Fishlake Hightop is an interesting area in Utah, a long ways from anywhere but well worth the effort to get there. If you are short of time and have a full agenda, then this is a route worth looking at. It is not as fulfilling as the hike from Pelican Point would be but it still provides an option if as I mentioned, you are dealing with a shortage of time. Essentially, you could hike this or if you have a high clearance 4WD vehicle, you could drive it and then hike / scramble the last bit to the summit. The choice would be yours.
I'm calling this the backdoor route since it should be used only if time is of the essense, which in a way defeats the value of a hike. However, it is an option for those who are trying to get two county highpoints in the same day or even three due to limited vacation time in Utah and traveling from afar. I personally would like to go back someday, camp up at the lake and do the Pelican Point hike. To me this would balance things out a bit but as always, its your call.
See the front page for the excellent directions provided by the author of this peak.
Ken Jones put together some great directions that Dennis Poulin and I followed and found them to be very helpful. From Ken Jones www.cohp.org trip report
, I'll quote his directions and then make an addition or two.
"From the junction of UT routes 24 and 25, head north about 3-1/2 miles on UT 25. At this point (just past a radio tower on your right) there are a pair of dirt roads heading off to your left. Both are signed to Hancock Flat in 6 miles. Take the left, lower one (it starts by going downhill) for 6.1 miles to the flat, and continue to the 6.5 mile mark (excellent gravel road to here). Turn right on a road signed for Fishlake Hightop.
Follow this road (still passenger-sedan passable) another 2.4 miles (total 8.9 from Highway 25). At this point a rough and in spots very steep 4WD road heads up toward the plateau. We dragged a 2WD vehicle up this about a mile but don't recommend doing so. At the junction at 8.9 miles, you are about 3.5 miles from and 1100 feet below the summit."
My additions: The road that goes to the left is called Old Bamberger road. Take the FS 057 option and that will lead you to Hancock Flat. The road you turn right on at 6.5 miles is FS 329. Take that to the junction as shown on this TOPOZONE MAP.
By hiking the road, you will save 1500 feet or more of elevation gain from the Pelican Point route and over 4 miles round trip.
3.7 miles each way
1100 feet elevation gain
Water, sunscreen, good hiking footgear. Be aware of thunderstorm activity and stay off of the peak during such times. Snow may block the road (it did for us as late as July 3rd) and if you drive the road, high clearance and 4WD is mandatory.
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