Desolation Trail

71 Pictures: 1-20 , 20-40 , 40-60 , 60-71

Desolation TrailheadDesolation Trailhead (10/27/2008) A view of the head of the Desolation Trail from the Pipeline Trail.

Desolation TrailDesolation Trail (04/27/2006) The Trailhead for the Desolation / Thaynes Canyon Trail.

South Box Elder Picnic AreaSouth Box Elder Picnic Area (04/27/2006) An unassuming building at the Desolation Trailhead.

Mill Creek CanyonMill Creek Canyon (04/27/2006) The south side of Mill Creek Canyon is covered with pine. This is a picture from the Church Fork Campground. The Desolation Trail is somewhere in that picture.

TrailheadTrailhead (04/27/2006) Start of the Desolation Trail: Salt Lake Overlook 2, Thayne's Canyon 3, Porter Fork Trail 8.5, Mill B 9, Bowman Fork 10.5, Dog Lake 16.5 and Desolation Lake 18.

South Box Elder BridgeSouth Box Elder Bridge (04/27/2006) A bridge over Mill Creek in the South Box Elder area (across the street from the Mill Creek Inn).

Fork in TrailFork in Trail (04/27/2006) Thaynes Canyon is to the left, Desolation to the Right. As it is early Spring, I head right.

Obstacle 1Obstacle 1 (04/27/2006) A tree fell over the trail. Several trees seem to have fallen down this last year.

Church Fork AreaChurch Fork Area (04/27/2006) Looking from the Desolation Trail to the Church Fork Area.

Glacier LilyGlacier Lily (04/27/2006) Wild yellow Glacier Lily (Erythronium grandiflorum) in the Wasatch.

Desolation TrailDesolation Trail (04/27/2006) The lower part of Desolation Trail.

Desolation TrailDesolation Trail (04/27/2006) The lower part of the trail is well developed. The trail becomes more primative as we move on.

Broken TreeBroken Tree (04/27/2006) I am really not sure how a tree could break in this manner.

Obstacle 2Obstacle 2 (04/27/2006) A tree fell over the trail.

Desolation TrailDesolation Trail (04/27/2006) The Desolation Trail in Mill Creek Canyon.

Wild ButtercupsWild Buttercups (04/27/2006) Spring Buttercups in the Wasatch Mountains.

WaterleafWaterleaf (04/27/2006) Waterleaf (Hydrophyllaceae family).

Exposed RootsExposed Roots (04/27/2006) These exposed roots are on the Desolation Trail. I doubt this tree has much longer to live.

Exposed RootsExposed Roots (04/27/2006) Trees alongside the Desolation Trail in Mill Creek Canyon.

Early SpringEarly Spring (04/27/2006) There are still patches of snow on the Mountain Trails in late April.

71 Pictures: 1-20 , 20-40 , 40-60 , 60-71

Desolation Trail

Desolation Trail is a primary access to the Wasatch Mountains. The trail starts at the South Box Elder Picnic area just East of The Mill Creek Inn restaurant.

The trail was originally designed as a motorcycle route. As such, it takes several switch backs with a consistent grade.

The trail South side of the canyon and has a North Facing Slope. In Utah, North facing slopes tend to be more sheltered and cooler. The trail goes through old growth pine forests.

If you wish to take a steeper hike. Thaynes Canyon trail parallels Desolation. It is much steeper and goes straight up this short side canyon. Most people take the Desolation trail as it has more view areas.

After gaining elevation the Desolation Trail connects with other trails in the Wasatch Mountains including Neffs Canyon Trail, Porter Fork Trail, Mill B (which drops into Big Cottonwood Canyon). The travels through the Mount Olympus Wilderness Area, winds to the South of Mount Raymond and eventually leads past Dog Lake to Desolation Lake (most people who want to visit Desolation Lake drive to the top of Mill Creek Canyon and take the Big Water trail.

Although the trail was built for motorcycles, it has eroded to the point that it is not a good bike trail. For that matter, since it goes through wilderness, bikes probably aren't allowed on the trail.

Context: Hiking

Mill Creek Canyon (193 pictures) These Trails are in Mill Creek Canyon.

Pipeline Trail (129 pictures) The Mount Grandeur Trail crosses the Pipeline Trail.

Neff's Canyon (255 pictures) The Desolation Trail connects with the Neffs Canyon Trail.

Mount Olympus (136 pictures) The Desolation Trail accesses the Mount Olympus Wilderness.

The Wasatch Mountains (130 pictures) Mill Creek Canyon is in the Wasatch Mountains.

Mill B North Fork Trail (33 pictures) The Desolation Trail meets the Mill B trail which leads into Big Cottonwood Canyon.

Bowman Fork Trail (71 pictures) The Desolation Trail connects with the Bowman Trail near Mount Raymond.

Big and Little Water (110 pictures) The Desolation Trail meets the Big Water Trail in the upper reaches of Mill Creek Canyon.

Desolation Canyon (169 pictures) This gallery shows pictures of Desolation Canyon on the Green River.


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