Trip Report: Lake Blanche


A fresh dusting of snow blankets Sundial Peak above Lake Blanche. 

Lake Blanche is an icon of the Wasatch Front and has been on my hit list for as long as I have been into photography, but I had somehow never gotten the opportunity to get up there. Finally this October I decided I was going to go for it. I invited my friend and fellow photographer Justin Poe along  and despite him just having had a new baby, he decided to come.  The weather looked promising, the storm we had just had was supposed to break by evening and it looked like we might have perfect conditions for the evening.

We started hiking in the early evening amid a light drizzle, it’s okay we though, it will break. It never did. The trail is rather pleasant, well maintained and good views are to be had all the way up to the lake. It is rather relenting however and it’s a steady and moderately strenuous climb all of the way, I believe about 3500 feet of elevation gain in a little over 3.5 miles.

The light drizzle turned into snowflakes half way up the trail and our hopes of the storm clearing were pretty much dashed. To prove that photographers can be rather stubborn and single minded mother nature decided to put on a beautiful display for us anyway. The partially frozen lake amid a group of Aspen’s still clinging onto their leaves presented an excellent foreground to the strands of snow dusted pines leading up to the partially shrouded Sundial Peak. It was gorgeous, even without the blast of color in the sky that we were hoping for. The snow was gently falling and it was quiet, so quiet, probably the most peaceful moment I had experienced in the mountains all year. I almost wished that I had a tent set up and could spend the night. It just goes to show you that sometimes mother nature knows better than we do.


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