Explore the most popular hiking trails near Santaquin with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

1 day ago

Don't be scared away by some of the other reviews! This is a great hike. Yes, it does have some steeper, more technical sections. Parts of it are more difficult than anything you would see on Timp, but overall I would say it's less difficult than Timp and much shorter. On the other hand, it's significantly easier than Provo Peak hiked from the valley. The steep section is maybe half of Provo Peak's ascent. The view from the top is amazing and hiking along the ridge can be pretty fun!

As many people have said, stay on the ridge. There are two false peaks. The first one is after Wolf Pass (just after hiking around the side of North Peak). The ascent here is the most strenuous. The second false peak is right before Nebo. Near the top of each of these, there are many paths leading off to the left. These are especially deceiving because the actual trail can be difficult to see when looking up from below. These other paths are not the trail and are much more difficult and even dangerous. For both false peaks, you want to go straight over the top of the peak. You can see in my recording that on the ascent we went off to the left for both peaks, which didn't turn out well. Try to follow the path we took on the descent, just straight over the peaks.

We summited in just under 2.5 hours, with maybe 10 minutes of breaks included in that. After about 20 minutes on the summit, we made it down in about 1.5 hours with a bit of trail running.

It's very easy hike. My two year old loved every minute of it. It's pretty and we loved the water fall.

6 days ago

July 24, 2018. This hike deserves the 'hard' rating. It's long and steep, but does have unique and beautiful views down onto the Payson Lakes area, Mt Nebo, and towards Mt. Pleasant/Moroni valley. It's well marked and clearly used by others. Some moderate overgrowth of trees/shrubs onto the trail through some of the lower areas. Moderate inclines for first couple miles with decent shade cover. Then you hit a grueling incline over dusty and gravely/shale trail while fully exposed to the west (afternoon sun) for about 1 to 1.5 miles. I started this hike at 11am and regretted not getting an earlier/cooler hike. Both up and down were very exposed to sun for most of the hike beyond the first couple miles. You'll reach the first ridge in a saddle atop the mountain and have partial views down into Utah Valley. From this point there's still a few miles to reach Loafer Mtn or Santaquin Peak. That really steep portion to this saddle is followed by long moderate inclines across scenic grass covered alpine meadows/slopes, then further up into a very pretty alpine forest just below Loafer Mtn's peak where you can see views down towards Spanish Fork canyon. Then there's about one more mile across open rocky trail to the top of Santaquin Peak. Hard to keep good footing on the way back down the really steep west-facing slope. I was just over 11 miles out & back - and was completely spent. I consider myself in average shape and was exhausted by the time I got back, but do attribute some of that to the late start and hiking throughout the afternoon heat. Except right near the trail head there's no streams or springs so come prepared with lots of water. I had used all of my 64oz hydration pack by the time I got back to the trail head. Although it has beautiful views I think it will be a 'been there, done that' trail. I don't know that I'll plan to hike it again soon.

Short and sweet! There are a lot of bridges to help you along the way and make it easier for your kids.

Amazing Views! Strenous, but well worth it! The tallest mountain in the Wasatch Range! Amazing flowers in August! :-)

13 days ago

Awesome hike but very strenuous. Bring lots of snacks and protein bars. And at least a 3 or 4 liters of water. Very beautiful but has steep climbs and two false summits. It's dog friendly but don't bring older/senior dogs.

I cannot add anything new than what has already been said in these reviews. I will reiterate and stress these points though.

1- It is very steep when ascending the false peaks. As someone who’s hiked Timp many times I can say that this was much more difficult. Be self aware of your conditioning and be prepared for some thigh busting, lung burning action here!

2- Take LOTS of water! You will need it no joke.

3- Bring a wind jacket. The top is super windy and chills you pretty good after you’re all sweaty.

I probably won’t be doing this bad boy again anytime soon. But I don’t regret doing it either. Great views and feels awesome after your done!

Took us 4 hours to go up, 2.5 going back down. We were a young group in our mid 20s and went a steady pace with only a handful of short breaks. Try some yells at the first summit, it will echo like crazy!!!! This was a tough hike that kicked our butts by the time we got back to the car but it was challenging and fun on the way up!

23 days ago

This is one of my favorite hikes, if you live in the area it’s especially fun to be able to see all the way into Nephi, Utah county Payson Lakes and even into Birdseye and Fairview. The hike is beautiful the whole way and you’re almost always in shade unless you get to an area that opens into a beautiful view. I’d highly recommend this, even to people who aren’t experienced hikers, it would be challenging but do-able.

