The plan was to hike up Sugarloaf Peak (11,051 feet/3,368 meters) and Mt. Baldy (11,068 feet/3,374 meters), two 11,000-foot mountains above the ski resort Alta in Utah’s Wasatch Mountains. I hadn’t climbed either. It was the end of June, and the road all the way into Albion Basin (the easiest/closest access point for these peaks) was closed until July 1, so I had to park at Alta and hike in from there. I hiked up the Upper Albion Meadows Trail (1.5 miles) to the Cecret Lake Interpretive Trail (.75 miles), which took me to pretty little Cecret Lake.
From there I followed a trail up to the saddle between Sugarloaf and Baldy and then on up to the Mt. Baldy summit.
I then descended back to the saddle and then went up Mt. Baldy. The part right above the tram was steep at first, but it leveled out and was reasonable toward the top.
When I was up there I looked toward Twin Peaks and thought what the heck, I might as well go climb those too, so I did. The trail descended off to the west toward Hidden Peak (where a huge new restaurant or something is being built) and then went up the ridge toward the Twin Peaks summit. The ridge narrowed and turned into this awesome class 3/4 scramble. It was so much fun. There were a few bolts there, which was odd. Apparently they are for guided parties. The rock turned from red quartzite to black rock and the angle got steeper, and I had the top all to myself.
I hadn’t looked up any information about descending from Twin Peaks because I didn’t think I’d be up there, but it wasn’t too hard to figure out. I dropped down into the Snowbird area and followed dirt roads and trails down to Snowbird Village and the road at the bottom of Little Cottonwood Canyon. From there I hoofed it up the side of the road to my car at Alta.
All in all, it was a wonderful day in the mountains, and I’m now a few peaks closer to climbing all of the Wasatch 11,000ers.
Here are my times:
10:34 – Left the parking lot
11:06 – At Cecret Lake trailhead sign
11:23 – At Cecret Lake
12:10 – On top of Sugarloaf
12:32 – Left the top of Sugarloaf
12:43 – Back at the Sugarloaf/Baldy saddle
1:05 – On top of Baldy
1:19 – Left the top of Baldy
1:40 – On top of Hidden Peak
2:40 – On top of the lower of Twin Peak’s summits
2:50 – American Fork Twin Peaks summit
2:57 – Left the top
5:08 – Back on the Little Cottonwood Canyon road
5:36 – Back at my car