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Diamond Fork Hot Springs
    Memorial Day Weekend, 2009

    The chosen hike for this lovely (it is pouring rain pretty much everywhere in Utah) weekend was to the Diamond Fork Hot Springs in Spanish Fork Canyon. (Off of Rt 6, east of Spanish Fork.) We decided we would drive to the trailhead, with rain gear, and decide once we got there if the rain was just too much to deal with (I don't mind rain so much, it is the mud that inevitably comes with it that can really make a hike more work than it needs to be.)

    Driving along Diamond Fork road is a scenic adventure in itself. Beautiful waterscapes, very green grasslands and new spring growth in the trees made just getting ot the trailhead a pleasant ride.

    And, with this being early spring, everything is so green and beautifully covered with thick green moss!

    Yeah, it is still raining, and the parking lot is almost full, but we decided, what the hey, we're here, let's give it a go. So we gear up (rain coat with a hood and a hat with a brim to keep the rain out of our faces, cameras safely tucked under a layer of goreTex. We stayed pretty dry (well, the top halves of us anyway) but there were lots of mud puddles to navigate. But there were not many other people on the trail

    One good thing about venturing out in the rain is that there are fewer people on the trails (and the roads for that matter), and those we did encounter were heading down the trail, most were without rain gear and were thus drenched and were impressed with our preparedness.

    Another interesting thing about hiking in the rain is that the waterfalls and pourovers are more dramatic.

    When we got about 1/2 hour away, we crossed a bridge over the stream where a sign was posted indicating we should be aware that there will probably be naked bathers. Keep that in mind if you are taking kids with you.

    There are three main hot pots, right on the side of the trail, with a few other smaller pools, not quite as easy to get to especially when the water is high and fast moving. The main pools have been nice rock walls containing them, maintained by the officials (is it the Forest Service?). Two of the main areas are below the big waterfall. Continue on the trail up and over the waterfall for yet another pretty big pool.

    The trail is a pretty easy, moderate up and down grade that took us 1 hour and 15 minutes to get to the 3rd hot pot. The distance to the pools is about 2.2 miles. I know that because one member of our party brought his GPS device and that is what it said.

    When we got there, even though the day was not the best for hiking, all three main pools were occupied. I'm just imagining how crowded they might be on a sunny, hot day. So, in order for everybody to enjoy these natural features, it is imperative that we all act respectfully and share.

    Tips:
  • Be prepared for whatever weather is going on (bring rain coats if needed, bring plenty of water, etc.)
  • Wear good hiking shoes. The trail is mostly even, but there were a few rocks to navigate.
  • Be courteous of others on the trail. We encountered both bikes and dogs.
  • The underwater rocks are very slick, so be careful when entering the pools. It might help, also, to wear some sort of water shoes to get better traction.
  • If you are going to get naked, please be discrete. If you are a bystander to the nudity, don't stare of take pictures.
  • Getting There:
  • From I-15, take the exit for Rt 6 (US 6 to Price and Manti) in Spanish Fork and head east and into Spanish Fork Canyon.
  • About 5.5 miles past of the mouth of the canyon turn left onto onto the Diamond Fork road.
  • After about 10 miles on this paved road, and just beyond a squiggle (technical term) in the road. This is the trailhead.
  • Alternate starting points and GPS info can be found here.

Backroads of Utah
by Theresa A. Husarik

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