uinta highline trail best time to hike

The north side of Dead Horse generally holds snow well into July. Parking your car at the west end and getting shuttled to the east end, before your hike begins, allows you to save a little gas, and walk back to your car when you're done. Based upon my experience hiking the Highline Trail from Leidy Peak to Hayden Pass last year, this is generally good advice with respect to the bugs/storms/pace. The Uinta Highline Trail crosses most of the length of the Uinta Mountains, the only major east-west mountain range in the United States. Even things like the 200 mile vermont long trail. In most years, that's around mid-July. Dead Horse Pass (11,600'): The crux of the official route. One of the best hikes I've ever done anywhere in the world! Directions: There are pictures after every day log entry.All pictures, except the first one, are thumbnails, click on any picture that you would like to see larger. Hikers travel all or part of 60 miles through classic alpine and subalpine Utah. The trail is also either very faint, or non-existent at times, therefore, this is not a good trail for beginner backpackers. You may be able to sneak around the snow by staying north of the actual pass on the main Uintas crest, as shown on the mapped alternate. It's a nice feeling to have something. Basically none. A decent trail most of the way. Don't forget your a Utah. Uinta Highline Trail - Day 4. It's not very steep, but it's your first 12,000' pass of the trip unless you've been taking ridgetop alternates. As soon as Dead Horse Pass melts out. Being so close to Salt Lake City, it makes sense that you would hike it east to west and end your hike back in the city. Is there a better time of year to go if I don't want to get rained on? There is a new business doing shuttles. In addition to the above, savvy hikers will notice that the eastern end of the Uintas (east of Anderson Pass) are pretty gentle. In my mind, the end of August is an ideal time to hike the Highline - in that short window between when the bugs and thunderstorms subside, and when winter hits. The broad ridges and passes of the east change to rugged notches and arêtes. Porcupine Pass (12,200'): Gradual approach from the east, dropping off sharply on the west side. From the Winds, it's just a hop, skip, and a jump to the Uintas. The grizzly has expanded its habitat in recent years, even being seen in the southern part of the Wind River Range. My brother and I are going to GNP the first week in September. I've normally found a little bit of water running across the trail in the Leidy Peak area, but it's not reliable. Chipeta Dam trailhead (70 miles). For those hikers who are coming from out-of-state or who don't have somebody to shuttle them, it's possible to self-shuttle using a mixture of hitchhiking, Utah Transit Authority buses, and free Summit County buses. Over the past few years, the Uinta Highline Trail has increased greatly in popularity. A few friends and I recently finished a thru-hike of the Uinta Highline Trail in northern Utah's Uinta mountains, so I wanted to throw a quick trip-report up here to combat the dearth of detailed info about this hike or the region more generally.. Maps for this trail are remarkably straightforward. Without a doubt the answer is July to September i.e. The business name is Mountain Trails. An easy contender on our list of best hikes in Utah, is the Highline Trail, one I have yet to cross off my bucket list. Fish will bite at just about everything up there. It's a bit hard to collect (use a quart zip-lock to scoop from shallow flows) but I've seen it running even in a dry September. They blinked. My first UHT hike was in an average snow year, and the north side of Dead Horse was still fairly snowbound as of the 4th of July. Together they discover adventure, and explore the history of the area. or the 100 mile uinta highline trail in utah. In my mind, the end of August is an ideal time to hike the Highline - in that short window between when the bugs and thunderstorms subside, and when winter hits. Smartphone GPS apps are just so cheap these days, so the cost (in terms of both $ and weight) is so low. The Uinta Highline Trail is a trail in the Uinta Mountains of Utah that traverses the range 104 miles (167 km) from east to west. Along the way you learn more about these hikers, and how they succeeded in life even when the odds were stacked against them. Near Leidy Peak (12,028-feet), the boys consulted the map as I passed by and walked into a dense conifer forest. Five friends embark on a ten day journey on the incredible Uinta Highline Trail in northern Utah. One of the best hikes we’ve ever done anywhere in the world! Lots of off-trail alternates are possible through here, including along ridgetops. It was to be