Last week we headed way out west to Horseshoe Springs Wildlife Management Area in order to keep social distance during our Spring Break. Horseshoe Springs is a small area that is great for walking a short trail, fishing, wading in the water, and learning a little history.
Horseshoe Springs is actually shaped like a horseshoe. The trail walks along the edge of the springs, and we wandered around in the open space admiring the beautiful blue water. The water stays warm, but not super hot like a hot springs. The average temperature is 70, and we read that in the winter it was down near 60. Our boys didn’t mind putting their feet in and wading for a bit.
The trail is only about 1/3 of a mile. We didn’t see much wildlife, but we did see some small fish in the water. The water is very clear and shallow in most areas, but there are some deep sections, so be careful if you allow your children to get in.
Horseshoe Springs was a stop for the Donner Party and other travelers along the Hastings Cutoff on the California Trail. There are some historical signs talking about those who traveled there, and a few small markers with quotes showing where the trail would have been. We loved learning more about Utah’s history.
We paired this adventure with a few other stops to make it worth the drive from Utah County out to Tooele County. Here are a few other adventures in the area worth stopping by:
- Utah Firefighters Museum (only open F and Sat)
- Dark Trail in Settlement Canyon
- Dairy Delight (get the Buffalo fries)
- Benson Grist Mill (May-October)
- Ophir Historical Site (Saturdays in summer only)
- Tooele Pioneer Museum (summers only)
- Daughters of the Utah Pioneer Museum (summers only)
- Tooele Valley Railroad Museum (summers only)
For more info about Horseshoe Springs Wildlife Management area, visit the BLM website. The directions are very simple. Take 1-80 west to exit 77. Head south for about 10 miles until you see a sign for Horseshoe Springs. Turn right onto Horseshoe Springs Road and park in the small dirt parking area.
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There was a fire at Horseshoe Springs a couple years ago. It burned the bridge, boardwalk and large sign with wildlife info as well as all the plants surrounding the springs. That is why there’s a couple old timbers now to cross the canal. It is a fun place to go swim with your dogs. I’ve seen carp and large mouth bass in the springs, and killdeer, stilts and cranes in spring time. Lizards, snakes and lots of dragonflies are always there too.