25 mile backpacking trip ideas needed


Jan 18, 2013
Hey all,
I've been given some great advice here in the past, so I'd like to pick your collective brains for ideas on backpacking with tweens.

I'm looking for ~25 mile backpacking trip ideas for taking my 12 and 13 year old daughters on this coming summer.

The 12 year old hiked the West Rim Trail as an over-nighter last year with my wife (14 miles mostly down hill) and the 13 year old hiked 42 miles with me over 3 days on Cedar Mountain last year-also mostly all down hill although it didn't feel like it.
I'm interested in doing one 25 miler with both daughters this year. Anywhere in Utah or within close driving distance to Southern Utah could be considered. I'd like it to be a three day trip with water available along the route.

I've considered hiking over Pine Valley Mountain on the Whipple Trail to Wet Sandy and down into Toquerville (where we live) for a memorable trip closer to home, but I'd also enjoy hiking along the Wasatch or, really, anywhere.

We can go any time from late May through the end of July.


Thanks in advance.
Last edited:
Such a broad range of possibilities. Do you have a preference between mountain or desert landscapes? Or how busy the route is?
No. I'm open to any suggested terrain. The only catch is, I'd like it to not be strenuous hiking all three days. One tough day would be fine, but three would probably make it miserable for the girls. Also, we wouldn't mind taking the dog with us, but we're fine leaving him if we need to.

As far as how busy the route is- I don't want to hear others while I camp, but otherwise I don't mind seeing a few people along the way.
Well I find that desert backpacking is usually less strenuous than mountains. What about something like Coyote Gulch? That's some pretty epic scenery, pretty easy and a nice 22-ish mile loop with options to extend. Nothing but unique terrain for the whole hike. I don't have kids, but I know that always makes me more stoked about a hike.

The Death Hollow point-to-point from air strip to Hwy 12 is just a bit longer, but a whole lot tougher. Lots of hot sand slogging on the way out to the bridge that kids might not enjoy. But that's one of my old favorites.

A point-to-point just doing the upper Escalante from town to bridge is super easy and nice if you can arrange the shuttle. Not hard with the option of hiring one in Escalante or hitchhiking back to town. That's 17 miles one-way with water along the entire route. Easy to add-on mileage in Death Hollow and Sand Creek as desired. Hardly any elevation change.

Further north, in the Uintas, a hike up West Fork Black's Fork through Buck Pasture and on to the Dead Horse Lake cirque is quite nice. Significant elevation change but somehow it doesn't feel like it. It's so very gradual and the views are outstanding all along the way. It has always seemed a thousand times easier to me than just about any other drainage in that range.

I've often thought about doing the Under The Rim point-to-point in Bryce which could be nice in the summer.
coyote gulch was the first thing that came to my mind also. but it might be hot between may and july.

hiking through hop valley in zion, and past the kolob canyons is one of the nicest hikes i've done there, but again it might not be as nice may or later. i went in march and thought it was great.

