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The Uinta Mountains
Uinta Mountains
(/juːˈɪntə/ yoo-IN-tə) are an east-west trending chain of mountains in northeastern Utah
Utah
extending slightly into southern Wyoming
Wyoming
in the United States. As a subrange of the Rocky Mountains, they are unusual for being the highest range in the contiguous United States
United States
running east to west,[1] and lie approximately 100 miles (160 km) east of Salt Lake City. The range has peaks ranging from 11,000–13,528 feet (3,353–4,123 m), with the highest point being Kings Peak, also the highest point in Utah. The Mirror Lake Highway
Mirror Lake Highway
crosses the western half of the Uintas on its way to Wyoming.

Contents

1 Geology 2 Hydrology 3 Ecology 4 Points of interest 5 See also 6 References 7 Further reading 8 External links

Geology[edit]

Hayden Peak
Hayden Peak
and Mount Agassiz seen from Bald Mountain

The Uinta Mountains
Uinta Mountains
are Laramide uplifted metasedimentary rocks deposited in an intracratonic basin in southwest Laurentia
Laurentia
during the time of the breakup of the supercontinent Rodinia. The marine and fluvial metasedimentary rocks in the core of the Uinta Mountains
Uinta Mountains
are of Neoproterozoic age[2] (between about 700 million and 800 million years old) and consist primarily of quartzite, slate, and shale. These rocks comprise the Uinta Mountain Group, and reach thicknesses of 4 to 7.3 kilometres (13,000 to 24,000 ft). Most of the high peaks are outcrops of the Uinta Mountain Group. Many of the peaks are ringed with bands of cliffs, rising to form broad or flat tops.[3] The mountains are bounded to the north and south by reverse faults that meet below the range, on the north by the North Flank fault and on the south by the Uinta Basin
Uinta Basin
boundary fault.[4] The Uinta Mountain Group from oldest to youngest includes Uinta Mountain unidivided quartz arenite, overlain by the Moosehorn Lake, Mount Watson, Hades Peak, and Red Shale
Shale
formations.[5] The flanks of the east-west trending Uinta Mountains
Uinta Mountains
contain a sequence of Paleozoic and Mesozoic
Mesozoic
strata ranging from the Cambrian
Cambrian
Lodore Formation to the Cretaceous
Cretaceous
Mancos Shale, all of which have been tilted during the uplift of the mountain range. The uplift of the range dates to the Laramide orogeny, about 70 to 50 million years ago, when compressive forces produced high-angle reverse faults on both north and south sides of the present mountain range. The east-west orientation of the Uintas is anomalous compared to most of the ranges of the Rocky Mountains; it may relate to changing stress patterns and rotation of the Colorado Plateau.[6] The high Uintas were extensively glaciated during the last ice age, and most of the large stream valleys on both the north and south sides of the range held long valley glaciers.[7] However, despite reaching to over 13,500 feet (4,110 m) in elevation, the climate today is sufficiently dry that no glaciers survived even before the rapid current glacial retreat began in the middle nineteenth century. The Uintas are the most poleward mountain range in the world to reach over 4,000 metres (13,000 ft) without modern glaciers, and are in fact the highest mountain range in the contiguous United States
United States
with no modern glaciers. Permafrost
Permafrost
occurs at elevations above 10,000 feet (3,000 m)[8] and at times forms large rock glaciers. In between the summits and ridgelines are wide, level basins, with some 500 small lakes. One of the most popular lakes is Mirror Lake because of its good fishing, scenic views, and easy road access.

Hydrology[edit]

Weber River

The south and east sides of the range are largely within the Colorado River watershed, including the Blacks Fork
Blacks Fork
and the Duchesne River, which are tributaries of the Green River. The Green is the major tributary of the Colorado River
Colorado River
and flows in a tight arc around the eastern side of the range. (Indeed, John Wesley Powell said the Green was the "master stream" where it and the Colorado came together.) The Bear and Weber rivers, the two largest tributaries of Great Salt Lake, are born on the west slope of the range. The Provo River, the largest tributary to Utah
Utah
Lake, begins on the southern side of the range and flows west to Utah
Utah
Lake, which itself drains via the Jordan River into Great Salt Lake. Large portions of the mountain range receive over 40 inches (100 cm) of precipitation annually.[9] The high Uintas are snowcapped most of the year except for late July through early September. The Uinta Mountains
Uinta Mountains
have more than 400 miles (640 km) of streams and 1,000 lakes and ponds.[10]

Ecology[edit]