Great in the fall during the Nebo loop.

Always a beautiful, short hike along water. The grotto is easy to access too. Good for young children

24 days ago

This was a perfect little hike for my 2 and 4 year olds. I thought it was a little too short for me but was fun to do. Beautiful along the trail. We had the waterfall to ourselves at around 9:30 am but close to 10 it started getting pretty crowded (for a week day too).

26 days ago

Nebo North is a great hike. You get fantastic views almost the entire trail. The first 1.5-2 miles is fairly easy. After that there are a couple really steep sections. The first climbs up to the first false summit. From there you traverse over to the bottom of the second false summit. The climb to the top of that is steep and loose. Make sure you stay on the trail. It's much easier. The trail on the way up the second false summit tends to run straight up the middle of the mountain or maybe a bit to the right. Don't veer left. Once on top of that summit, the trail typically is on the north side of the saddle. Stay on that and you'll have the easiest final climb to the top.

26 days ago

Hiked with my 5 year old granddaughter and her mother....we all had a great time .... I received much instruction from my granddaughter. Only two people met on trail. Hiked at 8:00 in morning back home by ten

She’s a steep one. There’s a few cute chipmunks at the top, get ready for a climb tho.

The steep is real, be ready for your legs to melt underneath you en route to the final “scramble” - at which point you’ll have to shift into maximum overdrive and push for the summit. Absolutely worth the hard work, the view from the top is unreal.

Easy, short, family friendly and fun, but usually extremely busy with lots of people.

Very pretty, fun little hike it can be crowded though.

1 month ago

The trail on its own is a great introduction for inexperienced hikers. My 5 year old son could accomplish the trail without needing any assistance or requiring a break. It has a few log bridges that cross the waterfall's stream that kids enjoy. The stream's size fluctuates depending on the run-off, but I have never seen it go above ankle deep.

This trail seems to attract a big crowd. plan accordingly around peak times or you maybe disappointed.

1 month ago

The easiest hike I’ve done it is short and so pretty with all the pine trees around. The water fall is small but a really nice place to go . I recommend it to go really early in the morning so you can enjoy the place to yourself.

After reading all the comments, we decided to drive out to Nebo and see what all the rage was about. For reference, we are pretty experienced hikers, one of us coming from LA and the other from Providence, RI (so both at sea level with about a week of acclimation in Park City at ~7000ft).

The first part of the hike was beautiful. The hills were a little less gentle than some commenters have suggested, especially with the altitude (for all you out of towners), but it was nothing serious. The wildflowers were beautiful.

The hike began to get real when we hit the first significant climb. You walk into a big valley and see a notch extending through the center with tall trees going up either side. Here, you cross the notch from left to right and begin to climb. We estimate we gained about 700-800 feet in this section in less than a mile. It is steep and the trail is loose, dusty dirt. However, we both felt comfortable and at the top of the climb, felt like it was manageable and felt ready to keep going.

After this, you gain a ridge line and walk along a gently rolling path until you arrive at the base of the false summit. In the 1/2 mile leading up to this, you can see both Nebo and the false summit on the right and left respectively. The route to the false summit is another significant climb, perhaps gaining another 800 feet in about a mile of hiking. Once you get to the top of the false summit, it is a good time to take a little break and begin to plan your attempt at the peak.

The final stage of the hike is very different from the first part. You walk along a tight, loose, rocky ridge above tree line. The path is not clearly demarcated and it is up to you to choose the path of least resistance. The ridge line is narrow and the drop off on either side is steep. My best advice, after completing the hike today (which others also suggest), is to stay as close to the top of the ridge as possible. Paths diverging to the left and right side can look inviting, however, many of these paths begin to drift off into loose shale and scree. While it can be intimidating to walk on top of a narrow, rocky ridge, you will find the path of least resistance here over and over again.

The final push to the summit is scrappy and includes some scrambling. It's a good idea to test rocks with your hand/foot before trusting them. The things that look like paths are not always a good indicator of the best route -- we found that doing some class 4 or perhaps very easy class 5 scrambling/climbing made our lives a lot easier because we were able to feel secure with what we were holding and standing on.

The route down from the summit requires patience. As is often the case, it is slow going when you head down on a hike like this. Keep a cool head and, again, follow the ridge as much as possible. After you hit the top of the false summit, the rest of the hike flies by.

