Great moderately hard hike! Did this a couple days ago(December 26th) so it was a little icy up the rock closer to the summit. If you're good on your feet you shouldn't need yak tracks or anything though. Just a good pair of hiking shoes. Only saw 3 other people on the trail the whole time...benefits of winter hiking. Fantastic views of the foothills and Rocky peaks at the summit!
We went the steeper shorter way up and the meadows way down. I recommend this way if you want the best workout. If you want an easier hike, do the meadows way up and the shorter/steeper trail for the way down. The meadows path also has better views... less tree coverage.
Quite an amazing hike. Definitely provided a challenge especially with the weather we had (around 85°) and there isn't much cover so make sure to dress light for the the sun on hotter days. Pack plenty of food and water, and it's worth noting you can't drink the water at the top unless you have a water filter that can take care of Giardia. The challenge really comes about 3/4 through the hike near the giant rock you climb, which is where a lot of the elevation is. Also worth noting that it would be extremely fun to do a backpacking trip there.
For a highly trafficked trail there weren't a lot of hikers the Sunday we made the trek. We hiked with our two big dogs and were worried about the heat but there was plenty of little runoff creeks for them to drink from. We packed extra water but didn't need to use any of it. It was a fun hike! Only saw one snake. We didn't take the "Meadow Loop" but some other hikers we asked said it is definitely worth it.
My girlfriend and I gave this a go about a week ago, and I echo most of the reviews in saying it was a really great and fun hike. We got on it around 8:30 and though the parking lot was full (it's pretty small) we found convenient street parking right by the bridge to the trail. We only saw a handful of people/groups during our hike up, and enjoyed feeling like we had it mostly to ourselves. It felt deceptively longer than the roughly 3-4 miles to summit, but we had no complaints. We didn't see snakes, as some have reported but saw a few deer and chipmunks. As others have stated, the last leg of the summit trail wasn't well marked and required a little scrambling, but the views up top were well worth the effort. Bring plenty of water and maybe some grub to enjoy up top. Oh, and consider wearing pants, not shorts, as there was poison ivy just off the trail in several places. Enjoy!
This was a very good local somewhat challenging hike with great views. The trails were somewhat overgrown, uneven, loose rock and some hand and foot climbing at Grey Rock. Just what a couple of 50+ year old men were looking for in a hike. We generally aren't looking for a city park path to hike.
It's worth noting that some of the trail at Grey Rock was hard to discern and some worn path areas can easily lead you off the path. However, you're not going to get lost and it's pretty straight forward to recognize and get back on trail.
The burnt-out trees and the quite flat inset at the summit area provided a unique eeriness, which added to the hike.
We only saw about 14 people, some with dogs. Not bad for a local hike and the 7.4 mile trek (Loop & summit).
The fact that the trail was built in 1910 was interesting and makes you think about the surveying, planning and constructing the trail at that time period. Something to appreciate.
Many people mentioned plenty of water. I would agree. The distance, dips, rises and overall ascent will drain you. Stay hydrated my friends.
I would highly recommend this local, somewhat challenging, hike.