Beauty in the Uinta Mountains
The boardwalk is cracked and faded, rotten in places to a point you believe beyond repair. Just as worn is the path, broken and sometimes diminished beyond recognition. I can see sign of horses traveling this route, certainly more gracefully than I do. My journey is not about looking at the path, rather, the surrounding area, ahead, to the side, and on occasion behind, the experience. The trail moves tightly through tall trees and then opens into small meadows, some with small ponds and beaver huts, all with excellent opportunities to sling my hammock.
The trees are almost barren of leaves and the river rages on with the first snows and rains of the fall season. Water is available the entirety of this trip with easy access to filter with your straw filter or pump. This is one of my favorite little hikes, somewhat secluded and always beautiful. North Fork Provo River from Forest Road 496 to Marjorie Lake is about a 15-mile round trip. The forest road turnoff is about 11 miles from Kamas up highway 150. Another mile or so up the rough road is the trailhead.
There are plenty of opportunities to do some boondocking and on this adventure, I did just that, hiking up and over a saddle about 4 miles up the trail to another path leading down boulder creek to Forest Service Road 036. Roundtrip I was just over 10 miles this day. Tighten up your elastic shoe laces and veer off into the unknown a bit. I returned a day or two later and hiked in and out to Marjorie lake, another excellent destination.
I was looking for elk during my trip, and while I did not find the elk, I found a mountain lion and several deer along with one large mama moose. The scenery is stunning, everything the Uintah's have to offer from lush meadows to tall standing Pines and a wide variety of wildlife. During the fall, as it is now, the Provo River is still moving with a pretty good flow. The roar of the water echoes off rock canyon walls and steep shale slides. The landscape provided images aplenty for my memory and my camera.
The hike is easy enough for small feet as well and there is no commitment on the distance, you can turn around anytime. If you have the opportunity to do a little snowshoeing later in the season this would also be an excellent area. Bring the kids and the pooches and pack a picnic, the Provo River trail running up through this tight canyon is well worth the drive and some well spent time. The parking area itself is beautiful and would be an excellent place to do a bit of Dutch oven cooking and maybe make a friend.