed to finish the new “Bountiful Bypass” section today into Mueller Park, but it had snowed earlier this week, and when we got to the trailhead, it was obvious that the trail would be very muddy (especially since much of it is not beaten in much yet). Hiking muddy trails is always a bad idea, but we didn’t want to waste the day (and the hour drive each way).

So we skipped ahead to the next episode, which follows a south facing (i.e., much sunnier) route that is lower and more beaten, and thus much less likely to be muddy. Which turned out to be true. We started near the Bountiful B, passed the Viewmont V and Centerville, ending at the Little Valley trailhead in southern Farmington.

The southern end was a little tricky. The official BST shown on all of our sources, including the Forest Service and Davis County (the trail stewards), was very steep, heavily eroded, and appeared to be abandoned (covered in weeds). Perhaps we were on the wrong route, but we couldn’t find anything nearby. There is an upper alternative route, which is not official, but it is more level, in much better shape, and is clearly more commonly used. I liked it quite a bit, as it wended its way through a meadow where the scrub oak had been burned a few years ago.

When we rejoined the official BST, it was in significantly better shape, a nice level trail. Because Centerville is the lowest elevation city on the Wasatch Front, the Bonneville Bench is far above the city, and even though this trail was a few hundred feet below the upper bench, it is a very natural landscape. As in other parts of the BST, this trail crossed several pretty creeks above where they are diverted into the city’s culinary water supply, including some well-built bridges.

North of Parish Lane in the middle of Centerville, the trail changes from a singletrack trail to following the old utility/fire break road, a typical “version 1” BST like we have seen elsewhere, especially in Utah County. It makes for a somewhat dull hike, although the views are great of Centerville, Farmington Bay, and Antelope Island in the distance.

Fall has been a great time to hike these last couple stretches, and we hope to continue in November, with just a few more outings to finish this season in Davis County.

20a: North Salt Lake

8 October 2022: 5.7 miles, 4.37 miles official BST. Trailforks hikelog

Welcome to Davis County! Today we continued north around North Salt Lake along a brand new section of trail high on the ridge between Davis County and City Creek Canyon.

In the first big push to expand the BST in the late 90s, the Lake Bonneville Bench above Bountiful had already been developed with homes and a couple golf courses. So Davis County just designated Bountiful Boulevard (well, its sidewalk) as the route for the BST. In recent years, the County and its cities worked with the US Forest Service to develop a countywide plan for a “Version 2” trail. We’ll probably be revisiting that plan several times over the next few hikes. Here we got to hike the first part of that new trail to be built, completed in 2021.

The trail is very high here to avoid some large blocks of private property and stay in the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest, which means that while the BST itself is relatively level with very reasonable grades on the hills, every access route from a trailhead has to climb at least 200ft to get to the trail. But there were amazing views of the valley and the Great Salt Lake (or at least where the GSL would be if it weren’t so low). It was also a beautiful walk through the fall colors, as these hills were covered with a lot more bright red bigtooth maple than most of foothills.

We’re excited to see what’s ahead!