Gilbert Peak seen from lake 151

The Uinta Mountains
Uinta Mountains
are part of the Wasatch and Uinta montane forests ecoregion. Nearly the entire range lies within Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest (on the north and west) and Ashley National Forest
Ashley National Forest
(on the south and east). The highest peaks of the range are protected as part of the High Uintas Wilderness. The forests contain many species of trees, including lodgepole pine, subalpine fir, Engelmann spruce, Douglas-fir, and quaking aspen. There are also many species of grasses, shrubs, and forbs growing in the Uinta Mountains. Points of interest[edit] The Uintas is home to Camp Steiner, the highest Boy Scout camp in the United States
United States
at 10,400 feet (3,200 m). The camp is near mile marker 33 of the Mirror Lake Highway. The Uinta Highline Trail
Uinta Highline Trail
traverses the entire range and is a popular backpacking trail. Dinosaur National Monument
Dinosaur National Monument
is located on the southeast flank of the Uinta Mountains
Uinta Mountains
on the border between Colorado and Utah.

See also[edit]

Utah
Utah
portal Wyoming
Wyoming
portal Mountains portal

List of mountain ranges Mountain ranges of Utah High Uintas Wilderness

References[edit]

^ "Kings Peak, Utah". Peakbagger.com. Retrieved 2008-02-23.  ^ Paleomagnetic results from the Neoproterozoic Uinta Mountain Group ^ John McPhee, Basin and Range, New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 1981, pp.198-199. ^ Nelson, S. T.; Keith, J. D.; Constenius, K. N.; Olcott, J.; Duerichen, E.; Tingey, D. G. (1 May 2008). "Genesis of fibrous calcite and emerald by amagmatic processes in the southwestern Uinta Mountains, Utah". Rocky Mountain Geology. 43 (1): 1–21. doi:10.2113/gsrocky.43.1.1.  ^ Condie, Kent C.; Dennis Lee; G. Lang Farmer (2001). "Tectonic setting and provenance of the Neoproterozoic Uinta Mountain and Big Cottonwood groups, northern Utah: constraints from geochemistry, Nd isotopes, and destrital modes". Sedimentary Geology. 141-142: 443–464. doi:10.1016/s0037-0738(01)00086-0.  ^ Hamilton, W.B., 1981, Plate-tectonic mechanism of Laramide deformation, in Boyd, D.W., and Lillegraven, J.A., eds., Rocky Mountain foreland basement tectonics: University of Wyoming Contributions to Geology, v. 19, p. 87–92. ^ Utah
Utah
Geological Survey. "Are there glaciers in Utah's mountains?". Retrieved 2008-04-11.  ^ Glacial Geology of the Northern Uinta Mountains ^ WRCC.dri.edu ^ Probst, Jeffrey, and Probst, Brad, Hiking Utah's High Uintas, pg. 3, Morris Book Publishing, LLC, 2006 ISBN 0-7627-3911-8

Further reading[edit]

Davis, Mel, and Veranth, John, High Uinta Trails, Salt Lake City: Wasatch Publishers, 1988 (3rd edition) ISBN 0-915272-37-7 Hansen, Wallace R. The Geologic Story of the Uinta Mountains, Washington, DC: United States
United States
Government Printing Office, 1969

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Uinta Mountains.

Uinta Mountain Lakes Map/Info - an interactive map for exploring the high Uinta lakes

v t e

Mountains of Colorado

Book Cliffs

Mount Garfield

Elk Mountains

Aspen Mountain Capitol Peak Castle Peak Cathedral Peak Chair Mountain Italian Mountain Maroon Bells Mount Owen Mount Sopris Pyramid Peak Snowmass Mountain Snowmass Peak Treasure Mountain

Elkhead Mountains

Black Mountain (Moffat County) Columbus Mountain Elk Mountain (Routt County) Hahns Peak

Flat Tops

Flat Top Mountain Sleepy Cat Peak

Front Range

Kenosha Mountains

Buffalo Peak Green Mountain (Jefferson County) Shawnee Peak Windy Peak

Mummy Range

Fairchild Mountain Hagues Peak Mount Chiquita Mount McConnel Mummy Mountain Ypsilon Mountain

Never Summer Mountains

Braddock Peak Iron Mountain (Jackson/Larimer Counties) Mount Richthofen Nokhu Crags Seven Utes Mountain Static Peak

Rampart Range

Blodgett Peak Cheyenne Mountain Devils Head

Others

Argentine Peak Badger Mountain Bald Mountain Bard Peak Bear Peak (Boulder County) Berrian Mountain Black Mountain (Park County) Chief Cheley Peak Eldorado Mountain Engelmann Peak Flagstaff Mountain Grays Peak Green Mountain (Boulder County) Green Mountain (Jefferson County) Grizzly Peak ( Summit
Summit
County) Hallett Peak Horsetooth Mountain James Peak Jones Mountain Lone Eagle Peak Longs Peak Lookout Mountain McCurdy Mountain Mount Alice Mount Audubon Mount Bailey Mount Bancroft Mount Bierstadt Mount Edwards Mount Evans Mount Guyot Mount Ida Mount Julian Mount Meeker Mount Morrison Mount Parnassus Mount Rosa Mount Silverheels Mount Sniktau Mount Zion North Arapaho Peak North Table Mountain Parry Peak Petit Grepon Pikes Peak Ptarmigan Peak South Table Mountain Specimen Mountain Taylor Peak (Grand County) Thirtynine Mile Mountain Torreys Peak Twin Sisters Peaks Waugh Mountain Williams Peak

