Jardine Juniper, 18 June, 2023

A group of 11 hikers made the journey to the Jardine Juniper, the oldest known Rocky Mountain juniper. It is estimated to be 1,500 years old, and still has a cluster of live branches near the top.

We encountered numerous hikers and mountain bikers at the trailhead and throughout the day. About 1.4 miles into the hike, a new bridge installed in 2021 allowed hikers and bikers to safely cross a seasonal stream that was flowing at an unusually high rate. Along the trail, we were able to view other peaks, including Mt. Elmer, Beirdneau Peak, and Logan Peak. After reaching and spending some time at the ancient tree, we ate our lunch at a point above the tree overlooking Cottonwood Canyon.

The entire landscape, from lower/mid elevation sagebrush, juniper and aspen communities to higher elevation mixed conifer, had a lush, green appearance due to weeks of spring rain and cool temperatures. Several shrubs and forbs were in bloom, including chokecherry, serviceberry, bitterbrush, snowberry, snowbrush, Oregon grape, arrowleaf and cutleaf balsamroot, low larkspur, death camas, sticky geranium, waterleaf, Solomon’s seal, penstemons, woodland strawberry, woodland star, western clematis, northern sweetvetch, Jacob’s ladder, green gentian, mountain dandelion, western wallflower, meadowrue, heartleaf arnica and leopard lily.

Trip Summary:
  • Eleven participants: Ralph, Dave P., Brent L., Jane, Dan, Deana, Brent J., Eugene, Michelle, Dave W., and Chris (leader)
  • Drove 11 miles to Wood Camp Trailhead in Logan Canyon
  • Started hiking at 8:45; ate lunch 12:00-12:30; returned to trailhead by 3:00
  • Cloudy skies; somewhat windy with occasional gusts; one short period of intermittent rain; cool temperatures
  • Hiked about 10.5 miles with about 2,000 feet elevation gain

Thanks to Chris for the narrative and photos, Jane, Michelle, Dan, and Dave P. for photos and Ralph for photos and GPS data.

The Wood Camp Trailhead

The new bridge
A new sign
On the trail

The old Jardine Juniper


Southwest view toward Logan Peak and Beirdneau Peak
East view toward Temple Peak

Northwest view toward Mt. Elmer
Hiking back on the "Shady" trail

Ron Auger of the Backcountry Horsemen has been here with his chainsaw

Leopard lily
Green gentian

Miners in Salt Lake's Little Cottonwood Canyon called green gentian the "iron blossom", now the basis for the logo of the Iron Blosam lodge and ski shop at Snowbird

Heartleaf arnica
Cutleaf balsamroot

Arrowleaf balsamroot

Northern sweetvetch

Jacob's ladder


Western blue clematis
Meadowrue (female)

Our GPS track shows about 10.5 miles and 2000 feet of ascent.
You can look at our route using Google Earth or download our GPS file.