Wednesday, June 12, 2013

solo hike to desolation

On Saturday H felt like going for a road ride so I thought I would hike myself up to Desolation Lake in Big Cottonwood Canyon.  We've done it before so I knew it would be a largely shaded, dry, not-too-steep hike.  As an out-and-back, it's about 7.2 miles: 1.7 miles to the Dog Lake/Desolation Trail junction and another 1.9 miles up to Desolation Lake.  This made it a little longer than I remembered and I was dragging a little bit on the second part, but a granola bar and lots of water put the spring back in my step.

It's so green this time of year!

This is a popular area, with lots of families doing the shorter hike to Dog Lake, lots of mountainbikers coming down the trail from the Great Western Trail on the ridge above and a good number of trail runners because the path is mostly packed dirt and easy underfoot.  After the hike I came up with a theory that the vast majority of trail runners are ridiculously good-looking people: they tend to be young, extremely fit and not wearing very many clothes.

You can just barely make out 
all the little blue flowers

It was a beautiful day, the strong sun and bright blue skies peeking through the aspen groves, the little creek still chuckling its way down Mill D North Fork.  I didn't see any wildlife other than a couple of potguts (and the aforementioned MTBers and trail runners).  My hike took me three hours, including some time soaking in the scenery up at the lake.

Still some snow - but melting fast

Back down at the car, I watched MTBers and hikers coming and going as I had my post-hike celebratory PBR.  The parking lot was pretty full - and the parking further down canyon at the uber-popular Mill B South Fork was as busy as I've seen it - and it was great to see people outside, enjoying the afternoon in the Wasatch.

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