Gore Range

Jacque Peak Meridian Peak Mount Powell

Grand Mesa

Crater Peak North Mamm Peak

Laramie Mountains

Greyrock Mountain South Bald Mountain

Medicine Bow Mountains

Clark Peak

Mosquito Range

Arkansas Hills Clinton Peak Dyer Mountain Horseshoe Mountain Mount Bross Mount Buckskin Mount Democrat Mount Lincoln Mount Sherman Pacific Peak West Buffalo Peak

Park Range

Mount Werner Mount Zirkel

Rabbit Ears Range

Elk Mountain (Grand County) Parkview Mountain

Raton Mesa

Fishers Peak

San Juan Mountains

La Garita Mountains

San Luis Peak Stewart Peak

La Plata Mountains

Hesperus Mountain Lavender Peak

Needle Mountains

Arrow Peak Jagged Mountain Jupiter Mountain Mount Eolus Pigeon Peak Sunlight Peak Turret Peak Twilight Peak Vestal Peak Windom Peak

Sneffels Range

Dallas Peak Gilpin Peak Mount Sneffels Teakettle Mountain

Others

Bennett Peak Cimmaron Range Conejos Peak Dolores Peak El Diente Peak Elliott Mountain Gladstone Peak Graham Peak Half Peak Handies Peak HD Mountains Horse Mountain La Garita Caldera Little Cone Lizard Head Lone Cone Matterhorn Peak Menefee Peak Middle Peak Mount Oso Mount Wilson Niagara Peak Red Mountain (Ouray County) Redcloud Peak Rio Grande Pyramid Sharkstooth Peak South River Peak Sultan Mountain Summit
Summit
Peak Sunshine Peak Tower Mountain Uncompahgre Peak Vermilion Peak Wetterhorn Peak Wilson Peak

Sangre de Cristo Mountains

Sangre de Cristo Range

Blanca Peak Bushnell Peak California Peak Challenger Point Columbia Point Crestone Needle Crestone Peak Ellingwood Point Humboldt Peak Iron Mountain (Costilla/Huerfano Counties) Kit Carson Peak Little Bear Peak Methodist Mountain Mount Adams Mount Herard Mount Lindsey Mount Mestas Mount Zwischen Rito Alto Peak Silver Mountain Tijeras Peak

Wet Mountains

Greenhorn Mountain Lead Mountain (Custer County)

Others

Culebra Peak Red Mountain (Costilla County)

Sawatch Range

Collegiate Peaks

Emerald Peak Garfield Peak Grizzly Peak (Chaffee/Pitkin Counties) Henry Mountain Huron Peak Ice Mountain La Plata Peak Missouri Mountain Mount Belford Mount Blaurock Mount Columbia Mount Harvard Mount Hope Mount Oxford Mount Yale Peak 13,762 Winfield Peak

Others

Antora Peak Bill Williams Peak Carbonate Mountain Casco Peak Castle Peak Cronin Peak French Mountain Mount Antero Mount Elbert Mount of the Holy Cross Mount Jackson Mount Massive Mount Oklahoma Mount Ouray Mount Shavano Ouray Peak Park Cone Red Table Mountain Tabeguache Peak Tomichi Dome

Spanish Peaks

East Spanish Peak Huerfano Butte West Spanish Peak

Tenmile Range

Crystal Peak Fletcher Mountain Peak 10 Quandary Peak

Uinta Mountains

Tanks Peak Zenobia Peak

West Elk Mountains

Carbon Peak Crested Butte East Beckwith Mountain Gothic Mountain Marcellina Mountain Mount Emmons Mount Guero Mount Gunnison Mount Lamborn Needle Rock West Elk Peak Whetstone Mountain

Others

Bear Mountain Blair Mountain Cannibal Plateau Chalk Mountains Cochetopa Hills Dawson Butte Diamond Peak Flirtation Peak Granite Peak Grand Hogback Grannys Nipple Horsefly Peak Lead Mountain (Grand County) Mount Neva Powell Peak Storm King Mountain Terrible Mountain Ute Mountain

v t e

Mountains of Wyoming

Absaroka Range

Abiathar Peak Atkins Peak Barronette Peak Breccia Peak Clayton Mountain Colter Peak Druid Peak Eagle Peak Fortress Mountain Francs Peak Index Peak Mount Chittenden Mount Doane Mount Hornaday Mount Langford Mount Norris Mount Schurz Mount Stevenson Pilot Peak Sheep Mesa The Thunderer Washakie Needles Younts Peak

