Sunday, May 18, 2014

Grandeur Peak Wasatch Mountains Utah

Another perfect day for a hike and I was interested in finding a new trail.  One of the more popular canyons in the area is Millcreek Canyon and I started to Google around, looking for a new trail.  I discovered Grandeur Peak Trail.

The parking lot for this trail is located at about 2945 S Wasatch Blvd at the junction of the 215 and highway 80.  There is limited parking here but I was lucky and nailed a spot.

This trail, from a technical standpoint is easy.  Endurance-wise - not so much.  In about 2.75 miles you will climb 3300 feet.  There isn't a lick of shade on the trail either, so bring plenty of water.  You will be sucking wind as well as water nearly from the get-go (there is a working drinking fountain in the parking lot).

What you are rewarded with are beautiful views of the entire Salt Lake Valley.  Within a short while you can easily see Antelope Island, Stansbury Island, downtown Salt Lake, the University of Utah, and all the suburbs of Salt Lake County.  Absolutely stunning.

Also, you will be able to make out all the freeways, including looking at the tiny-looking semi's that climb I-80 out of town.

This trail seemed to be filled with hikers included several ultra marathoners who were using it as a training ground.  The trail is mostly dirt with loose rocks and it is run-able but I would advice against running downhill.  It is just way too steep.  I know I had to "butt-slide" down sections of it and I ate it once and got thrown head first into a pile of bramble.

Again, bring walking sticks, shoes that have some grip and plenty of water.  Also there are two ways from the parking lot to the top of the peak.  The lesser known trail is definitely easier.  I took that one up and you just have one hard climb and the rest of it is mild.  The other trail is probably slightly shorter, but it is has no respite whatsoever.  The easier trail hugs the gully to the left while the right one hugs the ridge going straight up.  They both lead to the same place though.

Enjoy the photos:

Clean up after your dog!

Getting higher...

Looking down on I-80.

Looking down on I-80.

South Salt Lake Valley

North Salt Lake Valley

Grandeur Peak is the peak on the right

Getting higher

Looking at downtown Salt Lake

Life at about 7500 feet

You can just see Mountain Dell Reservoir in the background

Mining operations along the i-80

View of the mountains in Big Cottonwood

Even higher

Yup, I started at the base

Rocks with lichen

Tough going down

I was up on the peak in the distance, far left.

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