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Twin Peaks Wilderness

General Contacts Area Management Wilderness Laws
Photograph taken in  the Twin Peaks Wilderness
Credit:
Utah Wilderness Association

Introduction

The United States Congress designated the Twin Peaks Wilderness (map) in 1984 and it now has a total of 11,396 acres. All of this wilderness is located in Utah and is managed by the Forest Service.

Description

Twin Peaks Wilderness forms a part of the dramatic backdrop you see on the east side of the Salt Lake Valley, southeast of Salt Lake City. Originally carved by glaciation and currently remodeled by erosion, this area consists of narrow canyons and high peaks (including Twin Peaks, Superior Peak, and Dromedary Peak) that combine to form a rugged and spectacular display. Elevations range from just under 5,000 feet to 11,319 feet on Twin Peaks. Much of the higher terrain is classified as alpine and characterized by large cirque basins and exposed rocky ridges.

Dense mountain brush mixed with oak/maple and grass dominates the vegetation at lower elevations. There are scattered stands of firs and aspen in the mid to higher elevations. Temperatures with a 50-degree difference between summer highs and lows can occur. Snow can remain in some parts of the wilderness until midsummer.

State Route 190 follows Big Cottonwood Creek along the northern boundary and separates this Wilderness from Mount Olympus Wilderness to the north. State Route 210 follows Little Cottonwood Creek along the southern boundary and stands between Twin Peaks and Lone Peak Wilderness to the south. The canyons of both these creeks are highly scenic, and you'll find trailheads along both routes. Trails are often steep and strenuous. Trails are limited as the Twin Peaks Wilderness has only 5 system trails totaling approximately 10 miles. Crowds of people can be common on these trails, especially on weekends. Use is primarily day-use, although there is some overnight backpacking opportunities in the Lake Blanche area. The wilderness is within the Salt Lake City Watershed and has restrictions on dogs, horses and swimming.

Planning to Visit the Twin Peaks Wilderness?

Leave No Trace

How to follow the seven standard Leave No Trace principles differs in different parts of the country (desert vs. Rocky Mountains). Click on any of the principles listed below to learn more about how they apply in the Twin Peaks Wilderness.
  1. Plan Ahead and Prepare
  2. Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces
  3. Dispose of Waste Properly
  4. Leave What You Find
  5. Minimize Campfire Impacts
  6. Respect Wildlife
  7. Be Considerate of Other Visitors
For more information on Leave No Trace, Visit the Leave No Trace, Inc. website.



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