The Great Salt Lake in Utah is home to many different hiking trails, and thankfully I decided to hike around Stansbury Island. This is the second largest island next to Antelope Island on the Great Salt Lake. The hike I decided to go on was just over nine miles one way but being short on time I only hiked four of the nine before I turned around. This place was surreal, I only encountered a couple of people, the sights were outstanding and the trail was easy to follow.
Getting to the island was fairly easy, you can google, Stansbury Island Trail and it will take you right out to the hiking area. Once you turn off the main highway, a dirt road takes you across what is known as the “Mud Flats.” To be honest I don’t know much about the Great Salt Lake, and driving on a road that is surrounded by the water was a little scary. The water was not very deep but I have no idea if the mud under it is soft and you could sink in it or if it is even safe to enter the water! It was beautiful though and once through the mud flats and onto the island there is just water on one side of you. The dirt road goes on for about six miles before you turn right into the parking area. From what I understand there is a shooting range before the parking area that you can start at but it shortens the hike and you miss out on some of the best views. If you go past the shooting range and find the parking area, which was kind of difficult to spot, there is a trail marker for where you should start.
For the first part of the hike we walked through a field at the base of the mountain. Here is where I ran into a couple of people, they were camping at this spot. For any backpackers out there it was a small site but is very easy to get to and has a campfire ring and a spot for a tent. Past here is the first accent up the mountain, the incline wasn’t too bad but is a little steep so be prepared! About half way up the trail is a flat landing area perfect for a break and some pictures of the lake! The dogs had to be coaxed a little to pose for a picture here! Once we accomplished that we kept going, the trail worked its way to the top in switch backs. At the top of the mountain you can see both sides of the Great Salt Lake. The view is mesmerizing!
From here I followed the trail which cut along the side of the mountain, looping around the side and heading back inland. After four miles I stopped and took a second to look around! There are cows in the valley, and the trial kept working its way back up another mountain. I saw a couple of trail runners and one other couple with their dog. The hike is easy once you make it up the first hill. To hike 8 miles it took me just over two hours. The trail was easy to follow, it is kind narrow but no big obstacles to overcome. I plan on going back next time we are in Salt Lake and hiking the entire thing. I recommend bringing plenty of water because there is none once you get up there. I had to share my water with my dogs so that also contributed to cutting the hike short! If anyone is looking for a beautiful hike, that is fairly easy I say go on this one!