Brian Head Summit

It’s not too often that we recommend a scenic drive, but Utah really does have spectacular roads. We made our way up the Brian Head Summit during Fall, and it was gorgeous with deep greens and sparkling yellows. This road is short and drivable by most vehicles.

Check out the views from Brian Head Summit.

Just north of Cedar Breaks National Monument, is a very scenic area known as Brian Head. There is a small village in this place, which is notable for the best skiing in southern Utah. Just south of the village on Hwy-143 is a turn-off for the Brian Head Summit. The road is rocky and rough, but a careful driver can get a car to the summit when the road is dry. Even in wet conditions, the road has a solid base and would be passable. Snow on the road, which is common at this elevation, would make it 4-wheel drive only.

Brian Head Resort has lots to do in all seasons.

There is a sign for the turnoff to the Brian Head summit. The road is a narrow, but only three miles long. It wraps its way around the mountain as it climbs steadily to the summit. There is a relatively large parking lot just below the peak. A pit toilet and a trailhead are the only things there. Continue up the road for another quarter mile to reach the summit. There is a sign that informs you that you are 11,302 feet in elevation.

Watch for this sign along Highway 143.
This is one of the easiest peaks in Utah to visit.

Once at the top, you can walk around and look off in each direction. The top of the mountain is flat, so you can easily explore it. The views of the area are spectacular and you can even see Cedar Breaks National Monument in the distance. In the center of the summit is a small rock shelter built by the CCC nearly a hundred years ago. It offers a nice respite from the wind. We especially loved visiting in Fall when the leaves were a lovely golden yellow.

There is a small rock wall along the edge, but keep an eye on your kids.
The small shelter is just on open building.
Cedar Breaks is easily seen from the top of Brian Head.
The road down from Brian Head is steep and windy.
The views are beautiful in all directions.

This drive is easy and beautiful. If you are in the Brian Head area, and it’s dry, you should definitely give the Brian Head Summit a try.

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  1. Jonathan

    My family also did this during the fall, and we made it just fine in our Honda Odyssey van. It was somewhat bumpy, but definitely doable. Really awesome views at the top!

    1. Natalie Ockey

      Thanks for the info that your van made it, too. I think it’s definitely passable for cars as long as you are prepared to go slow on the bumpy areas. And definitely worth the drive!!