Willard Peak (9,763 ft) and Ben Lomond Peak (9,712 ft) are the two high points dominating the Northern end of the Wasatch Mountains, above Ogden, Utah. Willard Peak is the high point for Weber County, though it sees less than half the amount of hikers compared to the popular Ben Lomond Peak. Both are worthy summits, and to avoid having to come back on separate days to hike each one, do both in one trip.
Charlie and I hike year round, no matter what time of day. Even though the long, dark Winter nights just around the corner, Charlie doesn't give me a break on walking him. In order for me to see him running around off leash on the trails at night, or dog walks around the neighborhood, we use the GoDoggie Glow Collar Light. These collar lights keep your furry kiddos seen, safe, and protected, especially at night.
Last week we drove to two hours to reach a certain peak we wanted to hike up, only to have to turn around. Why? Once we got close to the trailhead, there were tons of hunters out in their blaze orange. One guy stopped us on our drive and said, "You got some blaze, right?" We kind of mumbled, and was very adamant about letting us know we wouldn't be very safe hiking without any orange on, especially having a dog that is colored like a deer. Needless to say, as soon as we got to the TH, we turned right around. As soon as we got into service I searched for the best blaze orange Dog vests so that we wouldn't run into this problem again.
Little Water Peak (9,606 ft) sits at the upper, East ridge, dividing Millcreek Canyon from Big Cottonwood Canyon. Little Water Peak is seldom visited, yet it offers great views of the surrounding peaks and a good look down into Millcreek Canyon. The summit is just above Dog Lake to the North, and while Dog Lake will have tons of people in the Summer months, Little Water Peak will offer a bit of solitude. This summit is safe to access year round. It only takes roughly 30 minutes from Dog Lake to the summit, so put it on your list!
Thurston Peak (9,706 ft) straddles the Davis-Morgan county line, making it the tallest peak for both counties. Many people think that Francis Peak, with the big white golf ball domes on the summit, is the highest peak along the ridge, but it is Thurston Peak that claims the high point. This is a relatively easy peak for Peak Baggers to summit, since it only gains 1,700 ft over 4.2 miles. The high alpine setting has expansive views all around - Antelope Island to the West, Mt. Ogden to the North, and an overview of Morgan, UT to the East.
Kessler Peak (10,403 ft) is located in Big Cottonwood Canyon at the north end of the ridge that separates Cardiff Fork and Mineral Fork basin; it is the peak that connects the jagged ridgeline to Mt. Superior, also known as Cardiac Ridge. Kessler Peak provides an amazing 360 degree view of surrounding peaks, including Mt. Raymond & Gobblers Knob to the North, Broads Fork Twin Peaks to the West, Clayton Peak to the East, and Mt. Superior & Monte Cristo to the south.
Donut Falls, located in Big Cottonwood Canyon, is a classic Wasatch Mountain hike. This hike is suitable for all hikers regardless of age or hiking experience. This is usually the trail I will take family that is visiting from out of state since it hardly gains any elevation, yet it leads to a beautiful destination. It is a very rewarding for those who don't regularly hike but still want to see Utah's varying scenery. Because of these things, Donut Falls is very popular - you will literally see hundreds of people here on weekends, especially in Summer. Hiking the Donut Falls trail is safe and easy to access year-round. Arrive early to beat the crowds.
The Tumalo Hydration Pack is Mazama Designs newest pack on the market. I recently did a post on a few of their other hydration reservoirs, so when I got the Tumalo pack, I was super excited to test it out and add it to my pack collection. Mazama Designs offers a complete line of patented/patent-pending water bladder systems and replacement parts for almost every backpack on the market. All of the bladders are made in the USA, using Metallocene film, which provides for a taste-free drink of water. No more plastic-mouth syndrome!