Soapstone Basin is a fast-paced, backcountry tour looping around a broad valley pocketed with groves of fir and aspen. Miniature wildflowers speckle the sunny, alpine meadows like paint spattered from an artist’s brush. By and large, you won’t find staggering views of mountain peaks along the main loop, although the Uinta Mountains do reveal themselves shyly from time to time.
If you venture off course to the Bluffs overlook, however, you’ll find a view that will make acrophobes tremble. Here, the Duchesne River has carved a gorge over 2,000 feet deep. The river’s headwaters trickle from snowfields that cloak the Uinta Mountains—home to Utah’s tallest peak, King’s Peak, rising to 13,528 feet. Tread: Packed- and soft-dirt doubletracks with variable imbedded rocks and ruts.
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