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Alpine Pond Trail - Cedar Breaks National Monument

A two mile round trip stroll through an alpine ecosystem and colorful amphitheater.
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Rating: 4 out of 5 by EveryTrail members
Difficulty: Moderate
Length: 2.2 miles
Duration: 1-3 hours

Overview :  One of two maintained trails inside the Cedar Breaks National Monument the Alpine Pond Trail is a beautiful walk through an ecosystem ... more »

Tips:  Bug Spray! Fly's, nat's and mosquito's are common.
Elevation! You are hiking at 10,000 feet, respect this fact and pay attention to... more »

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Points of Interest

1. Alpine Pond Trailhead

Located 5 miles away from the visitor center is the Alpine Pond Trailhead. The parking lot is clearly marked and a prominent Yurt is easily seen from the road.

The trail information sign is located next to the Yurt and a nice trail brochure is located in the area. The brochures are $1.00 and I think well worth the money to take along with you... More

2. Lower Trail

Start by taking the lower trail, this will allow you to follow the numbering system of the brochure. Immediately you will recognize the alpine feel of this wonderful environment. Your first visit is the Rock Apartment. If you are hiking during the heat of the day, Marmots should be visible sunning themselves on the rocks.

Education continues ... More

3. Dead trees and a Beetle Epidemic

It becomes painfully obvious that a Beetle Epidemic hit this area. Most of the large Spruce Trees are dead and waiting to play their role in nature's cycle. Because National Parks and Monuments are protected areas, no action was taken or will be taken regarding these trees.

4. Lupine Wildflower

The distinctive wildflower known as the Lupine grows in abundance along the trail. This beautiful wildflower's name "comes from the Latin word lupus, meaning "wolf"."

5. Alpine Pond

This high mountain alpine pond is peaceful and a great place to sit and relax (provided you used bug spray).

6. Shortcut to Upper Trail

Immediately after the Alpine Pond, a shortcut will take you to the Upper Trail and back to the trailhead, making this a 1 mile loop. If you desire to continue, follow the trail downhill (following the stream leaving the Alpine Pond).

7. Amphitheater

The trail soon leads you to a view point overlooking Cedar Breaks majestic amphitheater. The towering pinnacles of Limestone are called Hoodoos and this view is very different from the view at the visitor center.

8. Chessmen Parking Area

This trail can be accessed from both the Alpine Pond parking area or the Chessmen parking area. As a loop hike proceed to the Upper Trail.

9. Easy walking back to trailhead

The upper trail is easy walking along the relative level edge of the Markagunt Plateau. Beautiful views of wildflowers, Quaking Aspen trees and occasional glimpses back into the Amphitheater, make this an enjoyable place to visit.