Ponderosa pine-rimmed mountain meadows, good views of Steeple Creek and Grant Creek, and access to a clear forest stream provide the major attraction for this trail.
As with all Wilderness and Primitive Area trails, # 74 is open to hiking and horse use, but all types of motorized and mechanized travel are prohibited.
As you wander through the varied forest landscape, you'll also get a good look at several of the different habitats that form just part of the broad diversity for which the Blue Area is well known.
Leaving Grant Creek, the trail passes near Moonshine Park, another green meadow shaded by ponderosa. Along this stretch, gaps in the trees along the trail provide good views of Steeple Creek and Grant Creek Canyons, as well as Bear Mountain to the east. The trail then drops through stands of pinyon-juniper and scrub oak into Steeple Creek. Along this intermittent stream, riparian species include a good population of big-toothed maple. Though small and unassuming, those wispy saplings make Steeple Creek a colorful place to visit in the fall when the maples color the canyon's inner reaches with brilliant hues of pink and red.
0.0 Paradise Park, a ponderosa pine flat
0.5 Contours around a pine and fern basin
1.7 Crosses Grant Creek. Junction with Upper Grant Creek Trail (# 65)
2.2 Passes 150 yards to the east of Moonshine Park
4.2 Junction with Steeple Trail (# 73)
USGS Maps: Beaverhead, Bear Mountain, Strayhorse
At a Glance
May through October
No mechanized vehicles (including mountain bikes) permitted in Primitive Area
Paradise Trail is accessible only from other backcountry trails including Grant Creek Trail (# 75), Upper Grant Creek Trail (# 65) and Steeple Trail (# 73). The easiest route is via Grant Creek Trail. Drive south out of Alpine on Us 191. Just south of Hannagan Meadow turn left (east) to the Steeple Trailhead. Hike the Foote Creek Trail (# 76) 3.5 miles to Grant Creek Trail (# 75). Follow trail # 75 about 2.4 miles to its junction with Paradise Trail (# 74).
An alternative, shorter- though steeper- route is via the P-Bar Lake Trail (# 326) . Follow the P-Bar Lake Trail .6 mile fromt he P-Bar Trailhead to the Grant Creek Trail and to the junction with the Paradise Trail.