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Farmington Flats Loop

The Farmington Flats Loop is an easy ride with beautiful views. The surface is rocky dirt road. There's a bit of slightly-stiff climbing in the first half-mile (either way you ride), but total elevation gain is only 450 feet. Starting altitude is 7250 ft. The loop itself is 5.3 miles.

View over the Flats, towards Francis Peak. Photos September 12, 2002 by Bruce.

This is a great family ride, if the kids are reasonable riders who've graduated from training wheels. There's a bit of slope at first, but then it's easy cruising.

Stronger riders can make this loop harder by adding the climb up Farmington Canyon. If started at the Bench Road trailhead, the climb will be 3000 vertical feet, and the total distance 19.9 miles. This is a worthy ride. Still not enough? Go past the fork and climb up Bountiful Peak, then turn around and hit the loop on the way back. This will be 27.7 miles and about 4600 feet of climbing!

The loop road meanders through meadows and forest of aspen and fir. Brush includes bitterbrush, currant, choke cherry, and elderberry. In July, the open areas are a riot of wildflowers. 

Riding counterclockwise, you leave dense forest after about a mile, curving around the right side of a large, long meadow with frequent groves of trees. As you curve back towards your starting point, you'll climb a bit above the meadow, and begin to appreciate great views of the mountains.

Looking up the road at the beginning of the loop, we've got a bit of slope here.

The loop isn't hard to navigate. Major forks in the road have signs, and spurs usually don't look much like the main road. Just stick on what looks like the "main drag," and you'll be fine. If you're climbing Farmington Canyon to do the loop, you'll reach the fork at mile 7.3 from the Bench Road.

On the northern side of the loop, the views to the south are impressive.

Ride Notes, counterclockwise loop:
0.0  At the fork, go right (southwest)
       N 40 59.235' W 111 47.986'
0.6  Fork L (R = Skyline Drive)
       N 40 58.863' W 111 48.264'
       Campground on R just past fork
1.8  Keep right on more traveled road
2.2 to 2.4  Multiple forks, keep straight
       Curve around to N, opposite side of valley
3.8  Note view of Ogden Valley to R
4.5  Fork at maintenance shed, go L downhill
5.3 back at original fork

Typical view along much of the loop: meadows, scattered groves of aspen.

Getting there:  Exit I-15 in Farmington. Get to the corner of 600 North and 100 East. (The most direct route there was blocked by construction at the time of my visit 9/02.) Turn north (left if you're going up the hill) on 100 East. Keep right at the fork.

To climb Farmington Canyon before doing the loop, park on the left just past the fork (trail information sign) GPS N 40 59.808' W 111 53.060', in the parking area just off the Bench Road 0.4 miles later, or where the pavement ends at 1 mile past the fork.

To ride the loop, drive about 7.5 miles up the canyon to a broad fork in the road, with a gate (usually open) on each road. GPS N 40 59.235' W 111 47.986'. Park here, and start uphill either direction.
Riding resources for this trail:
Single-page riding guide
GPS track files and route (right-click and "Save as..."):
   Garmin     National Geographic     Google Earth     GPX
Medium-res topo map:  View
Lodging, camping, shops:   Links to Ogden area resources

Copyright 2002 Mad Scientist Software Inc