Uintas - Wall Lake to The Notch

Aug 3, 2016
I've done a lot of backpacking in the High Uintas and a bit along the Mirror Lake Highway, but amazingly enough I've never done one of the more popular day hikes in that area-- Notch Mountain. I plan to hike Bald Mountain with my kids this weekend and would like to do The Notch if time allows. My kids range from age 6 to 15, and they're fairly adept in the outdoors.

Most online resources I've looked at describe the Notch Mountain Trail from Bald Mountain to Trial or from Crystal Lake up and over, so the trail info-- particularly duration and mileage-- reflect a longer hike than I'm planning for. Can somebody provide a comparison of routes (from Bald vs from Crystal Lake TH)? Would either of them accommodate roughly a 4 hour window?
Aug 3, 2016
Check out this report: http://backcountrypost.com/threads/uintas-ibantik-lake-loop.283/. If I understand right, it has a lot of useful info for what you're wanting to do.

Thanks, Nick. Great report, and nice photos! I'm still unclear on distance and time, though. I'd like to reach Notch Pass from either trailhead, with deference to whichever takes less time. That said, your report tempts me to hit Ibantik even if it means not making it to the pass. Can you give me an idea of distance/time from Bald to Ibantik?
Aug 3, 2016
Thanks, Nick. Ultimately I decided that, given my limited window for hiking, I opted to summit Bald Mtn. Yeah, it's an "easy, quick" hike and kinda cliche, but it's still a surefire way to get a great view.

While at the top I was studying the Mirror Lake area and noticed the clearing on the northwest shore of the lake. I remembered my dad telling me about a lodge/motel/store that once stood in that area, so when we got back to the car I drove there to investigate. While none of the structures remain, there is a lot of evidence of the old place still there, including the now overgrown road that led from the spur road to the lodge. We also inadvertently discovered a geocache that contained a hand-drawn map of the lodge and outbuildings. I'm working on a trip report post, but would like to find some pictures of the lodge (before it burned and was bulldozed in the 70's) for context.

I'd love to see Ibantik and The Notch in person, but that may need to wait until next year.
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