Explore Lil Cottonwood - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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The last half mile is a killer (I was NOT prepared, it was my first time hiking it). It took me almost two hours to get to the falls. Wear spikes and bring poles because it is slick. All in all I enjoyed it! I want to hike it in the summer, which I hear is harder because you don't have the snow to protect you from the rocky trail.

hiking
8 days ago

Loved this hike. Views of the valley, tree's, tree's and more tree's then opening, then tree's then the gorgeous lake. Trail was packed down pretty well until the last half mile or so. Then snowshoes would be helpful but we didn't use them. A sled would have been helpful on the way down as well.

I was not prepared for how rocky this was. however, I had a great sense of accomplishment when I got to the falls!

This hike is great in the winter. Got to the waterfall just before dark. I recommend hiking down in the dark. Peaceful and a nice view of the city when there is no smog of course.

snowshoeing
16 days ago

Hiked on 1/5/19, most area are covered with packed snow, but last 1/4 will definitely need snowshoe.

We had a great time on this trail. The trail was packed pretty well up to the first falls but wearing spikes helped from sliding backwards. After that the trail takes a sharp turn up and to the right which became less and less packed as we went. We brought snow shoes and switched to using those at this point in the trail. We used trekking poles the whole time though. With the warm weather today on our way back down the snow became heavy, wet and slippery.

Most Definitely a Wasatch Favorite. I did this on Pioneer day '18 and getting up to the lake was incredibly fast but climbing up to the ridge slows you down. once you get up to where the high lakes are (or supposed to be anyway.. dried out wheb we went) you are supposed to start climbing to the right and We initially missed the turn and ended up boulder hopping to the south ridge and had to cross our way over. once the pheif was in view it was pretty straight foreward and needless to say we took the correct way down which was much easier to see from up above. I will definitely do it again but now I know where to go! my advice to first timers is pay attention once you start working above the lake and stay to the right. It will save you a lot of time and effort.

This hike was beautiful with all the snow this morning. I was the first on the trail with all the fresh powder from the snow. The lower falls was had so much snow coverage that you could only hear the water trickle down. Beautiful untouched snow! Couldn’t go much farther than the first falls. Highly recommend for some stunning views!

snowshoeing
26 days ago

Magnificent views, deep powder, and beautiful forests.

I hiked this in just boots, although I would have felt safer with spikes on too. This was a cool hike in the winter.

hiking
1 month ago

Amazing hike into the Pfeifforhorn Cirque area!

Got the opportunity to bust out the snowshoes!

Was very tempted to try for Pfeiff, but another day perhaps ...

:-) _/|\_

12/1/18
Today was the first time I hiked this trail, and, Wow!!! I have hiked a lot in Arizona, and I’m getting started on Utah hiking. This was easily one of my favorite hikes ever. The snow made it especially scenic and challenging. I went to the lower falls, then I went even farther up. I just couldn’t get enough of this trail. Note that everything beyond the WATERFALL sign gets pretty tricky in the snow.
Definitely recommend this hike to anyone who is up for the challenge.

A beautiful, quickly ascending hike. If you're doing this much work, I recommend Upper Bells Canyon as well. A shocking number of people have died slipping at these falls. Good boots and caution are an obvious necessity.

The hike up Lone Pk by the Jacob's Ladder route is fairly direct, steep, and efficient. I consider the Lower and Upper Bell's Canyon route BY FAR the most beautiful route, but also the longest, requires the greatest elevation gain, and is best done with overnight camping.

1 month ago

I hike this trail regularly I don't think the distance or elevation gain is currently correct. it is about 4.5-5mile round trip and about 1500-1600 ft elevation gain. I hiked 3 days ago and the last section is slick, you should bring hiking poles, a branch, yack trax, or snow shoes if you are going to hike in the storm tomorrow

A beautiful hike! The trail is covered with snow, so it is a bit slick in places - especially above the Lower Falls side trail. Definitely want to go back and hike all the way to the reservoir!

