WHAT TO KNOW BEFORE HIKING THE TALLEST MOUNTAINS IN UTAH
Utah is undeniably a country that embodies the word surprise; a desert state, Utah is surprisingly home to over 80 Prominence beautiful and in some cases unwonted Mountains each towering not less than 3,000 feet over its surrounding terrain which presents great opportunities like hiking, rock climbing, old school camping and mountain biking.
In fact referring to Utah as a giant playground should not be considered an understatement based on the fact that it is home to numerous fun sites and landscape; with five (5) impressive national parks, over forty (40) superb states park not to mention historic sites and national monuments or the impressive recreational parks, it might as well be said that Utah’s got it all. Mountains are one of nature’s most outstanding physical features and a site for tourism and camping all over the continents. This article highlights and provide background information on the top 10 tallest mountains in Utah:
Kings Peak, is regarded as the tallest mountain in Utah and is one of the most dominant mountains in the Uinta Mountain range. Standing guard at 13,534ft, it is one of the more popular destination for camping and hiking activities; this is because much of the Uinta range is not open to vehicles making it perfect for outdoor activities.
Hiking to the top of Kings Peak is easily one of the hardest activity to engage in the Uinta range although it is made a little easy by the several different routes to get to the top of the peak and the numerous trailheads on the mountain. Sites to set up camps can be found at any of the trailheads. Most of these campgrounds offers restrooms and plenty space for hikers to set up at any time they want. With the abundance of water in almost all of the basins found at the sides of the mountain, hikers can take the time to enjoy the beautiful scenery Kings Peak offers.Some of the most used trails to getting to the summit of the Peak include Henrys Fork trail, Yellowstone Creek Trail and Uinta river trail.
Wildlife activities is not that much given the peaks’ location but animals like moose might be seen albeit in some areas but spots for fishing and kayaking make up for this.
Located in the La Sal Mountains of San Juan County, the Mount Peale is the highest peak in the La Sal range standing proudly at 12,726ft offering amazing gazing of the surroundings and views of the other mountains in the range.
Owning to the fact that the Mountain is in the Manti-La Sal National Forest, only small sized camping is allowed with small stoves being preferred to camp fires. This is a precaution to prevent unnecessary fire accidents. Climbing the mountain is in fact not much of a challenge even for amateurs with no experience in hiking. Even though there are no established trail, the well-worn Burlfriends Trail – which starts beside the sign denoting Mount Peale – serves as an easy trail to begin the ascent of the mountain.
Signs of wildlife on the mountain is provided by animal trails – Mountain goats – which can be seen when navigating up the mountain.
Towering to a massive 12,316ft above sea level, Mount Waas is the highest peak on the north end of the La Sal Mountains, Utah.
Mount Waas is probably the most difficult mountain to climb in the La Sal peaks as there are no established routes to navigate. Miners Basin trail head serves as the starting point for any hiker trying to make an easy ascent. Camping is made easy as there are plenty of room from camping tent in the Miners Basin and Beaver Basin areas.
Cows and Goats might be spotted along or even on the Miners Basin trail. Beautiful flower adorn the Mountain at various points on the way to the summit.
Delano Peak is the highest peak in the Tushar Mountains located in South-Central Utah. Standing at 12,174ft, reaching the summit of the peak to enjoy the exceptionally good views of the terrain is relatively easy thanks to its well-worn though dangerous trail. The peak can be accessed all year round and hikers in winter are able to enjoy the trail with snowshoes or carry out activities like snowboarding or skiing.
Camping can be done near the Big John flat trailhead or in the meadows surrounding the route to the Big John flat or the Mahogany Cove campground. Along the trail, hikers can expect to see an abundance of wildflowers and mountain goats being the most prominent wildlife in the area.
Ibapah Peak stands tall at 12,092ft and is the tallest peak in the Deep Creek Mountain range in Utahs.’s West Desert. There is plenty of freedom for hikers is a long distance to the nearest town.
There is a 2 mile road before a hiker can have access to start on a trail but route up this road is closed to Motor vehicles and so has to be trekked. Camping is much allowed and can be done as soon as hikers find a suitable location. The CCC campground is Ibapah’s official campground but has no toilet facilities.
Wildlife is active in the peak and so, animals like pronghorns can be seen or glimpsed at some point in the hike.
A well-known peak, Bald Mountain gives hikers a bird’s eye view of the four major watershed/drainage in Utah. With a respectable height of 11,948ft, it is moderately easy to climb and is heavily hiked. The main trail to the summit is the Bald Mountain trailhead and is the most used trail by hikers both young and old.
Being the most popular peak in the Uinta Mountain eclipsed only by Kings Peak, it offers amateur hikers a tastes of what it is like to complete a hike and stand atop a summit. Camping grounds abound near the Bald Mountain especially along Highway 150 but are usually crowded because Bald Mountain is a relatively easy climb. The terrain surrounding the trails are also suitable for setting up camp.
Mount Nebo (11,933ft) is easily the tallest mountain in the Wasatch Mountain Range. With well-marked dirt roads –Mona Pole Rd – relatively easy to follow trails and well beaten paths Mount Nebo remains a destination point for many hikers.
Wildlife on Mount Nebo prominently features Mountain goats. Camping is made easy in the Bear Canyon campground with drinking water and toilet facilities provide albeit at a reasonable fee.
South Mountain towers majestically over Herriman in North Utah with a very respectable 11,822ft above sea level.
South Mountain offers great hiking experience and immersive fantastic views from its top. It even gives a glimpse of the popular Salt Lake Valley. There few routes and trails to choose from when hiking and are rated in order of their difficulty.
There is active wildlife in the South Mountain including desert critters and rattlesnakes and so careful precautions are to be taken. Camping –which can be done at the Little Cottonwood Canyons – requires driving across the valley as the terrain is now dotted with private homes.
Mount Timpanogos, home to the only true glacier in Utah, is the second tallest mountain in the Wasatch Range and has seen its own fair share of outdoor enthusiast. With three trails leading the way to the summit, and a variety of wildlife including but not limited to moose, mountain goats, Mount Timpanogos is indeed fun and beautiful to hike or climb.
Camping is mainly at the Timpooneke Campground where campers can pitch their tents to rest after the day’s activities. Climbing the mountain is a lot easier compared to the other mountains in the area and as a result many climbers prefer to reach the summit by the glacier route.
Mount Ellen Peak
Boasting a 5.6 mile out and back trail with spectacular views all around, Mount Ellen is definitely worth the effort of hiking albeit very fast to complete. As fast as it is to complete, the drive to the trail head is insanely treacherous, takes up time due to the trail being clay and should be avoided in any kind of wet weather. As it is known to render tires useless and trucks are recommended when undergoing the climb. Mount Ellen is indeed worth the hassle of driving standing at 11,527ft it is the highest point of the Henry Mountains located in the Garfield County of Utah.
Camping in the mountain is mainly at the McMillan Spring Campground with fees for sites that comes with table and fire pit. There is no restroom, but a pit toilet is available for the use of hikers in the campground. Most notable wildlife in the mountain are American bison.