KSL Outdoors: Kings Peak Base Camp

Thanks for tuning into KSL Outdoors, I’m Adam Eakle, along with my good buddy Jeff Bringhurst.

You know Jeff, usually you and I are out hunting geese or ducks or something but today you’ve got us into something different right? Little bit different — we are going to go up to Kings Peak. Little father-son outing. Can’t beat that. I brought my son Alex, you brought your son Britt and the only person out of all of us that has been there is Jared. Jared is the only one that has hiked this thing. What are we in for? It’s a long hike, around 30 miles round trip.

Well, we stopped off in Evanston, the hub of adventure. The last place we could get some supplies before we hit the trail.

13,528 feet. The highest point in Utah.

Jeff Bringhurst, Sandy hunter/adventurer: My wife and daughter, they do a lot of things, they go on trips. They were down in Disneyland six months ago. We were at home and said alright we’ve got something, just the two of us, let’s go, take a trip go have fun. We sat down, made a list, wrote down a bunch of stuff, Kings Peak was one of the things on there. We also had Hawaii and Costa Rica and we decided to go to Kings Peak. It’s something that’s been on my bucket list for a long time.

Adam: The quickest and easiest route to King’s Peak is the Henry’s Fork Trail. Now, when I say easy, it’s nearly 30 miles round trip with about forty one hundred feet of vertical gain. Most turn it into a three day adventure.

Doug Meek, Payson: Old guys like us can make it right?

Kind of. Yes you can. Lot of false summits. You get up to the top of one and there is three more. So you’ve just got to keep going. How was the fishing? Awesome. He caught 75. (laughs) It’s good, stream’s good, Dollar Lake is bad. Lot of people, lots of people.

You know, the trail on the way in is almost entirely along the Henry’s Fork river. It is a cool-looking river and there’s got to be some fish in it. The guys are taking a break. I’m going fishing.

The Henry’s Fork river is loaded with small cutts and the DWR stocks many of the nearby lakes by air every few years. Some hold nice tiger and brook trout. If you are serious about fishing, you’ll want to take an additional day.

Camp near Lake Blanchard, Castle or Cliff lakes. The fishing there is outstanding.

I’ve fished with anchovies bigger than that, but not that pretty.

Better get back on the trail, those guys are probably ready to go.

The Henry’s Fork Trail is easy to follow. The first eight miles, the incline is only around 1500 vertical feet, so Day One is not that difficult.

Oh yeah, feeling that elevation now.

When you’re over 10,000 feet, the air does get a bit thin, so give yourself plenty of time.

Well, we got the boys up this far and there it is: our destination for tomorrow, Kings Peak. It’s still a long ways, but it’s a lot closer than when we saw it earlier. How you doing?

I’m tired, I’m not going to lie.

You’re hurting, huh?

I’m more stubborn than I am tired, we’ll make it.

Finally after five hours of hiking, we find a campsite.

We got a nice camp spot, even a nice fire pit. I’m done walking. Are you going to set my tent up? No. Let’s do it.

You know there is a lot of people that use this drainage to attempt their climb of King Peak and there are a few rules the rangers here ask you to abide by. One is, if you camp close to Dollar Lake or Henry’s Fork Lake within one quarter mile, they ask that you not have a fire. All of the fire wood, all the dead wood has been used up. We are a quarter of a mile away, thus we decided to have a fire. The other thing they ask you is to camp 75 paces from any major trail or any water source.

Don’t forget: Your fire is not your garbage can.

Pack it in, pack it out.

And when nature calls, yeah there are some rules with that too. You are supposed to dig an 8-inch hole to put your waste in there. Make sure you cover up your toilet paper 8 inches deep, cover it back up. You should be good to go.

After a long hike, there’s nothing better than a hot meal. It gave us a chance to try out Camp Chef’s new backpacking stove called the Stryker.

II saw this at Sportman’s Warehouse and it was only $55 bucks. Lightweight, it’s awesome and we’ll be using it all weekend. So you detach the bottom part of that, put that in your container. Then you can even put your fuel inside there, it has a little stand.

Jeff: it boiled the water in 2-3 minutes. Didn’t take long.

Adam: 2-3 minutes. Yeah, and of course we are eating Mountain House, eating like kings. Your water is a little brown. That’s ok. Little chewy. I’ll have Brit try it first.

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