Our total time was 5 hours 50 minutes, 3:20 on the way up and 2:30 on the way down. This excludes a 20 minute pit stop we took on the peak to admire the views.

In general, I would consider this a stout hike, but nothing terribly difficult. The real difficulty in this one lies in the mental game. It is significantly exposed and requires some confident scrambling. If you haven't done something above tree line before, get nervous seeing steep drop offs/on ridge lines, or you aren't fully acclimated to the altitude, I would be cautious and think about something less intense. If, on the other hand, you are in decent shape, don't get easily intimidated by heights, and feel confident in your ability to securely place your hands and feet at ~12,000 feet, go for it! It's really not so bad and offers BEAUTIFUL 360 views of the territory below. The hike itself is also really fun, challenging, and offers a wide array of different experiences and a lot of elevation gain in an afternoon.

This was a tough trail. I’ve done it twice. Not recently. It was harder than Spanish Fork Peak, Y Mountain, Squaw, but not as tough as Timp.

1 month ago

Overcrowded and unsafe.

It was packed with people and little kids. Someone above the grotto dislodged a bolder that came crashing down into the area below. It was a miracle no one was killed or seriously injured. It was a hot day so everyone was in the shade around the edges around the edge of the grotto. If a kid was in the sun or crossing from one side to the other they could have easily been crushed.

My sister in law's ankle was hit by rock fragments. We did some quick first aid, packed up and left.

There are dozens of other great hikes in Payson Canyon. If you do go to the grotto, I would suggest avoiding crowded Saturdays during peak summer. In any case, keep your kids close and be hyper aware of who and what's above you.

1 month ago

Super easy and lots of fun for kids and our puppy. My 2 1/2 year old did it with no problems. I did have to help him on a few areas but otherwise very family friendly. Bring water shoes to walk in the water at the end.

1 month ago

If this was closer to the highway it would be the perfect place to get out and get some fresh air. We did not see anyone when we went in October but it did have lots of trash. Fun little falls for the girls.

This is a beautiful trail, the views from the top are magnificent. There are a couple sections of the trail that are calf burners but most of it is a nice leisurely hike. It took me just shy of 5 hours to go up and down. I would definitely recommend it.

I completed the hike on 06/20. Although the trail is only 8.5 miles for round trip, plan around 8-hr. The trail is not always gaining elevation and it becomes very difficult towards the end. The final portion of the trail towards the summit is built on loose shale and there are multiple trails which are not always leading to the peak. I got lost in some false trails. It is better and safe to follow or ask someone in front of you. I would recommend hiking poles and tough shoes for this trail. The view is fantastic though.

Perfect trail for smaller kids, beautiful waterfall. Plenty of space for kids to play but super crowded. I rated 4 stars for that reason. if it were less crowded it would be 5 no question. The trail is really pretty but short.

trail running
1 month ago

Decent trail. Hiked up to run down. Great views and lots of deer. Big fat porcupine strolling down the trail too! Very glad I read a few reviews first so I would know where to TURN! The first option about a mile in is obvious (don’t go through the fence) but the next option less than a quarter mile later isn’t so obvious and isn’t marked (at least not in the middle of June ‘18): stay RIGHT when the trail comes to a ‘T’ here. There is an old faded sign, and It actually looks like you would want to go left, but the Loafer trail will be on your RIGHT. It will begin to get steep about 2-3 miles in; this will continue for most of the remainder. Nice hike though. Still a little snow in June. Mailbox and flagpole at the top! My Garmin GPS clocked it 12 miles round trip.

2 months ago

There is no doubt this is a very heavily trafficked trail. The trail is quite leveled out by all the foot traffic as well as some trail sides. Finding loose stones or gravel is almost impossible on most of this trail due to the heavy foot traffic. That being said, there are times this trail is very quiet. When we went in, we saw only one couple at the falls, then exiting we saw a few people entering, which meant we had the whole trail virtually to ourselves for the hour we were here. While the trail is easy, and they have made it easy to get to the falls, there are places there are wooden boards, bridges and logs that go over the stream. Once you get to what seems like the end of the trail, there will be a rock face to your left, a very smooth tree stump ahead of you, and a place to step down into the creek to the right. Go down into the creek and cross through the water or over the log bridge, and around that rock face you will see the falls. You have to go down into the ravine to see the falls or you could see it from above if you climb/scramble up the rock.

Note on the distance: Alltrails mentions .6 miles, the trailhead says .5. I have tallied .9. Actually it would be closer to .8 (.1 from car parking to trailhead).

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