Notch Mountain Trail to Trial Lake

MODERATE 31 reviews

Notch Mountain Trail to Trial Lake is a 17.8 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Kamas, Utah that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
17.8 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
3474 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

birding

fishing

hiking

nature trips

walking

horseback riding

forest

lake

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

bugs

This trail begins at the Base of Bald Mountain on the Notch Mount Loop Trail. It begins at 11,700 feet then drops 450 feet by the time you arrive at Notch Lake after 2.3 miles. The trail passes Clegg Lake 1.5 miles and Dean Lake 2.0 miles. Notch Lake experiences annual fluctuation of 21 feet

hiking
4 days ago

I took the point to point on the trail starting from Trial Lake. I left a bike up at the Bald Mountain trailhead to get back to my car at Trial Lake. The walk was good. It was a sunday morning with very cool air. Navigation is easy as there aren't a whole lot side trails merging with this loop.

There are sections of trail that are stubbornly rocky because of erosion but overall it's a good one. The inclines aren't crazy, however the trail does get a little steep and loose headed up the north flanks of Notch Mountain. I think I ended up with about a 10 mile day on the trail, according to the ole GPS.

The views are spectacular and well worth getting some photos. The trail is pretty heavily used but I didn't see that many people once I passed Ibantik lake. In fact, the stretch between Wall Lake and Ibantik is the only stretch that I really saw anyone.

hiking
26 days ago

backpacking
27 days ago

Packed up the Grandkids [ages 4yr -13yr] 7 gk 5 adults [30- 64 yr]. Started at Bald mountain TH and headed to Notch Lake. Camped at the West end near the cliffs. We all went swimming and cliff jumping, even the 4 yr old did a 10 footer. Bugs not bad, intermittent rain which made the temps much better. Great place to hike and camp.

hiking
1 month ago

backpacking
1 month ago

1 month ago

We started at Baldy's trailhead and hiked back down to Trial Lake (two car shuffle technique). It was no joke, but both my 9 yr old and my 11 yr. old made it. Going over the notch was an intense uphill, but so very, very worth it.

I'm a wuss with bad knees, so this is about as hard as I can do, but I loved it.

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
11 months ago

hiking
11 months ago

I did this hike over the weekend with a group of 12 yr old scouts. We started at the Crystal Lake TH and finished 10 miles later at Bald Mountain Pass. This route took us 5.5 hours with only a few stops for pics, snacks and a pace that all would enjoy. Everyone did awesome and already asking to do it again!

As a side note, I wouldn't call this route between Bald Mountain and Trial (or Crystal) Lake an "out and back" unless you hike from one of these THs and *return* to the same TH. Otherwise, if you start at one end and finish at the OTHER end, as indicated by this trail description, we call that a thru hike...in which case, you will need to make arrangements for a shuttle car as we had to do. That said, I also think the "17.8 mile" stated distance is wrong too. Whether that calculation was intended to be 1-way (from Bald to Trial) or 2-way (from Bald to Trial and then back to Bald), it's confusing and inaccurate! Lastly, we snowmobile this area in the winter and that trail is NOT accessible in March (nor April). The Mirror Lake Highway is typically under a LOT of snow until May (even into June) before they slowly start plowing up and over Bald Mountain Pass. If you are going to hike this trail in March, you better have a snow machine of some kind to get yourself to the trailhead and then snowshoes from that point on where you will be breaking trail the whole way in (and it is DEEP).

11 months ago

only went to the notch. started at parking for Washington lake / crystal lake . hike to wall lake and connected to notch mountain trail.
moderate trail 2.9 miles to point .
too many people but this was a Sunday in August!!
great views. had lunch at the notch (plus a little nap time) . views are wonderful looking from each side of the notch...great if your not in mood for a full 9 mile commitment to other side.

11 months ago

hiking
Sunday, July 24, 2016

We did a loop starting from the parking lot near Trial Lake, went by Wall Lake and Hope Lake, returned from the Notch. We came back from John Lake and bypassed Clyde Lake, Watson Lake, Cliff Lake, and Crystal Lake. Pretty flat. No particular challenge. Other than the section between Clyde Lake and the Notch, the trail is clearly delineated.

Can be quite warm in summer days during the day. Cool down quickly in the evening. Great Hike.

hiking
Friday, July 08, 2016

This was our first time to hike this trail. Great hike. When you reach Notch Lake be sure to climb up plateau that overlooks the lake. Awesome views.

backpacking
Sunday, June 26, 2016

Backpacked to Notch Lake and camped. Very nice hike, still a fair amount of snow patches and runoff making the trail muddy and running water in some spots.

hiking
Monday, November 23, 2015

This may be one of my favorite trails in Utah. You come upon so many lakes that it makes for a magical day. Near the end of the hike, we reached a campground area where we could connect to the road and walk it back to where the car was parked. (We were doing a loop) But, we thought it looked doable to cut across the side of Bald Mountain to get back to Moosehorn Campground. What a decision. We found a little meadow on a ledge that was invisible when looking up at the mountain from camp. It had the most beautiful little meandering stream and a little (tiny) glassy shallow lake with rocks nested half in the water. It was like a fairy tale. If you go this way you have to scramble down the side of the mountain to Moosehorn Lake. But, its SO worth it.

hiking
Sunday, November 08, 2015

Just flat out gorgeous. Easy hike and amazing scenery.

camping
Monday, October 19, 2015

Camped at about 2.5 miles in, great trail, tons of amazing scenery. Good stuff.

camping
Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Nice downhill hike, in. Superb camping spots. Great for families. Beautiful lake and scenery. A little bit of an uphill back out.

fishing
Saturday, August 15, 2015