Hike the Buffalo Point Trail on Antelope Island
Utah › Buffalo Point Trailhead
Added by Michelle Olmstead
The short and rewarding hike to Buffalo Point provides 360 degree panoramic views of the Great Salt Lake, Antelope Island, and the surrounding mountains. It is also one of the best places to catch a sunset. A variety of flora and fauna can also be seen along the trail including the American Bison.
Antelope Island State Park is a gem within the Utah State Park system. With over 28,000 acres, it is the biggest island located in the Great Salt Lake...the largest salt water lake in the Western hemisphere. It is incredibly scenic, with beautiful shoreline and beaches, grassy plains, mountainous areas, and interesting geology. It also hosts a variety of flora and fauna, including bison, bighorn sheep, pronghorn antelope, coyote, and a large variety of bird species. The Great Salt Lake that surrounds the island is one of the most important areas for migratory birds in the United States.
Your hike begins at the Buffalo Point trail-head, which is approximately 2.5 miles South-West from the end of the Antelope Island causeway. There is a large parking lot, and an interpretive center with an observation deck to enjoy the scenery before starting your hike. This is a moderately steep hike, with a 300 ft. elevation gain in approximately 0.5 miles. The trail is well-defined, and there are several benches along the way to stop at and rest if needed. Bison are frequently seen along this trail and it is important to remain at least 25 yards away from them at all times. Once you get to the top, there are numerous rocky outcroppings to climb on and take in the beauty of the sweeping grassy plains below, the Great Salt Lake, and the surrounding mountains. If you visit in the evening, sunsets here are phenomenal. This trail is also one of the best places to see the ancient Tufa limestone deposits, which are remnants of Lake Bonneville.
The best time of year to do this hike is early Spring, late Fall, or Winter. Late Spring and Summer bring bugs...a lot of them, and since the trail is exposed the whole way, the heat can also be a problem. If you choose to do this hike during those times, it is still worth it, but start early and bring the bug spray!
Antelope Island is located West of Salt Lake City. Take exit 322 off of Interstate 15, then drive West for 7 miles to get to the park entrance, where you will pay the $10 entrance fee. There is also a small parking lot just before the entrance if you choose to carpool. Drive another 7 miles West on the causeway, and then head South-West for another 2.5 miles to get to the trail-head.
- Appropriate clothing for the season.
- Hiking shoes or boots.
- Bug spray if hiking late Spring through Fall.
- Snacks and Water.
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Chillin, Hiking, Photography
Spring, Autumn, Winter
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Short but sweet
Its a very short hike to the top that provides great views over the Great Salt Lake. I was there right around noon, but could imagine it would be a great spot to watch the sunrise and sunset with reflections on the lake.
Quick, But Fun.
I did this with a friend when we only had about 1 hr. to be out. It was a fun little hike, which only takes about 15-20 minutes to hike up. Up at the top there are some cool rock formations to climb around on, and a great place to sit and eat lunch. This hike is also great for kids, not long, but plenty of places to climb around up top.
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