Hiking Blanche Lake, Utah – A Salt Lake City Gem

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Article Categories: Hiking

If you ask anyone in Salt Lake City, or Google “best hikes near salt lake city”, Lake Blanche will be at the top, or near the top of the list. It is less than 30 minutes from nearly all of Salt Lake City, features a well traveled, and moderate incline, and definitely has some stunning views. Here’s everything you need to know to check out this beautiful location within Big Cottonwood Canyon.

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Trail Map | Trails | Hiking In Winter | Camping | WeatherDirections | Pictures

 

Difficulty – Intermediate
Distance – 6.28 miles round trip (10.11 km)
Height – 8,920 feet (2718.82 m)
Elevation gain – 2,787 feet (849.48 m)
Duration – 5-6 hours (book time)
Trailhead Location – Mill B South Trailhead (6,264 Feet)
Dogs – Not allowed on this trail

 

Need To Know Information

  • Dogs are not allowed on this hike.
  • Swimming is not allowed in any of the lakes in this area.
  • This is a popular hike, and you will encounter people. Parking fills up quite fast.
  • There is overflow parking on the road and the nearby trailhead (explained below).
  • Lake Blanche is the first of 3 lakes at this location, and we have information below about how much added distance it is to the other very nearby lakes.
  • Camping is common, and there are no fees or permits required. Camping information and regulations below.
  • Fishing is allowed at this lake with a Utah Fishing License.

Trail Map

Lake Blanche Trail Map

Click to enlarge this map

Download GPX Here

 

Routes

 

Lake Blanche Via Mill B South Trailhead – 6.28 miles round trip (10.11 km) – 2,787 feet (849.48 m) Elevation Gain

This is the only commonly taken route to Lake Blanche. Hikers begin on a paved path along the gorgeous Big Cottonwood Creek and diverge from the paved path to the right, at a marked junction about 0.25 miles from the parking lot. This portion of the trail is steep at the beginning. From here, the trail is well maintained, very easy to follow, doesn’t have any junctions, and maintains a moderate incline for the entirety of the hike to Lake Blanche.

Most of this hike is in a gorgeous forest, but hikers are rewarded with occasional, and very stunning views along the way up. The trail is mostly dirt, with some rocks, and boulders mixed in until the last tenth of a mile where the route is mostly rock to the lake.

 

Adding Lake Florence And Lake Lillian

Once reaching Lake Blanche, the views are stunning, and hikers can actually walk all around the lake.

If hikers choose to add in Lake Florence, they add roughly:

  • An additional 0.30 miles to reach Lake Florence

If hikers choose to add in Lake Florence and Lake Lillian, they add roughly:

  • An additional 0.50 miles to reach Lake Lillian and Lake Florence

This ads a total of about 1 mile, and 150 feet of elevation gain round trip. Hikers can add a bit more by exploring around the lakes as well.

 

 

Hiking in Winter

This is a very common winter hike, and the above information does not change very much aside from being prepared for the weather, and bringing snowshoes or microspikes.

 

Camping Information

This is a common camping area. Due to the wilderness area and watershed regulations, no campfires, dogs, horses, or bicycles are allowed. Any campers must camp at least 200 feet away from trails, lakes, or streams. There is a limit of 10 campers per group.

 

Fishing Lake Blanche

Lake Blanche has a healthy population of trout. This is a catch and release fishery. Fish will take dry flies on most summer days.

 

Weather

Here is a detailed weather forecast for the area:

Alta, UT

This Afternoon
Partly sunny. High near 32, with temperatures falling to around 27 in the afternoon. Southwest wind 9 to 13 mph.

Tonight
Snow likely after 5am. Mostly cloudy. Low around 20, with temperatures rising to around 25 overnight. Southwest wind 13 to 16 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%. New snow accumulation of less than one inch possible.

Monday
Snow. Cloudy. High near 25, with temperatures falling to around 20 in the afternoon. Southwest wind 14 to 18 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New snow accumulation of 4 to 8 inches possible.

Monday Night
Snow. Cloudy, with a low around 9. Wind chill values as low as -4. West northwest wind 9 to 18 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New snow accumulation of 5 to 9 inches possible.

Tuesday
Snow likely before 5pm. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 14. West wind 7 to 14 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%. New snow accumulation of 3 to 5 inches possible.

Tuesday Night
Partly cloudy, with a low around 1.

Wednesday
Partly sunny, with a high near 26.

 

Directions

The Mill B South Trailhead is a small parking lot, but parking is located along the road as long as cars stay off the road, and not over the white lines. Non parking spots are denoted by signs. This trailhead is at a large bend in the road, and located within 100 feet of another trailhead that can serve as overflow parking as well. This is a very popular destination, so parking is often limited on weekends, holidays, or nice weather days.

 

 

Additional Pictures

Lake Blanche with rainbows

Lake Blanche with rainbows

Views looking back at Big Cottonwood Canyon from Lake Blanche

Views looking back at Big Cottonwood Canyon from Lake Blanche

Salt Lake City as seen from Lake Blanche

Salt Lake City as seen from Lake Blanche

Three moose at Lake Blanche

Three moose at Lake Blanche

Lake Blanche Moose

Lake Blanche Moose

A moose walking out of Lake Blanche

A moose walking out of Lake Blanche

Lake Blanche while raining

Lake Blanche while raining

Max DesMarais
Max DesMarais

Max DesMarais is the founder of Hiking & Fishing. He has a passion for the outdoors and making outdoor education and adventure more accessible. Max is a published author for various outdoor and marketing websites. He is an experienced hiker, backpacker, fly fisherman, trail runner, and spends his free time in the outdoors. These adventures allow him to test gear, learn new skills, and experience new places so that he can educate others. You can read more about him here: hikingandfishing/about

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