Utah Hike of the week: Hot Pots or Fifth Water in Utah County
Directions » From Interstate 15, exit onto U.S. Highway 6 in Spanish Fork. Go east for 23.5 miles to Sheep Creek Road, which also is labeled as Rays Valley Road. Follow the road as it winds northeast and north for 13.9 miles. The trail head has no signage but look for a pullout on the left side of the road in front of some cattle fencing with a gap wide enough for a hiker. Or set your GPS to find coordinates 40.105828, -111.290850. Mapped directions: http://goo.gl/maps/qoppY
In 2009, we hiked the eastbound trail to these hot springs. This time we went west, and it was just as great a fall hike. From the trail head, follow an old Jeep trail west across the range cow pasture. Fifth Water Creek will be on your left for the duration of the hike, but you should never cross the creek. At .75 miles, you will come to a fork. Go left into the woods, where the trail will narrow. At 1.08 miles, you’ll see your first waterfall. Another appears at 2.39 miles. That’s also about the time you begin to smell the sulphur from the hot springs a few hundred feet father up the trail. Enjoy the springs, but remember it’s uphill on the way back to the trail head.