Wasatch Crest

Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest, Utah 84047

Distance6.9mi
Elevation Gain2,706ft
Trailhead Elevation8,949ft
Top9,904ft
Elevation Min/Max8949/9904ft
Elevation Start/End8949/8949ft

Wasatch Crest

Wasatch Crest is a hiking, biking, and horse trail in Salt Lake County, Utah. It is within Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest. It is 6.9 miles long and begins at 8,949 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 11.0 miles with a total elevation gain of 2,706 feet. The Scottish Chief Mine (elevation 9,823 feet) quarry can be seen along the trail. This trail connects with the following: Mill D North, Pinecone, Beartrap Fork and Old Red Pine Rd Trail.

Wasatch Crest Professional Reviews and Guides

"The Wasatch Crest trail is a daylong adventure filled with five-star scenery and unparalleled vantage points. As its name indicates, the trail climbs to the crest of the Wasatch Range between Big Cottonwood Canyon to the south and Summit County to the northeast. From this one ridge you can see into both canyons and beyond. During July and into August wildflowers add color to the alpine trailside, and the path into Mill Creek Canyon provides a beautiful, green, packed trail through the trees."

"Undoubtedly the premier mountain bike trail in northern Utah, the Wasatch Crest Trail follows the “Backbone of Utah” and is a must-ride for anyone new to this neck of the woods. At nearly 10,000 feet in elevation, this ridgetop singletrack requires pistons for legs and bellows for lungs, but it serves up sweet singletrack through pristine aspens and across wildflower-dotted alpine bowls.

Pack along your camera because the glacial-carved peaks and canyons, wildflower slopes, and dense aspen groves of the Wasatch are postcard perfect. Best of all, many options exist by which to shorten, extend, or make loops out of the standard out-and-back ride. Trail surface: 9.2 miles on singletrack and 6 miles on doubletrack for the entire out-and-back ride. Pack along your camera because the glacial-carved peaks and canyons, wildflower slopes, and dense aspen groves of the Wasatch are postcard perfect. Best of all, many options exist by which to shorten, extend, or make loops out of the standard out-and-back ride."

"The Wasatch Crest Trail is one of northern Utah’s premier mountain bike routes. Nearly all singletrack, the Crest Trail traces the spine of the central Wasatch Range, coined by Utah geologist William Lee Stokes as “the Backbone of Utah.” Along the initial climb, you venture through sun-kissed forests of aspen, pine, and fir. But when you pedal out the ridge, you are entertained by top-of-the-world views of jagged mountains, glacier-cut canyons, and urban valleys. And when you are not gawking at the topography or prospecting for winter’s backcountry ski routes, you’ll be riveted to the world-class singletrack trail.

Moab’s Slickrock Bike Trail might be the state’s most popular trail because of its uniqueness, but the Wasatch Crest Trail epitomizes the concept of “mountain” biking. General location: The Wasatch Crest Trail runs between the tops of Mill Creek and Big Cottonwood Canyons, 9 and 15 miles east of Salt Lake City, respectively. Tread: Singletrack with a few miles of quasi-doubletrack-turned-singletrack."

Wasatch Crest Reviews

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8/5/2008
Great Trail, fantastic views and quality singletrack See my trip report here with lots of pics http://www.mtb-hol.com/MTBUSA2007/Day_13.html
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9/15/2002
Having just come from the flatlands of Michigan, this trail took my breath away -- figuratively and literally! Don't expect much of a warmup -- the trail starts to climb right away from the road to Guardsman Pass all the way to the ridgeline. Once you get to the top, throw your bike down, sit down, recover and look at the views: down below is Park City an across you see the peaks of the Uintas. Amazingly beautiful. The trail then climbs a bit more along the ridge on a two-track before it turns into a single track that sweeps you across the crest -- this part is great fun, let go of the breaks and enjoy. But a word of warning, pay attention to the trail. It is narrow, a bit technical and I found myself constantly looking up at the great views both to the north and south. The nastiest section is the sawtooth redrock part -- you'll know when you see it. Just swallow your pride and walk your bike. After that you have two options, ride down to Big Cottonwood or down to Mill Creek. Either way it is dooooownhill! This is one ride where a 1/2 hour of uphill earns you twice that much time of downhill. It doesn't get any better than that.
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9/14/2002
This is the funnest trail I''''ve been on. It gets cold in the morning at the top of Guardsman Pass but you''''ll warm up on the trail. There''''s a warm-up 1/4 mile or so before Puke Hill, use it to your advantage. The hill isn''''t technical it just climbs forever and you start at the top of Park City ski resort, so it''''s like your in the clouds. Once past Puke Hill the trail runs along the ridge line. There''''s one more hill I''''ve heard called "red hill of death" because the dirt is reddish in color. The hill isn''''t that bad. You do have to cross the spine, a pointy rock section that splits the divide. I''''ve only seen two riders make it over the whole section. After that you climb another small hill to get to Big Water in Millcreek and from there it''''s all downhill. You can only go down here on even numbered days. I know of riders who have gone on odd days, but big fines await those who are caught. Once you make it to the top of Millcreek rode, follow it for a few miles and then take the Pipeline Trail. Pipeline can take 45 min to get to the bottom of the canyon. One way is about 26 miles, we did it in 2.5 hours. Love that downhill!!!
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9/13/2002
Wasatch Crest combines challenging uphill, fast descents, tight single-track and beautiful scenery into one unforgettable ride. I prefer to leave a shuttle car at the bottom of Millcreek Canyon and begin the ride from Guardsman Pass. Tackle "puke hill" and the ride the singletrack down to Big Water trail head in Millcreek. Ride the road for a couple miles and then jump on Pipeline, down Rattlesnake Gulch and out the bottom of Milcreek Canyon. Be sure to only ride upper Millcreek Canyon rides on even numbered days(on odd days there is no biking, and no leash law in effect-big fines for breaking rules apply).Share the trail! Enjoy.
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6/27/2002
This trail has a little bit of everything - buffed out singletrack, spectacular views, and a wild descent if you take the Mill D fork down. My favorite route is to start at Guardsman Pass down to Desolation Lake, and then take Mill D down to the shuttle car. You still have a good amount of climbing at elevation even if you shuttle it. Expect a lot of hikers on the Mill D section on weekends, but it's a beautiful section with a lot of rock drops and roots.
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1/1/2001
Its a really tough climb up from solitude but worth it. Your a sissy if you dont ride the whole loop.
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9/21/2000
We like to do the ride from Guardsmans Pass down to SL and shuttle. Park at the second righthand switchback going from Brighton to Park City. There is about a 2 mile killer uphill that is double track and then you get to the actual Wasatch Crest trail. From this point it is mostly downhill. Make sure what date it is as you can only go into Millcreek Canyon on even numbered days. After you get to the Big Water trail look for Little Water trail turnoff. This is a little more challenging and there is a stream crossing that is great fun. After you get to the paved road you ride down about 3 miles and catch the top of Millcreek Pipeline trail and follow it all the way to Rattlesnake Gulch and down to the paved road. You have about 3 more miles to Wasatch Blvd where you can find a place for your shuttle car. My bike computer had the downhill portion of the ride at just over 28 miles.
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Wasatch Crest Photos

Trail Information

Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest
Nearby City
Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest
Parks
Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest
Local Contacts
USGS Brighton, Mount Aire, and Park West
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Jul 2018