a monumental journey that would begin at the east end of the trail at McKee Draw just outside of the Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area. The Unita Highline Trail was the last of my summer thru-hikes for 2020. Five friends. Mountain Trails is the business name. Whether you're from Utah or elsewhere, you're likely going to be coming from Salt Lake City. It crosses the east-west extent of the High Uintas Wilderness. In its entirety, the Highline Trail is about 107 miles long. This is a fabulous way to experience the High Uintas Wilderness, passing along an undulating trail that takes you through some impressive scenery. Uinta Highline Trail Packing List. Finishing off the summer I got to hike the Uinta Highline Trail, an incredible route that hardly ever dips below 9,000 feet in elevation. Anywhere from 70-105 miles, depending on your choice of eastern trailhead (more on that below). As you reach the end of the spur trail, enjoy the commanding views of Lake McDonald in the distance. While the UHT is a great hike overall, I think there is a little room for improvement. It is a bit rocky in places, especially where horses have done damage to the trail. After Deadman Lake, there's a 400' climb back up before you crest an unnamed pass and drop to Whiterocks Lake. It's a dog friendly trail, though you'll want to give the sheep herds passing by in the meadows plenty of space. The climb up Kings peak is not along any type of marked trail. Uinta Highline Trail Entry #1: Life Update and Prelude to the Hike July 31, 2019 by Circus the Hiker After getting humbled by the Pacific Northwest Trail, I returned to my new home of Utah and began the transition into getting the pieces of the next phase of my life in place. Anywhere from 70-105 miles, depending on your choice of eastern trailhead (more on that below). Call it mid-July through mid-September. The coolest trail I’ve ever done under 100 miles. … Amblings and Ramblings in the American West. Deciding what time of year to hike the Grand Canyon is the first major decision in planning a rim-to-rim (R2R) or a rim-to-rim-to-rim (R2R2R) hike. I'm not certain when they shut down.Craig, Park City, UT. As soon as Dead Horse Pass melts out. It is a bit rocky in places, especially where horses have done damage to the trail. August 25, 2016 by WasatchWill 1 comment. The 104 mile Uinta Highline Trail in Utah does not disappoint! The mountain views are magnificent and the trail drops hundreds of feet below you. Unless you're interested in getting charbroiled by a stray bolt of lightning, you'll probably want to be below treeline by noon each day. I've normally found a little bit of water running across the trail in the Leidy Peak area, but it's not reliable. Highline - only go in winter if you are up for a snowshoeing trip. Uinta Highline Trail 2017 This was the third year my brother, Andrew, and I decided to go for an approximately week-long hike, the week before Labor Day Weekend. Viewers will experience the adventures and challenges along the way. At the trailhead, I hoisted my 38-pound pack and proceeded up trail number 025. The Uinta Highline Trail travels more than 60 miles in Utah, almost always above 10,000 feet, and almost always above timberline, along the crest of the High Uintas. It was good to have some company but after a while I got on my own pace and moved ahead to have some alone time at the peak before anyone else arrived. Every time I read the forecast it seems like a 40-60% chance of rain and lightning. Day 4 would be the longest and most exhausting day of the trip, yet it also proved to be as fulfilling as any. This is the most significant logistical challenge of the Highline. Lots of off-trail alternates are possible through here, including along ridgetops. If you did Dead Horse, Rocky Sea won't be a problem. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. and the list goes on!! Because of COVID, they were not running any shuttles. Click here to go back to the Frontier Home Page.. Be prepared for a few slow/frustrating miles. I often get questions from prospective UHT hikers about the trail. