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Wasatch Cache National Forest, UT

About Wasatch-Cache National ForestWasatch-Cache National Forest is within the Wasatch, Uinta and Stansbury ranges of northeastern and north-central Utah. A small portion of the 1,259,160-acre forest, which merged with 949,848-acre Uinta National Forest in 2007, extends into Wyoming, and its northern sector reaches the Idaho border.

Some of the tallest mountains in Utah are found in the Uinta and Wasatch mountain ranges. (Wasatch is a Native American word meaning “high mountain pass.”) Paiute and Ute Indians had long dwelled in the mountain valleys by the time the first white explorers arrived, among them trapper Jim Bridger, guide Kit Carson, trader and explorer Jedediah Smith, and the Rocky Mountain Fur Co. trappers.

Access provided by nearly 1,400 miles of road and some 1,500 miles of trails. Within the forest are seven wilderness areas, more than 70 campgrounds and more than designated 30 picnic areas.

The terrain is very diverse, ranging from the dry Great Basin Desert to lush green meadows and the lofty Uinta Mountains. In the forest's easternmost section is part of the High Uintas Wilderness Area, where the mountain peaks soar from 12,000 to 13,512 feet. This wilderness area also contains hundreds of glacial lakes, many of which are stocked with trout.

Wasatch-Cache National Forest provides a habitat for approximately 300 species of birds and mammals. Two endangered species, the peregrine falcon and the bald eagle, are seasonal residents.

There are snowmobile trails at Mirror Lake North, Mirror Lake South, Wolf Creek Pass, the Bridger Lake area and between Monte Cristo and Woodruff; because of the high altitude, snowmobiling is best after the snow has settled. Snowshoeing as well as downhill and cross-country skiing trails also are available.

Other recreational opportunities include deer and elk hunting. A winter feeding ground for elk at Hardware Ranch is managed by the Division of Wildlife Resources. Elk and deer can be observed by telescope at the ranch's visitor center from mid-December to late February. Sleigh rides are offered in winter. Phone (435) 753-6206.

A scenic drive from Provo Canyon via US 189 and SR 150 (Mirror Lake Highway) at Kamas winds through the forest and ends in Evanston, Wyo. Another scenic drive is SR 39 between the Monte Cristo Range and Woodruff. Pineview Lake, about 9 miles up Ogden Canyon, can be reached via SR 39. Logan Canyon is a recreation area east of the town of Logan. Logan Canyon Scenic Byway, a winding, 45-mile-long route that is part of US 89, runs from Logan east to Bear Lake.

Snowbasin, on the east slope of Mount Ogden, offers year-round recreation. Other ski areas within the forest are Alta and Snowbird.

For further information contact the Forest Supervisor, Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest, 857 West S. Jordan Pkwy., South Jordan, UT 84095; phone (801) 999-2103, (877) 444-6777, or TTY (877) 833-6777 for camping reservations.

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Wasatch Cache National Forest, UT

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