We found a little piece of Heaven today in Juab County. A short, easy hike to a waterfall. We’ve heard that the Salt Creek Waterfall only flows until the Fourth of July, so let us know in the comments what the flow was like and the date you hike this one. The water was really rushing when we visited in late May.
- Distance: 2.6 miles roundtrip
- Elevation Gain: 365 feet
- Rating: Easy
- Dog Friendly: Yes
The trail to Salt Creek Waterfall begins at Bear Canyon Campground on the south end of the Nebo Loop. There is a small parking area for half a dozen cars (see detailed directions below). The trail follows the creek for about 1.3 miles to the waterfall. Then it is 1.3 miles back to the trailhead for a roundtrip distance of around two and a half miles.
The trail climbs a little at the beginning, but is generally flat, and there are no steep parts. There is also a good mix of sun and shade, so make sure that you use sunscreen and hats if it is hot when you hike. The trail is a bit rocky, but the pines smelled lovely, and we passed dozens of wildflowers. We saw squirrels and birds along the trail, but there are bears, cougars, deer, and elk in the canyon, so keep your eyes peeled for wildlife.
The trail is wide and after the first third of the hike it starts to follow the creek. We enjoyed cooling off by dipping our hats into the creek. There are also some interesting rock formations along the way.
After the trail crosses the creek, there is a narrow turn up to the waterfall. There are a few logs laid over a narrow section of creek. As you cross, look up and left. A narrow trail leads up to it. You can glimpse and hear the waterfall just about 100 yards up the trail. From there you can walk right to the base of the waterfall.
The waterfall was rushing when we hiked in May, but might be smaller later in the summer. We walked across the creek and nearly froze our feet off, but it was a fun way to enjoy the waterfall. Be extra careful if you do get in the water.
The easiest way to access Salt Creek Waterfall is to drive the Nebo Loop from the south end in Nephi Canyon near the Ockey Ranch KOA. From the 1-15, take exit #225 in Nephi and head east into Salt Creek Canyon. After 5 miles, turn left onto the Nebo Loop. There is a small sign, but it’s hard to miss, so keep an eye out. From the junction, drive 3.3 miles to a signed turn to the Bear Canyon Campground. Follow that road to the end, which is only 2.2 miles. The trail begins here next to a group campsite in Bear Canyon Campground. There is a map of the area with a sign. (Don’t get on the Bear Canyon Trail, but continue to the Right Fork Salt Creek Trail).
If you are looking for other waterfall hikes in Utah, check out our 35 Waterfalls in Utah post.