Provo Canyon, Utah 2020

Provo Canyon is located in Wasatch County, Utah. Bridal Veil Falls, Sundance Mountain Resort, Alpine Loop Scenic Byway, Squaw Peak, and the Provo River are all accessible via Provo Canyon. This canyon exemplifies the majesty of the Wasatch Range and, in particular, the magnificence of Mount Timpanogos. This 28-mile route winds through the vast and beautiful Provo Canyon, whose twisting rock faces and jagged rock formations hint at the dramatic energies of an earlier era. The canyon is well known for its scenic features and useful properties. Between the lowlands east and west of the Wasatch Mountain Range, Provo Canyon was used as a transportation route.

Provo Canyon Geography

Road through the Provo Canyon near Salt Lake City

Between Mount Timpanogos to the north and Mount Cascade to the south is Provo Canyon. From Heber Valley to the Provo/Orem area, Provo Canyon is approximately 24 miles long. It connects Heber Valley to Utah County as a main road and is open year-round. The reservoir, which has a maximum depth of 120 feet and an area of ​​150,000 acre-feet, is seven miles long and three-quarters of a mile wide when full. The Provo River, whose sources are in the Uinta Mountains, serves as the main source of water for the Deer Creek Reservoir.

Provo Canyon Geology

The history of this magnificent canyon stretches from the Precambrian (about 700 million years ago) to the Wasatch Fault and Lake Bonneville, which at its peak about 18,000 years ago covered much of from western Utah. Visitors can make out the features well and piece together the canyon’s past thanks to the excellent rock exposures. The Mineral Fork Tillite glacial deposits are the oldest rocks. A substantial layer of Cambrian to Permian Paleozoic rocks, all deformed into an asymmetric, overturned fold during the Sevier Orogeny, a mountain-building event that occurred between 140 and 50 million years ago, lies above the tillite. At the entrance to the canyon, now cut by a recent alluvial fan, are the deposits of the Provo and Bonneville levels of Lac Bonneville. The upper parts of the canyon were carved out by glaciers in the Pleistocene. Excellent exposures of structures related to the Wasatch Fault are also seen at the entrance to the canyon.


Provo experiences hot, dry, largely clear summers and cold, snowy, and partly cloudy winters. The average annual temperature ranges between 20°F and 90°F, rarely falling below 7°F or exceeding 97°F. Late June to early September is the perfect time of year to visit Provo for warm weather activities. Provo often experiences its first winter snowfall in November. However, it is not uncommon for snow to start falling in October. The last snowfall of the season often occurs around April. But between March and May, it can stop snowing at any time. The months of June to September are often snowless. With an average increase of 30°C and a minimum of 18°C, July is the hottest month of the year, and with an average decrease of 20°F and a maximum of 35°F, January is the hottest month. coldest of the year. .

Wildlife in Provo Canyon

deer in the provo canyon
A deer in the Provo Canyon forest.

Provo Canyon is home to a huge diversity of animals in a very small area. This area is home to big horn sheep, black bears, bobcats, coyotes, elk, moose, mountain goats, cougars and mule deer. The Provo River in Utah is a world-class, self-contained brown trout fishery where all brown trout spawn naturally without being stocked. The upper reaches also contain rainbow trout, cutthroat trout and even brook trout.

Brief History of Provo Canyon

The Provo Canyon Guard Quarters, one of only three existing fortifications built by the Mormons during the Utah War to defend against the impending U.S. Army assault, was built in 1857-1858 and is historically significant . The parapet at Provo Canyon was the smallest fortification used during the Utah War, and due to its location it was least likely to be used to defend against an army. There were ten men assigned to the service. The circular parapet had a commanding view of the canyon and was located on a prominent elevation on the north side of the canyon, directly across from Bridal Veil Falls. Because Johnston’s army chose not to descend Provo Canyon and because the war did not fully materialize, the guard quarters were never involved in any of the actual events of the conflict. In addition to its involvement in the Utah War, Provo Canyon’s guard quarters were also used as a lookout post to track the Indians as they ascended and descended the canyon.

Attractions in Provo Canyon

Viviane Park

Historic Vivian Park has been a feature of Provo Canyon almost since the beginning of settlement in the Utah Valley. In an 1888 land patent, William Ferguson received the first deed to this area. To provide visitors to the canyon with a comfortable rest and dining area, Ferguson started what came to be known as “Billy’s Place”. The area was promoted as a getaway destination at the turn of the 20th century after changing ownership. Shacks were built and the area quickly filled with various forms of entertainment, including a dance hall with live music, excellent restaurants and a boat rental business. Vivian Park was designated a Utah County public park in 1974.

Sundance Mountain Resort

    View from a ski lift at Sundance Ski Resort on a beautiful sunny winter day in Utah.
View from a ski lift at Sundance Ski Resort on a beautiful sunny winter day in Utah.

Summer guests at this well-known year-round luxury mountain resort can take part in zip line tours, biking, hiking, beautiful chairlift rides, horseback riding, fishing, art workshops, outdoor summer performances and concerts. With a vertical drop of 2,150 feet, the winters offer a uniquely tight-knit experience for all levels of skiers and snowboarders.

Falls of the bridal veil

The bride's veil falls
Bridal Veil Falls in Provo Canyon.

Natural waterfall Bridal Veil Falls is located in scenic Provo Canyon. It is easily accessible by a path that leads to the parking lot. Although access may be restricted in winter due to snow, the trail to the falls is open year-round. Bridal Veil Falls Park offers grassy picnic areas, plenty of parking (in a few parking lots), and picnic tables with grills. Bridal Veil Falls can be reached quickly along the paved Provo River Parkway from Bridal Veil Park, which is near the Provo River. The Bridal Veil Falls Tram has been permanently closed. It stopped working in 1996 after being destroyed by an avalanche.

In addition to Provo’s attractions, the canyon is an excellent outdoor research center. Due to the canyon’s unique geology, biology, and plants, scientists and students have known and examined it for a long time. Climbers, hikers and other nature lovers also enjoy it as a destination. Visitors can find everything they need near the mouth of the canyon, including parking, bathrooms, a lecture hall, and a covered tent with picnic tables.

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