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Cardiff Fork

Salt Lake City

Wasatch Backcountry

This is an easy hike up an old road grade through a beautiful drainage lined by rugged alpine peaks.

Hiking Moderate

14 km
840 m
841 m
4-5 hrs
Low Point
2.2 km
High Point
3.1 km
Cardiff Fork Map

Cardiff Fork is a very scenic and moderate hike up one of the most popular canyons in the Wasatch. The climb is a bit over 2,500 feet in 3.5 miles (one-way) passing by some old mining relics and entering the upper alpine ridges. This hike has a few steep sections, but for the most part, it's mellow and follows an old jeep road. It is heavily traveled and well-marked.


The unique Doughnut Falls is a short and worthwhile side attraction lower down in the canyon. This is a short hike to view the creek pouring through a hole in the roof of a small cave.

The main trail/road stays to the hikers right and shoots straight up the center of the canyon. It opens up to reveal the surrounding peaks and passes by several old mining sites.

In the upper valley, it gains a ridge in the middle of the drainage and continues to head south until it gains the Little Cottonwood Canyon ridge at Pole Line Pass. From here, one can continue to the west to Mount Superior, or scramble to the east and reach Flagstaff Peak.



Hiking along trails with some uneven terrain and small hills. Small rocks and roots may be present.

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