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BOUNTIFUL — Snowshoeing through fresh powder is always rewarding. However, when you have an exciting destination in mind, the reward is even greater. Rudy’s Flat is the perfect destination for any snowshoer or skier looking for a great winter escape.
Located between City Creek Canyon and Bountiful’s Mueller Park, Rudy’s Flat is a pristine meadow on a ridge overlooking the Great Salt Lake. In the wintertime, this meadow becomes a beautiful field of white powder, perfect for snowshoeing, skiing, camping, or just relaxing in a nice place above the inversion.
Three main trailheads lead up to Rudy’s Flat: Rotary Park, Mueller Park, and North Canyon. In the winter, the Rotary Park trailhead is difficult to access, and the trail from Mueller Park is 13 miles round trip (if you feel up the distance, it is a great, gradual route).
Meanwhile, North Canyon is less than eight miles round trip and is a beautiful hike, making it my preferred option for going up to Rudy’s Flat. The trailhead is located at the end of Canyon Creek Drive (3700 S) in Bountiful. Whether you are coming from the north or south, there is a map here with a pretty direct way of getting to the trailhead.
Parking can be a little difficult since it is a residential area. Make sure you aren’t blocking anyone’s exit and be courteous to the surrounding neighborhood by keeping noise to a minimum. Also, “No Trespassing” signs are posted all around the road that goes up North Canyon so respect private property and stay on the main road and trail.
If you have solid snow tires and four-wheel drive, you may be able to drive further up the road to the actual trailhead, but it isn't recommended for everyone because the icy dirt road can be very difficult to negotiate in some vehicles.
For snowshoers and skiers, the trailhead is only a gradual mile up the road and won’t take long to cover. A sign marks the beginning of the actual North Canyon trail, along with a zipline that runs over the creek. If you can reach the bar, it might be fun to play around with, if you don't mind dodging pines and aspens.
The single-track trail isn’t hard to follow, especially since it is always well-traveled by numerous skiers and snowshoers. The trail switches back and forth up the canyon, crosses the canyon’s creek and proceeds to climb up the south side of the canyon. The many switchbacks and twists and turns help maintain a very gradual ascent of 1,600 feet over four miles.
The trail provides numerous viewpoints of Antelope Island, the Great Salt Lake, Bountiful, and the mountains that surround the area. Also, the entire hike usually remains above the inversion making it a fantastic escape for people seeking relief from the polluted air.
Overall, Rudy’s Flat is an easy, accessible, and beautiful hike for winter trekkers of any age or skill level.
Keaton Reed is a recent USU Alumni who loves hiking, running, snowshoeing, and skiing when he isn't working as a editorial assistant in Salt Lake City.