Jardine Juniper, 26 September, 2020

Eleven hikers met for a fall hike to the Jardine Juniper.  We drove 12 miles to the trailhead and started out under mostly cloudy skies and a 20% chance of rain.  The temperature was a comfortable 66 ºF degrees as we started up the trail with high hopes of enjoying autumn colors.  Being a Saturday, the trail was somewhat busy with hikers and bikers.  All we crossed paths with were pleasant and polite which added to our sense of well being.

This trail is a constant gradual ascent and provides an interesting assortment of views, looking up the valleys at the start and then broad vistas of cliffs and more distant mountains as you approach the tree.

We observed the work in progress of the Forest Service moving the trail to follow the contour of a sidehill in order to reduce erosion problems with the current trail.  Some of the group looked at sections of the new trail and felt that it will be an improvement.

Our timing for this hike was good as the fall colors seem to be at a peak.  We enjoyed bright splashes of red and gold all along the trail, as well as an ever changing sky with a variety of cloud formations followed by sun and then clouds again.

As a bonus, Dave W. read a hikers prayer for us as we ate lunch near the tree.

Trip Summary:
  • Eleven hikers, Dave P., Kathy, Dave W. Jane, Teresa, Kris, David W., Michelle, Laurel, Susan and Brent (leader) 
  • Left the trailhead at 8:35, at the Jardine Juniper at 11:10 (where we waited for our turn on the platform). 
  • Lunch from 11:30 to 12:05 and back to the trailhead at 2:25. 
  • Temperature stayed in the mid 60's all day, but felt cooler when the wind picked up at about mile 4.
  • 10 miles with 2100 feet of ascent and descent

Thanks to Brent for the narrative and photos, Susan, Jane, and Dave P. for photos and Dave W. for photos and GPS data.

At the Wood Camp Trailhead, the start of the Old Juniper Trail
"Oldest Tree in Utah"  a new marker at the trailhead  A new signboard and announcement at the trailhead
Colors of fall (looking south about 1/2 mile from the trailhead)
Dave P. explaining how tufa is formed (mile 1.9)
At the Wilderness sign (mile 3.3)
The side trail down to the Jardine Juniper (mile 4.8)
Waiting for our turn on the viewing platform (mile 5)
Damaged sign
The informative sign at the platform has deteriorated (it was a Boy Scout project)
On the viewing platform
Jardine Juniper
The oldest Rocky Mountain juniper tree in the world, the 1500-year old Jardine Juniper
Lunch Prayer
Enjoying lunch near the old juniper
Dave W. reads "The Walkers' Prayer" from the Derbyshire Ramblers
Hikers on the trail
Colors of fall (looking south toward the trailhead)
Hiking back down the trail
Quaking aspens (Populus tremuloides) turn gold in fall
Maple leaves
Bigtooth maple, Acer granditentatum
Curl-leaf mountain mahogany, Cercocarpus ledifolius
More fall colors along the trail
Looking southeast toward the Right Hand Fork of Logan Canyon
The Sweco Trail Dozer
The bench near the Wilderness sign is broken
Our GPS track shows about 10 miles and 2100 feet of ascent and descent.
You can look at our route using Google Earth or download our GPS file..