Millcreek Rattlesnake Gulch Trail (Rattlesnake Gulch Trail Head to Pipe Line Overlook)

The trails around Salt Lake City are absolutely gorgeous this time of year. I was lucky enough to sneak away for a quick run with Sadie last week up Millcreek Canyon. The Rattlesnake Gulch trail is a go-to for me. I can’t tell you how many times I have been on this trail since moving to Salt Lake City. The second half of this trail is the first trail I attempted running on, rather than just hiking. It is a perfect section of trail to introduce trail running for those who are interested in trying it out.

You can find directions to the trail head here.

As you drive up Millcreek Canyon, the trail head will have a small parking strip on the left (north) side of the road. You will see a two signs on either side of the trail marking the trail head.

Trail Head Sign

The first three quarters of a mile (1.2km) up the canyon is pretty steep. I am walking, rather than actually running, most of it. There are a few spots that I can pick up speed but overall I don’t try to burn out on this first section of trail, because right after that the three quarter miles mark it levels out all the way to the overlook and this is where I can really let loose and run.

This trail is easy to follow and well marked, unlike the Bonneville Shoreline Trail (which I have written about here, here, and here – an obvious favorite).

The first sign you will encounter is beside a giant boulder jutting up next to the trail. The sign points you to a sharp turn left of this boulder

Past this point the trail will wind and switch back a bit at an easy incline. This section I was able to speed up a bit and walk/jog more than just walk.

The next sign you see will be at the top of a pretty steep incline. Don’t worry, You’ve almost made it to the flat part! There’s just one tiny hill to the left of this sign.

Congrats! The hard part is over. When you see this sign you have made it up all the hills!

Now there’s just about a mile out to the overlook. This is the section of trail that is great for running. There are only a couple of sections of loose rocks where you may want to slow down. Otherwise just keep your eye on the trail for the occasional rock or root tripping hazards.

But it will be hard to keep your eyes on the ground with all the loveliness in store on this simple little trail.

And of course I always have my trail buddy, Sadie, on any trail that allows dogs.


  • Route: Millcreek Canyon Rattlesnake Gulch Trail to Pipe Line Overlook, Out and Back
  • Distance: 3.4 miles
  • Time: 47 minutes Running and Walking, No Breaks.
  • Access Fees: $3 per vehicle per day, or $40 annual pass
  • Dogs: Dogs are allowed off leash on ODD numbered days, must be on leash on EVEN numbered days.

Happy Trails!


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