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Lake Solitude, tucked between Brighton and Solitude Ski Resorts, makes a great addition to a Silver Lake hike if the family is motivated to go a bit further.
The hike meanders from Silver Lake up the hillside and through Solitude Ski Resort to the lake proper. Though wildflowers and views abound, so do ski lifts, disc golf stands, and the many trappings of a ski resort in the summer.
For my money, this is a good family hike, but with all of the resort clutter, there are better destinations.
Big Cottonwood Canyon is on the east side of the Salt Lake City Valley. Get there by taking I-215 to the east, taking exit 6 off the interstate and heading east.
Follow 6200 South which becomes Wasatch Blvd for 1.8 miles to the stop light and signs for Big Cottonwood Canyon.
Turn left at the light and reset your odometer.
Drive up Big Cottonwood Canyon 14 miles to the small community of Brighton. At the loop, go right, with Silver Lake Visitor Center well signed on the right with a small parking area. If the parking area is full, there is more parking just up the road at the resort.
From the Silver Lake Trailhead, follow the Silver Lake trail right (counter-clockwise) around the lake. At the far end of the lake, a major trail junction is reached.
Go right at this well-signed junction toward Twin Lakes and Lake Solitude. A minute or two after this junction is a second junction. Go right here, again, toward Lake Solitude. (left goes to Twin Lakes).
The trail climbs and rounds the hill as it enters Solitude Ski Resort. Once at the resort, the terrain is crisscrossed with trails and roads. Stay on the most used trail throughout. Signs mark any confusing junctions.
The lake is reached about 1.6 miles from the trailhead. Return the same way.
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