Thursday, August 29, 2019

Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort

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Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
Clayton Peak (10,721 ft) is a fun local peak located at the top of Brighton Ski Resort in Big Cottonwood Canyon. It's right on the ridge of the watershed, so if hiking this route, dogs are not allowed. However, dogs can make the summit from Bloods Lake Trailhead, and going that way is allowed for them. This time, however, my friend and I decided to hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort. I hadn't hiked this route in over four years so it was time to revisit this trail. 

This route is very gradual, and makes its way up several long, easy switchbacks until you reach the base of the peak, and then climbs steadily up short but steep switchbacks. The views from Clayton Peak are some of the best in the area, in my opinion. On a clear day you can see as far south as Provo Peak and Hayden Peak to the East. This is a great hike to do after work in the summer months when the days are long and temps are cooler at this elevation.



Drive all the way up Big Cottonwood Canyon (BCC) until you reach the end of the road where Brighton Ski Resort it. Park at the main lodge where there is a giant TH sign and map.

Here is a driving map.


Distance: 6 miles RT
Elevation gain: 1800 ft
Time: 2-4 hours
Dog friendly? No, dogs are not allowed in BCC
Kid friendly? Yes, ages 8+
Fees/Permits? None

Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
 Start by parking at the giant ski map in front of the lodge.
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
Stay straight on the large, well worn trail. You'll be on the Lake Mary trail the first 0.8 miles.
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
 You'll hike up a few gradual switchbacks.
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
At 0.8 miles turn left for Clayton Peak! 
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
Hike past Dog Lake, and up a small hill through a forested section. Hike by the chairlift and you have the first good view of Clayton Peak ahead. 
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
 This trail is very shaded which is great in summer. My friend David leads the way.
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
The trail crosses several dirt roads/ski runs. Keep following the trail. 
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
 Passed by this Gian mushroom on the way. Looked like the piece on the right fell off.
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
Make your way up to the ridge, then turn left.
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
Turn left, and you'll again see Clayton Peak.
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
Follow the dirt road. 
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
 At 2.3 miles you'll see a cairn and a trail split off to the right. Take this uphill.
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
The trail narrows and you'll hike up several small but steep switchbacks. Awesome views to the South! 
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
Hiking up through the boulder field. No scrambling is required on this hike. 
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
On the summit! David looks out to the South and we point out all the peaks that we can see we've done from here. 
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
 Looking down to Lake Lackawaxen.
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
Summit selfie!
Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort
On the way back down we saw the pinkest and most purple sky I've seen in awhile. Gorgeous! What a fun hike.





 

Hiking to Clayton Peak via Bloods Lake Trailhead
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Hike to Clayton Peak via Brighton Ski Resort