Naomie Christensen: Neff Canyon (Wallpaper)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Neff Canyon (Wallpaper)

Neff's Canyon Trail is a great place to take children and pets. The majority of Neff's Canyon is referred to as, "the Meadow." However, the meadow is comprised of tall pine trees and steep terrain. It doesn't look like a standard meadow.

There are many areas to have picnics. During the spring and early summer, it is a great place to go wading. The trails for experienced hikers run deep into the mountains. It is also enjoyable going off the paths and exploring the woods. Be careful the cliffs are steep. Deer trails often end up on top of cliffs, so watch your step.

Neff Canyon Images (1024 x 769)

This a great place to go hiking and it has great views. Go south from the parking lot to see the city. The lookout comes with rocks to sit on. During the summer I go there to see storms. The lightening and rain in the distance, highlighted by lights of the city, creates an apocalyptic scene. At twilight the red glow from the city lights are subdued by graceful clouds hanging overhead.

Go to the north east corner of the parking lot to find the trailhead. Travel east and the hiking paths open up and spread for a few miles around. It is approximately three miles square; however, to access Mount Olympus travel 3 miles east. It is hard to find, because often you have to walk through river beds and find the connecting trail. Often the trail is in view.

About a quarter of a mile from the Mount Olympus Trailhead, an over-flowing stream masks the path. If you are and experienced hiker, you will notice stone set out evenly to cross over the top of the waterfall. On the other side, hike up the crevasse. It looks like a river stones for a few meters, yet the trail reemerges.

Wildlife is fairly diverse in this area. They come and go. Along with squirrels, birds and deer there is a chance you will see a passing predator. They don't usually stay around people; however, I have seen a wolf, bobcat and possibly a mountain lion while hiking off the path.

Predators live out amongst the rocks and trees: typically they stay away from paths. While is exciting to see a predator there are a couple things to remember. Predators do not hunt other predators. The biggest threat to safety is territory. An animal will attack if it feels threatened or someone is taking their territory.

To avoid being attacked, look at the animal and look away. Do not stare at the animal or show your teeth, smile. After seeing the animal, keep walking. It is not your territory you are walking through. I have seen many dangerous animals up close and also follow these rules when approaching a deer or smaller animal. I have never been attacked, bitten or even scratched; except, by thorny bushes. Keep your mind about you and it all works out.

This is a forested area. There are tall trees, bushes and some wildflowers during the spring. In the summer it is very green. The arid climate and altitude kills off most mosses and insects. Practice regular protection against ticks and mosquitoes though they are not prevalent.

As for finding Neff's Canyon, go to Wasatch Boulevard and turn east on 3800 South. Going up the mountain there is a stop sign for Parkview Drive. Turn south onto Parkview Drive. Follow Park view up for a ways and turn left or up onto Parkview Terrace. The street signs are difficult to see from the road at times, so slow down. From Parkview Terrace, turn right onto White Park road and follow it to the parking lot.

Permits to camping overnight are available through Wasatch-Cache Nation Forest and Recreation. For information on maps contact Wasatch-Cache National Forest and Recreation: (801) 466-6411.

Neff's Canyon is overflowing with scenery. I have enjoyed it over the years. One of the best amenities of living in Salt Lake City is being surrounded by nature and still having modern conveniences of the city. However, there are no modern conveniences in Neff's Canyon.