Red Butte Canyon Trails

HARD 138 reviews

Red Butte Canyon Trails is a 4.3 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Salt Lake City, Utah that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 4.3 miles Elevation Gain: 1,666 feet Route Type: Loop

dog friendly


mountain biking

nature trips

trail running



partially paved


wild flowers



over grown


no shade

15 days ago

Great trail for being right in the city. Went off this trail and went straight up the ridge... tough climb for the first bit. Nice views of the city at the top

1 month ago

Nice Loop good climb

1 month ago

very straigt to the top but if like to be exhausted after 3 hours it s done for you good trail closed to the natural science museum

2 months ago

Gorgeous with the green mountains! I'm glad I did this before the mountains turn brown for the summer. There is limited shade so bring sunscreen!

5 months ago

So great for views on a snowy/foggy day! Bring spikes if you’re going to hike it in the winter because the trail is super icy. It’s great for dogs to run around too. My tip is to treat the trail as an out and back instead of a loop because the second half is basically just a road. When you get to the stream, turn back. Way prettier.

7 months ago

I don't know if I completed this hike because it seemed to end before 4.1 miles. I found a great lookout at the top and it wasn't too busy when I went.

Nice short trek. Not much shade though.

9 months ago

Good if you like walking straight up and down a mountain and rocky trails. It’s pretty in the fall and crosses a cool stream.

11 months ago

Great hike, close to the city and perfect length!

11 months ago

This hike broke my kids. They hike pretty frequently and are 7 and 10. This hike has no shade, except for tiny little smatterings of trees during the first 2 miles, The first 2 miles were not bad at all. you reach a little creek but there were a TON of wasps everywhere. Then the mountain unleashed. All 1,666 feet gain is in a very short length and is very steep. It's pretty rocky and the trail is very thin in some areas, about 12-18 inches wide. It just keeps going up and up almost to the very top of the mountain your hiking. It evens out for a very short period of time and then you head straight down the front of the mountain on extremely rocky, dusty ground. There are also a lot of forks were we could have easily taken the wrong path if it weren't for my having downloaded the trail. I would not suggest this hike unless you download the trail beforehand. The only thing that somewhat made up for all the hardness, was the views of the whole valley. It was beautiful, but knowing what I was in for, I don't think I would have done it. Definitely should be rated as Difficult, not Moderate at all.

11 months ago

Some good views, pretty steep in one section with lots of Sandy dirt and rocks. Little shade.

Sunday, June 03, 2018

This was one amazing hike! You are very exposed during the majority of the hike so be sure to wear a cap. You’re going to have to work during the hike up to the peak of Mt Van Cott but it will be well worth it once you reach the top! There were a lot of wildflowers growing near the top which is great for pictures. The descent is slightly challenging with a lot of loose rocks so take it slow. Be sure to follow the trail according to the map since it’s very easy to get turned around and accidentally follow other hiker’s “desire paths.” There is another climb behind the red butte gardens so be prepared once you hit the stream. It was a relatively isolated trail for a Saturday afternoon since we didn’t see any hikers until we reached the stream around mile 4. I’m very surprised this trail isn’t as popular and that it received some poor reviews. I would definitely recommend!

Wednesday, October 25, 2017


Saturday, July 22, 2017

The first 1.5 mikes are moderate. The rest is too difficult to be called moderate. The climb is quite steep at 15% and the descent is straight down the face at 20% on loose rock. The trail is very exposed after 9:00 am.

Monday, July 17, 2017

fun but not much shade.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

To be clear- Red Butte Garden is a fenced-in 100 acre botanical garden located in the area of the Red Butte Canyon Trails. There is an entrance fee and only service animals are allowed inside the Garden. Some of the walking paths are paved and are wheelchair accessible. No bikes. The trails depicted as "Red Butte Garden Trails" on this website are located all around Red Butte Garden, but not inside.

Monday, June 05, 2017

Great! Got confused because of all the animal trails, got lost , but it was great!

mountain biking
Friday, June 02, 2017

cool place to ride. just make sure you don't accidently follow an animal trail and end up on the wrong side of the fence by the reservoir lol.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Fun little hike with plentiful birds, butterflies, and wild flowers this springtime. Came across mostly folks with dogs and lotsa peace and solitude on a weekday.

Saturday, April 01, 2017

Love this hike. It feels like you're hiking through beautiful rolling mountains. Gorgeous!

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Nice hike. The garden is awesome.

Wednesday, September 07, 2016

This is not a review but more of a question. Why isn't there access past the reservoir further into the canyon. I noticed when you get up by the reservoir there is large fences that run up both sides of the canyon and they have no trespassing signs.

Monday, September 05, 2016

I hesitate the give "Red Butte Garden Trails" a poor rating because there are a lot of beautiful trails in and around Red Butte Gardens. But the one shown on the map is probably the worst way to climb Mt. Van Cott. I wouldn't use the trail past the 0.6 mile mark on this map, it's too steep and loose, hiking this route will only contribute to erosion. Stick to the lower trails around the garden, and if you want to hike Van Cott I highly recommend the route up from Dry Creek (although parking is a problem there.

trail running
Tuesday, August 30, 2016

perfect place to take my dog for a quick run early morning or evening as it is not shaded.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Loved this trail, not too steep and beautiful views of Salt Lake City! Free for u of u students with a student ID too!!

Sunday, June 05, 2016

I love hiking in red butte! Pretty views and the oak tunnel is the coolest!

Friday, May 27, 2016

A great trail for dogs. Moderate elevation gain towards the end but overall the steepness wasn't bad. Short hike but great views of the city and surrounding mountains.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Nice trail with good views and its dog friendly so that's a plus

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Simple hike, decent views.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

I think there is some confusion about the trail description. There are trails within Red Butte Garden and multiple (spiderweb) of trails outside Red Butte Garden. The differences are in order the use the Red Butte Garden Trails you must pay admission to the garden (excluding ZAP free days) and their are no dogs allowed within the garden boundary. There is a trail running outside the fence of Red Butte Garden property for public use with their dogs, camels, platypus, or other pets. All trails have great views of Salt Lake City and access to Red Butte Creek. Shade is available in Red Butte Canyon with the permanent water source of Red Butte Creek. Shade is limited when exposed out of the creek drainage as vegetation is not as tall. Diversity of plant and wildlife species and habitat depends on disturbance but there are great groups working to improve the habitat along the foothills.

Load More

Featured Trails