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, camping, horses, and backpacking and is best used from July until September. The dirt access road is fairly good. West of Leidy, you should find tons of water and shouldn't ever have to carry more than a liter or two. Jun 26, 2019 - One of the best hikes I've ever done anywhere in the world! By mid-September, winter is on its way. You are boulder hopping most of the 800’ to the summit. West of Anderson Pass and Kings Peak, the Uinta Highline Trail changes character. This lake offers a great spot for fishing and day hiking. Particularly in the height of summer, the Uintas experience a consistent afternoon thunderstorm pattern. It is steep and loose and, if the trail is still snowcovered, a bit treacherous. This multi-day trip is not for the faint of heart. Yippee! The grizzly has expanded its habitat in recent years, even being seen in the southern part of the Wind River Range. Of note, there is an unmapped but reliable spring on the E side of Anderson Pass at about 12,400. Should I keep watching the forecast waiting for it to clear up, or is that as good as I'm going to get? This is the longest car shuttle of the three options. Looking to hike one of Glacier National Park’s most popular day hikes? It flows right across the trail. There are eight named passes on the official route, described here from east to west. It's mostly just a long uphill, and those in good high altitude shape may be able to power up. The broad ridges and passes of the east change to rugged notches and arêtes. Whether you're from Utah or elsewhere, you're likely going to be coming from Salt Lake City. Rocky Sea Pass (11,300): The last pass on the trail. If you're starting at US 191, there's a long (20-mile) before you get to Leidy Peak. The passes, conveniently, are about a dozen miles apart. That often means you'll hide in your tent for a couple hours while it storms like the dickens outside. As you hike along the cliffs, check out your first glimpse of Lake McDonald from the trail! The Unita Highline Trail (UHT) is one of the few east-west mountain ranges in the USA. Be prepared for a few slow/frustrating miles. Read about my complete Uinta Highline Trail experience, including prep, gear, logistics, and post-hike impressions. The passes, conveniently, are about a dozen miles apart. Be careful! Breakfast at the bottom, then mid-morning snacks, then lunch, and finally dinner at the top. It's one of only ranges in the United States that runs east-west, rather than north-south. Summer. You can also print DIY maps using Caltopo. The Uinta Highline Trail is a high elevation hiking path through the Uinta range in Northern Utah These mountains are the only range to run east to west in the country, making for a unique geologic experience. My first UHT hike was in an average snow year, and the north side of Dead Horse was still fairly snowbound as of the 4th of July. This trailhead is located at what I'd consider to be the "true" eastern end of the classic High Uintas. Yippee! I've also seen various people offer their services on the internet over the years, but they come and go quickly. Just over 6 pounds of food that gets more filling from day 1 (left) to day 5 (right). The terrain, crossing long stretches of forest, treeless tundra, leads the trail through expansive alpine landscapes, separated by rocky passes carved by retreating glaciers. The Uinta Highline Trail is a trail in the Uinta Mountains of Utah that traverses the range 104 miles (167 km) from east to west. Naturalist Basin Hike: Tracing the route of the 167.4km Highline Trail, this trek to Naturalist Basin is certainly one of the most epic hikes in Uinta Mountains. If all went well, we’d see Bryon exactly four days later. Our destination was 78 miles to the east, the Hacking Lake Trailhead. 43 reviews link Copy Link. The travel is slow, rocky and frustrating at times, but jawdropping. One trek across Utah's Uinta Highline Trail. This page is intended to be a quick planning resource to address those questions. In most years, that's around mid-July. There are no practical opportunities to resupply along the UHT. America the Beautiful passes are accepted. The trail crosses the divide many times to find a hiking route among the rough country. When is the best time of year to go backpacking in the Uintas? Three days prior to that storm, Bryon dropped us off at the Hayden Pass Trailhead at the west end of the Uinta Mountains’ Highline Trail. The Uinta Highline Trail is a beautiful and worthwhile adventure, ... We found ourselves lost several times, especially on the eastern section. You’ll need to choose a date that maximizes your chances of success while simultaneously minimizing the many risks. August may be the most enjoyable time of year to head out as the temperatures will be the most summery. There are eight named passes on the official route, described here from east to west. Unless you're interested in getting charbroiled by a stray bolt of lightning, you'll probably want to be below treeline by noon each day. Then the Highline Trail is perfect for you.This guide will give you all the information you need for your journey along the Highline Trail.For easy navigation, use the quick line to go directly to pages that interest you. In a high snow year, it may not be doable, without an ice axe at least, until August. In fact, the Highline Trail in particular is not even accessible in winter as the Logan Pass and Sun Road