Vegas to High Uintas

Vegas Britta

Apr 29, 2014
Hi all,

been living in Vegas for the past 28 years and have been actively hiking, trail running, backpacking for the past 14 or so years. My boyfriend and I have been drooling about a backpacking trip across the High Uintas for a while. This year it finally made it onto the calendar for later in June.

So I have been lurking on the Uintas Conditions thread for a few days. It is always nice to have people in close proximity who actually know what is going on - seems that Ranger Stations may or may not know the actual conditions ;).

Wondering about taking The Dog along for the 5-6 day trek.....he is my constant companion for hikes and runs, been working with him to carry a pack. Pros? Cons?

Love to plan, Britta
Welcome to BCP! I can't think of any reason not to bring a dog to the Uintas. What area area/route are you shooting for? Some areas have worse grazing issues than others so if your dog likes to herd or roll in cow poop, that can be a problem, but it definitely wouldn't stop me. And late June should be early enough to avoid most of that anyway. Not sure when exactly they start running them up there but I've had most of my grazing encounters in August.
Good!! Might teach him the whole camping thing (he doesn't understand why there is nylon in the way to his outdoor experience). Planning on Chepeta Lake to Hayden Pass, conditions permitting.
Oh, that's probably not a realistic route in mid-June. You're basically talking about doing the abbreviated Highline Trail, right? Chepeta to Highway 150? Last year things melted off faster than average and we still had huge drifts in the low 10k elevations. It will likely still be totally snowbound for areas up near 11k which is a lot of that route. And even if the bulk of it is gone, you still have to deal with the passes. Dead Horse in particular is largely impassable with even a fair amount of snow left on it. I bet in mid-June it will still be corniced. Some years it is August before the last drifts melt off there.
The Highline Trail is pretty much 10,000-12,000 ft, so if you plan on doing it in June prepare for a lot of snow
That is what I was afraid of reading the posts here......I am going to be very optimistic and have a plan B and C just in case. Any good suggestions for either??
You should really just start planning B and C now. There is really no chance of doing the Highline in mid-June. At least not without snow gear, ropes, axes, crampons etc. I guess insane temps melting off the snow is possible, but extremely unlikely.

Alternate plans... You'll have less snow on the far east side of the range but the scenery isn't as nice over there, in my opinion. The best scenery is in the north slope drainages between Highway 150 over to and including West Forks Blacks Fork. Unfortunately, the tops of all of those basins are pushing 11k or higher so again, not a great mid-June destination. If you want more mellow scenery, you could probably piece together something on the east side but I still wouldn't count on passes being doable. So basically, I'd suggest not driving all the way up here for a 5-6 day trip in mid June. ;)
The Zion Traverse would be nice in June. ~50 miles from one end of the park to the other. Maybe a bit hot but not bad at 7k'+ for a lot of it. No doggies on that one though. :(
Spirit Lake to Tamarack Lake to Mccoy Park may be doable in June. It's pretty short route, but there are lots of other little lakes in the area you could explore. It's not as scenic or rugged as the west, but it was a really nice area. Mccoy park in particular is really nice. It's the largest meadow I have ever been in, it just goes on for miles and miles. In June you will most likely see a lot of wildlife up there.
I will just keep looking here for information and things to do. We will be up at East Canyon off 65 for reunion anyway, so no super long travel. And yes, Zion is always nice, especially off the beaten path. Silly dog rules :cry:.
I'd practice dog camping somewhere close to home before that one. It took my dog a few trips to be able to relax and fall asleep in the tent. The first few nights he didn't sleep at all.
The first few nights he didn't sleep at all.
You are right - don't care so much that he is not sleeping, but of course that means I am not sleeping as he is trying to dig out of the tent ;). Seems like most of our backpacking is in NPs, so he usually only gets to go when we car camp and I take the easy way out and lock him in the vehicle.
I agree that you will have to stay in the lower areas. So the question now would be what do you want to do? Do you like fishing, seeing beautiful, remote areas, etc.? There are several lakes that are not often visited and have good camping sites, fishing, etc.