“East, low angle tour that connects you to tons of moderate terrain.”
— Ben Haas
This is a great skin track, especially if you are new to touring or like to get out and dawn patrol before work. This area is known for it's relative avalanche safety, and is a perfect place to go on a higher risk day. There is usually a lot of traffic at this trailhead because there are so many great places to ski. On a big powder day, the spruces lot will be bustling before 5:30 am.
From the Spruces Campground parking lot (approximately 9.7 miles from the Big Cottonwood Canyon park and ride) walk across the road to the bus stop sign and begin skinning up a cabin access road that is gated in the winter. About a quarter mile up the road there will be a gated trail on the left. This road will connect with the Mill D North Fork trail and bring you all the way to Dog Lake. There is a split in the trail about half way up; the left fork is Mill D and will go to Dog Lake, and the right fork will bring you to Desolation Lake.