Lonely Spanish Fork Peak sits by itself between the Cascade/Provo Peak massif to the north and the Santaquin Peak/Loafer Mountain massif to the south. Sure, it's 1,500 feet lower than Mount Timpanogos or Mount Nebo, but it still rises 5,500 feet above the valley floor and is higher than any peaks in Weber or Davis Counties to the north.
The most popular route is the trail leading up the Right Fork of Maple Canyon, a well-maintained trail all the way. Another lesser-used (and virtualy derelict) trail leads up Sterling Hollow from the south slopes. Both routes involve well over 4,500 feet of vertical climbing. The Maple Canyon trail is wicked steep and rocky, climbing over 4600 feet in 5.5 miles. The trip is worth it, though, with vistas opening up as you climb past a lake and over the ridge for dramatic views of Utah Valley, Hobble Creek Canyon, and Diamond Fork Canyon.
An alternate same for the mountain is Sierra Bonita (Spanish for "beautiful mountain"), based on the name that Junipero Serra reputedly gave the mountain on his farthest venture north in the 17th Century. This is an historical curiosity, but no one calls it this.
Mountain Goats on the Summit
(Some locals refuse to call this mountain Spanish Fork Peak, instead calling it "Maple Mountain" or "Mapleton Mountain." This seems to be borne out of some simmering rivalry between David (Mapleton) and Goliath (Spanish Fork City). USGS, understandably, sided with Goliath. Best advice for residents of Mapleton (which exists only because it seceded from Springville in the 1910s, with the blessing of the Utah Supreme Court) is to get over it. The name is Spanish Fork Peak.)
Take I-15 exit 263. Take a right on US-89 (State Street), then left at the Mapleton and Whiting Campground sign (Maple Street). At Main Street turn left and then right on 400 North which leads to Maple Canyon and the trailhead, located at the far end of the campground.
No fees. The campground gate closes at about 2200 and doesn't open again until about 0600, so if you forget your cheezits or marshmallows and will need to drive into town for a resupply, be sure you park in the south overflow/group lot outside the gate. The trailhead parking lot is closed to horse trailers from Memorial Day to Labor Day, but outside that window expect parking to be tight, especially during the big game hunting season in October (which, ironically, is some of the best hiking weather of the season. Wear orange).
When To Climb
June – October most years. Expect lingering snowfields early in the season on north or east facing slopes.
Corral Mountain from Right Fork Trail
Good camping can be had in Maple Canyon, or at Maple Lake.
Visit www.ksl.com for weather conditions and cameras from the Wasatch mountains.