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View north over the creek

Beaver Creek Trail

The Beaver Creek Trail is a fairly easy trail in the western Uinta Mountains, about 6 miles east of Kamas. Compared to other trails in the area, it's free of snow fairly early in the season. Altitude is 7,100 feet, with about 500 feet elevation gain over the 4.8 mile trail. In early June, some deep mud pockets can persist.

View from the trail looking east.
June 1, 1999 by Bruce Argyle

The trail begins across from the Yellow Pine parking area, just before you reach the fee station for the Mirror Lake Highway (trailhead GPS N 40 37.552' W 111 11.224'). Be sure to pay your $3 fee before turning back to park -- if your car is parked there, it's assumed you've gone into the fee area.

The trail rolls along where the valley meets the hillside, passing countless beaver ponds. Here Jackie, the Doc's Jack Russell Terrier, plays alongside a pond amid balsamroot and yellow fawn lilies. June 1, 1999 by Bruce Argyle

Jackie plays along a beaver pond

The broad, round-bottom valley is the work of a glacier that originated higher up near the headwaters of the Provo River. From 1 million to about 10,000 years ago, the Uinta Mountain area was covered with massive glaciers. The action of the glaciers is responsible for the rounded valleys and multiple lakes seen in the higher Uintas.

View east along the trail, near the Shingle Creek Campground Most of the trail is easy hard-packed dirt, perfect for a first-time alpine bike ride. Except for a not-to-tough hill right at the beginning, the trail is fairly flat. More technical trails, such as the Cedar Loop trail, head uphill at several locations along the Beaver Creek Trail.

Single-track portion of the trail just beyond Shingle Creek. June 1, 1999 by Bruce Argyle

The last 1.5 miles (after the Shingle Creek Campground), the trail narrows and there are some rocky sections to test your handling skills.

The official end of the trail is at where the Pine Valley Trail forks off to the right. (GPS N 40 35.920' W 111 07.217'). If you drop 1/4 mile down the Pine Valley Trail, you can link up with the beginning-level North Fork Scenic Byway Trail.
Yellow fawn lily  

 

 

What's the fine for cutting down a tree if you're NOT a beaver?

Left above: Yellow Fawn Lillies along the trail, appear soon after the snow recedes. Also called trout lily, glacier lily, adder's tongue, and dogtooth violet, these delicate flowers are around 5 inches high.

Right above: Beavers hard at work just before our arrival felled this quaking aspen. The leaves on the branches are still crisp.
Getting there: In Kamas, turn east towards the mountains on the well-marked Mirror Lake Highway. Drive 6 miles to the fee station, then backtrack 1/4 mile to the parking area for the trail (GPS N 40 37.552' W 111 11.224'). Or you can catch the trail at the second Shingle Creek Campground entrance (GPS N 40 36.852' W 111 07.800'). As an out-and-back from the lower trailhead, you'll cover 9.6 miles.

A young moose along Beaver Creek.
June 1, 1999 by Bruce Argyle

Plently of deer, one moose, and a bear.

Beaver Creek Trail Map

One-page printable riding guide
GPS track file for this trail (right-click and "Save as...")::
     Garmin     GPX 
High-res topo for printing:   View
Lodging, camping, shops:  Links to area resources

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