Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt Trip

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Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
The Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt is located in the High Uintas Wilderness, with a 6 mile hike/ski/snowshoe to reach the yurt. The "trail" follows HWY 35 for 3 miles, before turning off onto forest roads. This ski in requires you to have comfortable backcountry skills, as well as appropriate gear (beacon, shovel, & probe), as avalanches have occurred here. The hike/ski in is well worth it, as you are surrounded by a winter wonderland, yet have a warm hut to hang out in. Plan to spend at least two nights here - one night is not enough to fully enjoy the area, get out for a tour, or relax. 

This is one of the best yurts for backcountry skiers - there is a good variety of terrain and steepness, plus you'll have the fresh powder all to yourselves! Be aware that this is a popular area for snowmobilers, so take caution with your dogs. There is no water source, so you'll need to either boil and filter water, or carry it all in. Plan to take half a day to arrive at the yurt, especially if you will be breaking trail. It's a long haul in, but well worth the effort!

Other yurts I've blogged about:
Lily Lake Yurt
Limber Flat Yurt
TUNA/Nordic Flats Yurt

From SLC head East on I-80, then south on HWY 40. Take exit 4 towards Kamas, UT. At the stoplight in Kamas, turn right. At the stop sign in Francis, UT, turn left. Drive to the very end of HWY 35 until you reach the winter gate. Park here - a port-a-potty is available.

Here is a driving map from SLC.


Distance: 6 miles one way
Elevation gain: 1,400 ft
Time: 3-6 hours to reach the yurt (depends on method of transportation)
Dog friendly? Yes, a max of 2 dogs are allowed
Kid friendly? No due to the distance
Fees/Permits? Yes, see below
GPS location of yurt: 40.47792, -111.08835
Altitude: 8,950 ft


How can I make a reservation?
Reservations can be made on Air B&B! You will get an email with the lockbox code to access the yurt as well.

How much does it cost to stay at the yurt?
The yurt cost $109/night + Air B&B fees. 

If you book last minute, and can go in the next two days when you make the reservation its only $87/night + fees.

How many people can stay in the yurt?
You can sleep a max of 8 people, though I don't recommend bringing 8 people. The yurt is small and you want some room to put all of your gear. I feel like 6 is a good amount, especially if you have a lot of gear.

What does the yurt provide?
The yurt is equipped with bunks (surprisingly soft mattresses, a propane stove (propane is included), kitchen utensils, and plenty of firewood. 

Is there water access?
No. There is no running water nor a nearby stream to filter water. You either need to carry it all in, or melt snow, then filter.

What should I bring?
-Your own sleeping bag and pillow
- toilet paper 
- food & alcohol
- games or cards
- really thick socks, slippers, or down booties for inside the yurt
- firewood is provided but you need fire starter & a lighter
your own sponge, biodegradable soap, and towel to clean dishes
 - trash bags (everything must be packed out)
- first aid kit
- any other entertainment you want!
Day 1 - 6 miles in

Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
 Charlie gets comfortable for the drive to the Nobletts Creek TH!
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
Ready to go! The "trail" is really easy to follow - just stay on HWY 35 for 3 miles. It's typically groomed, but also gets rutted out from snowmobilers.
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
Turn right at the signed Mill Hollow Reservoir and ski up 1.5 miles. This section will have the tightest canyon walls, so avalanche danger is a big concern. Make sure you check UtahAvy before heading out.
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
At 4.5 miles, just past the Mill Hollow Guard Station, turn left and cross a bridge. Continue along this until you reach the yurt, only 1.5 more miles.

Check out my posts on Backpacking with Dogs, and How to Keep your Dog Warm While Camping! He loves his Ruffwear Palisade's Backpack!
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
Taking in the view - so pretty!
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
The last 1.5 miles was fresh snow, so Ian and Charlie broke trail in the winter wonderland.
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
We could finally see the YMCA Camp area, and we were really close.
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
Finally, after 4.5 hours we reached the yurt! I was extremely slow since I had a heavy pack plus had never skied that far before. I ended up having really bad blisters under both of my feet in the same places.
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
Home for 2 nights!

Day 2 - rest day for me, ski day for the boys

Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
On a clear day you can see Bald Mountain and Hayden Peak!
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
The beautiful meadow, this time with snow showers!
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
Looking SE, out towards the YMCA Camp from the Yurt deck.
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
There are 4 port-a-potty's nearby - this one was so snowed in and hard to get into. 
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
Instead, we found these under the main lodge and it was much easier access. Anytime we wanted to get out, we had to put our skis on the snow was so deep. The yurt actually had two pairs of snowshoes that you could use if you wanted, but skis will help you float better.
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
Nap time for this pup!
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
After skiing most of the day the boys were worn out!

Day 3 - headed home!

Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
So sad to leave so quickly! On the way back it only took us 2 hours exactly - half the time getting in since we could ski most of the way out. The last 2 miles we had to put our skins back on since the road was too flat to skate ski on.

Really happy I used my Waymark Gear Co 50 liter pack for this trip - it held 34 lbs on the way in really well, then felt perfect on the way out with less weight. Get 10% off all packs using the code "GOAH19" on their website!
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
Flying down one section of trail!
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
On the drive home I highly recommend stopping at the Woodland Biscuit Company in Francis, UT - they are only open until 2pm, so leave early enough to grab a homestyle breakfast meal. They make everything from scratch and it's soooo good.
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow
The hot chocolate was also amazing and made me feel all warm and cozy!



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(A good year-round hike!)
Hiking to Nobletts Creek, Uintas


Also check out the
TUNA Yurt in the Uintas!
Norway Flats Yurt/TUNA Yurt, Uintas
Save me on Pinterest!
Mill Hollow Yurt Trip, Hiking to the Mill Hollow Backcountry Yurt, Yurts of Utah, Yurts in the Uintas, Dog Friendly Yurts, Mill Hollow

2 comments:

  1. What a great little vacation! Love how deep the snow is this year:) Charlie had quite a pack himself. What a good little guy.

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    Replies
    1. Yeah the pack doesn't seem to phase him at all - the more running in the snow the merrier for him!

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