The upper section of East Canyon runs from East Canyon Reservoir along SR-65 up to Big Mountain Pass at the Salt Lake County line. The canyon is primarily mixed conifer and aspen forest but also contains riparian habitat, and mixed oak habitat. The main canyon portion is about 5.5 miles in length form the pass down, before opening up into a valley above the reservoir.
Upper East Canyon is most notably popular for nocturnal birding and the breeding population of FLAMMULATED OWL that are very common here from May to August. These birds can be found through the entire length of the upper section and are usually associated with the aspen habitat, or areas where the aspen mixes with conifer or oak. NORTHERN SAW-WHET, NORTHERN PYGMY, LONG-EARED, and GREAT HORNED OWLS have all been recorded here as well. Both COMMON NIGHTHAWK and COMMON POORWILL are found here with some frequency as well. During late summer in July and August, the hummingbird feeders at Hatcreek Outfitters at the mouth of Drouby Canyon (near MM 10) are very active and all 4 of Utah's northern hummers can be found including RUFOUS and CALLIOPE HUMMINGBIRDS. If you want to view the feeders ask permission and please respect the rights of the property owners. Bret Heiner owns Hatcreek and has been very accommodating to birders in the past--I suggest donating a bag of sugar, or leaving a tip if you take advantage of the great opportunity his property provides. The habitat in the canyon is like elsewhere along the Wasatch Front, so the birds are similar. DUSKY FLYCATCHER, HOUSE WREN, MOUNTAIN BLUEBIRD, VIOLET-GREEN SWALLOW, WESTERN TANAGER, CHIPPING SPARROW, YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER, RED-NAPED SAPSUCKER and RUFFED GROUSE are all seen here regularly as well.
From I-80 take exit 134 north on to SR-65 towards East Canyon. Follow this road over Big Mountain Pass. From Big Mountain Pass you drop into Upper East Canyon.