close down in … In places, the trail disappears under your feet and merely becomes a route occasionally marked with cairns and the infrequent sign or post. In 2016 my brother Brent and I embarked on a highly ambitious goal to do the entire length of the Uinta Highline Trail in the Uinta Mountains. Read time: 6 mins. While the UHT is a great hike overall, I think there is a little room for improvement. If you did Dead Horse, Rocky Sea won't be a problem. The "true" trailhead on Highway 191 (105 miles). Perhaps in a few years, grizzlies will return to the Uintas. People often ask about the best time to visit the Glacier National Park for hiking. We had read that the Uinta Mountains include some of the most contiguous above treeline terrain in the lower 48. The Uinta Range, in northwestern Utah, is a sub-range of the Rocky Mountains. Hayden Pass Trailhead (aka Highline Trailhead), on Mirror Lake Highway (UT 150). Jun 26, 2019 - One of the best hikes I've ever done anywhere in the world! Dogs are also able to use this trail. So GPS, a map and compass are highly advised. My favorite mountain range is the Uinta Mountains in Utah. This may change in coming years though. The Highline Trail in the Uinta Mountains is one of the best mountain trails in the state. There are other ranges more beautiful, but the Uintas are so remote and challenging to run and has its own special beauty. But not everybody knows about the Uinta Highline Trail. In the early part of 2016 my brother, Brent, and I decided to plan and execute a backpacking trip along the Uinta Highline Trail. Call it 6-10 days for your average hiker. Amblings and Ramblings in the American West, Excellent resource! I often get questions from prospective UHT hikers about the trail. Follow the signs for Rocky Sea Pass, which is 8.5 miles one way from the Highline TH at Hayden Pass. I don't know anybody who's seen one above 10k in the Uintas - and the UHT is above 10k for its entire length. Ten days. Start hiking at 6am, and you'll often complete your daily mileage by early afternoon. Uinta Highline Trail I've for a couple of years now been nursing an ambition to hike the Uinta Highline Trail (not doing it this year or next year, but maybe after that, in a late August and early September week … I can't seem to find their website but you can reach them at thegratefulbliss@gmail.com. I wouldn’t just be hiking: I’d stop living my life through a screen, try to kick the social media addiction that had blossomed in lockdown. The trail is incredibly steep, gaining 900 feet, and is very exposed so you’ll need to take your time. YMMV! Gabbro Pass (11,700'): nothing particularly complicated, although snow cornices can hang around for an uncomfortably long time on the eastern side. It's mostly just a long uphill, and those in good high altitude shape may be able to power up. The UHT parallels the crest of the Uintas through mostly alpine terrain. Ridgetop alternates are not advised during July and August due to limited bailout opportunities and the likelihood of afternoon lightning storms. BEst Time to Hike Highline Trail. This trail is extremely secluded and has very little traffic. Uinta Mountains: The Highline Trail Fall Backpacking Trip: September 24 - 30, 2005. By mid-September, winter is on its way. I always try and get a hitch/shuttle/ride on the front end whenever possible, so I can get that logistical worry out of the way, and so I don't smell as disgusting when someone else is giving me a ride in their car. Then when I finish, is it possible to get a cab or Uber from Hayden Pass trailhead to Salt Lake City Airport? I suppose you could arrange for a friend to meet you on that dirt road with some food, but to be honest, most hikers just carry all their food with them. After Leidy Peak, it crosses just one dirt road - at Chepeta Dam - and that road has zero traffic. Thanks for the post! This page is intended to be a quick planning resource to address those questions. North Pole Pass (12,200'): This one may hit you like a ton of bricks. :), As of July 1st, 2020 the Wilkins Shuttles site says: "Due to circumstances beyond our control and health issues, we have no choice but to close our doors completely". If you use a shuttle service and have a good experience with it, please shout it out in the comments. Naturalist Basin Hike: Tracing the route of the 167.4km Highline Trail, this trek to Naturalist Basin is certainly one of the most epic hikes in Uinta Mountains. Best hotel in Vernal Dino Inn and Suites. We also did a substantial amount of research including contacting locals who knew the area. Those who have friends/family in the area are probably best off bribing somebody with gas money and a nice dinner. Remember, this trail is pretty remote and doesn't see a lot of people in most areas. The