If you’re looking for a quick getaway from suburban life, Highland Glen Park in Utah County is a great place to get away for a bit. It’s easy to access, has plenty to do for the entire family, and is great to visit year-round. If you’re looking to soak in a bit of nature and escape the crowds, this is one of the best nature parks in Utah County.
Where is Highland Glen Park Located?
Highland Glen Park is located just to the west of Lone Peak High School. The address of Highland Glen Park is 4800 Knight Ave, Highland Utah. It’s tucked away behind several fields and as you’re driving there, you may wonder if you’re going in the right direction. Once you hit the roundabout, head down the hill and you’ll head straight towards the park.
What Makes Highland Glen Park Special
Highland Glen Park will make you feel like you’re in the middle of the country while you’re actually right in suburbia. The location is tucked away so you’re not going to be seeing any buildings, shops, or housing while you’re at the park, which makes it feel like a great little getaway. On weekends it can get crowded, especially in the summer, but during the week, it’s never too crowded and you can almost always find plenty of space to claim as your own.
The pond of the highlight of Highland Glen Park and hanging out along the shores is always a highlight. We love that they allow non-motorized watercraft there, making it the perfect spot for kayaking or paddleboarding with kids, without worrying about the dangers from other boaters. While the water quality is somewhat questionable (read more on that below), we still think it’s a great place to splash around and play.
Fishing at Highland Glen Park Pond
One of the best highlights of coming here is the Highland Glen Park fishing pond. We didn’t bring our poles with us this time, but there are always kids fishing there and we’ve seen a lot of good-sized trout being caught in this Highland fishing pond. There is also Channel Catfish in Highland Glen Pond.
There is a limit of 2 fish per person, so keep that in mind as you’re preparing for your fishing day. There are also some largemouth bass in the pond, but they encourage anglers to release any back into the pond if they catch one to help increase the population.
Are Boats Allowed on Highland Glen Pond?
Yes, boats are allowed here, but they must be non-motorized. We’ve seen kayaks, paddleboards, row boats, and even homemade cardboard boats (that was HILARIOUS). If yu’re bringing your boat to Highland Glen Pond, there is a small boat ramp that you can back down, to help with easy loading and unloading, but there is not a lot of parking for trailers, so if you do bring a trailer, make sure it’s small and that you park it past the main parking spaces (especially on weekends when it gets more crowded there).
Can You Swim in Highland Glen Pond?
Yes, swimming is allowed, but recently there have been concerns about the water quality and microorganisms in the water. We’ve been swimming there and even with the cautionary signs, there are always people swimming there. I you do swim, make sure not to ingest the water, and the health department recommends not going underwater.
While deep-water swimming at Highland Glen isn’t the best idea, it’s perfect for letting kids play and splash around. There is even a life jacket loaner station there, though it badly needs to be restocked. We saw only one life jacket there and didn’t notice anyone wearing any of the others, so hopefully that gets resolved soon, and the life jacket loaner station gets refilled.
Facilities at Highland Glen Park
Highland Glen Park is a pretty low-key park, that’s great for just hanging out for the afternoon. It’s got lots of open space for families to play and the waterfront and trails ensure you won’t get bored while you’re there. At the park, you’ll find bathrooms, a large covered picnic pavilion, a large grassy field, several different bike trails, a playground, and a sand volleyball court.
Playground at Highland Glen Park
There’s a great playground at Highland Glen Park that our kids’ LOVE playing at. It’s got sections that are good for both older and younger kids and it’s rarely crowded. The biggest downside to the playground is that it’s separated from the pond area, so you can’t keep an eye on kids who are at the playground and the pond at the same time. There is parking at the playground area, so if you just choose to go there, it’s rarely crowded and you can park right next to it.
Beach at Highland Glen Pond
There is a beach at Highland Glen Pond, but my kids weren’t too impressed by it. I was thinking they’d want to play in the sand for over an hour, but it wasn’t that great, so they mostly just threw rocks. The sand is all imported and while there are a couple of sections that are soft and good for playing in, most of the sand has solidified and feels more like hard dirt now. While I know that it used to have more sand that was soft, it appears to have compacted or washed into the lake over the years. The sand toys that we brought didn’t even get used by the kids because the beach wasn’t really that great.
Trails at Highland Glen Park
The trails around Highland Glen Park were sour FAVORITE! There are lots of little trails (both paved and dirt) that are great for biking, walking, and exploring. There’s a nice shaded trail that goes all around the lake and is perfect for a hot day. As you’re walking around, make sure to stop and go out on the docks that jut into the lake and look for fish and enjoy the different views of the pond.
The trail system here, connects into the larger Murdock Canal Trail system that makes it easy to bike here from other areas nearby in Utah County.
Biking at Highland Glen Park
While we didn’t take our bikes on this visit to the park, we’ll absolutely take them next time. The Murdock Canal Trails make it easy to ride all over this part of Utah Valley. We also learned from a friend after we left that there is a Highland Glen bike park just to the north, so we’ll be coming here for a visit soon since the kids are all bike obsessed. The bike park is about ¼ mile north of the pond and can be reached by a paved trail on the east side of the pond. The Highland Glen bike park is just northwest of Lone Peak High School.
As you go down the hill towards the park, there’s also a trailhead to easily access the Murdock Canal Trail. You can find it by continuing south down the hill, when the road turns to the west, and there’s a trailhead parking area there.
Highland Glen Park Hours
Highland Glen Park is open from sunrise to sunset year-round. That makes for very long days that you can enjoy at the park during the summer and shorter days in the winter.
Best Time to Visit Highland Glen Park
Highland Glen Park feels like a bit of an escape from suburbia, any time of year. Summer is our favorite tie to visit since it’s great for playing in the water. However, we also think that it’s excellent in the spring and the fall as seasons change. If you’re a serious fisherman, heading there in the winter is probably one of the easiest ways to catch a fish in Utah during the winter months.
If you want to beat the summertime crowds, go during the week. If you want to visit on the weekends, mornings are less crowded, and then things get more busy around lunchtime.