On Ogden’s scenic, historic Indian Trail

Story by David Owen
Special to the Standard-Examiner
October 3, 2012
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Special to the Standard-Examiner

Ogden spoils outdoor enthusiasts with a plethora of world-class hiking trails that vary in landscape, difficulty and technical challenge. But if you find yourself in a conversation with a fellow hiker, Indian Trail is sure to come up for its aesthetic and historical value.

Native Americans used sections of this elevated path to avoid Ogden Canyon’s high spring waters, and although the Ogden River isn’t a challenge these days, modern folk still enjoy Indian Trail for its incredible diversity: Conifer forests, cold-water creeks, mountain bowls, the fresh aroma of timber pines and sagebrush and the stunning views.

Hikers also are likely to spot resident wildlife during their treks — bounding deer, rummaging squirrels, chirping birds, scampering lizards and the occasional sun-bathing rattlesnake. These are all reasons that would catapult Indian Trail to the top of Ogden’s “greatest hits list” if there was one.

Indian Trail has two main trailheads: One is a mile and a half inside Ogden Canyon on 12th Street’s south side (marked by a “Smokey the Bear” sign) and the other is atop 22nd Street in Ogden’s foothills. Maps of Indian Trail grace both trailheads (and present a fun fact or two), but neither trailhead hosts a restroom.

October provides a fantastic seasonal opportunity for exploring Indian Trail. There is no better way to prepare for the white of winter than breathing fall’s crisp air and celebrating the mountain’s vibrant display of deep reds, oranges and yellows.

For one-way hiking with friends or family, park one vehicle at each trailhead for convenience.

Take a Hike is coordinated by the Ogden Trails Network. It appears monthly in Xplore and online at www.xploreutah.net.

Trail Facts

  • Difficulty of trail: Moderate
  • Hike time: Allow 4 hours
  • Distance: 4.3 miles one-way
  • Elevation gain: Approximately 1,000 feet
  • Trailhead restrooms: No
  • Bikes allowed: No
  • Kid friendly: Yes (Parent supervision highly encouraged)
David Owen


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The Ogden Nature Center is located at 966 W. 12th St. in Ogden. For more information, visit www.ogdennaturecenter.org or call 801-621-7595.