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Pets allowed
Allowed
Elevation Gain
850.00 ft (259.08 m)
Trail type
There-and-back
Distance
9.00 mi (14.48 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Granddaddy Basin is one of the most well known areas of the vast High Uintas Wilderness, and it provides hikers, backpackers and horse riding enthusiasts with a chance to access the southern portion of this wild territory. Located north of Hanna, Utah, this area gets far less visitors than the easier-to-access Mirror Lake portion of the Uintas because it's simply further from the major population centers of Salt Lake and Park City. The drive up a 6-mile rugged and precarious rocky dirt road also ensures that many people stick to the more easily accessed trailheads below. In fact, this area takes so long to reach, and the road is so hard on vehicles, that it may be a better choice for a multi-day backpack than a day trip. If you don't mind the long and harsh commute, this trail does give you a greater sense of solitude than you can find in the western Uintas along with a better chance at seeing a wide variety of wildlife.

The hike starts out along the North Fork of the Duchesne River and looks like a standard Uinta trail consisting of rounded and rolling peaks with lakes everywhere you look. The colors out here can be a bit drab unless you arrive in wildflower season, when you'll see a bit more color to the area. Mosquitos are terrible here in early summer, but they relent a little by late summer. Keep an eye out for Bighorn Sheep along the cliffs of the surrounding mountains. Moose, deer, elk, coyote and large raptors are common here, and hummingbirds buzz around during your hike. There are 500 miles of trails in the High Uintas Wilderness, and this area gives you access to many different possible multi-day backpacking trips. From this southwestern corridor you can reach Four Lakes Basin and Naturalist Basin to the north.

Mohawk Lake does not stand out in particular from the other nearby bodies of water, but it is still another beautiful trail to escape the crowds and enjoy some solitude deep in a wilderness. While it is still a popular trail relative to its location, this area has a much more rugged and remote feel than almost anything you find along Mirror Lake Highway. With 9 miles of hiking, the hike to Mohawk Lake is long enough to justify the long trip to the trailhead. There isn't too much elevation gain other than when crossing Hades Pass, so the 9 miles is often just a nice walk in the woods. Keep in mind that this hike is at 10,000 feet; the weather here can change on a dime, so be prepared for anything.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Summer
Fall

Congestion

Moderate

Parking Pass

None

Open Year-round

No

Open from

May 15 to November 15

Pros

Less people than Mirror Lake trails. Wildlife. So many trail options. Dogs allowed.

Cons

Takes a lot of effort just to get to the trailhead. Can be very buggy.

Trailhead Elevation

9,792.00 ft (2,984.60 m)

Highest point

10,651.00 ft (3,246.42 m)

Net Elevation Gain

1,194.00 ft (363.93 m)

Features

Near lake or river
Backcountry camping
Waterfalls
Wildlife
Fishing
Big vistas
Big Game Watching
Wildflowers
Bird watching

Typically multi-day

No

Suitable for

Horseback

Permit required

No

Location

Field Guide

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