Best time to visit Utah

Brighton Lakes Trail

One-way trail connects four scenic lakes surrounded by Alpine meadows

Brighton Lakes Trail in Utah 2019 - Best Time
Photo by

© Phil Piercy

The Brighton Lakes are nestled up Big Cottonwood Canyon, close to Salt Lake City, Utah. They can be reached from the Brighton Resort Lodge trailhead at the end of Big Cottonwood Canyon Road. Hikers can visit four lakes in one day: Dog Lake, Lake Mary, Lake Martha, and Lake Catherine moving from lower to higher elevations. The best views over the lake area can be taken at the Sunset Peak, less-than-an-hour hike from Lake Catherine.

Lake Martha 2019
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Lake Martha
Watching the sunset overlooking the Brighton Lakes 2019
Watching the sunset overlooking the Brighton Lakes

Brighton Lakes Loop is an 11-km (7-mi) trail with an elevation gain of about 550 m (1,807 ft). The trail is usually moderately crowded and can be rated as difficult. The best time to hike to the Brighton Lakes is from July until October. The prime time would be late June–July when the water levels in the lakes are higher, as by the end of the hiking season they rather resemble puddles than lakes. Keep in mind that swimming and dog walking are not permitted in the Brighton Lakes area.

Lake Catherine 2019
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Lake Catherine

During the summer months, the Brighton Lakes trail boasts great wildlife and wildflowers on scenic Alpine meadows. Flowers are most abundant from mid-July through mid-August. The trail features a scenic view of the peaks surrounding the Brighton Bowl.

Lake Mary 2019
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Lake Mary

The trail also attracts cross-country skiers in winter but is often closed due to bad weather conditions.