Summary: This is an incredible hike. You won't want to leave the summit. It is an arduous journey to the top, but worth every ounce of expended energy. The view is godly!
The trail begins loping through a mixed aspen forest. After about a mile, it connects with the Alpine Lakes Loop, and the forest grows more thin. Follow the well signed path to the intersection with Stella Lake, where you turn right and begin a steady well-graded climb for a mile. You will get some shade along this part of the trail, and the ascent here isn't too demanding.
After a mile, at 10,800 feet you begin your true ascent. In 2 miles you gain over 2,200 feet of elevation. The trail is very well marked, even though it is over loose scree from this point on. It is just as tough coming down though, so save some energy for the descent.
The 360' view is spectacular, and indescribable.
Trailhead: To get to Great Basin NP - take the 15 north from Vegas. Then Head north on the 93. Follow it through a vast expanse for hundreds of miles to the junction for Major's Place, then turn right/east towards Baker on the 6/50. Head into the mountains. Turn south/right on the 487 and follow it into Baker. Turn right/west onto the 488 and head into the park. Turn right onto Wheeler Peak Scenic Drive and follow it to well-signed Summit trailhead parking. You can also begin this hike from the campground, it adds some elevation, but takes off some distance.
Note: You can also follow Utah Route 21 into Nevada and it leads right to Baker from the 15 north of Cedar City.
This trail is steep, strenuous, high altitude and windblown. Extreme temperature variations can occur, and so can threatening weather. Be overly cautious when hiking this trail. Descend rapidly if storms develop.
Be sure to treat yourself on the way down with a visit to Stella Lake, a pretty tarn. (Lat:38.98578 Lon:-114.31443)
Trail Guides for Great Basin NP - Wheeler Peak:
by Bruce Grubbs (Falcon)
Hiking Great Basin National Park
by Bruce Grubbs (Falcon press)
Best Seasons: Summer,
User Groups: Hikers,
Ranger Contact: Great Basin National Park (775)234-7331
Localhikes Reporter: This hike was submitted by Allen Riedel, who has posted 123 other hikes on this site. To visit this reporters web site, click here.
Trail Reviews Submit your own review
Reviewed by Karen on 2/26/2007
Hiked it twice now. Be prepared for the wind near the top.
Reviewed by Rob on 7/29/2005
As a local, I've hiked it dozens of times. The fun way to experience this hike is to deviate a bit from the "official" trail. When you get to the stella lake turnoff, look toward the peak. You'll see a crease ascending from Stella to the shoulder of the mountain. If you're in good shape, and willing to risk a twisted ankle, this route cuts 1.5 hours off the hike and is spectacular.
Notice: Traveling in the backcountry can be hazardous. You are responsible for informing yourself about these hazards and taking necessary precautions. Information on this web site comes from volunteer reporters and may contain errors or omissions. A current guidebook and proper equipment are essential for safe enjoyment of the hikes posted on this site.
Keys: Nevada Hiking, Nevada Trails, Nevada Hikes, White Pine County Hiking, White Pine County Trails, White Pine County Hikes