Donut Falls Snowshoe

Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest

Central Wasatch Mountains, Utah

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Donut Falls Snowshoe


  • In winter, starting out from Big Cottonwood Canyon Road adds about a mile each way to the traditional summer length.- Donut Falls Snowshoe
  • In winter, snowshoes or microspikes are recommended when making the trek to Donut Falls.- Donut Falls Snowshoe
  • Small bridge over the creek.- Donut Falls Snowshoe
  • Enjoying a winter hike to Donut Falls.- Donut Falls Snowshoe
  • Gotta bring the hot cocoa when it's 12 degrees out- Donut Falls Snowshoe
  • Enjoying a winter hike to Donut Falls.- Donut Falls Snowshoe
  • The small descent into the little valley where Donut Falls sits. - Donut Falls Snowshoe
  • Enjoying a winter hike to Donut Falls.- Donut Falls Snowshoe
  • Hiking up the snow-covered Donut Falls.- Donut Falls Snowshoe
  • There are some steep sections, and poles really help with the ascent.- Donut Falls Snowshoe
  • The small cave at the top.- Donut Falls Snowshoe
  • It is a lot warmer inside the cave than outside of it.- Donut Falls Snowshoe
  • Inside the Donut Falls Cave.- Donut Falls Snowshoe
  • Finding a safe route down.- Donut Falls Snowshoe
  • Returning down canyon.- Donut Falls Snowshoe
Overview + Weather
East way to enjoy winter hiking. Small cave at the top.
Gets busy.
Central Wasatch Mountains, UT
Pets allowed: 
Net Elevation Gain: 
580.00 ft (176.78 m)
Parking Pass: 
Not Required
Preferable Season(s):
Winter, Spring
Total Distance: 
3.20 mi (5.15 km)
Trail type: 
Trailhead Elevation: 
7,302.00 ft (2,225.65 m)
Current Local Weather:
Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Pro Contributor

Snowshoeing into Donut Falls is a really fun, easy, and relatively safe way to enjoy the Wasatch mountains in winter. This is a really popular trail in the summer, and although there are less people in the cold, you will still see plenty of hikers. It is usually packed down, so some microspikes are fine unless you arrive after a big storm. If that is the case, make sure to check your avalanche conditions at the Utah Avalanche Center

During the winter the gate is closed at the main canyon road, and only residents are allowed to drive further in. This means you will hike almost an extra mile each way that you don't have to hike in the summer. Even though the road is covered with snow, there are ample signs to let you know where to find the trailhead. Stay left at all the forks and you should be fine. The right hand turns will take you toward Cardiff Fork. The main road is to the north, and the falls are to the south tucked up along the eastern wall.

The waterfall is covered in snow and ice, but it still flows underneath. If you are willing to risk some bumps and bruises, climbing up to the top gives you access to the small cave at the top. The cave is large enough to hold multiple people, but be very careful: This is not recommend without microspikes or snowhoes and poles.

This is a short and fun hike that is actually a little more enjoyable when it is longer than usual and attracts fewer people. There are no dogs allowed on this hike, and you may encounter moose; be very careful and keep your distance.

Backcountry Safety

Winter backcountry adventures can be dangerous outdoor activities that pose significant risks as conditions affecting safety (i.e. weather, snowpack stability, avalanche hazard) are constantly changing. Prior to engaging in these activities each individual should get the proper training to make safe decisions and be equipped to use avalanche safety resources and tools. Please visit our Backcountry Skiing and Avalanche Safety post to learn more.

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(20 within a 30 mile radius)

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(170 within a 30 mile radius)

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