Crystal Lake Route

Page Type
Utah, United States, North America
Route Type:
Time Required:
One to two days
Class 2+

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Crystal Lake Route
Created On: Feb 8, 2005
Last Edited On: Oct 24, 2012


Crystal Lake is reached from the Trial Lake spur road off Highway 150 25.7 miles east and north of Kamas. Follow the signs along the spur road to Crystal Lake. This gravel road is good for all vehicles.

Route Description

From the trailhead, take the trail posted for Long and Island Lakes. The first part of the trail is actually and old road that heads west and stays above Crystal Lake. There is a sign-posted junction at the end of the old road. Turn left (west) at the junction. The trail heads west for a mile and switchbacks up to Watson Pass. From Watson Pass, the trail continues west and drops gradually one mile to Long Lake. About half way between Watson Pass and Long Lake, there is a hard to spot and un-marked junction with the Middle Fork Weber River "Trail". Chances are you won't see it. Continue on the main trail.

Just before Long Lake, there is another junction with the trail to Weir Lake and North Fork Provo River. Stay on the trail to the right and to Long Lake. Long Lake is in a pretty setting, but is over-used by campers.

Island Lake is another 1.5 miles west along the well use trail. Just before Island Lake, there is another junction with the trail heading south to Duck Lake. Turn right and to Island Lake. Island Lake is in a very scenic setting, but it too receives heavy use from campers.

From Island Lake, continue on the trail along the trail to the northwest. The trail is rather steep at first then flattens out and heads to a pass. At the pass, there is a junction with the Smith and Morehouse Trail. There is also a pond right near the pass. At the junction, turn left . The trail becomes indistinct and is marked with cairns. The route passes through some beautiful meadows. Make sure not to drop low too early, and follow the map carefully. Some carins can be deceiving, so stay fairly close to the base of the ridge to the north. After two miles, the trail drops down to Big Elk Lake.

Wall Peak

The trail to Big Elk Pass from Big Elk Lake is also indistinct. From Big Elk Lake, the route climbs steeply north to a bench. Watch carefully for cairns that mark the route. From the bench head west to a small pond. From this pond, the route heads west and up to Big Elk Pass. Wall Peak is reached from Big Elk Pass via a steep boulder-hop and scramble to the southwest and along the ridge southwest to the summit. There is another variation. Wall Peak can also be climbed from its southeast ridge. The southeast ridge is reached by heading cross-country to the pass southeast of Wall Peak from the ponds near Big Elk Pass mentioned above. From the pass, boulder-hop and scramble along the ridge to the summit. For a spectacular extension of the Wall Peak climb, continue south from the saddle just mentioned and follow the ridge (with scrambling and boulder-hopping) to peak 10,712. This is a spectacular ridge route with Big Elk Lake located directly below.

Round trip distance to Wall Peak is about 14.8 miles.

Ridge south of Wall Peak,...

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Route Map

Essential Gear

A good pair of boots is needed.

Crystal Lake Route

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