I hiked this again yesterday. Beautiful hike as always. The rivers and falls are now frozen. Adds a whole new beauty to this hike. Better hike if you go across the bridge and head up and around the back of the lake.

hiking
2 months ago

I have probably done this trail 10 times. It is so easy for me to get to from my house and is the perfect distance if you only want to go out for 4 hours.

I used this trail as a training hike for a high-altitude hike in California, and it worked beautifully. I have done it in the warmth of summer and the light snow of late autumn to test my winter hiking gear.

This is a great into hike to the fabulous hikes of Little Cottonwood Canyon with amazing views and an awesome lake to have lunch at before heading back down.

I hiked this on August 11, 2018 with a buddy. I think it took us about 6 hours round trip. I was not expecting the pretty intense scramble across some boulders on a ridge to get to the final steep push to the summit. I kind of lost the main trail in that ridge line but kept reconnecting with it.

The final steep scramble looks much worse from afar than it is. One you get across the ridge, just take your time and you'll be golden. The views from the summit are out of control.

This is a great hike to do if you want to get used to altitude since the summit is well over 11,000 feet. Also, if you start this hike and are not feeling like doing steep stuff that requires using your hands or you are with less experienced hikers, you can top out at Red Pine Lake. This is still a fantastic hike with beauty all around.

Have fun out there, folks!

Hey, I got old knees. They sure did get a work out! This hike can be strenuous, but the payoff is incredible. The water fall is frozen with small trickles of water running through the icicles. Breathtaking! Busy trail with friendly people. Question? -trail runners, man or machine?

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful views almost the entire time! It was a gradual incline until the last mile before the lake, but still
totally doable. Sadly .5 miles to the lake the snow pack dies out and you would need snow shoes to get through the final section so we had to turn around. Bummer, but the views up to that point were awesome.

The first and third miles are hard. And fabulous!!! The last 3/4 mile is steep rock, which is kind of hard to get down. Loved this hike! Took 80 minutes up and 70 minutes down. Two navigation notes: at the first landing (above the lake), go left. And up at the river go left (over the bridge).

on White Pine Lake Trail

hiking
2 months ago

I love this trail, I’ve been here several times and great incline not too steep but long. When you bet to “top” of that branches into couple trails. On the right. Ore covered and foresty and left more views and more of the similar incline as the beginning.

Loved this hike! Not as steep as Red Pine but longer. I’d agree with others who’ve characterized this as moderate rather than difficult. The lake at the top is a gem. Still doable without poles or traction but It is a bit slippery in spots though, especially once it starts warming up. The snow is packed now so you don’t really need gaiters.

Beautiful trail. Definitely would recommend poles, snow and ice for a solid mile. Would rate this overall as moderate if not for the snow. Only a steep incline for about a mile. Almost made it to upper lake, but snow got a bit too deep without poles. Will be heading back to do again - awesome trail!

hiking
2 months ago

Trail off red pine trail up to Maybird lakes was difficult to follow in a few spots with the snow on the ground. GPS on the trail app was a lifesaver. The views at the end are epic, especially with the snow on the peaks and mt. pfeifferhorn. Would have been 5 stars but the trail could use a little help with guidance markings.

hiking
2 months ago

Great trial, especially in the winter. I'm 50+ and it is hard though.

Love!!!! Going up, it didn't get hard until the last 3/4 of a mile when it gets steep. It took me just under 2 hours to get up and I didn't take a real break until I got to that steep part. Trek poles really helped save my knees coming down.

Great day hike! Trail was snow covered from 9000 feet to the top. This was the most difficult part for me as I’m not accustomed to altitude ( from PA). Below that it is very rocky, so be prepared for both. The lake was beautiful, though there are other small lakes on the way up. Very few others on the trail, which was well marked even in the snowy areas, thanks to those who went before us. Views were absolutely spectacular. Despite the cool temps, the sun was very warm. Bring sunscreen, especially now that there is snow.

More of a moderate hike, comparatively. beautiful all the way up, great changes in scenery, good workout, easy to run up&down (other than the last mile), and good anytime of the year!

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