Explore the most popular walking trails near Alta with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

hiking
1 day ago

This hike is full of wonder and beauty! The flowers through the Albion Basin are amazing. This hike is a steeper hike. You’re already up 10 thousand plus feet in altitude so the hike can be a bit of a challenge for a newbie but it is worth it if you are able to take it slower. One of my favorites! ❤️

hiking
6 days ago

We parked at Alta and hiked up. The kids complained the whole way (It’s a little bit of an incline) but it was beautiful. So worth it!

hiking
7 days ago

Our third time on this trail. We enjoy it every time. Seems to be more wildflowers this time (July 8, 2018) than at the end of July 2017. Keep in mind this trail is a bit steep, so when you get to the top bring something to enjoy your time there like snacks (don't litter, please :) ), a blanket or hammock for lazing for a bit.

This year, they started charging $6 to park at the closest lot to the trail (we parked further away, so did not pay for parking). Some people are complaining about that charge. After seeing three different rangers (one from the US forest service, one from Alta Ski Resort- who came up twice in the time we were there- and the third from Alta city) coming up and down the trail helping people who were struggling and ready to give out water (or probably even first aid if needed), I have no problem to pay that $6 in the future if we park in that lot. And, I am sure at times, they are also picking up garbage people leave/drop. Thank you, rangers!

After I hiked the Albion Basin, I headed up to Cecret Lake. Just a short 0.9 miles from the campground. It was a nice short beautiful hike, and the walk around the lake was a great cherry on top for it was adventuresome yet not too dangerous with an extra dose of more wildflowers in the mix. Loved it. Perfect start to the day. Remember this hike is best to do off peak hours, and before 7:30 you don't have to pay $7 to park. Weekends buses run up to the parking lot to help you enjoy this area. HAPPY HIKING! https://shaunasadventures.blogspot.com/2018/07/360-adventure-hike-to-cecret-lake.html?m=1

Easy, short hike. Plan to pay the new $6 summer road fee at Alta. You are offered 3 options: pay $6 to drive up to the campground parking lot, park at Alta and do the 5+ mile round-trip hike through Albion Basin, or pay $10 per person to take the ski lift up.

walking
8 days ago

Nice trail, beautiful scenery! We even saw a moose!

Took the kids. 5 and 7. It wasn’t easy, but kids managed. Lots of elevation gain, but the views at the end were beautiful and serene. Wildflowers were blooming too.

hiking
10 days ago

This was such a fun hike! The wildflowers were beautiful! And lots of kids had little nets to catch salamanders in the lake! So i highly recommend bringing some so you can catch them. Also make sure to use the all trails app to make sure you’re on the right trail because we got a little lost, but overall it was a great experience. :)

hiking
10 days ago

Fun family hike to small lake full of salamanders. Easy in and out. Can get crowded.

This was a gorgeous hike! We didn’t get to stay as long as we wanted to, but it was really pretty. My only critique is that you have to pay $6 to get up there. Which isn’t that bad, but when you expect it to be free.... but the lake is amazing! I would definitely go again :)

hiking
11 days ago

Today was July 4th so it was extremely busy but still managed to have a great time. Update: New this year Alta Ski resort now operates the trailhead. There is a small fee to park. Since it was so busy today it was 1 car in, 1 car out. We elected to ride chair lift up for $10 a person and park in the resort lot.

This is one of the greatest short hikes in the Wasatch. Easily completed it with a 3 and 5 year old with plenty of sunlight to spare after we didn’t leave our home in slc until 6pm. Mosquitos were out in force but a misting of 20% deet kept them completely at bay. Tiger salamanders were also out in droves in the lake. Flowers not even close to full peak yet. Snow completely gone from anywhere close to the trail. Weekdays are the time to hit this trail to guarantee parking and limit the crowds on the trail and edge of the lake.

Really fun and an excellent spot for a picnic, but expect some bugs at the lake. I recommend starting from the lower Albion basin and hiking up to the cecret lake trailhead.

