East Canyon Reservoir is a 608 acre lake sitting in East Canyon State Park, open year round. The park sits at about 5,700' in elevation in a valley/canyon in the Wasatch Mountains. The reservoir is mostly surrounded by shrubsteppe, with some cliffs, and some conifer and other habitat. SR-65 follows east side of the south leg, and the south side of the east leg, while SR-66 follows the north shore to the dam in the northwest corner. There is a campground and picnic area where a day use fee is imposed.
The reservoir is ice free usually form March through November and during spring and fall migration it is a popular birding location to look for migrating divers and waterfowl. COMMON LOON and WESTERN GREBE are both common here during migration. HORNED GREBE are seen occasionally while PACIFIC LOON is recorded almost annually. RED-THROATED LOON have been reported on multiple occasions as have RED-NECKED GREBE. Diving ducks like COMMON MERGANSER and HOODED MERGANSER can often be found, and all 3 SCOTERS and LONG-TAILED DUCK have been recorded.. BALD EAGLE are a common sight during the late fall through spring here. NORTHERN SHRIKE are infrequently encountered along SR-65. On September 10, 1981 there was a reported Parakeet Auklet. However unlikely this sounds, the observer described the birds perfectly. This unprecedented report is generally regarded as a mis-identification of a scoter, grebe, or some other waterbird--but was worth mentioning here due to its magnitude.
The reservoir can be reached from 3 different directions, via SR-65 from the south and the northeast, and from SR-66 from the northwest. The most direct route from Salt Lake is to take I-80 east bound and take exit 134 north on to SR-65 towards East Canyon. It's about 15 miles to the reservoir, on your left. This road is closed during the winter.