Lake Blanche Trail

HARD 1,431 reviews
#1 of 10 trails in

Lake Blanche Trail is a 6.7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Salt Lake City, Utah that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from June until October.

DISTANCE
6.7 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2726 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

backpacking

birding

camping

hiking

nature trips

snowshoeing

trail running

walking

lake

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

bugs

rocky

snow

no dogs

Beautiful mountaintop lake, awesome views, and abundant wildlife. This is a demanding hike! Plan to stop several times to catch your breath. If you want exercise, this is the hike for you. It's a lot of work, but it is well worth it. The views down into the canyon below are breathtaking. Just prior to arriving at the lake, parts of Salt Lake City are also visible from the trail. There is plenty of wildlife and an abundant variety of trees, flowers, and everything else Utah's great outdoors has to offer! This is a very difficult hike, but is very satisfying to complete. Everyone should do it at least once! ADVISORIES: Make sure to take plenty of water! Insect repellent is a good idea as mosquitos are plentiful. If you are planning this hike for later in the day, pack a flashlight (with fresh batteries) in case your journey takes longer than planned. Attempting to navigate the trail after dark would be a very dangerous endeavor.

2 minutes ago

One of my favorite hikes in slc county. We backpacked overnight. It was a great experience!

2 days ago

Just hiked this trail yesterday in the rain and loved it. The trail is fairly steep at the beginning but still very enjoyable. There's quite a bit of snow at the top so if you're going to hike it right now I'd recommend bringing some layers. The view is well worth it!

backpacking
2 days ago

Really wonderful views. The trail itself is very difficult for backpacking because of the steep grade, but it's doable. You just have to really pace yourself and not get overeager on the ascent or descent. There was a good amount of snow on the northeast side of the lake this time of year, and the mornings were around 20 to 30 degrees. You don't need microspikes just to get the top, but there is some slick snow right now. Really great opportunities to explore!

hiking
3 days ago

Hiked trail to lake today. No more snow or ice on the lake. Almost to the bottom, started raining. By the time I reached the asphalt path to the parking lot I was caught in a downpour. So glad I started at 9:30. I had a wind breaker that I put on at the lake which was good because clouds covered sun and breeze off the lake was cool. Didn’t need to use my spikes.

3 days ago

Didn’t get lost - almost did at the place where there’s hundreds of ticks and it’s super steep but quickly figured out you need to just climb up and quickly go right to get back to the path. Still some snow up there but nothing my hiking boots couldn’t handle. Just behind the lake there are tons of waterfalls and amazing views. Walked up in about 1.5 hours and ran down in about 40 mins. Rain, thunder, and lightening on the way down and it was exhilarating

trail running
3 days ago

This hike was awesome! We were able to run most of the way down. It’s so beautiful! I’ve had it on my list for almost three years and it was worth the wait. Parking sucks, you’ll probably have to park on the road. Trail is super easy to follow.

hiking
3 days ago

Here’s the thing...
Is the hike beautiful? Is the lake beautiful? Yes! However is the hike hard...HELL YES.
The shear elevation was very hard on me, be prepared to hike a steep trail. For real.
It’s a 5 star hike although I can’t say it was “fun” :)

hiking
4 days ago

Tiny bit of ice on the upper part of the trail. Snow field just before the lake. Neither need any gear/spikes. Friendly reminder to bring sun screen and bug repellent, and plenty of water.

hiking
4 days ago

Got a late start today but the rain and hail kept the conditions just perfect for a Spring hike. I was surprised by the number of people on the trail at this time of year. The secret is out...this is an awesome hike. There is ice covering half the lake and the surrounding mountains have plenty of snow remaining. Trail is in excellent condition with very little snow on the trail (mostly on the last approach to the lake)

4 days ago

Amazing!

hiking
4 days ago

Beautiful views on this hike - the snowcapped peaks are almost always in sight ahead of you on your way up. Turn around and see across the canyon. Plenty of places to explore around the lake, so plan to spend an hour or two poking around there before you head back. Bring a fleece, cold mountain air in the basin. Snow all gone now unless you push past the lake. Fairly crowded on a Saturday, but still a nice hike. Get there early if you want a parking spot.

hiking
15 days ago

Views are spectacular!

18 days ago

Amazing!

hiking
19 days ago

First time to Utah and had to try the Lake Blanche trail. What a fun hike...my wife and I started around 8:00 am and the cool morning really helped out with the climb. Amazing scenery around and a running stream that you follow for the first half. This hike was moderately difficult and it requires many rest breaks (which is perfect anyways to take a panorama view of the breathtaking beauty around you). About a mile out from the top we encountered a decent amount of snow and put on our micro spikes. I would HIGHLY recommend the spikes as it helped get up the terrain without slipping all over the place and trying to regain footing. Once at the top take a break and soak in the magnificent nature. The lake was covered by snow unfortunately and we didn’t spend too much time around it. For us, we packed a couple bottles of water, snacks, sun screen and, of course, micro spikes. If in SLC, you gotta check it out!

hiking
22 days ago

Nice singletrack next to the river and some beatiful views at the lake. There is still some ice and snow on the lake. I used my microspikes for the last part of the trail because it is icy but you could reach the lake without any spikes too. The trail is not that hard.

