Living in the desert has certainly made me feel grateful for the bodies of water we do have. There is something restorative about being by the water, and the contrast it offers to the dry sand and rock is refreshing. Quail Creek State Park and its 600 acre reservoir in Hurricane, Utah offers the best of both worlds.
Quail Creek State Park has something for everyone. The park is open year round from dawn to dusk and maintains a mild climate and warm water. In addition to walking and hiking, individuals may enjoy boating, water sports, fishing, camping, and ATV trails. There are entrance fees for those who choose to spend time in the heart of the park, ranging from $15 for day-use (includes use of boat ramps), $10 day-use for Utah seniors 62 and $75 annual pass ($35 annual for seniors). There are various facilities at the park including a campground, restrooms, day use areas, boat ramp and docks, and a fish cleaning station. The facilities provide a welcome change for those who may not be so fond of roughing it in the outdoors.
The reservoir was built to provide irrigation and drinking water to the St. George area in the 1980s. The maximum depth of Quail Creek can reach 120 feet, so it is cold enough to sustain the stocked rainbow trout, bullhead catfish, crappie, largemouth bass, and bluegill. Most fishermen prefer to fish in the calmest waters in the morning or the evening. In addition to boating, water sports enthusiasts can enjoy water skiing, wakeboarding, paddleboarding, kayaking and jet skiing. Swimmers can play in warm, calm no-wake zones of the reservoir.
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Not everyone likes being on or in the water. Those who prefer keeping their feet on dry land can utilize the trails around the reservoir. “Quail Creek Mountain Bike Trail is an easy 3.4 mile moderately trafficked out-and-back trail. Quail Creek Overlook Trail is a moderate 4.9 mile lightly trafficked out-and-back trail. Quail Creek Reservoir Overlook is a difficult 12-mile out-and-back trail primarily used for hiking” (Quail Creek State Park, 2021). Rock art enthusiasts may traverse the East Overlook Trail searching for scattered petroglyphs. There are many images carved into the rock, continuing over onto rocks that back up to private property.
Quail Creek State Park is a beautiful, peaceful destination with a variety of different activity options. From water sports to hiking trails, there truly is something for everyone, anytime of the year. And of course, how could you beat those views?
Written by Lauren Kehoe