Seeking Storm Window Arch
Earlier this summer, Jason and I decided on a fine Sunday to go hiking. We did a little research online and uncovered some information about Storm Window Arch in Corner Canyon. The trek to this granite gap was supposed to take 2-3 hours and seemed like it’d be a fun explorative jaunt so we opted to give it a try. The instructions on how to get there appeared relatively simple and yet…
The directions we found online for reaching this arch turned out to not be so great. We made it to the correct parking lot just fine but after we started out on our own feet things got frustrating. The instructions talked about a couple of different trails in the area and it wasn’t obvious, once we were staring them down, which one we were supposed to take. We ended up wandering in all the wrong places for over an hour even though we could see our destination unmoving above us. Blast those pointless circles! It was pretty exasperating and I’m sure there were moments when my hubby wished he had gotten lost by himself instead of with me.
Eventually, we did manage to find a route that took us to the arch. Our final climb, about 750 feet, was on a rather sketchy path that clearly doesn’t get much use. It became little more than a hint as we neared its apex. The growth on either side of this narrow track scratched my legs frequently and I came home looking like I’d buddied up with Edward Scissorhands. Still, that vague trail got us where we wanted to go.
The arch was cool but I thought the view surrounding it was more impressive. At our end point, we were cradled in the grassy crown of two valleys. The gloss of Utah Lake was visible on one side and the dense fuzz of Corner Canyon rolled away from us on the other.
It was a pretty pleasant hike, besides that whole getting lost all over the place thing. So I’m going to do my community service for the day and give those interested in going to this arch the best directions I can on how to get there. Hopefully, my instructions won’t merit the torrential downpour of cursing that those we found generated.
How to get to Storm Window Arch: I’m going to skip the directions to Corner Canyon, which is located in Draper, because you can obtain those easily online. The Orson Smith Trailhead is the Corner Canyon access point you want to use. From that parking lot take the dirt road that heads south. Unless it has been raining, most cars should be able to travel this road with slow speeds, despite its lack of asphalt. After you have been on the road for a few minutes, you will cross another road. Don’t let this intersection confuse you; just continue going the direction you have been moving on the upper road. After about a mile, you will reach a parking lot for the Bonneville Shoreline Trail. Keep driving up the road for roughly another mile past this first parking lot until you hit another parking lot. This is the parking lot for the Jacob’s Ladder Trail and for you. When we came, there was a locked gate blocking the road just past this parking lot but I’m not sure if that gate is always shut.
Finding the right trail from the parking lot is a little tricky. Do NOT take Jacob’s Ladder. Instead, find a little path on the north side of the parking lot that heads up the hill. Apparently, this used to be Movie Road, a thoroughfare created for the filming of Devil’s Brigade back in the ‘60s. It has been allowed to thin and deteriorate into a footpath over the years.
Once on Movie Road, continue following it for a few minutes until another trail crosses your path. Do not take this intersecting trail but, instead, keep moving forward down a small steep gully to a little river. (I’m not entirely sure if this river flows year round.) Cross the river and shortly thereafter, on your left, you will see an obscure track leading up the slope. It’s very indistinct so if you find yourself doubting whether it’s the right path, then you’re probably in the right place. Head on up.
As you persist to climb on this faint course, you may find several route options available. Yes, there seems to be a number of paths created in the area but, not to worry, they all appear to lead to the same place. And, luckily, your destination is obvious so you can’t get too horribly lost. On a side note, since the trails in this stretch are so unused and narrow, you will find bushes, and their coinciding scrapes, hard to avoid. I would recommend wearing pants if you don’t want your legs to look like the web of a very active and scratchy spider when all is said and done.
Once you have reached those stone outcroppings, you will find the arch somewhere in their middle section. It isn’t apparent until you’re right on it but, never fear, you’ll stumble upon it. It’s about twenty-five feet high and four feet wide. The arch is neat but the panorama from it is more spectacular in my opinion. Enjoy!