Welcome to SP!  -
North Face Trail
Route

North Face Trail

 
North Face Trail

Page Type: Route

Location: Utah, United States, North America

Lat/Lon: 40.65700°N / 111.77°W

Object Title: North Face Trail

Route Type: Mountaineering, Scrambling

Time Required: A long day

Difficulty: class 3-4 scramble, very steep hikng

Route Quality: 
 - 3 Votes
 

 

Page By: PellucidWombat

Created/Edited: Mar 13, 2003 / Jul 13, 2010

Object ID: 157840

Hits: 5815 

Page Score: 70.36%  - 1 Votes 

Vote: Log in to vote

 

Approach

There is no official trailhead to the route, but the trail is easy to find. From I-215, exit onto Wasatch Blvd (northbound; via 39th S, southbound). Drive south and turn left onto Oakview Dr. Follow the road all the way to the end, where it makes a sharp turn to the right and doubles back up the hill a short distance farther. At the end of the road is a gate. Continue on the pavement by foot past the gate. This access road doubles back and ends at some water tanks near the mouth of a gulley. Look near the fence surrounding the water tanks and you will see the trail on the east side of the gulley.

WARNING: THERE HAS BEEN A LOT OF DEVELOPMENT AROUND THE WATERTANKS. ONE MUST NOW TRESSPASS TO REACH THE BEGINNING OF THIS ROUTE, or approach cross country via the approach to the West Slabs.

Approaching the north face
 
Another approach shot
 

Route Description

The trail contines partway up the leftside of the gulley and soom crosses over to the ridge on the west side of the gulley. Continue up the crest of the ridge untill you reach a rock wall and pine trees. There should be a passage to your right that drops down towards another gulley.

Traverse the side of the gulley and head up the rock-strewn chute filled with pine trees. Midway up there is a rock wall blocking the route. This can be overcome by scrambling about 10-15 feet up the left side and traversing back over to the chute. At the top of the chute, traverse to the saddle on your left. From here you can see into a couloir that runs diagonally across the north face. (This couloir can also be accessed via North Fork, which empties into Neffs Canyon.)

From here you hike up the couloir. Partway across the face the couloir opens up and the pathway branches. Take the right route that drops down a little ways into another couloir. Follow this couloir to the prominent skyline of the north face. From here, it is about a 20-30 minute scramble along the top of the ridgeline to reach the summit. Before the summit you will encounter an impassable wall interrupting the ridgeline. Downclimb into the notch below you and continue hiking parallel to the ridgeline until you come to a saddle. From the saddle you can easily find a minor summit to your left looking down the north face. To your right is a class 4 scramble to the north summit.

The summit can also be reached more easily by crossing the gulley you downclimbed into, rather than hiking up it. Scramble below the ridge that makes the southern boundary of the gulley and scramble up the chute that cuts through this ridgeline. The summit block is a giant diamond-shaped rock. You can't miss it!

For the descent you can either descend the route, but it is more enjoyable to either do the Sumit Traverse or the West Ridge.

The route up the north face...
 
North Face Couloir
 
Looking down the north face...
 

Essential Gear

Daypack
Lots of water (there is no water along the route)
Map (compass not really needed)
Headlamp

The couloir is full of snow in the wintertime and might be a high avalanche hazard. I'm uncertain about wintertime conditions, but snowshoes are probably needed in winter, and crampons and an ice axe are probably needed in the spring since the couloir is in perpetual shade in the winter.

A view of Salt Lake City from...
 
Looking up the first chute...
 
The north face
 
The south side of Mount...
 

Red Tape

Even though the route travels through the Mount Olympus wilderness area, there is no permit needed. Group sizes are limited to 10 people, and no dogs are allowed.

There are only a few sections...
 
[img:18161:aligncenter:thumb:]

Images

Summit of the North Peak of Mount OlympusThe south side of Mount... On the North Face of Mount OlympusLooking down the north face...There are only a few sections...A view of Salt Lake City from...Approaching the north face
Another approach shotLooking up the first chute...North Face CouloirThe north faceThe route up the north face...North Face CouloirBells Canyon Peaks