The weather is warming up here and we have been anxious to start hiking. This is something we enjoy doing. My girls like discovering new things and as parents we like getting our kids active. At the beginning of the summer we take a few smaller hikes and then extend the distance as the summer progresses. Ghost Falls Trail has two trail heads. We took the longer trail which is about 3 miles round trip. It took us 2 hours round trip to complete this hike. My 3 year old walked all but 10 minutes! We were very impressed! She did take a 2 hour nap just before we left that helped immensely with her attitude and willingness to walk. It is named Ghost Falls because this waterfall is seasonal. It “disappears like a ghost” in certain seasons.
Where is it located?
Begin at the Coyote Hollow trail head at 14200 South 1850 East in Draper (just south of the Draper LDS Temple). There are brown signs just west of the LDS Temple that point you to the Coyote Hollow trail. Turn right before entering the Temple parking lot, then left, then right (another brown sign is pointing the way), go to the end of the road where there is a very small parking lot and trail head.
The trail starts off through some trees and along dry creek bed. After a short distance of about .28 miles the trail splits. There is another map there to look at. Along the trail are occasional signs pointing to the different trails. Here is an online view of the map.
How much does it cost?
Is food allowed?
Plenty of water is definitely recommended. Whatever you bring in you pack out.
Are strollers allowed?
I would not recommend strollers. The pathways are narrow and some places are very rocky. My baby went for a ride in a backpack carrier.
How close are the bathrooms?
Bathrooms are located at the trail head. There is one portable toilet just off to the right in the trees.
Is there a picnic area?
No there are no picnic tables, just plenty of scenery. If you want to stop along the trail for a snack just remember whatever you pack in you need to pack out. There are no garbage cans along the trail.
Are there shaded areas?
Absolutely! There are beautiful trees and scenery throughout the hike. Go ahead and take a rest in a shady spot.
What should I expect?
When you arrive at the location it is a neighborhood, but keep looking and you will find the trail head just off the road at the end of the circle. Stop by the portable bathroom before you hike. Ghost Falls Trail is located in a watershed area. No domesticated animals are permitted. There are many trails along the way. We did not have a hard time staying on the right path but there were quite a few people enjoying the outdoors, many bikers. The trail ended at the waterfall. There were barriers up so we couldn’t get in the water or even touch it if we wanted. My girls looked at it for a minute then said, “let’s go.” Apparently they enjoyed the journey, not the destination!
Any safety concerns?
This area has a lot of mountain bikers. Trail etiquette is that hikers yield to bikers. The bikers we encountered were very aware hikers would be on the trail. We talk a lot while we hike so the bikers knew they were coming up to hikers. Sometimes they would verbally warn us they were coming and sometimes we just heard a bike bell. We pulled off to the right, they graciously passed and we continued walking.
I’m always worried about my kids getting lost. We either have one adult at the beginning and one at the end or we make sure we are always bunched together in eyesight of each other. In reality this means I say repeatedly, “Can you see me?” or “I can’t see you please stop.” Since I have 4 girls it is easy for them to have a buddy the entire trip but switching pairs many times along the way.
This was a great hike. There are so many other trails in this same area we could go back a few more times. There is a shorter trail to Ghost Falls. You will start above the fall and hike down to it. It is about half the distance.