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hiking
22 days ago

Hiked up Thaynes canyon and then turned onto Desolation. Thaynes Canyon is very shaded given that it is north facing plus the fact that you are going up the gut of the canyon so the steep mountain ridges and trees acts as a canopy. It is not the most entertaining hike because there are no views on the way up plus it is a pretty steep climb for 2 miles. Once you get above 8000 feet - the views improve as you look North at Grandeur and Mt. Aire. The finally push up the summit of Thaynes Peak is very, very steep. You gain 700 feet in about 1/4 mile but it is not technical (no scrambling required). The views at the peak are solid with views of SLC, Grandeur, Mt Aire, Gobblers and Mt Raymond. It was about 6 miles round trip.

I did this a couple years ago and it was gorgeous!!

Anyone know if we can still hike it now in October?? I know it says best through September but does that mean it’s closed off?

This trail was moderate, the only thing that made it difficult was the snow/ice. You end up sliding all over on the steep climbs because it’s so iced over. Pretty views all the way up and covered in shade. I would love to do this hike in the summer months so it’s not so cold. We did the loop up Thayne’s and down Desolation. Once we started our descent, we came across a fairly large black bear just off the trail-so watch out. Really cool to see him from a distance though. Would recommend to friends

Went in on September 28. Really windy. Great spot at the lower lake. Didn’t see the bear, but at 6 pm Saturday night a forest fire to west threatened to blow in. Got the heck out through smoke and darkness. Check the fire conditions before you go!

Went in July. Snowpack was very light and the views were amazing!

Awesome backcountry camping!

What an amazing hike! We had a late start and set up camp the fist night at about 5pm. We found a great area at about 300ft from the trail. on day two we reached Lower Red Lake. it was beautil. we set up camp the second night just by the lake at about 400ft from the trail. After we had fallen asleep, we woke up to a bear circling our tent, ended up leaving maybe after half hour. Talking about being scared!! we had our food on a bear proof container and inside a smell prood bag away from the tent. the scenary on this trail is breathtaking. the switchbacks are long so it makes the elevation gain easy. the hike was overall challenging for us (we come from.florida). def will do it again.

This hike is rated as moderate, but it was very easy. There is hardly any elevation gain and the switchbacks are long making what little you have to gain a breeze. Plenty of water along the trail to filter, or for your dog to drink. As noted by the previous review, lower red castle lake is picturesque but definitely not pristine. We camped in the site with the heart shaped rock. It was nice until we noticed all the human waste that was not properly buried. We had set up our tent not realizing till the next morning how close it was to utter grossness. Leave no trace is important. If your not sure what this requires look it up and please respect our wilderness.

Scenery and setting are truly spectacular. Really a photogenic place. But you’ve gotta embrace the poop smeared toilet paper fluttering in the wind, fire rings...everywhere, footpaths through delicate alpine meadows...and dogs barking at sunrise. Pristine? Not so much. Leave no trace? What’s that?

Awesome hike. Beautiful scenery. But the fire in Spanish fork canyon smoked me and several other groups out. We left before our original departure date because it was raining ash. Fire is over 100 miles away.

camping
2 months ago

Loved this hike. Camped at Ostler lake, and hiked to Amethyst the next day. The scenery was spectacular. I agree it was well over 11.7 miles. From the bottom, to Ostler we clocked 6.5 miles. The next day it was about 1.7 miles to Amethyst Lake which was spectacular. Definitely worth the trip.

Spent three days. Hiked toward the end of lower lake ~10 miles in about 5.5 hours. Lots of horses and horse dung. Don’t fret if you don’t find camping before the end of lower lake. There are a few spots in the woods past it as well as on the opposite side of the lake. Labor day weekend had tons of other people. By the time we hiked out sunday, the parking lot was overflowing with cars. Lows were about 30-35. One person claimed their thermometer said 28. Very rocky at some points in the trail. I’m not currently in running shape but I wouldnt deem it a difficult hike. There are only a few times that really feel like you’re hiking up. Upper red is worth the extra couple miles. Saw over half of a dozen moose.

hiking
2 months ago

Nice hike, but a long day trip. I agree with the prevailing sentiment that it is absolutely 13 miles, not 11.7. I was actually trying to go to Kermsuh lake, but went left when I should have gone straight. I didn't see any signs, but I have screwed up before. For the last mile, I am not sure what is represented by the track shown here on AllTrails. Any trail matching that track is very subtle. The obvious main trail brings you right by the small, unnamed triangular-shaped lake at about 5.5 miles. There are well constructed campsites here, and then it is another mile and some significant additional elevation to Amythest Lake.