24 days ago

Stunning!

hiking
25 days ago

Trail clear for first 2 miles, mild runoff after 2nd mile. 3rd mile is beginning to slush, a lot of postholeing when not on hard pack, spikes and baskets on trekking poles highly recommended for last mile. Reccomend starting early, at 8:45 last mile hard pack began to soften. Still about 4ft of snow at top. Lake Blanche is starting to melt. Moderate amount of hikers ascending while I was coming down. Plenty warm. Do yourself a favor and follow the trail not the tracks of other hikers, I got off trail and conditions were less than great at that point. Good hike, made it in 2.5 hours round trip.

trail running
26 days ago

Lake Blanche this AM, started at 7. Trail getting a little busier on way down, many coming up- start early. You’ll be glad you brought Microspikes 2 miles up and trekking poles for the lot of it. Attire, I wore a tank, hat, winter tights and gloves. Removed gloves, plenty warm to do in shorts in you’re running/hiking at a good pace. Might be worth while to sync trail to your GPS. Lots of people going off trail, including myself today, following foot steps. Took a very long way, pot holing filled route towards top. Took me 90 minutes on the dot to get to Lake, should have taken 1:15 if hasn’t gone off trail. Conditions, great first 1.5 mile, then mud, followed by spring slip and slide icy/squishy snow. Have fun!

trail running
1 month ago

Started trail this morning around 6:30. Trail is very fun right now with the right equipment. Muddy/water flow on trail, 1.5 or so, ice and snow. Not pot holing early morning until you get to lake. With sun up at top of trail minor pot holing. Equipment suggestions: microspikes (its very icy right at least half way up), trekking poles and gloves. I ran in baseball cap, tank top and tights. Hands even with wool gloves got very cold (started to hurt), until getting to top. Super fun and technical at present.

hiking
1 month ago

One of my favorite hikes of all time. Always such a good time. Have gone multiple times and always look forward to going again!

1 month ago

This hike was amazing! I did it this past weekend and didn’t need spikes or snow shoes (the snow was packed down enough). Got super sunburnt on my face so wear sunscreen!

1 month ago

Went during the snowstorm; bring your spikes or you won’t get too far! Lake was still covered in snow and not very visible, but really pretty nonetheless. Definitely worth the hike up.

1 month ago

Ok so this review is for those that are not local or are used to hiking in snow. I am from Florida so while hiking isn’t new doing it in snow is.

First all the info on this site was really great. When I read the comments like “some snow and ice” and maybe wear “ice spikes”. I vastly under estimated things.

I did buy snow spikes but I had no idea how to get the right size or how to put them on.. so off I went without them.

BAD MISTAKE... the first of many

I started the trail and there “some” snow but not to bad and I did have a walking stick so all was well... until....it was a pure snow/ice trail and not even really a trail once you get up a ways.. just other people’s foot prints you are following

Not having the spikes made it hell and yes this is rated “hard “ for a reason it is always going up.

But about a mile from the top I literally was stopping every 100 yards or so needing to catch my breath and I am in pretty good shape. It was (1) walking uphill in the snow with no spikes and (2h failing to realize that coming from Florida to this elevation in Utah and then walking up a mountain was overwhelming me because I was t acclimated we all (had been in Utah less than 24 hours .

But... I made it in about 2 1/2 hours and let me tell you the view was breathtaking. What an incredible experience.

I meet some locals who were super friendly and we chatted awhile and he offered me an extra pair of spikes he had... I figured going down would be easy so I said no. Bad mistake #2

It’s as steep going down as going up and so I was literally sliding through the ice and fell hard a dozen or so times. But made it down in 2 hours.

So I wasn’t as prepared as I needed to be but getting to the stop was worth it.

So... WEAR SNOW SPIKES

hiking
1 month ago

Great view all around. It took as like 1:40 to the top and 40 minutes back. Snow is splashy and could still use spikes for better grabbing if you have one.

1 month ago

Awesome hike. It was a challenge but i made it. I took my time and lots of breaks. There was still snow, but I didn't need any snow snow shoes. I just used spikes and sometimes I used my trekking poles. Nice views at the top.

2 months ago

Went up last week, tons of snow and quite a bit of ice on the lower parts of the trail. Sunset was beautiful and it took 1 1/2 hrs to get up. (we were going really fast) plan for just over 2 hrs and bring spikes!

2 months ago

What an amazing trip up to Blanche today. The trail is hard packed all the way to the top. Snow shoes not needed to the lake but spikes are highly recommended. The sun was out and no wind. Even lugged up some ice fishing gear and landed 5 browns in only 20 min. Nothing above 10”. The action is fast due to lack of food right now I’m sure. The ice was about 4 feet deep and plenty safe. We head lumped early, but the trail was busy on our way down. Everyone was really respectful and nice and I was glad to see many people enjoying the amazing day. Happy trekking

snowshoeing
2 months ago

Went up this trail 3/4/18 after a really solid snowfall in Big Cottonwood Canyon. Trail visible the first mile and a half or so from others doing some trailblazing, but then everything from there was covered in 2-3 feet of snow. Had to trailblaze with the snow to my hips but so long as you're prepared for that after a big snowfall, you'll be fine! Absolutely beautiful trail even in the winter, everything covered in white. If hiking in deep snow, make sure to check avalanche reports, have correct gear and don't go alone.

2 months ago

Beautiful trail, hiked it last fall and will do it again!

snowshoeing
2 months ago

Awesome hike after a good snowfall. Could get away with hiking it with some good spikes. Didn’t need my snowshoes the entire time. The views were amazing at the top.

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