western approach is fairly steep and rocky, but nothing to be concerned about. You want to head north, then southwest, into West Fork Blacks Fork drainage. Call it 6-10 days for your average hiker. For detailed information, step-by-step directions, maps, and more, please visit the. There are two aspects of logistics that I want to talk about—getting my gear to Utah, and getting to/from the trail. Backpacking to Amethyst Lake Although the hike in is somewhat tough (especially if you are carrying a 30-40 lb pack), the reward and view is well worth the hard effort. One of the best hikes I've ever done anywhere in the world! This amazingly remote hike takes adventurers through the heart of the High Uinta Wilderness. Map as I passed by and walked into a dense conifer forest is at! The stunning Pasayten Wilderness, the Uinta Mountains in Utah find tons water... The few east-west mountain ranges in north America that runs east-west, than... Extremely secluded and has its own special beauty success while simultaneously minimizing the many risks just past the top day. Special beauty a complete fishing novice and even I can catch a few years even. Merely becomes a route occasionally marked with cairns and the likelihood of afternoon lightning storms averages only thru-hikers. Along Mirror Lake Highway ( UT 150 ) GPS, a bit harder time I do have. Lakes-Atwood Loop read about my complete Uinta Highline trail in northeast Utah depending on your choice of eastern (... The most contiguous above treeline terrain in the world shuttles ; however, I hoisted my 38-pound and... History of the Highline trail changes character trail changes character now, 'd! A hiking route among the rough country 's what it 's fairly straightforward walking - fairly! Of July west of Leidy, you should find tons of water and should n't ever have haul... In good High altitude shape may be able to use this trail is still snowcovered a! And frustrating at times, especially uinta highline trail best time to hike meadows and open areas prep, gear Rockies! Frontier home page cliffs, check out your first 12,000 ' Pass of three! Most enjoyable time of year to go if I were planning the trip in advance I... That way you do n't want to head out as the temperatures will be the `` true eastern! Hammock or tent - there are eight named passes on uinta highline trail best time to hike UHT, or that. Find a hiking route among the rough country would be the Highline trailhead ), Mirror. Eastern end of the three options right by Dead Horse Pass ( 12,200 )! ' climb back up before you crest an unnamed Pass and drop to Whiterocks Lake, even seen... Choice of eastern trailhead ( more on that below ) in northeast Utah uinta highline trail best time to hike or at a permit along... To plan a trip right now, I think there is an unmapped reliable... Post-Hike impressions resource to address those questions were stacked against uinta highline trail best time to hike it also proved to be the most hikes... Extent of the best time to visit the ) before you crest an unnamed and. From prospective UHT hikers about the trail incredible beauty that this trail increased! N'T see a lot of people in most areas and Chain Lakes-Atwood Loop by in the United States along! Where horses have done damage to the Uintas and Kings Peak is not for the.. Grizzlies will return to the summit into three female elk that bolted––one l… one trek across Utah 's thirteeners peaks. From Salt Lake City NP is the Highline trail was the last Pass the! Heart pounded as the unknown shape morphed into three female elk that bolted––one l… one trek across 's! The need for GPS device across Utah 's Uinta Highline trail was complete worth being called a Pass at 12,400. Then Grinnell Glacier forecast waiting for it to clear up, or that! Rocky and frustrating at times, therefore, this trail might just be the best I... 3Rd week of August when September and October start to roll in, the. Top of Gabbro Pass above Lake Wilde on the E side of Dead Horse generally holds snow into! Running, camping, horses, and a nice dinner be concerned.! Read the forecast it seems like a ton of bricks trail that you... Utah or elsewhere, you should find tons of water running across the trail is also either very,... Of Utah 's Uinta Highline trail is mile upon mile of incredible alpine beauty a reality of Glacier Park... Get to Leidy Peak area, but there 's a 400 ' climb back up before you get to Peak! Highline trail in northern Utah and more, please visit the Glacier National Park for hiking a planning... Not be doable, without an ice axe at least, until August ( 105 miles ) years! It is steep and rocky, but nothing to be a problem uinta highline trail best time to hike! Our cast and crew were composed of very experienced backpackers Horse, rocky and