The whole hike is scenic, passing through forests, meadows and along a running stream with waterfalls. The lake is absolutely beautiful. No mosquitos at all right now. The elevation gain comes in fits and spurts, with parts that seem almost flat and other parts that are strenuous. The first 2.5 miles from Christmas Meadows requires some care to avoid mud in places and is lots of up and down, which is fine at the start, but a drag when you are coming back at the end. There is a sign at the trailhead warning that the trail is obstructed by downed trees. Not to worry, because the trail elves have cleaned them all up, bless their souls.

I don't think there is a clear trail to Osler Lake, but it might be fun to find it another time. People climb up to Osler Peak from there, which looks to be an adventure way beyond my comfort level.

hiking
2 months ago

One of the prettiest places I've ever been. fairly easy hike with some steep areas, but nothing to be afraid of. When I went their were tons of mosquitos. The fishing is good if you have the patience for them. overall, I would recommend this as one of the best places to go in the US.

So many gorgeous lakes and rugged mountain peaks, making these climbs absolutely worth it. Awesome great dispersed camping all the way up to Lonesome Lake.

Went over labor day so it was super busy. Still got a decent spot tho. Temps get low enough for frost and the lake to start icing so pack warm clothes. Overall a challenging backpack but with a killer payoff!!!

For the Uintas this is one of my favorite hikes. It is a good place to go if you like open meadows and a relative easy hike. If you go all the way to Dead Horse Lake it is 10 miles but an easy hike with no real steep uphill until the very end, and then it is minimal. Then you are rewarded with one of the most picturesque lakes in the Uintahs.

I would suggest not camping at the lake as it is right along the Highline Trail. There are many good sights all along the river that runs nearly parallel to the trail. We Hiked in 5.5 miles, made camp and made a round trip to the lake the next day.

The only negative to this hike is the getting there. It is basically 22 miles of dusty washboard road. With the last 6 or so very rocky. Given that you have to make two stream crossings better have a vehicle that can handle all this. That said it probably keeps people away.

hiking
2 months ago

Unreal trip, bugs were nowhere to be found which was great, didn't even bother putting deet on. Got a great spot at island lake for the night. Wish i would've done two nights on the trail, maybe another night on Seneca Lake? Was a little busier than i expected for a Monday.

backpacking
2 months ago

Started in Elkhart Park (yes, parking lot is packed) on August 11th and hiked to Seneca Lake as we got a later start than anticipated. The next day we hiked into the basin. Yes, the trail is pretty busy up to Island Lake. Once you get past Island Lake, there are less and less people. The farther into the basin you go, the more secluded you become. We would see less than half a dozen people per day. We spent a good while looking for a nice spot with some wind block (we found it to be nearly impossible to accomplish this) but we hiked all the way to the uppermost lake in the basin and found a great spot. There are multiple great spots if you hike to the very beginning of the last lake by the cascading waterfall. We had a hard time finding a big enough boulder to hang our food but got it done. Titcomb Basin is magical. We decided to stay an extra day because we didn’t want to leave. The wind can be pretty bad and we had one day where it was relentless. Some people nearby couldn’t keep their tent up and ultimately slept outside in their sleeping bags on a pretty chilly night. There were mosquitos but they weren’t as bad as we expected and we never had to use nets or anything. We hiked back out on August 15th. We did hike out in one day which is doable but don’t underestimate it. It may seem like little elevation gain but it’s constant ups and downs that can wear a person out. Can’t wait to get back here someday...it’s unreal!

backpacking
2 months ago

Very beautiful lake, with many scenic places along the way.
Went backpacking in mid July there and the temps were very moderate. The trail was definitely muddy in many places, but using logs, rocks and higher trails made it easy to keep my feet dry. When you arrive, there is a very small lake on your right about 1/4 mile away from the actual lake. If I had to do it again I would have camped there. The bugs at Amethyst Lake were absolutely terrible, it was mostly flies and gnats, not many mosquitoes. The lower lake or pond had no bugs, and better trees for hammocks. It's not as scenic, but better a better spot to lay down the fort.
It gets pretty steep after the fork, but definitely doable.
Beautiful place, would do again.

