Directly west of Tooele Valley, the Deseret Peak Wilderness Area was designated by Congress in 1984 and encompasses over 25,212 acres of rugged alpine terrain. Located in the Stansbury Mountain Range, the wilderness area includes Deseret Peak and its craggy summit of 11,031 feet, the highest in Tooele County. From the summit, hikers enjoy a breathtaking 360-degree view of the county below, plus the Great Salt Lake, and portions of the northern and southern Wasatch Front. The area’s wilderness values are significant in both flora and fauna indigenous to the Great Basin Region. Although Tooele County is mostly semi-arid, Deseret Peak typically holds snow well in to summer. The peak’s north-facing couloirs are popular for summer skiing and glissading. North and South Willow Lakes are remnants from the last glacial age. The most popular trailhead to access Deseret Peak, and North and South Willow Lakes, is from the Loop Campground at the end of South Willow Canyon. For more information, contact the Salt Lake Ranger District, Wasatch-Cache National Forest at (801) 943-1794.
The Cedar Mountain Wilderness Area was created in 2006 and holds approximately 100,000 acres of arid desert mountain landscape. The next mountain range west of the Stansbury Mountains and Deseret Peak Wilderness Area, the Cedars are comprised mostly of rounded hills and shallow canyons. Although the highest summit reaches only 7,700 feet, it offers a grand view of Skull Valley and the Stansbury Mountains to the east, and the Great Salt Lake Desert to the west. Further west, the Bonneville Salt Flats and Deep Creek Mountains can also be seen. The wilderness area supports a broad range of flora and fauna, plus a herd of wild horses. For more information, contact the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, Salt Lake Field Office at (801) 977-4300.