Preston Canyon West

Page Type Page Type: Route
Location Lat/Lon: 40.45635°N / 111.72272°W
Additional Information Route Type: Hiking
Seasons Season: Fall
Additional Information Time Required: Half a day
Additional Information Rock Difficulty: Class 3
Sign the Climber's Log


In 2.2 miles, you will gain 4000' in elevation to the top of Dharma from the parking spot on East Preston Dr. It is extremely steep, and has no defined trail. Following game trails is your best shot.

From the 3 parking spaces provided at the Trailhead, head across the street to the east where you'll find a small trail. From the beginning of the trail, you can see a big rockslide on the south side of the canyon's mouth. There is a trail that runs along the top of the rockslide. Let that be your goal. There is new construction going on, as of October 2, 2009, and the start of the trail will pass to the south of this new construction. Follow the trail across a little stream, up a small hill and you'll find yourself in a ravine type drainage. From there the trail winds in the wash, then exits the other side. Follow those game trails onto the ridge and begin ascending the ridge, with the rockslide as your goal. There is a series of trails that zig-zags, and criss-crosses up the ridge. It doesn't matter which one you take, as long as you are ascending and heading east-southeast up the ridge. At the .7 mile marker, you should find yourself on a decent trail at the top of the rockslide. Head up the trail til mile 1.07. At this point the trail should've faded into almost nothing due to fallen trees and overgrowth, and you should be in the Preston Canyon wash. There is a small cairn there to let you know where the trail is on your return. At that conjunction of washes, look almost directly East, and you should see a faint trail heading up the left ridge. There are 2 other washes to your right that have been carved out of the mountain. The faint trail is extremely steep and will lead you onto the south slope of Dharma Peak. South of Ascetic's Ridge. Continue east up the south slope of Dharma and especially south of the jagged peaks on your left. Keep on the south slope or in the drainage to your right. That will lead you right to the south face of Dharma. From there, it's a straight shot to the ridge separating you from Alpine and American Fork Canyon. Once you hit the ridge, you'll know and you'll see the summit of Dharma to the north. Continue til you reach the top. The views of Box Elder, and the Pfeifferhorn are absolutely outstanding from the top of Dharma. On top, you'll find a small PVC pipe tube with a registry.

Getting There

From I-15, take the Alpine/Highland, a.k.a. Thanksgiving Point exit and head East towards American Fork Canyon. Turn left at 5300 West, a.k.a. Alpine Highway. Head North, straight through roundabout, and turn right (East) on 100 South. Follow this road, straight through a stop sign until it T's. Hand a right, and then a quick left on to E Preston Dr. Follow Preston east til it bends north. After a little bit, you'll see a little parking area, for 2 or 3 cars on the left side. Parking is on the left (West) side of the road, Trailhead is on the right side (East) side of the road, directly across from where you park.

Route Description

No maintained trail. Follow game trails the entire time. Good luck.

Essential Gear

If you hike in summer, take 2-3 liters of water. There is NO water along the hike. Good hiking boots are recommended, since there is a lot of loose scree and dirt.

External Links

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