Notch Peak |

Delta

Hiking Notch Peak - Delta Hiking Notch Peak
Delta

Overview | Getting There | Route | Photos | Maps | Comments

Overview


TICKS & TODOS: 3 Todo Lists / 3 Ticks
RATING: Easy/Moderate Hike
LENGTH: 7 miles (3-5 hours)
GEAR: Standard Hiking Gear
MAPS: Miller Cove, UT; Notch Peak, UT;
WATER: None.
SEASON: Spring, Fall, Winter (when no snow)
NOTES: High clearance required and 4x4 recommended. The last few miles are rocky and (in 2015) quite rutted in spots.
Wed Hi:80 Lo:54 Thu Hi:90 Lo:58 Fri Hi:83 Lo:59 Sat Hi:85 Lo:57 Sun Hi:76 Lo:54
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Notch Peak is considered by most to be a Utah classic. The hike is quite casual, but the summit offers jaw dropping exposure down the second highest vertical drop in the United States. (The first is El Capitan in Yosemite.) Some debate the second highest drop status depending on how you define pure vertical drop, but it is a stunning drop to stand on top of, and a hike I would strongly recommend. The views of the west desert from its summit give some perspective on the lonely western side of the state and how isolated and expansive it is.

Be aware the hike is located in the very wild and unpopulated west desert of Utah. Services, people, and help are a long ways away when visiting the area. Given the remoteness, I would rate this as an intermediate hike. Be sure to have a mechanically reliable car, spare tire, and extra food and water in case of trouble.

There is good primitive camping at and near the trailhead though no water is available in the area.

Getting There

From Delta, head west on US-50/US-6 for about 40 miles to just after mile post 48. The side road is on the north side of the road:

  • Right @ Mile Post 47.95 ( 12S 308087mE 4327104mN / N39° 04' 19" W113° 13' 06")
  • 0.9 miles, merge right ( 12S 306949mE 4328174mN / N39° 04' 53" W113° 13' 55")
  • 3.4 miles left into Miller Canyon ( 12S 308043mE 4331621mN / N39° 06' 45" W113° 13' 13")
  • 8.6 miles left to Sawtooth Canyon. There is a camping area at the junction. The road gets rougher from here. ( 12S 300564mE 4335016mN / N39° 08' 29" W113° 18' 28")
  • Old House ( 12S 296764mE 4333790mN / N39° 07' 47" W113° 21' 04")
  • Trailhead ( 12S 295667mE 4333634mN / N39° 07' 41" W113° 21' 50")

Route

From the trailhead, begin hiking up Sawtooth Canyon. A towering wall on the left offers a good preview of the immense walls that surround much of Sawtooth Canyon. After just a few minutes, a major junction is reached. Stay left. The trail is an old ATV trail. Follow it up Sawtooth, keeping an eye out for the many arches that dot the walls both high and low. We saw three on our trip.

The ATV trail gives way to a use trail, still staying along the bottom of Sawtooth Canyon. At a steep ledgy section, the trail ascends left, crosses the canyon, ascends out of Sawtooth Canyon on a well-defined social trail, then re-enters Sawtooth above a few small falls. The canyon becomes more shallow here.

At a prominent junction as the canyon becomes more of a wide valley, follow the social trail left and up to a saddle. At the saddle, the hike changes from a canyon hike to a jaw-dropping ridge hike! The views from the saddle are excellent and the reason to do this hike. From the saddle, hike south up easy slopes to the true summit of Notch Peak.

Return the same way.


Maps

Printable Maps:
Trailhead

12S 295742mE 4333607mN

N39° 07' 40" W113° 21' 47"

Junction left

12S 294849mE 4334258mN

N39° 08' 00" W113° 22' 25"

Arch and cave view to East

12S 294040mE 4334104mN

N39° 07' 54" W113° 22' 58"

Arch View

12S 293746mE 4334138mN

N39° 07' 55" W113° 23' 10"

Arch To East

12S 292912mE 4334392mN

N39° 08' 03" W113° 23' 45"

Leave Right

12S 292447mE 4334510mN

N39° 08' 06" W113° 24' 05"

Leave Left

12S 292267mE 4334914mN

N39° 08' 19" W113° 24' 13"

Summit

12S 291777mE 4335427mN

N39° 08' 35" W113° 24' 34"

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