Backpack to Rudy's Flat

7 miles  - Out-and-Back Trail

Added by Jordan Smith

This backpacking trip into Mueller Park Canyon has 2 approaches offering flexibility in distance and time required (7-13 mile RT). This trip offers beautiful, sweeping canyon views, and plenty of trees for hammocking.

Rudy's Flat is a great overnight hike with plenty of tent or hammock space and multiple established fire rings. This hike offers multiple options for distance depending on your availability and skill level.

From the Mueller Park Canyon trailhead (5,234 ft), hikers will experience a gradual ascent past Elephant Rock - stop and enjoy the view; scramble onto the rock if you are feeling adventurous - at 3.5 miles, and continue to Rudy's Flat at about 6.5 miles, with a total elevation gain of about 2,160 ft.

The approach from the North Canyon Trailhead is much shorter. From the end of the paved road (5,525 ft) to Rudy's Flat is 3.7 miles with 1,615 ft of elevation gain. This route is steeper (approximately 100 ft more elevation gain per mile), but will reduce your trail time significantly. If you are able to drive to the trailhead at the top of the dirt road (6,170 ft), you will hike 2.5 Miles to Rudy's Flat, gaining only 970 ft of elevation.

Both approaches are beautiful, with sweeping canyon views. You can't pick a bad route. I personally enjoy parking a shuttle vehicle at one trailhead and hiking in at the other, giving me the chance to experience both trails.

There is no water available at the trailhead, so stock up before you come. You will cross a small creek in both canyons a couple of times, but there is no creek access at Rudy's Flat, so don't count on filtering water unless you want to hike back down the trail a considerable distance.

Rudy's Flat can be crowded some weekends during the summer. I would say go early, but the last time I did this trip, we hiked in later, which allowed us the chance to pick a spot away from the crowds instead of being surrounded by other campers. Take your pick. Either way, you'll have a fun trip.

Getting There:

Mueller Park Canyon Trailhead
From I-15 North or Southbound, take exit 315 (2600 S) for Woods Cross and Bountiful. Travel east on 2600 S. The road will curve to the left after South Davis Junior High School and become Orchard Drive. Continue north on orchard Drive until you reach 1800 S. Turn right on 1800 S and travel east for about 2 miles until you arrive at Mueller Park Canyon. Park on the road just outside of the Park or near the bridge just before the entrance gate. The trailhead is across the small bridge just before the entrance gate.

North Canyon Trailhead
From Mueller Park, travel west for about .3 miles to Bountiful Boulevard. Turn left and travel south on Bountiful Boulevard for roughly 1.5 miles to Canyon Creek Drive and turn left. Travel east to the end of the paved road. Continue on foot or with capable off road vehicle for 1.2 miles up the dirt road to the trailhead. Do not veer off the main dirt road.

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Overall rating: 

Fun, Short, Easy, Breathtaking!

This is an easy backpacking hike that has some amazing views. Great for a quick overnighter.

Fun Overnighter

We really liked this spot. We went in the beginning of June for three days during the week. We were the only campers for two of the days, but there were a lot of cyclists and motorcyclists that came and went each day, so it's really not secluded. The hardest thing for multiple nights is the water. We biked up a couple of days before and stashed about two gallons of water on the trail, which is really the only reason it wasn't just an overnighter for us. There are a few small streams (on the elephant rock side) and one of them isn't too far from the flat but I don't know how far into the summer they're there. Overall, it's a beautiful hike, and there's quite a few good spots to pitch camp. I would recommend it for sure.

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