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Fish Lake Snowmobile Complex (Update)

Fish Lake Snowmobile Complex (Update)

Posted in: Outdoor adventures on December 17, 2019.

Snow-tastic Fun

It’s December! And there’s plenty of snow in the mountains of Southern Utah. And, hey, you know us here at the Lodge, we love to have fun outside all year long – even in the winter time. So we’re always looking for great snowy places to explore. And one of our favorites is the Fish Lake Snowmobile Complex. Honestly, if you’re into snowmobiling (and if you’ve tried it, you are) there isn’t a better spot. The snow is pristine, the trails are (mostly) groomed, the sky is bright, and the views are spectacular!

A man rides a snowmobile with aspen trees in the background

Snowmobile fun. Photo by Nate Johnston via unsplash.com

The Complex

The Fish Lake Snowmobile Complex is actually a system of four main trails – the Gooseberry Trail, Sandledges and Mount Terrill Trail, the Monroe Mountain Trail, and the Koosharem Trail – all located near Fish Lake. Each of the trails is great, and all are worth exploring. Here’s the breakdown on each, just so you know what to plan for. Be sure to refer to the maps below, and also check out the official brochure, which has some additional information.

A snowmobile parked at the summit with a great alpine view

A perfect view. Photo by Spencer Davis via unsplash.com

Easy Rider

The easiest of the three is the Sandledges and Mount Terrill Trail. Start at the trailhead, and ascend gradually to the top of Mount Terrill. At the summit, the Sandledges joins up with the Gooseberry Trail. Along the way up the mountain there are large, open, snowy areas on the plateau – perfect for playing around on.

Some Experience Necessary

The Gooseberry Trail is a bit more technical. There are narrow sections that require some careful maneuvering. But, according to the officials who track this kind of stuff, it’s still the most popular trail in the Complex. Also, after you reach the plateau, you’ll have access to those same great play-areas we mentioned on Sandledges.

The Long Haul

The longest of the three trails is the Monroe Mountain Trail. It’s 33-miles of pure fun. The trail will take you up to the summit of Monroe Mountain through some of the best scenery in Fishlake National Forest. You’ll likely encounter some of the many big game herds that roam the area. Be aware that unlike the other two trails, a portion of the Monroe Mountain Trail is not groomed. So enjoy the powder!

Connecting Route

Koosharem Trail is the shortest on the list, but it just might be the prettiest. It’s a steep narrow trail that passes through a beautiful, but equally steep and narrow canyon. Good riding skills are a must. This trail is mostly used as an access route to the Monroe Mountain Trail.

A group of people snowmobiling in a play-area

Play hard and play safe. Photo by Samuel Chenard via unsplash.com

Safety, Safety, Safety

The official Fish Lake Complex brochure mentions these safety warnings. We thought we’d re-produce them here, just so you have them on hand. When you’re out there snowmobiling in the backcountry, safety is the biggest priority. Also, get the most up-to-date info on trail conditions and warnings by calling the numbers below.

Call 801–378–4333 for avalanche forecast information.
Call 435–896–9233 for Fishlake National Forest and Richfield Ranger District.

  • Let someone know where you’re going and when you expect to be back. Never ride alone.
  • Be familiar with your machine. Know its fuel capacity and basic maintenance procedures.
  • Carry extra spark plugs, extra drive belt, a tool kit, and a survival kit.
  • Watch your fuel supply. Ride out only to a point where your fuel gauge reads one-half; then follow your tracks back to the trailhead.
  • Ride on the right side of the trail, giving the uphill bound machine the right of way. Be careful not to follow other snowmobiles too closely.
  • Dress for changing weather conditions. Layered clothing allows riders to adjust to changing temperatures and conditions.
  • Check the weather and avalanche danger forecasts to avoid potentially dangerous situations.

And The Maps

Here are the two maps that you’ll need to explore the Fish Lake Snowmobile Complex. Have fun out there!

Fishlake Area Map

Monroe Mountain Area Map

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