The first official hike of our two week trip started in Santa Fe. From the Santa Fe ski area you have access to multiple trails a short distance from the Aspen Basin Trailhead. Most folks visiting the area will do a similar distance hike to Lake Katherine. If you are looking for more solitude try the hike to Spirit Lake. On a bust Saturday in July we were the only people at the lake.
Starting from the Aspen Basin Trailhead you follow the Windsor Trail around six miles to your destination. Don't be discouraged by the beginning of the hike as a majority of the elevation gain is in the first mile or so. After that initial climb the trail levels out and crosses creeks multiple times. The trail does have one more notable climb and then a final drop to Spirit Lake. You can do this as a day hike or as an overnighter. Either way make sure you spend some time at the lake enjoying the quiet.