I did this hike this morning with my six month old son and couple coworkers. It was a very beautiful hike. The only down fall was we saw a cougar on our final climb up to the lake. It kept its distance but made us very on edge. So anyone going out there with little ones be sure to keep them close, and always communicate with others you see on the trail as well.

hiking
14 days ago

A great hike, nice and cool when we went in June, still snow on the ground in some places. Lake is nice and pristine.

hiking
15 days ago

Fun trail with bunch of kids...

Great hike that really doesn’t go too far past Cecret Lake. Wasn’t as sketchy as I thought it was going to be either. Last half is very steep, but it goes by fast! DO IT!

This is a family favorite hike. We usually go the first week of July (after the gates open) and take nets from the dollar store to catch and release salamanders. We see a moose frequently on this trail.

hiking
24 days ago

The road is closed until 6/30/2018!

One of my favorite summer hikes. Wildflowers are spectacular. This is a fairly easy hike, the end gets a bit rocky and steep. The lake at the top is lovely and it’s nice to sit in the quiet.

hiking
30 days ago

So... Albion Basin road was closed and I'd promised three 4 year-olds we were going to make it to the lake. We decided to take a shortcut instead of walk the entire road. Neither I nor my friend knew exactly where the trailhead was, but we figured we would find it when we got to the top of the road. The trailhead is in the campground. That somehow isn't made very clear here. There's still quite a bit of snow and a whole lot of mud.
What is listed here as 1.7 miles ended up being 7.3 for us. My little hikers-in-training were troopers, but I am sore.

on Cecret Lake Trail

1 month ago

Beautiful and easy hike. Busy though and lots of kids.

hiking
1 month ago

Decent trail that follow the valley in the trees. Goes past a nice cascade to lower Albion Basin

It was a little early in the tear to do this because of all the snow, but it’s still doable. I was able to complete it in tennis shoes. It’s important to note that the campground is not yet open, so there are a few extra miles tagged on from starting at the bottom of the paved road rather than being able to start at the trailhead. It was beautiful there, the lake was a big giant slushie, the first sign of buds were poking out of the ground, and you don’t have the business of summer. Being the first time I was up here, I lost the trail coming down baldy (I did sugarloaf first). I basically had to just run/slide down the ski slopes that were still there haha. I was able to see the main road coming up alpine so I just moved that direction until I got to the bottom. It was challenging, but to echo what others have said, it is a short hike for a summit.

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked this on 6/3, still knee deep snow covering most of the trail so plan on your feet getting wet. We hiked the summer road up to the campground since it is not open until the end of June, and there was no snow on that. We did end up making it to the lake and it was still mostly frozen. Then we slid on our butts down the snow where the switchbacks are, it was easier than trying to climb back down it. This is easily one of the most crowded trails in Utah in the summer, but this time we saw one other person the whole time so this was a plus.

hiking
1 month ago

I took my wife and kids up to this trail on a whim. I’d heard about it from a friend who raved last year about the beautiful flowers. I would have been well served to look up the details on the terrain this time of year. I didn’t realize how high the trailhead is. I expected to see snow, but I didn’t expect to see nothing but snow. It turned into a great little adventure. The dirt road to the trailhead was still gated, so it added just over two miles to our journey. I used my phone to point us to the direction of the lake and we meandered up. The snow was mostly crusted over so that walking on top of it was not a problem, but I post-holed up to my knees or deeper a few times.
The nice thing about going so early in the year was that when we got to the lake mid-day, we were the only ones there. A few other people showed up while we ate our snacks and took in the scenery.
My kids said it was one of their most favorite hikes ever.

