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Wheeler Peak Summit Trail

Difficult
 4.6 (7)

A beautiful trail leading through alpine forests and meadows to the summit of Wheeler Peak.


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Map Key

4.3

Miles

7.0

KM

Point to Point

13,048' 3,977 m

High

10,192' 3,106 m

Low

2,898' 883 m

Up

42' 13 m

Down

13%

Avg Grade (7°)

75%

Max Grade (37°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Birding · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Wheeler Peak Scenic Drive is closed in the winter, usually from November to June.

Description

From the trailhead, follow the trail southwest through quaking aspen and mixed conifers. After opening onto an alpine meadow and joining into the Alpine Lakes Loop Trail for a short stretch, the trail separates and heads north toward Bald Mountain.

After turning west to ascend the ridge that runs between Wheeler Peak and Bald Mountain, the trail turns south and heads toward the final destination. Enjoy this last stretch of conifer forest as the timberline approaches fast. Once you leave the trees behind, the trail begins a series of switchbacks, through a fellfield, until attaining the shoulder of the final ridge.

Here you can appreciate the vistas; from southwest, around to west, and all the way to the northeast. The wind tends to be substantial along this ridge, which is why you'll see periodic windbreaks that have been built from rocks along this section of the trail. This is the point from which the summit is visible in front of you, and it seems so near! Alas, it is also the point that the trail begins getting steeper and steeper as it approaches the top. There are some switchbacks in the final stretch, but since snow is common at this point until August, it is easy to lose the trail and just scramble up the rocks till you summit.

Contacts

Shared By:

Jason Ethridge

Trail Ratings

  4.6 from 7 votes

#6972

Overall
  4.6 from 7 votes
5 Star
71%
4 Star
14%
3 Star
14%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Trail Rankings

#50

in Nevada

#6,972

Overall
2 Views Last Month
1,588 Since Jun 16, 2016
Difficult

0%
0%
0%
14%
71%
14%

Photos

It gets steep and rocky as you approach the summit, but the view can't be beat.
Jun 13, 2016 near Baker, NV
Headed up the ridge to the peak. Glad we brought along the snowshoes!
Apr 11, 2016 near Baker, NV
Best view in the park!
Jun 13, 2016 near Baker, NV
Looking across the meadow toward the summit.
Jun 13, 2016 near Baker, NV
Heading to the summit of Wheeler Peak with the REI National Parks Centennial pack.
Mar 8, 2016 near Baker, NV
Wheeler Peak summit view.
Sep 5, 2016 near Baker, NV

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Check-Ins

Jun 25, 2022
Judson Zhao
Oct 7, 2021
Scott Meyer
Jul 4, 2020
David Hitchcock
Hard hike, but wonderful views of the surrounding landscape.
May 12, 2019
JM Ditna
Aug 29, 2018
Steffen Hauschild
Some problems with my health; good felling to be back at the car
Sep 16, 2017
Bruce Hope
Great hike to awesome views!
Sep 5, 2016
Andy Mueller