Repairing or upgrading your bike! Look for items on UMB site Discussion board for bike fanatics! Visit the UMB store!
Css Menu Javascript by v4.3.0
Rocky Top (Kamas Valley Overlook) Trail

The Rocky Top trail starts on Highway 32 just east of the Jordanelle Reservoir. It climbs 900 feet over four miles to a viewpoint on the rocky hilltop. The trail is easier-intermediate in overall technical requirement, and moderate in aerobic strenuousness. 

View northeast just after hitting the singletrack. Photos and review by Bruce on June 22, 2015.

The parking lot for the trail is on the north side of Highway 32. The entry to parking is on the road to the Rock Cliff Nature Center and Jordanelle State Park, just a few feet after that road leaves Highway 32. Although it's just outside the fee station for the state park, there's no fee to park or ride here. (The nearby Jordanelle Perimeter Trail is 1.2 miles down the road, at the west end of the park area, and does require a day-fee to ride.)

On reaching the first ridgeline above the cliffs, we're looking west at an arm of the Jordanelle Reservoir. The Jordanelle Perimeter Trail is about a mile away, to the right of the water. You might see a piece of it.

From the trailhead parking, go back to the Rock Cliff road, go to the right around the culvert, then turn right on the gravel road. Go through the smaller side gate (close it behind you). About 100 feet up the thistle-infested gravel road -- just when you're thinking "this can't be the right trail" -- nice smooth narrow singletrack forks uphill to the left.

Looking east along the cliff line. The Provo River peeks through the trees in the valley.

Climb uphill through two switchbacks, and you're at the top of the cliffs. The trail will work generally northeast. You'll have periodic views of the Provo River and surrounding hills. In season, there may be flowers.

Sample prickly pear. There were reds, purples, pinks, salmons, yellows and greens.

For most of the year, this will be a very dry and warm hillside. An early morning start works best.

The terrain is mostly sage brush with occasional small stands of scrub oak. You'll pass through some areas of open igneous rock. In the higher elevation there's a bit of elderberry, chokecherry, and wild currant.

Getting a little higher on the mountain.

Navigation is easy. There are no trail forks. The trail is crossed once by a dirt road, but it's obvious that you just continue straight.

As you reach the ridge, you might think you're there. Nope. Another half mile. But pause to look at the views over the little town of Francis to the east.

Looking east after reaching the ridge. Francis lies just in front; Woodland is along the hills in the distant right.

The trail will now drop to the east side of the ridge, traverse north, then climb up to the Rocky Top. Suddenly there's a lot of greenery. Here the trail dead-ends in a group of granite boulders.

The Superfly rests at the top.

Kamas is the larger town to the northeast, on the far side of the valley. The letters on the hillside are for South Summit High School, if I recall my rock and roll musician days correctly.

View northeast toward Kamas.

You'll need to scramble a bit to get a view south into the valley. That's the Provo River down there just before it enters the Jordanelle Reservoir.

Looking southwest. You can see bits of the river in the trees just above the highway.

The downhill is fast and scenic. Beginners may find the turns a bit tight. But there aren't that many of them, so if you're having trouble rolling through, just put your feet down, swing the bike around, and continue on.

The round trip is 7.9 miles and your total climbing will be 900 vertical feet.

Ready for some "scrunch" as the trail crosses broken granite and tuff.

Getting there:
Go to US-40 north of Heber, via Provo Canyon from Utah County or I-80 up Parleys from Salt Lake. Just south of the Jordanelle dam, turn east onto State Highway 32 at the traffic light. Climb up and past the south side of the reservoir's east arm. When the road crosses the Provo River, turn left toward Rock Cliff Nature Center and Jordanelle State Park. Immediately as you swing off of Highway 32, turn to the right into the gravel trailhead parking lot. The ride starts at the gate on the gravel path just north across the creek from parking.

Map kiosk, but no other services at trailhead.
Water, toilets, and camping at Jordanelle State Park (fee area).
Nearest bike services in Heber (Slim and Knobby's).

Riding resources:
GPS track files (right-click and "Save as..."):
     GPX track file for Rocky Top
Maps for printing:   H-Res topo map 
Lodging, camping, shops:   Links to area resources

Copyright 2015