snowshoeing
1 month ago

The forecast of rain drowned my hiking plans, but rising above the fog and drizzle, I soared up to 8,800' while the temperature dipped to 37 degrees at Alta. Snowshoeing solo on soft snow over two miles of abandoned ski runs and frozen road to the campground in a fine snowfall and steady breeze, and another mile beyond and above Cecret Lake to about 10,200', I quit after two hours of climbing a half mile from Germania Pass to conserve energy for today's activities. Backcountry skiers were spotted making their ascents, and Devil's Castle cliffs emerged frequently from the solitary mist. Cecret was still frozen, and the silent lift lines and snow making equipment detracted little from the majesty. My spirit was contrite as I rode the gusty breeze that chased me back down. Descending swiftly down a winding chute that forms the headwaters of Cottonwood Creek, I dropped into Albion Basin and reached my car in less than an hour, having covered 5 miles in 3 hours with 1,400' gain. Enough fun. There was 12 hours of work to do at home and the office, but nothing could detract from this excellent morning!

snowshoeing
1 month ago

Snow shoeing was so good last weekend that I returned with a new goal, to ascend above Cecret Lake to the col between Sugarloaf and Devil's Castle for a look at Pittsburg Lake on the south facing slope. A fantastic hike with Breck with boots, chains, and snow shoes. We met up later than usual, 7:00am, so by the time we drove up to Alta and reconnoitered the terrain, we got a much later start than usual. We were thinking of Davenport Hill, but it looked too muddy to me, while Albion Basin still had plenty of snow, and the ramp from Cecret Lake to the col between Sugarloaf and Devil's Castle looked possible. So we hiked off with snowshoes and chains strapped to our packs, following the newly plowed road, cutting off one switchback road corner, but otherwise, making good time to where the plow ended at the traditional Cecret Lake Trailhead in the campground. Continuing on a firm crust more frozen than it was during the warmer inclement weather of the prior weekend, we reached the switchbacks above the cabins below Cecret Lake before we remembered to eat and put on our chains, switching up the hill over the buried trail and reached Cecret Lake's northeastern shore where squirrels were already emerging to browse amongst the rocks, covering 3 miles in about an hour with 1,100' gain in elevation from the 8,880' parking lot at the end of the paved road to about 9,900' at Cecret Lake. We climbed up the next ramp kick stepping into the crust to gain only about 300' in an hour, then put on snow shoes at 10,200' and took another hour of slow determined ascent, making full use of the crampons on our snow shoes to scale the steep and frozen ground, closely following the buried route of underlying switchbacks until we emerged onto exposed talus at 10,800', stowed the shoes, and dropped down a bit to the col's grassy meadow. Taking in the vista along the ridge rewarded our effort, and peering down on Pittsburg Lake on the Mineral Basin side achieved our ultimate goal. Walking this ridge would be for us only a midsummer option, and reaching Pittsburg would be much easier on a traverse from Sugarloaf Pass than the steep descent from this col, except perhaps in mid-winter when the south facing slope might offer a snowy ramp. Having taken 2 hours to climb 1 mile with 900' of hard-earned gain on a more direct line than the underlying trail of switchbacks which is only marked on the Wasatch Mountain Club map and rated as 1.49 miles, we elected a slightly more easterly line and posthole-leaped straight down the snowy ramp, sometimes breaking through to our thighs, leaving a muddy path as we passed blackened snow stained by avalanche control rockets, and returning swiftly to the lakeshore in a mere 15 minutes on a direct line that was probably only 0.5 miles instead of the 1.0 mile we had ascended. From there, another straight line down Albion Basin brought us back to the car in 45 minutes, covering 1.5 miles swiftly on boots with chains. Three hours up, one our down, a perfect hike with challenging terrain, sufficient energy, warm blue skies over crusty snow, and our goal achieved in a partnership.

hiking
4 months ago

Catching up on some reviews, so recognize that I did this hike in early September. Went with some friends to hike this on Labor day. Quite possibly the worst day to do so. The parking lot closest to the lake was filled, so we had to park at the ski lodge. We could have taken a shuttle from there to the real trailhead, but the wait was 45min+, so we started our hike from there. Very sunny, hot, and exposed for most of it, so be prepared. Also, there were so many people! This would have been much nicer if the trail wasn't so backed up. Didn't stay long at the lake because of how many others were already there. Other than the heavy traffic, this would have been a nice, short, enjoyable hike.

The roads closed during the winter /:

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