Hike the Y on BYU Game Day
If you are in Provo and need a short hike, you are in luck. BYU’s Y Mountain is an excellent hike for an activity prior to a BYU sporting event, an evening date, or even a morning jog. Go do it! Hike the Y! If you are looking for a bit of history on Y mountain and how it came about, you can look at wikipedia’s explanation here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Y_Mountain.
You have 2 choices as you hike the Y trail. (Please stay on the trail and help fight erosion on the slope.) The trail splits near the top allowing you to choose from the top or the bottom of the Y. I typically go to the top, walk down the Y’s face, and then take the lower trail down.
If you are looking for even more adventure, you will find a trail at the top of the Y sloping to the south that will take you up slide canyon and around to the back of the mountain. Although I am not aware of any trail to the very top, I have climbed to the top by taking this trail around to the south of the mountain and then blazing a trail up the south face through some shale.
Y Mountain Hike Details
The Y trailhead has a nice gate, several parking lots and a nice restroom with flush toilets. The hike begins at about 5,200 feet and has a series of switchbacks (9 for the trail to the bottom of the Y and 11 for the top.) The lower hike is about .93 miles and rises to 6,103 feet. The hike to the top ends at about 6,262 feet for an elevation gain of 1,089 feet over 1.25 miles.
At the Top of BYU’s Y
Because of the awesome view and the cool Y, it is easy to get less attentive and forget that you are on a fairly steep slope with the imminent danger of falling as you hike down the face of the Y or around the area. One of my daughter’s actually slipped and fell off down and off the bottom of the giant letter when she was about 5 years old. BE CAREFUL up there! But don’t be so careful that you don’t enjoy the hike and your time at the top. As you descend the Y, be really careful of the bumps in it that are huge rocks covered with concrete and white paint. It can be really easy to trip on them. Also be sure that your have grippy shoes!
Improvements on Y Mountain
I have seen huge improvements in the trail maintenance ever since BYU was able to purchase the mountain from the forest service. The trail has been smoothed, rocks removed from the path, benches installed for stopping and resting, fences installed to help prevent falls. BYU owning the mountain is a good thing. Be careful and have a great hike.