Hike to Timpanogos Basin via Timpooneke Trail

10 miles 3100 ft gain  - Out-and-Back Trail

Added by Beau Day

Timpanogos basin has amazing views of the sheer cliffs of the second tallest mountain in the Wasatch surrounding alpine-meadow hills blanketed in colorful wildflowers.  Enjoy a waterfall and wildlife as you head up the trail.  

The wildflowers are normally at their peak from mid to end July or beginning of August. Depending on the amount of snow that year and how wet of a spring we had it could vary a little bit.  But anytime during the mid summer you will encounter amazing Indian Paintbrush, Lupine and other colorful wildflowers.

 After entering the mouth of American Fork canyon you will pass a fee station ($6 entrance fee).  Go for about 8 miles up the canyon on the Alpine Loop road until you reach Timpooneke Campground. The parking lot and trail head is just past the campground.  The trail starts off just behind the bathrooms and heads to the right where you will see a big wooden sign with a map and other info.  If you go straight and start to drop down, you are on the wrong trail. 

After on the trail, it is pretty straight forward. This is an out and back trail (10 miles round trip) starting at an elevation of 7,360 feet.  Total elevation gain to reach Timpanogos basin is about 3,000+ feet in just under 5 miles. The trail is heavily-trafficked and well-maintained.

There is a waterfall along the way called Scout Falls.  It is 1.5 miles into the hike and is marked at one of the right-switchbacks where a short trail heads off to the left. All along the trail, watch for moose and other wildlife down in the willows and in the open meadows you pass along your way up. 

After ascending the "grand staircase," (which is probably the most difficult and steepest part of the hike) you will be rewarded with a view of the impressive peaks of the north face of Mt. Timpanogos, towering a sheer 1630 feet above the basin, blanketed in wildflowers.  

Relax, enjoy the view, and explore the basin!  This is a great place for photography. There are a couple different trails that take you through the wildflower-covered hills.  One, off to the right takes you to an old crash site of a B-25 airplane.  Another, takes you directly south to emerald lake where you can filter water and if you're daring, take a refreshing swim. (Or a freezing swim, depending how you look at it!) 

While you are up there, you might want to summit Mt. Timpanogos! You've come all that way so you might as well, right? Take the main trail as it ascends up through the basin and switch backs to the saddle.  You may encounter some mountain goats along this part of the trail.  When you reach the saddle the view of the valley and Utah Lake below is stunning. The trail continues along the ridge to the south until you reach a hut at the summit where you can take in 360 degrees of stellar views at 11,752 feet! (From the basin if you summit it's an extra 1.5-2 miles and another 1,500+ feet.)

No rush coming back down, but when you do, you can go down the way you came or head south along the ridge until you come to top of Timpanogos glacier.  Hike or slide down (carefully) to the bottom to Emerald lake.  From there, take the LEFT trail back to Timpooneke where you started.

This place is beautiful and totally worth the hike.  Stop and turn around at the basin, the saddle, or bag the summit and you won't be disappointed with either decision! 

Read More

Tags

Photography
Hiking
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Lake
Scenic
Waterfall
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

Hike to Scout Falls

I had my 2 year old and not a lot of time, so we were looking to do a quick little hike. We made it to Scout Falls. This hike was beautiful, and the views were stunning. I definitely plan on going back soon to do the rest. Looking forward to it...

Awesome :)

Beautiful trail, good workout

Stay Nearby

Provo, Utah

Little Mill

Overview Little Mill Campground is located in American Fork Canyon on the banks of American Fork Creek. This popular campground is a great place to escape the hot summer days while hiking or fishin...

Provo, Utah

Mt. Timpanogos

Overview Mt. Timpanogos Campground is located along the beautiful Alpine Loop Scenic Byway in the Wasatch Mountains. The Mount Timpanogos Wilderness Area is adjacent. Visitors enjoy hiking the Aspe...

Provo, Utah

Altamont

Overview Altamont Campground is located along the beautiful Alpine Loop Scenic Byway high in the Wasatch Mountains. The Mount Timpanogos Wilderness Area is adjacent. Visitors enjoy hiking the nearb...

Provo, Utah

Timpooneke

Overview Timpooneke Campground is located along the beautiful Alpine Loop Scenic Byway high in the Wasatch Mountains. The Mount Timpanogos Wilderness Area is adjacent. Visitors enjoy hiking the Tim...

Nearby Adventures

  • Hike Timpanogos Summit via Timpooneke Trial

    Mt. Timpanogos is one of the most popular hiking destinations around the Salt Lake and Utah Valleys.  Hundreds of people give everything they've got for this grueling hike each weekend.  From the end of June, to end of August, Timp offers some of ...

    14.5 miles 4700 ft gain

  • Backpack Mount Timpanogos

    The Timpooneke trailhead is located in American Fork Canyon, next to the Timpooneke Campground. There is a $6 fee to enter the canyon, unless you have a National Park Pass with which you get in free. On the weekends, it may be difficult to find pa...

    15 miles

  • Hike to Scout Falls

    Starting at a little over 7,300 feet, the Timpooneke Trailhead offers a beautiful alpine setting for starting your hike. Several trails originate from the same parking lot so you will want to make sure you get on the correct trail. The parking lot...

    2.8 miles 675 ft gain

  • Camp at Timpooneke Campground

    The Timpooneke Campground sits at 7,400 ft. elevation with views of Mount Timpanogos and campsites surrounded by beautiful aspen, fir and spruce trees. The leaves in the fall put on a show you will not want to miss. Within the campground there are...