Island Lake - Uinta Mountains

Jason Bergreen | The Salt Lake Tribune


The hike to Island Lake is a great fall trek where you can see the leaves in the Uintas changing from green to yellow and orange. The trail to the lake snakes mostly west and passes several small marshes, meadows and lakes. The path is rocky in places, but there is not much elevation change overall. From the parking lot, follow the signed trail toward Long Lake. The path passes around Washington Lake and offers great views of Mount Watson. After about a mile, hike over several wooden footbridges. You will soon reach a fork in the road. Follow the path right where the sign points to Island Lake, not Weir Lake. Head down a set of rock steps and you will soon see Long Lake on the right. Continue west following the cairns along the rocky trail, where you will then cross north along another bridge. Head up a small rocky ledge and continue following the skinny dirt path to the west. You will pass another small lake on your left and then two little green lakes with lily pads on your left. At about mile two, you will see Duck Lake in front of you. The path splits again. Follow the sign right, heading mainly north. There is some incline here, but only for a short distance. In less than half a mile, after going up several switchbacks, you will reach Island Lake. It is named for the rocky formations in the middle of the lake that look like small, floating islands. Horses allowed: Yes, Fee: $6

Getting there: Take Mirror Lake Highway (State Route 150) east of Kamas and drive 32 miles to Crystal Lake Trailhead parking lot. The trail for Long Lake and Island Lake begins here.


-- Jason Bergreen

Region: Uinta Mountains

Destination: Island Lake

Distance: 6 miles

Time: 3 hours

Elevation Gain: (start)10,042 (low) 9,916 (high) 10,248 (End) 10,

Dog Allowed: Yes

Restrooms: Yes

Biking: N/A

Difficulty: 3


First published 2010-09-19