Difficulty: More Difficult ◼︎◼︎
Length: 11 miles round trip
Elevation Gain: 2,200 feet
Dog Friendly: Yes
Trailhead coordinates (copy + paste): 40.6538, -111.5094
Directions: Park at the PCMR base next to the First Time chairlift. Walk up the dirt road between First Time and 3 Kings all the way to the top of First Time. Keep walking up the road for another 0.25 miles, at which point it will turn into a series of switchbacks (Gotcha Cut-Off ski run). The switchbacks end on top of a ridge— follow the ridge past the top of King Con, then past the top of Crescent, pausing when you reach the Viking Yurt. Turn right and follow the sign for Road to Thaynes, which leads past the Thaynes chair all the way to the bottom of Jupiter. Stay awhile and enjoy the lake before heading back down the way you came.
Skiers know that Jupiter Lake is a place to avoid at all costs during the winter— nobody wants to get stuck doing that grueling shuffle across the snowed-over lake to the bottom of the chairlift. Despite that, the lake is a great place to visit during the warmer months. The longer of two unique ways to reach Jupiter Lake, this hike will take you from the base of PCMR to the bottom of it's highest chairlift, passing mining relics and your favorite ski spots along the way. The resort's trail system tends to cater to mountain bikers, so this route intentionally avoids singletrack trails in order to make the journey more relaxing. Next time, reach the lake from above via Jupiter Peak to round out the experience.