Welcome, I envision this blog as sharing information about the trails that I love, so others might enjoy them as well. I may not end up always going in that direction, but that's how I will start. So for my first post I'll go for one of my favorite hikes in Utah, Lake Blanche.
Lake Blanche is a favorite because the entire trail is beautiful! The trail descriptions say it's 3 miles to the lake, I've always gotten about 3.4 though. By the time I walk around and check out Lake Florence as well, my round trip mileage is about 7.2. I would consider this a moderately difficult hike, I use this trail and others like it to train for marathons so I try to run, this trail is too steep for me to keep going for too long though. The fastest I have made it to the top is 1:05, I want to make it under an hour sometime. Along the trail you will see giant slabs of granite that look like something out of the Lord Of The Rings. Lots of Aspen trees make this a great trail to see colors in the fall as well. Once you get to the top you are rewarded with one of the most beautiful places I've ever been.
Sundial peak is impressive and usually reflects onto the lake. Just below Lake Blanche are 2 more small lakes, Lake Florence, and Lake Lillian. Lake Florence is well worth the 3 min walk to see it.
I've often seen mountain goats and deer, it's worth walking around the granite to look around for them. The view back towards the valley is also fantastic.
Because this is a hard hike I see a lot of people either backpacking up to spend the night (which I plan to do sometime,) or giving up and heading back before they get to the top. If you plan on 4 hours total you will have plenty of time to make it to the top, just bring snacks and water, it's worth it!