Lake Blanche Mill B South Trail - Big Cottonwood Canyon
Submitted By Dj Nebula Of SLC - Back To Big Cottonwood Canyon Hiking Trails
I cannot even begin to tell you how much I loved this hike. The trail head begins in the lower S-Turn in Big Cottonwood Canyon. You walk a ¼ mile up the road, and on the right, you will see the sign. It starts up a small hill, then crosses a stream to a switchback that puts you on a stair-like trail up to an aspen grove. Just above the aspens, you get your first look at Sundial Peak. It is an awesome view, with red rock cliffs ahead.
Then the trail starts to switchback through aspens again, where we saw a fallen Paper Wasp Nest. They didn't like us very much so we kept moving after taking some pictures. Then up another incline, though not too harsh, to the next ridge. After a minute, you begin to become level with the red rock cliffs, but there is another switchback before the lake. You get to the end of a switchback, and you are on a small boulder field, just turn right, the trail starts up the hill to the lake.
Lake Blanche sits directly below Sundial Peak, and has a great view of Dromedary Peak, the back side of Superior, Monte Cristo, and the canyon below. At 8920 feet this is a very surreal scene. It is very peaceful, with big red rocks to view the lake from. We wandered around the lake, and came to rest on some glacier carved rocks that made a great spot in the shade. Of course we had the camera out and took some postcard perfect pictures of Lake Blanche and Sundial Peak. The Lake itself is very placid, not even a ripple from the wind. A meadow to the left, a small incline covered with pine trees, and the peak in the background make this one of the most beautiful mountain lakes I have ever seen.
Sundial Peak really holds up to its name. Named for its natural sundial appearance, the peak really is a natural marvel. On a sundial, you have three points for the sun to cast a shadow to show what time it is. When sitting on the rocks, I looked at my clock, it said 6 pm, and the peak was casting a shadow really close to the 6 o clock position. That is amazing, millions of years ago, Mother Nature made a clock long before man. I really wish I had brought my tent and camped overnight, the temperature was perfect, no one was in sight, and I would have had the place all to myself. Next time for sure, and who knows, I might see you there, because I will for sure return here. Magnificent!
Big Cottonwood Canyon- Trail Head- Lower S-Turn 4.5 miles up canyon
Distance to Lake Blanche - 2 ¾ miles
Elevation Gain- 2720 vertical feet to 8920 feet
Hiking Time- 2hrs 20 min
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