Bighorn Mountains

Bighorn Peak Black Tooth Mountain Bomber Mountain Cloud Peak Darton Peak Hallelujah Peak The Innominate Mather Peaks Mount Woolsey Penrose Peak

Black Hills

Bear Lodge Mountains

Inyan Kara Mountain

Others

Missouri Buttes

Gallatin Range

Antler Peak Bannock Peak Bunsen Peak Clagett Butte Dome Mountain (Park County) Echo Peak Gray Peak Joseph Peak Mount Everts Mount Haynes Mount Holmes Mount Jackson Purple Mountain Quadrant Mountain Sepulcher Mountain Terrace Mountain Three Rivers Peak Trilobite Point White Peaks

Gros Ventre Range

Doubletop Peak Sheep Mountain

Laramie Mountains

Casper Mountain Laramie Peak Muddy Mountain

Medicine Bow Mountains

Elk Mountain (Carbon County) Medicine Bow Peak

Salt River Range

Mount Fitzpatrick

Teton Range

Albright Peak Battleship Mountain Bivouac Peak Buck Mountain Cathedral Group Cleaver Peak Cloudveil Dome Disappointment Peak Doane Peak Dry Ridge Mountain Eagles Rest Peak Elk Mountain (Teton County) Forellen Peak Fossil Mountain Grand Teton Green Lakes Mountain Housetop Mountain The Jaw Littles Peak Maidenform Peak Middle Teton Moose Mountain Mount Bannon Mount Glory Mount Hunt Mount Jedediah Smith Mount Meek Mount Moran Mount Saint John Mount Wister Mount Woodring Mount Woodrow Wilson Nez Perce Peak Owl Peak Prospectors Mountain Rammell Mountain Ranger Peak Raynolds Peak Red Mountain Rendezvous Mountain Rendezvous Peak Rock of Ages Rockchuck Peak Rolling Thunder Mountain Shadow Peak South Teton Spearhead Peak Static Peak Survey Peak Symmetry Spire Table Mountain Teepe Pillar Teewinot Mountain Temple Peak Thor Peak Traverse Peak Veiled Peak The Wall Window Peak

Uinta Mountains

Humpy Peak Medicine Butte

Wind River Range

American Legion Peak Atlantic Peak Bair Peak Bastion Peak Bastion Peak-Northeast Peak Bears Ears Mountain Big Sandy Mountain Block Tower Bow Mountain Brown Cliffs North Cathedral Peak Desolation Peak Dog Tooth Peak Dome Mountain (Hot Springs County) Doublet Peak Downs Mountain East Temple Peak Flagstone Peak (Fremont County) Fremont Peak Gannett Peak Harrower Peak Henderson Peak Jackson Peak Klondike Peak Knife Point Mountain Lander Peak Lizard Head
Lizard Head
Peak Mitchell Peak Mount Bonneville Mount Chauvenet Mount Febbas Mount Helen Mount Hooker Mount Koven Mount Lander Mount Nystrom Mount Owen Mount Sacagawea Mount Warren Mount Washakie Mount Whitecap Overhanging Tower Payson Peak Pingora Peak Pylon Peak Raid Peak Rampart Peak Roaring Fork Mountain Shale
Shale
Mountain Sharks Nose South Downs Mountain The Sphinx Split Mountain Sunbeam Peak Three Waters Mountain Torrey Peak Turret Peak Twin Peaks Union Peak Valentine Mountain Valentine Peak War Bonnet Peak Warrior Peaks Watch Tower Whiskey Mountain Wind River Peak Wolfs Head

Wyoming
Wyoming
Range

Wyoming
Wyoming
Peak

Others

Amethyst Mountain Aspen Mountain Barlow Peak Bridger Mountains Cook Peak Dirty Mountain Douglas Knob Dunraven Peak Factory Hill Ferris Mountains Folsom Peak Garfield Peak Granite Mountains Granite Peak Heart Mountain Hedges Peak Hoyt Peak Mansface Hill Mount Hancock Mount Leidy Mount Sheridan Mount Washburn National Park Mountain Owl Creek Mountains Prospect Peak (Park County) Rawhide Buttes Roaring Mountain Sierra Madre Range Signal Mountain Snake River Range Specimen Ridge Sublette Mountain Tongue Butte Trischman Knob White Mountain Wilkins Peak

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 State of Utah

Salt Lake City
Salt Lake City
(capital)

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