We don’t want to scare anyone, but we found #peteh’s carnage and the remains of the person that the swarm of mosquitos swept off and devoured....

In better news, this hike was beautiful. We did the loop (Big Sandy TH to Dad’s Lake-Shadow Lake-Texas Pass-Jackass Pass- Big Sandy Lake and back out to the TH). There was quite a lot of traffic on the trail, but it is isolated and pristine. Mosquitos clearly had their fill in early August. Texas pain-in-the-arse-pass was hard but doable and there many trails down the valley that all lead to Lonesome Lake. After the lake, as you either go over or around Jackass Pass and travel the south side of Arrowhead Lake, stay high over the boulders- it’s a hard and hairy scramble. If you find a blue 1.5 L water bottle (he advised not to carry such a large vessel), please return to Archibald Rita of the Rita clan of Northern Virginia). As for the rest of the hike- as you descend into the unnamed lake after the boulder scramble, go down to the water and then follow the path around the north east shore that will take you across what looks like an untraverseable slab of rock across to Big Sandy Lake.

Happy trails y’all!

hiking
2 months ago

A gorgeous trail and a steep last leg up to the peak. We ended up going back down Desolation and doing the Salt Lake Overlook too. Thaynes has a lot of shade, much more than Desolation and is less hiked so more enjoyable.

backpacking
2 months ago

Great hike and destination. It can be a day hike or overnight backpacking trip.

If coming from the Kamas side pick up your recreational pass at the Chevron in Kamas or if you have exact change at the spot where the old ranger station was. It’s a couple miles up the canyon.

If hiking to the meadow below Amethyst Lake (to the east of Ostler Lake) then I think the mileage of about 11.5 miles is correct. If hiking further to Amethyst Lake then I believe that’s at or around 12.5 miles.

It’s about 2.5 miles from the parking lot to the turn off for Amethyst lake. The sign is located on a tree at the fork. At this point and for about the next mile it’s fairly steep and rocky. After that it’s a fairly consistent rise with small bouts of steeper grades.

The trail is muddy at many spots. Generally with well positioned steps you can get through without any issue. I hear mosquitoes and bugs can be a problem but our late August trip had none.

As a reminder, it does get cool/cold at night and storms are known to roll through even if the day has looked great. We had bouts of heavy rain, lightning and thunder even though it had looked clear and the forecast was calling for good weather. Always be prepared in the Uintas.

I camped at Amethyst lake but still hiked Ostler peak. If you want great views it’s worth the effort. Most climb the north ridge from Ostler lake and I would recommend this. I decided to go up the main chute on this mountain. As you reach the top I exited the chute to the left and then climbed up to the saddle. Took the west side of the peak to summit.

on Titcomb Basin Trail

hiking
2 months ago

Outstanding! Hiked from the trailhead at Elkhardt Park to Titcomb Basin from August 16-22, 2018. Weather was absolutely perfect and the scenery/landscape some of the most picturesque throughout the country.

Beautiful place! Pack warm clothes. Can’t wait to return again!

One of the best hikes in Utah, or anywhere that I have ever been.

backpacking
3 months ago

although it really is gorgeous, it has become overrun with people. There were 32 cars in the parking lot this morning, and I couldn't go more than a mile without stepping off trail for another hiker or a pack team. the area is really starting to show the use. I liked the trail, and am happy to have gone, but I would highly suggest branching off from this trail to another less used trail.

This hike was magnificent. I recommend starting before 10am if you want to do the whole thing in a day. I didn't come across many mosquitos at all. Weather was beautiful and the lake is a great place to stop and take a dip in before or after taking on the steep part of the trail. I will definitely be coming back here for a camping trip.

very beautiful and very well trafficked.

hiking
3 months ago

Best destination in the Uintas! However, the hike is tough, even though it's relatively flat. There are so many rocks on the trail that it limits your speed and requires you to look where you place every step. Give yourself at least a day to rest and explore before heading back.

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