Mount Tukuhnikivatz Trail

Moab, Utah 84532

Mount Tukuhnikivatz Trail

Mount Tukuhnikivatz Trail Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"Anyone who has visited Canyonlands or Arches National Parks in the early summer has probably gazed admiringly at the snow capped peaks of the La Sal Mountains. The sight of snow seems oddly out of place in the midst of the desert heat, but snow is usually visible on the higher summits of the La Sals well into July.

The highest point in the La Sals is Mount Peale (12,721 feet), but the most celebrated peak is the one with the most unpronounceable name: Mount Tukuhnikivatz. Tukuhnikivatz is prominently situated on the western side of the La Sals and can be easily seen from the desert canyon country around Moab. The exquisite red rock wilderness of Canyonlands and Arches is laid out in a vast panorama below the peak, and the resulting view from the top of Mount Tukuhnikivatz on a clear sunny day is extraordinary."

Mount Tukuhnikivatz Trail Trip Reports

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The contrast between red rock canyon country and this alpine scramble only heightens the beauty of this high altitude hike. It takes a lot of roundabout driving to get to the trailhead from Moab in a non-4Wd car (get a good map), driving around the south end of the La Sal range to get to the other side. And even then my rental Ford had to literally ford a creek. But once you drive up through the aspens to the 10,000 ft trail head you will be glad you went. The hike will require some route finding, and what trail there is through the spruces and steep meadows quickly ends at the rocky saddle between Mt. Tuk and its neighbor, Mt. Peale. From there it is a ridge walk followed by very steep scrambling. I am an experienced 45 year old hiker, and the cold and snow (1st week of November), as well as the lung-crushing altitude (over 12,000) was a good stretch for me, don’t let the low mileage fool you. Five steps up and fifteen deep breaths, repeated, was my summit strategy. Gone were any dreams of ridge running the La Sal’s! I simply was not acclimated to the heights from the canyon hiking I had done the first few days in Moab. The view from the summit may be unmatched in the US for the color and variety of landforms. The drifts of snow had many animal tracks as well. At least at this time of year, there was no one maybe in the entire range. This is a MUST DO for experienced hikers who are in Moab and want to see canyon-topia from a whole new perspective. It was the highlight of a trip of highlights. Do it.

Mount Tukuhnikivatz Trail Photos

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Trail Information

Nearby City
2,362 feet
Elevation Gain
Trail Type
4.5 hours
Midsummer through mid-fall
10,120 feet
Trailhead Elevation
12,482 feet
Top Elevation
Moab Ranger District, Manti-La Sal National Forest
Local Contacts
Mount Tukuhnikivatz (USGS), Mount Peale (USGS)
Local Maps

Trail Log