Utah Lake is a major feature that spans nearly all of Utah County. It is the third largest lake in Utah, behind the Great Salt Lake and Lake Powell. Utah Lake is a great place for boating, fishing, and other water recreation, wildlife and photography. I like to view sunrises and sunsets there because water reflects the sky so beautifully and the mountains are so majestic in the background. For more information check out Utah Lake State Park, Lindon Marina, or American Fork Boat Harbor. I also have a post on sunrise and sunset photo spots.
There are many locations to get to the lake, and I’ll share a few.
The sunrise photo above is from Eagle Park in Saratoga Springs. When you pull into the parking lot, there will be a small play ground. Beyond it you can see the lake. Walk beyond and you see the path to the shore. It is a bit muddy near the shore, so there are pallets laid to make a path. You can get great photos without taking the path, but the one below was taken from that point.
Here is the view to the east.
Here are a few more sunsets and sunrises from that spot.
Saratoga Springs Marina
Another spot to watch the sun across Utah Lake is the Saratoga Spring Marina. It is free to walk in, but there is an $8/car fee to launch a boat. Here are some photos from the marina.
In the winter there are amazing ice stacks here.
Other West Side Shores
There are also many spots between the housing developments where you can walk across the fields to Utah Lake. In one of them a few visitors surprised me!
It’s amazing how ten minutes before a sunset there may not be any indication of what is about to happen. Then you start to see a few pink streaks in the east. As time passes, the east turns more and more pink, and then the west starts to turn yellow and orange. A few minutes later there is red and purple, and then it disappears.
Loch Lomond Pond
On the north side of the lake is a little park and pond called Loch Lomond Pond. This is a great place for birdwatching, including eagles in the winter. The shoreline near there is pretty mucky, so it’s not great beach access, but birds love wetlands.
The east side of the lake also has wonderful spots.
American Fork Boat Harbor
American Fork Boat Harbor is especially fun because you can look both to the east and the west and have the water in both directions.
AF Boat Harbor also has nice ice stacks.
Lindon Marina has a fee to enter, but is a nice place with a sandy beach.
In the winter sometimes they have ice skating on the lake.
Vineyard Beach is a great free place to go with ice stacks.
Summer sunsets are beautiful too!
Utah Lake State Park
Utah Lake State Park is a popular place to go. This one has a larger fee unless you have a State Parks Pass.
We love to use our kayaks and pedal kayaks here at Utah Lake State Park. The lake has many types of fish.
The Provo River empties into Utah Lake here.
As of 2023, the Utah Lake Commission restored the Provo River Delta just to the north.
Utah Lake State Park is a great place for bird watching.
I have seen bald eagles here in the winter.
Our kids love playing in the water here in the summer.
It’s also a popular place for sailboats and motor boats.
Further south is Lincoln Beach. I have only gone there in the winter, but the ice stacks were awesome!
Stats: Distance – 0-500 feet round trip
Approximate hiking time – 5 minutes
Elevation gain – 4 feet
Difficulty – Easy
Bathrooms – Yes, AF Boat Harbor, Utah Lake State Park, Lindon Marina and Saratoga Springs Marina
Seasons- Year Round
Permits needed – Depends (see below)
Pets allowed – Yes
Map to Saratoga Springs Marina free walk-in
Map to Eagle Park free, but muddy
Map to Saratoga Springs Private Marina (must live in the neighborhood)
Map to Inlet Park free, but muddy
Map to Loch Lomond Pond free, but muddy
Map to the American Fork Boat Harbor free in winter, walk-ins $2 summer
Map to Vineyard Beach always free
Map to Utah Lake State Park – $15/vehicle or $4 walk-in or State Parks Pass
Map to Lincoln Beach
Map to Sandy Beach always free