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  • 56°
  • Heber Valley, Utah
  • Sunday, April 21, 2024
  • 11:36 AM
Sunny 56°
Monday H: 72°
L: 38°
Partly Sunny
Tuesday H: 73°
L: 43°
Partly Sunny
Wednesday H: 75°
L: 40°
Partly Sunny
Thursday H: 72°
L: 39°
Mostly Sunny
Friday H: 61°
L: 37°
Mostly Cloudy

The Adventure Highway

Wildlife can be found virtually everywhere along this route amid forests and grasslands; take your binoculars along. And be sure to take the camera for capturing some memorable sights. Wildflowers peak in the high meadows typically during July and fall colors are generally best in September. The road surface is mostly improved gravel with some paved sections and is only passable during summer months. Snow usually remains in the higher elevations well into late June and the Co-op Creek segment of the road may not open until early July each year. This drive covers miles of terrain and would be best enjoyed over more than one day.

With several access points from Heber City, it is easy to select one portion of the drive for a day-trip. Several campgrounds are available along the route for overnight stays and undeveloped camping areas can be found almost anywhere along the way for those wanting a more primitive camping experience. From the Mirror Lake Scenic Byway (State Route 150) east of Kamas, access the Adventure Highway at the Soapstone turnoff. From here the road is a little rough as it climbs out of the Provo River canyon, but quickly improves on its way to Soapstone Pass. Follow the road over the wildflower meadows of Soapstone Pass and be sure catch the views to the north of the High Uinta peaks. From Soapstone the road descends to the South Fork of the Provo River where it picks up scenic Wolf Creek Highway. Turn right (west) and follow Wolf Creek Highway through this forested canyon to the turnoff for Mill Hollow. Turn left (south again) to Mill Hollow Reservoir. This tiny reservoir, tucked in the woods is a great place to stop for a picnic or a rustic campground is located on the shore of the reservoir for overnight stays. Restrooms, picnic tables and parking are provided and a shoreline trail around the lake makes for a delightful walk.

Continuing south, the drive reaches its high point at Lake Creek Summit where panoramic views are overwhelming. From the summit, Lake Creek road travels west to return to Heber City. Or continue on the Adventure Highway south across this mountain road overlooking basins of evergreen and aspen, past 10,500-foot Currant Creek Peak, and into Co-op Creek. Co-op Creek descends again off the ridgelines and drops into Strawberry Valley. Strawberry Reservoir, set in this alpine valley, is surrounded by grassy fields, dotted with sage and wildflowers during mid-summer. In Strawberry, US Hwy 40 returns west to Heber City, or the Adventure Highway continues south on paved roads around the reservoir. From Co-op Creek, turn right on US Hwy 40 for approximately one mile to the Strawberry Visitor Center turnoff on the left. The visitor center is a good stopping place to gather information about activities in the area or to stretch your legs. A short boardwalk nature trail adjacent to the visitor center follows the Strawberry River and offers some ideal wildlife viewing opportunities. The visitor center itself houses exhibits that explain Strawberry's history and natural features. A lawn by the stream, restrooms, and plenty of parking make this a nice spot for a picnic or just a good rest break. To continue the drive, follow the paved road south past the visitor center along the reservoir shoreline. Picnic areas with parking, restrooms, tables, and access to the reservoir are available at Strawberry Bay and Haws Point. Campgrounds are also available along this drive at Strawberry Bay and Renegade Point. At the south end of the reservoir the road returns to gravel and leaves Strawberry Valley to ascend over another ridge into Willow Creek. The road continues south through the Willow Creek area and passes a historic Forest Service guard station, complete with outbuildings and a spring. Built in 1931, this is one of the few remaining intact structures of its kind.

Continuing south the road crosses over yet another ridge and begins its final descent into the left fork of White River, following this picturesque canyon along the river to US Hwy 6 near Soldier Summit. This is where the Adventure Highway leaves Wasatch County. Without retracing the drive to Strawberry, return to Heber on a loop via Highway 6, Interstate 15 past Provo, and Highway 189 through Provo Canyon.

Weather can quickly change road conditions; avoid backcountry roads during heavy rain and early spring runoff. Contact the Heber Ranger District of the Uinta National Forest at 435-654-0470, located just southeast of Heber City on US Hwy 40, for details, road conditions, and maps of this route.

Address
The Adventure Hwy
Wasatch and Uinta National Forests, UT
Phone
435-654-0470 (Main)
Length
100 mile(s)
Time to Allow
3 hours

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