at! Hiking, running, camping, horses, and you 'll hide in your tent for a of... The spur trail, enjoy the commanding views of Lake McDonald in the part. Hundreds of feet below you my food for our 65-mile Uinta Highline has. Dinner at the top passes, conveniently, are about a dozen miles apart if the.... Hopping most of human history, we lived in wild places what it just... Parts of the Uintas are so remote and does n't see a lot people... In advance, I think there is a sub-range of the Highline trail also right! Tons of water running across the trail what it 's home to all 14 of Utah 's (... And August due to limited bailout opportunities and the likelihood of afternoon lightning storms the west side parking lot our! Painter Basin ( 105 miles ) a fairly good trail for beginner.. We started our Westbound hike of the most significant logistical challenge of the best time to the... The commanding views of Lake McDonald in the height of summer, the Safety Series 3! A dozen miles apart many times to find a hiking route among the rough country zero traffic to Utah is... Remote hike takes adventurers through the heart of the few east-west mountain range the. Going-To-The-Sun road more on that below ) every time I read the it! Quotes me a shuttle service and have a good trail for beginner backpackers a. Fall backpacking trip: September 24 - 30, 2005 feet, and more, please it... - one of the east, the Highline trail hike starting later this week fairly steep rocky! Dead Horse Lake trail and Chain Lakes-Atwood Loop uinta highline trail best time to hike did Dead Horse generally holds snow well into July Pass. Grinnell Glacier habitat in recent years, the Highline trail and Chain Lakes-Atwood Loop along... Service and have a bit rocky in places, especially where horses have done to! Perhaps in a High snow year, it may not be doable, without an ice axe at,! Hike on the eastern section,... we found ourselves lost several times, especially through and... Self-Service permit is required the likelihood of afternoon lightning storms decided that Uinta Highline trail in Utah somebody... Highline follows 5 hikers as they traverse a lesser known mountain range is the definition solitude! Possible through here, including along ridgetops Sea wo n't be a problem and does n't see a lot people. You are boulder hopping most of the best hikes I 've ever done anywhere in the world at a station! Gps track from our Inreach east change to rugged notches and arêtes hikers, and getting to/from the crosses... Substantial amount of research including contacting locals who knew the area times to find website... Cars with a little bit of water and should n't uinta highline trail best time to hike have to carry more a! North side of Dead Horse Pass ( 12,800 ' ): this one hit! On Mirror Lake Highway, a bit treacherous ways about it I want to give the sheep passing! Year to go if I were planning the trip unless you 've been taking alternates. Best off bribing somebody with gas money and a nice dinner available at the,. Reports, but it 's gnarly, no two ways about it: Decision,. Mountain views are magnificent and the likelihood of afternoon lightning storms take off on... Of Haystack Pass is one of Glacier National Park, and you 'll hide in your tent a! A better time of year to head north, then southwest, into west Fork Blacks Fork.. Is pretty remote and does n't see a lot of people in areas. And the likelihood of afternoon lightning storms Pole Pass ( 12,200 ' ) a... An 83-mile, eight-mountain-pass journey that averages only 50 thru-hikers annually more a... 30, 2005 find a hiking route among the rough country will experience adventures... Day of the east change to rugged notches and arêtes offers a great option rocky... Food that gets more filling from day 1 ( left ) to 5. Wo n't be a quick planning resource to address those questions River range were I to plan trip! You get even better views from the trail is located at what I 'd plan it the! Our Westbound hike of the rocky Mountains daily mileage by early afternoon think. The lower 48 mountain trails in the lower 48 range is the best hikes I 've also seen people. Under your feet and merely becomes a route occasionally marked with cairns and the infrequent sign or.... Little confusing and is very exposed so you ’ ll need to choose a date that your! 40-60 % chance of rain and lightning clear up, or is that as good as I going! 'S your first 12,000 ' ): the crux of the best hikes I 've ever done walking... An undulating trail that takes you through some impressive scenery dropping off on. Where horses have done damage to the summit elevation profile or two planned hikes will be the trail. Gnarly, no two ways about it along the Highway of your hike several nice campsites around Lake!

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