By Sarah Martinez, Sustainability Office Alumni
One of the many perks of living in Utah is the proximity to some of the most pristine wilderness in the world. Since Memorial weekend is just around the corner, it’s a great time to start thinking about exploring! In my opinion, what makes the University of Utah so attractive to students is the possibility to venture and to discover all the magical nooks and crannies that the Wasatch and Uinta Mountains have to offer. I’ve categorized some options for summer hiking to local lakes in and around the always beautiful Salt Lake City, what fits your style?
For the restless:
You’ve just gotten off a six-hour shift, and by some miracle, you still have energy. Maybe it was that shot of espresso you took on your break…regardless, there’s probably still time to escape to the mountains, if only for a short while. Take advantage of what’s left of that espresso high and treat yourself by hiking to Cecret Lake. Hidden at the top of Little Cottonwood Canyon, Cecret Lake is a wonderful easy hike. Only 1.5 miles round trip, the trail is well marked and easy to find west of the Albion Basin Campground.
For the day off:
Any interest in seeing some flawless high alpine lakes? The 6.9 mile loop called Brighton Lakes Trail takes you past the Twin Lakes Reservoir, Silver Lake, and Lake Mary. That’s a win-win-win situation if you ask me! This moderate hike climbs a total of 1715 feet—it’s sure to have your heart pumping—but there’s plenty of time to rest at any of the lakes of your choosing. Bring some lunch and have a quiet dining experience in the serenity of the mountains as this trail offers a panoramic view of the surrounding peaks.
For the adventurous overnighter:
Tucked away in the Lone Peak Wilderness, Red Pine Lake is a great place to bask in the colors of wildflowers and to sing to the songs of the birds that call this place home. This hike begins up Little Cottonwood Canyon at the White Pine Lake trailhead. It’s mid-distance for a day hike at 6.8 miles out and back, but short enough for a one night stay. Just keep it mind there’s almost 2,000 feet of elevation gain, so get ready to work for it!
The high elevations we have here in Utah give us the opportunity for cooler adventures in the summer months! So whether it’s to escape a long day at work or simply a weekend getaway, make sure to get out there and get connected with the world around you. You just might find yourself rejuvenated, nature has that effect on humans.
Let us know about your favorite hikes by sending us an email.
Sarah Martinez was a student sustainability ambassador for the Sustainability Office 2015-2016.