Taylor Lake to

North Pole Pass

Taylor Lake is a nice detour just off the beaten path of the Highline Trail. You'll first see this lake as you near the base of North Pole Pass. The lake sits in a gorgeous basin and it's one of the prettiest locations you'll find for a lake. It offers great fishing opportunities for several species of trout. Camping is also possible in the timber on the edge of the lake. The only downside is that you drop 250 feet in elevation from the trail to get to this lake. But if enjoying the journey is part of your itinerary, it will be well worth your time.

From the Reader Lakes Basin, the Highline Trail heads above Taylor Lake and up the face of North Pole Pass. This pass is by no means the fiercest pass you'll encounter along the trail, but it does pose several risk factors that you'll want to consider before you make the summit. First, the pass leaves you exposed to the elements for a long period of time. Be sure to avoid this area during storms because it would be a horrible place to be stuck in a lightning storm. The second thing to consider is time. The pass takes more time to complete than you would originally think. The climb to the top can feel like a never-ending climb given the mountain is largely round, and once on top you'll spend a considerable amount of time crossing the 3/4 mile stretch across the flat top of the mountain. This pass also tops around 12,300 feet in elevation, which makes it a likely spot to encounter freezing rain or even snow. So make sure you take those things into consideration before attempting this pass. 

 

However, given that intro, this pass offers a fantastic view of the Reader Lakes and Fox Lake. The pass also marks an important milestone as it's the beginning of the the High Uinta Wilderness Area. You'll likely be surprised that you haven't been in a wilderness area prior to this point, but nonetheless it's an important designation that makes the Highline Trail so incredible. 

Camping Potential - 1
Water Availability - 2
Difficulty - 4
Scenery - 4

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