This route is one of the most exciting short routes in the Bear River Range. It affords great views of Logan Canyon and the Logan River, and also offers a good ascent for the distance covered, and a really fun experience as you get to travel along the top of a cliff band.
On weekends and evenings, the trail can get rather congested. However, weekday mornings are usually great times to be out on this trail, and it's very doable before work at only 4 miles round trip.
There are rocks and roots that could cause someone to trip if they aren't careful, and this could be especially dangerous on the exposed part of the trail up on the top of the cliffs.
From the Spring Hollow
parking lot, follow the paved pathways to the north that lead to the Riverside Nature Trail
. This part of the trail is an easy, rolling jaunt for about 3/4 mile that has some great views of the Logan River and some neat informative signs about the flora and fauna of the area and how they survive and thrive in this environment. After this first 3/4 mile or so, the trail forks without any signage. The fork that continues straight goes to Guinavah Campground, but the fork to go up to the Crimson Trail
is to the right. Since this turnoff is not signed, it's best to keep your eyes out for it. However, if you miss the turnoff it is still possible to complete the loop, as the Riverside Nature Trail
ends at Guinavah campground, at the northern trailhead of the Crimson Trail
, so you could still complete the loop, but you would add probably a mile to your outing.
From the fork in the trails, the trail starts to ascend, steeply in places, through a sparsely populated forest. Eventually the trail leaves this forest for a more exposed hillside and starts and meets up with the actual Crimson Trail
and starts to switchback along this hillside on a well-developed trail. From here, you can get great views of Logan Canyon and the Logan River if you take the time to look back behind you. The trail continues to ascend until it eventually gets right up to the base of the China Wall, the rock formation that forms the foundation of the most exciting part of the Crimson Trail
. The last part of the ascent involves some short switchbacks that go up through a steep drainage and ends right on top of the cliffs.
The trail then contours along the top of these cliffs for almost a mile and a half, with some really fun ups and downs and great views from the tops of these cliffs. It can get really fun as the trail gets narrow in places and often gets really close to the edge. The views of the Wind Caves and the fall colors can be amazing, as well as the wildflowers in the spring. The trail also weaves in and out of forests as it crosses drainages that cut through the cliff band, so there is plenty of shade along the way during the summer, but also plenty of exposed spots for great pictures and views.
Eventually, the trail starts to switchback down as it descends towards Spring Hollow
. This descent can get rocky in places, but nothing technical, and eventually it connects with the Spring Hollow Trail
, which drops quickly to the Spring Hollow
campground, and the last part of the route just goes down the paved road back to the parking lot past these group sites associated amenities.