Baer Canyon, Utah – Northern, Utah
Baer Canyon, Baer Creek, lots of pine trees
About 2.68 miles round trip
Bring a liter of water. You will travel close to several streams. Baer Creek is in the canyon below
Spring, summer, fall
Open year round
About half in sun and half in shade
Trail is very steep at beginning until you climb to ridge. Once you are at ridge the trail narrows but is somewhat flat
Allowed in camping spots
Bring snacks as needed
Good hiking shoes, bag for food and water
A rewarding hike through pine trees and quiet mountain streams, the Pine Gulch Trail is a less traveled area in Bear Canyon.
Parking Lot: 41.030133°, -111.897517°
Pine Gulch Trailhead: 41.032558°, -111.891324°
Pine Gulch Fork: 41.034158°, -111.885396°[/tab]
The trail begins at the mouth of Baer Canyon in Fruit Heights, Utah.
The Pine Gulch Trail is so named by The Trek Planner due to the trail that circles just below the Baer Canyon Mines which, according to official Davis County Recorders Office affidavits, is called the Pine Gulch Mines.
The trail begins at the mouth of Baer Canyon (Haight’s Creek) in Fruit Heights Utah. It is a somewhat inclined hike until you come to the clearing of trees where the actual Pine Gulch Trail begins. This is a relatively short but very steep hike that will make you wonder why you have never done this trail before. Please understand that this trail is less traveled for a reason: it is very steep until you reach the ridge and once you do reach the ridge the trail is very narrow and overgrown. I enjoyed it because I knew what I was getting myself into – a very rough trail.
From the parking lot to the actual Pine Gulch Trailhead you will be hiking for about .40 miles. In the above pictures you can see that the trail continues to the left. The left trail is the normal Baer Canyon trail. To go up to Pine Gulch, you will need to go up the trail which is just behind the water box that you can see in the middle right of the picture above. There is a small fire pit and campground area here.
From here the trail winds up the mountain at a very steep angle and the trail narrows down. Just take your time and rest often as you make your way to the top of the ridge.
The above picture is what it looks like at the top of the extremely steep ridge. I hiked this in the winter and luckily, someone with wide snowshoes packed down the trial enough for me to stay on top of the 1 foot deep snow. From here, the trail is mostly flat but the whole mountainside is steep so please be careful as you hike on this trail.
From the ridge, if you keep hiking on the trail you will come to another fork (see Pine Gulch Split in the GPS information section above). The right trail leads up into the next canyon to the south but it offers many more instances for pine trees and great views. The left trail continues on to Pine Gulch. For now, stay on the left trail.
The trail winds around through 100+ foot tall pine trees with nothing but very short shrubs and bushes underneath them. I couldn’t believe how fresh the air smelt and how much the trees dampen noise of the Baer Creek below.
The entire area is on a very steep slope that leads down to the canyon bottom where the Baer Canyon trail is located.
The Pine Gulch Trail will cross over several small streams and even a few areas where it seems there was a mud slide or some type of recent erosion which may make the trail a little bit precarious but you can cross over just fine.
Eventually, the Pine Gulch Trail will begin to drop down a little bit then hug a rock face for about 25 yards. On the trail I found an entire tree that was covered in spiderwebs and literally crawling with large spiders. The “spider tree” was located on the trail and I didn’t want to get covered in a spider’s nest so I bypassed the trail and bushwhacked the remainder of the hike until it meet up with the Baer Canyon trail. The trails meet at just above the 2nd river crossing in Baer Creek and right below the Baer Canyon Mines.
From here you can either do a big loop and go on the main Baer Canyon trail or you can go back through the Pine Gulch Trail.
I have never really hiked up the Pine Gulch Trial until recently. I will have to come back in warmer months, but this hike was incredible and it was a strange sight to be hiking underneath 100+ foot tall pine trees in the middle of Davis County. It made me think I was in Sequoya National Park or some place in Park City Utah. Even though the beginning of the trail is very steep, I recommend you hike this trail and take in the fresh air and amazing views of Baer Canyon.