|Jagged Sundial Peak Towering Over Lake Blanche|
But where to go? If you know Salt Lake, you know the possibilities are almost limitless. Choosing one trail from the gigantic list of really top-drawer options is a bit like buying beer these days. The choices are so numerous, and the quality so high, that the process can be paralyzing. So we opted for a Wasatch classic, the hiking equivalent of a Polygamy Porter, and headed for the Lake Blanche trailhead up Big Cottonwood Canyon.
As we drove up the canyon, the heat continued to hound us. Escape didn't really materialize, at least not as we envisioned. But the gushing voices of Big Cottonwood Creek and Mill B South Fork Creek sufficiently distracted us as we made the stiff ascent toward the high-alpine cirque which cradles the three beautiful ladies we had come to see: Lake Blanche, Lake Florence, and Lake Lillian.
|Twin Peaks Wilderness Boundary Sign|
|Amazing Aspen Grove|
|Big Cottonwood Canyon Flora|
|View Down Mill B South Fork Canyon to Mt. Olympus|
|Outlet to Lake Lillian Spilling Into Mill B South Fork Canyon|
|Lake Blanche with Sundial Peak as a Backdrop|
|Dromedary Peak from Lake Blanche|
|Lakes Florence and Lillian with Dromedary in the Background|
We plopped down in some like-side shade, had a snack, and immersed ourselves in the moment. When we couldn't take any more of Blanche's beauty, we wandered over to Lake Florence to see her and her sister Lillian. On the way, we stopped to admire the outflow from Lake Blanche which despite its somewhat low level was still coursing quite nicely.
|My Better Half Admiring the Outlet from Lake Blanche|
|View Down Mill B South Fork Canyon|
|Beautiful Bloom Deep in Mill B South Fork Canyon|
|Getting Intoxicated on Aspen|
|Mill B South Fork Creek|
Afterwards, we stopped by the irreplaceable Cotton Bottom to get garlic burgers for perhaps the last time. Unless things have changed since I last heard, this wonderful refuge that breaks up the monotony of sedate Holladay, is slated to disappear only to be reincarnated as a fire station or park or some damn thing. That, coupled with the previous loss of Gepetto's, is an absolute travesty.
|The Legendary Cotton Bottom|
|Cotton Bottom Bar Stools|