Early Spring Conditions On The Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest

Contact(s): Kathy Jo Pollock 801-558-8016

Even though temperatures and spring like conditions exist in the valleys, it’s still winter in the mountains. The Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest reminds forest users that most forest roads and trails are still closed to motorized vehicles other than over-the-snow vehicles, where there is enough snow to protect road surfaces.  The recent warm weather and rain has opened up previously snow covered areas, where soil moisture is high.  Motor vehicle use in these wet areas will cause extreme damage to roads and trails.  Public access, on the side of Forest Service gates is there to allow only snow machines use of the trail/road during the winter season.

Summer travel is still several months away.  On the forest, the summer travel usually begins around the end of May at most low elevation areas, depending on weather and soil conditions.  Summer travel opportunities are defined as “when local conditions become suitable to support wheeled vehicle traffic on designated roads and trails without causing resource damage until the beginning of the snow season in the fall when local conditions prevent travel on designated roads and trails by wheeled vehicles”.  The definition of “resource damage” includes “rutting on road and trail, or other surfaces by any type of vehicle during wet or muddy conditions, damaging any type of fish or wildlife habitat, or harassing any wildlife.”  The resulting resource damage can also degrade water quality.

For the most current updates call your local Forest Service office, or visit https://www.fs.usda.gov/uwcnf

photos of lower portion of South Willow Canyon road
Photos of lower portion of South Willow Canyon road

Photos of lower portion of South Willow Canyon road