there are a huge number of options in the uintas that others here can give better advice regarding than i can.
King's Peak is a fun bucket list hike, I'd come in from the north, up Henry's Fork (easier route) just don't camp at dollar lake (it can be crowded there), in that valley there are several other lakes that are far less visited. Camp a bit away from any lake to limit mosquitos if you're up there in June/July. You can make a base camp and then snag the summit on day two with only day packs, then pack out on day three.
If you could go later in the year I'd suggest Fullers Bottom along the bottom of San Rafael Swell about 18 miles point to point, a gentle down slope the whole way, several doable river crossings.( October for that hike).
Grand Gulch.
Thanks everyone. I'll look at these options. I hadn't thought much about the hike below the rim at Bryce.
I'm also pretty interested in hiking upper Escalante. Sounds like just the right distance if we add some.
Thanks for the ideas. I love this site!
Similar threads
Thread starter Title Forum Replies Date
tomcat32 Late May suggestions for 100ish mile backpacking trip Trip Planning 1
V 50+ mile backpacking loop in Escalante? Trip Planning 5
Bob 206 mile water trail Trip Planning 0
seekinglost Introducing the Mojave-Sonoran Trail: A NEW 625-mile Winter Thru-Hiking Route Backpacking 4
seekinglost 1000 Mile Nevada Thru Hike on the Basin and Range Trail Trip Reports 14
IlVagabondo Looking for a ~30 mile loop in the Scapegoat/Bob Trip Planning 2
P 9 Mile Trail, Yellowstone Backpacking 3
tropicalwanderer YNP : 8/31-9/7 : Heart Lake to Nine Mile via CDT, South Boundary and Thorofare Trip Planning 9
Stephanie B Behind the Rocks, Ken's Lake Faux Falls, U-Turn Canyon, Seven Mile Canyon, and Dark Angel Hiking & Camping 4
smscheick Packrafting Willow/Davis/50 mile Backpacking 22
fossana Superstitions 8-25 mile hike suggestions Trip Planning 19
DrNed Recommendation for 35-45 Mile Route in the Uintas Trip Planning 7
Born to Hike Windriver 36 mile loop: Skull Lake, Washakie Pass, South Fork Lakes, Lizard Head Trail, The Cirque, Big Sandy Lake Backpacking 6
Tanasi 50 mile trip suggestions for 1st week of August? Trip Planning 19
seekinglost Pinto Valley Wilderness, NV - 3 Day 25 Mile Loop Hike March 2017 Backpacking 6
Outdoor_Fool Yellowstone - 9 Mile Post to South Entrance Backpacking 1
piper01 Packrafting Escalante, Part 3: Fifty Mile Canyon Backpacking 4
Brian Skibbe 200 mile Yellowstone loop in June. Route advice needed. Trip Planning 15
Dustin Gent fifty mile canyon Trip Planning 6
piper01 Packrafting Escalante, Part 2: Davis to Fifty Mile Backpacking 12
Udink Nine Mile Canyon XIV: Warrior Ridge Hiking & Camping 4
Udink Nine Mile Canyon XI Hiking & Camping 0
Nick The Emerald Mile General Discussion 50
Scott Chandler A Square 1/2 mile in the Red Cliffs Hiking & Camping 5
klank Documentary: Mile.. Mile & Half Photography 2
Udink Nine Mile Canyon VII: Awesome! Hiking & Camping 5
Udink Nine Mile Canyon VI: Big, Big Sheep Hiking & Camping 0
IntrepidXJ Nine Mile Canyon Tour Hiking & Camping 4
Udink Nine Mile Canyon V Hiking & Camping 5
Udink Nine Mile Canyon IV Hiking & Camping 2
Ben Sawtooths, 68 mile loop, August Backpacking 32
BrendanLB Coyote gulch via 40 mile ridge road Trip Planning 17
John Fowler Entering Forty Mile Gulch General Discussion 7
Udink Nine Mile the Third Hiking & Camping 8
Scott Chandler Egypt TH south to 25 Mile? Trip Planning 10
Udink Nine Mile Canyon, Round Two Hiking & Camping 2
Udink Nine Mile Canyon Hiking & Camping 6
steve Mile Mile and a Half General Discussion 31
IntrepidXJ Fall in Nine Mile Canyon Hiking & Camping 3
Blake Merrell HELP! Need ideas for 50 mile routes in the Uintas Trip Planning 14
Nick Forty Mile & Willow Gulch Backpacking 6
Antlerking Nine Mile Photography 2
Duke Five Mile Gulch Canyoneering 2
B 3P Backpacking Tent Recommendation and Nemo Aurora feedback Gear 3
TrailScot Capitol Reef NP - 5 Day Backpacking Adventure from Chimney Rock to Burro Wash - October 2023 Backpacking 10
Mikjik86 Backpacking Indian Peaks Wilderness - King Lake - August, 2023 Backpacking 0
J Backpacking in the UK Backpacking 1
2eez4life Suggestions: Uintas Backpacking with some rock climbing routes Trip Planning 0
M Backpacking 50 miles in the Uinta Mountains for 5 days with ~50 pound pack Backpacking 4
forest dweller What do you think are the most essential nutrients while backpacking? General Discussion 17

Similar threads