Via Francis Peak... It's about 4.5 miles, and who knows how much in elevation gain. The snow really slows you down, and you'll lose the trail completely in sections. But there's no scrambling needed to stick to the ridge, just be patient as you climb up, and then down, and then up, and then down... typical ridge hike. But it's beautiful, and a good early-year peak-bagging opportunity if you're attempting to bag them all in one summer.
The hardest part of this was the drive up Farmington Canyon!
Traversed ridgeline from Francis in deep snow. The trail's in bad shape. Climbed to ridgeline from Fernwood Dr. trailhead twice (Feb '08 and early May '08) and got caught in whiteout conditions both times. Finally had clear skies and lots of sun in late June.
Drove up Farmington Canyon, started hiking where the dirt road turns into the trail. Had great weather until coming back, when my father-in-law and I got caught by a thunderstorm. Would love to do an early spring summit via Adams Canyon.
I traversed over from Layton peak, which was quite a bushwacking adventure. I could not find a trail to go down; I made my own way down to the Great Western trail and then headed out. Summit log is in a jar under some rocks on the peak.
Fun Ridge Run
What a way to spend Independance Day! We parked at Smith Creek Lakes and bagged Thurston Peak just a few hours later.
It was hot, but not miserable. The wildflowers were showing their colors, and there was still some snow on the east side that I just had to make a snowangel in.
I had a chance to leave work a little early on a great October day. With perfect weather all around my wife and I made a quick hike up Thurston and made it home for the Packers game on Monday night football.
I've been here a few times. We usually park at Kay's Creek and then hike up and over the mountain straight to my house in Morgan County. Fun hike. Very steep acent.
Drove to the top of Francis and hiked the ridge. It was very enjoyable. The scenery is beautiful at the top and I enjoyed the leasurely hike over to Thurston. It is was fun, a little longer than I expected but worth the trip.
Drove up the road instead of hiking up Kay's Creek as planned. Too hot to hike it from down below and I didn't have the time to do it from that route. Someday I'll hike it from the Fernwood Picnic area as originally planned. The last bit of road to Francis was a bit nervewracking but open all the way to Francis.
Very nice ridge hike.
Beautiful day. It was good to meet 2 other SPers on the summit with their fun living dogs.
Easy hike/stroll across the ridges. Decided to summit the smaller peaks along the way to make things more interesting. Dogs loved the many snow field crossings. Clear skies, but the blasted wind kept me from noticing a terrible sunburn developing.
July 4, 1995 - Drove up Farmington Canyon Road to Francis Peak and hiked toward Thurston Peak. There was a lot of snow still on the ridge.
November 2, 1997 - We traversed from Francis Peak to Thurston. It was late in the year and very cold. The ridge was covered in snow the whole way. The views are great and the summit plaque is very nice.
I've been up Adams Canyon many times. It is my favorite way to climb the mountain. It is also a good winter hike. Kays Creek is a long hike from the valley.
I had been to Francis Peak (before 9/11) several times by car. Now, the gate was locked a mile or so below the summit. I followed the 4wd road around the East side of Francis, and eventually on a single track trail that went over the bumps of the ridge. It was all near sunset and just plain awesome. I crossed an eastfacing snowfield when it was slushy on the way to Thurston. On the way back, it was hard ice and extremely precarious in tennis shoes. Next time I'll kick better steps, bring crampons, or just avoid the snow slope altogether and go over the ridge. Fantastic views to the Uintas, Stansbury mountains, Little Cottonwood canyon, etc. Too many 4 wheelers come out after dark though.
I had attempted this peak at least twice previously as a teenager and only got up halfway before giving up because of excessive bushwhacking on the trail from behind the castle. (I hadn't ever tried on Farmington ridge before)
I'll add the route later. If you want a challenge, this is the route. Alot of bushwacking, but most of that was my own stupidity! Oh yeah! Rattlesnakes! lots of 'em!
Tons of snow. Hiked/Snowshoed from the gate below the weather station. This adds a mile or two on the trip but still a great winter hike away from the SLC crowd. Crampons would have been nice, a little icy on some of the east facing exposures in the A.M.
Brought my mountain bike for the first mile or so and continued on foot to the peak, had the place to myself, great weather. Did the round trip in just over two hours... biked and ran a good portion of the trail.
Very enjoyable via Francis Peak. Open ridges, great views. Not so enjoyable from Kays Creek, steep and long!