Overview

This family-friendly hike passes through fields of beautiful wildflowers before arriving at a scenic lake nestled high in Albion Basin at the top of Little Cottonwood Canyon. With about 440 feet of elevation gain in the one-mile hike to the lake this trail is will get your heart rate up but is still easy enough for everyone in the family to enjoy.

Trailhead

The Cecret Lake trailhead (40.577986, -111.612986) is located near the Albion Basin Campground at the top of Little Cottonwood Canyon. To reach the trailhead from I-215 in Salt Lake City:

  1. Take Exit 6 for 6200 S/Wasatch Blvd.
  2. Drive south on Wasatch Blvd. for 3.9 miles.
  3. Bear left onto UT-210/Little Cottonwood Canyon Road and continue up the canyon 12.7 miles.
  4. After passing Alta Ski Resort, the paved road ends. Continue up the dirt road another 2.4 miles to the signed parking area near the entrance to the Albion Basin Campground. The dirt road is suitable for passenger cars in dry conditions.

NOTE: There is very limited parking at the trailhead and no parking is allowed along the road nearby. Arrive early and carpool if possible to get a spot. On busy weekends, a free shuttle is often available from the Alta to the Cecret Lake trailhead.

The Hike

From the Cecret Lake trailhead, begin hiking on the signed trail heading southwest from the parking area. Take note of sign markers along the way as the trail sometimes follows a private access road for nearby cabin owners.

As the trail climbs toward Cecret Lake, hikers are treated to outstanding views of Albion Basin and the surrounding peaks. Wildflowers thrive here in the summer time and come in a rainbow of colors. The sheer north face of the Devils Castle sets the perfect alpine backdrop to the fields of colorful blossoms. Sightings of moose and other wildlife are common in this area.

As you approach Cecret Lake, the trail becomes more strenuous as it climbs steeply up rocky switchbacks. After just under one mile, the trail arrives at Cecret Lake (40.571035, -111.622080). Numerous rocky outcroppings provide a welcome spot to stop for a break and take in the beautiful alpine scenery. Children will enjoy playing along the shoreline and watching the salamanders swimming in the crystal clear waters of Cecret Lake.

Return the way you came. Round trip hiking distance is approximately 2.0 miles with 440 feet of elevation gain.

Rules and Regulations

  • No dogs allowed.
  • No littering.
  • No swimming.
  • No camping within 200 feet of trails and water sources.

Special Considerations

There is very limited parking at the trailhead and no parking is allowed along the road nearby. Arrive early and carpool if possible to get a spot. On busy weekends, a free shuttle is often available from the Alta to the Cecret Lake trailhead.

Credits

This trail guide is provided by Backcountry Post.