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Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Brighton Hikes - Silver and Twin Lakes, Utah

Silver Lake, Twin Lakes, Lake Solitude.

I have been living in Salt Lake City for about 10 months (wowza) and I have not done any hikes in Big Cottonwood Canyon.  Big Cottonwood Canyon is one of the protected watersheds, meaning no pups allowed.  

Well, last weekend I left the dog in daycare and headed to Big Cottonwood to hike the Brighton Lakes.  

Garmin Mapped Hike to Twin Lakes 
Length: 3 miles round trip
Elevation Gain: 720 ft
Highest Elevation: 9,480 ft
Trailhead: Big Cottonwood Road, entrance by Brighton Ski Resort.  The building says  "Solitude Nordic Center" in the winter and is a forest service information center in the summer.  The trail starts out right by this building, on a boardwalk system that surrounds Silver Lake. 

Eventually, you will reach a fork in the trail.  At this point, the boardwalk continues around the lake and you will also see a dirt path that heads away from the lake (this is the route you want). You will see a sign that says "Lake Solitude and Twin Lakes" . If you want to head to the Twin Lakes, take the left fork.  This will take you around Silver Lake.

Eventually, you will reach some Brighton ski trail signs, and a rocky section of the trail.  Finally, you will see the dam and the Twin Lakes.  You may wonder why there is one lake called Twin Lakes.   "Before the dam was built, the lakes were clearly 2 lakes, but now with the dam holding the water back, it is really just one big lake (unless water levels are low)". source

We turned around here and headed back down to Silver Lake.  If you are up for a little more hiking, you can head up to the pass and down to Lake Solitude before heading back to Silver Lake and the trail head.  If you head this way, you can see all three lakes in one hike. 

Trail Head for Twin Lakes

Boardwalk around Silver Lake

Silver Lake

Silver Lake

Silver Lake

Silver Lake

dirt trail to Twin Lakes

Silver Lake from the dirt trail

Twin Lakes

Twin Lakes

Dam at Twin Lakes 

hike from Twin Lakes 

Wildlife at the Twin Lakes hike

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