Harker Canyon (Tooele County, Utah)

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Approaching Harker Canyon

Harker Canyon is located 10 km (6.2 mi) south of the town of Vernon, in Tooele County, Utah, USA. The canyon is oriented east-west on the southern side of the Sheeprock Mountains, a small mountain group in the larger Wasatch Range.[1] The canyon is entirely encompassed by the boundaries of the Wasatch-Cache National Forest, and is accessible from Harker Road by a forest road designated NF 586. There are many abandoned mines in the canyon. Bird watching and horseback riding are popular recreational activities in the canyon.

History[edit]

Harker Canyon has been extensively mined for hard minerals. Artifacts of a ghost town and abandoned mining operations below a natural spring remain. Management of the old mines is assigned to the Vernon Sheeprocks Project, a joint project managed by the United States Forest Service, the United States Department of Agriculture, the United States Department of the Interior, and the Utah Department of Natural Resources. In a report issued in January, 2005, Harker Canyon was singled out as having the highest concentrations of heavy metals in its groundwater of any sampled area in the Sheeprock Mountains.[2] Harker Canyon is located in the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources Wildlife Management Unit 19B.[3]

Geography[edit]

Harker Canyon is about 5.0 km (3.1 mi) long. The road entrance to the canyon at its eastern end is at approximately 1,900 m (6,300 ft) elevation, and the top of the canyon at its western end is at about 2,700 m (8,800 ft) elevation above sea level. A natural spring can be found in the canyon at 2,255 m (7,400 ft) elevation, which flows into Harker Creek. Vegetation in the canyon is principally a pinyon-juniper woodland.

References[edit]

  1. ^ United States Geological Survey (2007). "Feature Detail Report: Harker Canyon". Geographic Names Information System. Retrieved July 23, 2007.
  2. ^ Rohrer, J. Chirs and Resare, Duane (2005). Environmental Assessment: Vernon Sheeprocks Project. U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Department of the Interior, State of Utah Department of Natural Resources. January, 2005. p. 22.
  3. ^ Utah Division of Wildlife Resources (2006). "Wildlife Management Unit 19B - West Desert, Vernon". Utah Big Game Range Trend Studies. Retrieved Aug. 16, 2006.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 39°59′27″N 112°28′20″W / 39.9908°N 112.4722°W / 39.9908; -112.4722