Difficulty: Most Difficult ♦︎
Length: 16 miles round trip
Elevation Gain: 4,400 feet
Dog Friendly: Yes
Trailhead coordinates (copy + paste): 40.4311, -111.6391
Directions: The trail begins about an hour and half from Park City. Turn off of Alpine Loop Road onto Timpooneke Road, and into the parking lot after about 0.2 miles. The trail is clearly marked and easy to follow from here. This road is seasonal and can only be accessed from mid/late May through early/mid November. Check UDOT's traffic website for current status.
The more popular of two trails that ascend the iconic Mount Timpanogos, the Timpooneke Trail climbs at a steady pace to the 11,752-foot summit. The first portion of the trail travels through a forested area and is well-shaded, gaining elevation gradually but steadily. Eventually the trail leaves the forest behind, opening up into the Giant Staircase, which is a series of four meadow-covered plateaus stacked on one another in a large basin. Upon conquering the stairs, you will enter into the Timpanogos Basin. Many people choose to camp here and do this hike over two days, but it is easily doable as a day hike. From here, the trail heads up the rocks to the saddle, where you'll connect with hikers from the Aspen Grove Trail and may want to rest before continuing on for the final stretch to the summit. With less than a mile left to go, you still have about 700 feet of elevation to gain. This last stretch is steep and treacherous in the wrong weather conditions, so choose your day carefully. This trail is highly-trafficked, so snow turns to slippery ice quickly. Be prepared with spikes if you do choose to go when there is snow on the ground. Take in the view and visit the century-old shack at the summit (it doesn't always look like Mount Everest. Again, choose your day carefully) before starting on the journey back down. Always remember that uphill traffic has the right of way— etiquette seems to be more of an issue here than most places. And keep your eyes peeled for mountain goats (last photo), they might even kick rocks at you!