Hiking/Backpacking, Uinta Mountain Area

The Uinta Mountain area is one of America's great destinations for hiking, backpacking and horsepacking. In addition, there are many excellent hiking trails around Flaming Gorge Reservoir.

The mountains include a large wilderness area where motorized vehicles are not allowed. The High Uintas Wilderness Area includes Kings Peak and several other peaks that are the highest in Utah. Many people enjoy hiking to these summits.

The mountains are heavily forested, offering beautiful alpine meadows, lakes and streams. Many Boy Scout Troops and other youth groups hike and backpack here every summer. The mountains offer hundreds of small lakes, which are popular destinations for fishermen.

These high mountains receive heavy winter snowfall. The area starts to open up in June, but snow doesn't melt from many high passes until mid-July. Late July and August are prime times to hike and backpack here.

Fall comes early in the mountains. Snow can fall on any day of the year, and storms become cold and more frequent during September. The Wilderness Area is essentially inaccessible during winter. Outside of the wilderness area, snowmobilers are allowed to operate in some mountain canyons.

Hwy 150 provides easy access to trailheads in the western portion of the Uintas. Many trails are suitable for day hikes, offering causal hikers the chance to see small lakes and flower-filled meadows.

Overnight and multi-day backpack trips can start from trailheads all around the mountains. Popular backpacking destinations include:

  • Kings Peak
  • Granddaddy Lake
  • Red Castle Lakes
  • The Brown Duck Lake basin

In general, the farther you go the fewer people you will see. In the Uintas it is possible to do long backpack trips into very remote spots where you can find total solitude.

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