Utahn’s beat the heat by hiking Little Cottonwood Canyon

Jul 9, 2022, 5:33 PM | Updated: Jul 26, 2022, 4:15 pm

LITTLE COTTONWOOD, Utah – As the summer heat grows in the valley, some Utahns seek to cool off in nature.

The peaceful sounds of a creek flowing over rocks and a gentle breeze passing by trees.

You couldn’t blame people for wanting to get into the mountains Saturday afternoon.

“We’re going to go up high and be able to look down the whole canyon,” said Eva Kauffman, who lives in Salt Lake City.

Kauffman and her friend were in Little Cottonwood Canyon getting ready for a hike.

“This area is nostalgic to me,” she said. “I love it up here.”

However, the peaceful sounds of nature were accompanied by plenty of traffic.

“There are crowds today,” said Kauffman. But, it’s not just the views many people were after.

Hikers prepare to climb the mountains to beat the heat in the valley.

“It’s hot,” said Skylar Phelps with a laugh.

He and his family were visiting from Grantsville, and although they enjoy the outdoors as much as possible, they chose the mountains because of triple-digit temperatures in the valley below.

Even if it meant hiking in crowds.

“This is a beautiful canyon,” Phelps said. “It’s tough to beat the views, but I know it’s always crowded up here.”

Weekends usually are busier. However, it gets even more alive when temperatures start to climb past 100 degrees.

“Yeah, it’s different. Like, you get the breeze, and it’s twenty degrees cooler,” Kauffman said.

That’s part of why cars were lined up and parked on the side of the road for almost a third of a mile at the White Pine Trailhead.

Cars parked on the road.

Lots of people wanted to get outside and do a little hiking. Almost any hiker will tell you it’s easier to move and go further when you’re not melting.

“Millcreek today is, I think, 102 degrees. But here, only 82 degrees,” said James Lin, who lives in Millcreek.

With many people having the same idea to get out of the heat, getting onto a mountain trail might not be the outdoor escape from the crowds many were hoping for.

But it was an escape from a hundred-degree beatdown.

“Yeah, you can get out of the heat, and then you hope it cools down by the time you go back down the canyon,” said Kauffman with a laugh.

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Utahn’s beat the heat by hiking Little Cottonwood Canyon