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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
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    2,912

    40ish miles in the Sawtooths or Winds

    I’ve got some time off coming up next month and I’m working on finding a good backpacking route. Over the past 25 years I’ve probably covered just about every mile and seen every lake in the Uintas, so I’m trying to find something new. I’m thinking 10-15 miles max per day and 40-50 total miles over 4 hiking days. Preferably within a 5 hour drive of SLC. I’ve never hiked in either the Sawtooths or the Wind River ranges so they’re high on my list but I’m open to other options. Anyone got a route they’re willing to share?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    truckee
    Posts
    23,414
    I hike the length of the Winds many years ago. Most of the hiking was on the hiline stock trail that runs in lowish elevations on the east side. We did our hike as part of a climbing trip, spending time in the Cirque of the Towers and Temple area and then in the Titcomb/Gannet area. You could put together a short loop in the Cirque of the Towers/Temple area, if you're willing to cross Class 2-3 cols. Same with the Titcomb/Gannet area. For the latter a big part of the hiking would be coming in from Pinedale or Dubois--20 miles or so either way.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Ogden
    Posts
    9,231
    One of the fishing shops in Pinedale will do a car shuttle for you if you want to do a point to point. The Cirque is kind of a must see but it’s getting pretty crowded, don’t expect much solitude and make sure you carry wag bags.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    Before
    Posts
    28,202
    Dear Leader:
    https://usfs.maps.arcgis.com/apps/Vi...2b622e0af98182

    It's a little more than 5 hours from SLC, but there's just a ton of nice high country/lakes/streams/cirques/peaks.
    Merde De Glace On the Freak When Ski
    >>>200 cm Black Bamboo Sidewalled DPS Lotus 120 : Best Skis Ever <<<

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    3,801
    Quote Originally Posted by Buster Highmen View Post
    Dear Leader:
    https://usfs.maps.arcgis.com/apps/Vi...2b622e0af98182

    It's a little more than 5 hours from SLC, but there's just a ton of nice high country/lakes/streams/cirques/peaks.
    If there's one thing I've learned from posting on this board, it's that Buster knows his stuff when it comes to travel. The Wallowas are amazing!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Posts
    2,912
    Quote Originally Posted by phatty View Post
    If there's one thing I've learned from posting on this board, it's that Buster knows his stuff when it comes to travel. The Wallowas are amazing!
    You ain’t lying about Buster!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Location
    Down on Electric Avenue
    Posts
    4,545
    Dear Leader:

    I'd posit that it'll be quieter in the Sawtooths. Crazy to say that, as the Winds are serious bizness but more peeps in there these days.

    Mosquito hell out there sometimes. Bigguns.

    Consider the Teton Crest trail? Stellar weather here now.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Posts
    2,912
    Quote Originally Posted by Djongo Unchained View Post
    Dear Leader:

    I'd posit that it'll be quieter in the Sawtooths. Crazy to say that, as the Winds are serious bizness but more peeps in there these days.

    Mosquito hell out there sometimes. Bigguns.

    Consider the Teton Crest trail? Stellar weather here now.
    Teton Crest was actually on my list but my partner did it a few years ago and wanted something new. I think a loop through Cirque of the Towers will be the ticket.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Location
    Down on Electric Avenue
    Posts
    4,545
    ^^^^^^^^
    Coolio, that's a bucket list lap for sure.

    Holla at me if ya need anything/place to crash, etc.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2021
    Posts
    2,997
    Quote Originally Posted by alias_rice View Post
    I’ve got some time off coming up next month and I’m working on finding a good backpacking route. Over the past 25 years I’ve probably covered just about every mile and seen every lake in the Uintas, so I’m trying to find something new. I’m thinking 10-15 miles max per day and 40-50 total miles over 4 hiking days. Preferably within a 5 hour drive of SLC. I’ve never hiked in either the Sawtooths or the Wind River ranges so they’re high on my list but I’m open to other options. Anyone got a route they’re willing to share?
    What's some of your favorite sections or short 2-3 day hikes in the Unitas?

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Ogden
    Posts
    9,231
    Quote Originally Posted by alias_rice View Post
    Teton Crest was actually on my list but my partner did it a few years ago and wanted something new. I think a loop through Cirque of the Towers will be the ticket.
    I’ve got a decent loop for you. I’ll shoot you a PM later. Maybe I can figure out how to share a Gaia track.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    Orangina
    Posts
    9,301
    Quote Originally Posted by alias_rice View Post
    I’ve got some time off coming up next month and I’m working on finding a good backpacking route. Over the past 25 years I’ve probably covered just about every mile and seen every lake in the Uintas, so I’m trying to find something new. I’m thinking 10-15 miles max per day and 40-50 total miles over 4 hiking days. Preferably within a 5 hour drive of SLC. I’ve never hiked in either the Sawtooths or the Wind River ranges so they’re high on my list but I’m open to other options. Anyone got a route they’re willing to share?
    Sawtooths are incredible. Tons of lakes to connect and generally not too crowded, plus no griz to deal with. I've never hiked the Winds before, so no comment there.

    Sent from my SM-S918U1 using Tapatalk
    "All God does is watch us and kill us when we get boring. We must never, ever be boring."

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Location
    gamehendge
    Posts
    999
    i've got a good loop of both sawtooths and winds (not the cirque) that I enjoyed if it's not too late (i can pm gps tracks). I'm guessing bugs have come down a bit in the winds by now...

    winds loop i did after labor day, no bugs, 20's at night and saw 4 people total over 30 miles and two nights.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    3,801
    Quote Originally Posted by NBABUCKS1 View Post
    i've got a good loop of both sawtooths and winds (not the cirque) that I enjoyed if it's not too late (i can pm gps tracks). I'm guessing bugs have come down a bit in the winds by now...

    winds loop i did after labor day, no bugs, 20's at night and saw 4 people total over 30 miles and two nights.
    Not OP, but would love these!

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Location
    gamehendge
    Posts
    999
    didn't feel like making this public anymore
    Last edited by NBABUCKS1; 08-21-2023 at 11:24 AM.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Location
    gamehendge
    Posts
    999
    buster - wifes family is from walla walla and they love that area and have very strong connections to it. I've seen them from the highway and they look good, have to put the wallowa on our next year loop

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    The Wilds of Maine
    Posts
    2,855
    Cirque of the Towers classic loop is pretty easy in the scale of things, one real up 'n over at Texas Pass but otherwise lots of mellow walking to enjoy the views from. Had such a great time there a few years back, but there seemed like a lot of options to extend north of that area and then come into the Cirque towards the end. Making me miss Wyoming...

    Sadly had the worst meal of my life in Pinedale after we got out. Wish I could remember the name of the bar so we could warn ye!
    "We're in the eye of a shiticane here Julian, and Ricky's a low shit system!" - Jim Lahey, RIP

    Former Managing Editor @ TGR, forever mag.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    truckee
    Posts
    23,414
    Coming out meal is always chicken fried steak. Never had a bad one in Pinedale or anywhere else.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Under the snow
    Posts
    1,571
    Not a loop but go the other way to Elko and The Ruby Crest ? Warning ... It can be brutal 'cause you can see what's ahead for the next 10 miles or so along a portion of the trail (nothing but PUDs).
    Food ? We always pick up a dozen, or so, pasties from BJ Bull for future consumption.

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