Ive only lived in CO for 2 years, so there is still a lot to see, but this hike was probably the most beautiful hike i've ever done in my life. When we got to the tundra i actually almost cried because it was so breathtaking! The hike wasn't very hard, the altitude made me struggle more than the actual hike. You gain over 1000ft in elevation on switchbacks that are not very steep. There was only 1 stretch on the beginning of the switchbacks that made my stomach turn because of the skinny trail and huge drop (lol)! The drive up on the pass to the parking area freaked me out a little because my husband likes to drive too close to the edge and i was beginning to wonder if there was even going to be room for parking, but alas we found it! It was beautiful and i will definitely do it again!
Favorite climb to this point in my climbing career. Really enjoyed this day. The valley is spectacular with lots of streams, trees, boulders and views. The day was magnificent so I stayed on the summit by myself for 45 minutes. Quite an adventure.
Hiked this trail in Early October 2015 with my girlfriend who is very new to backpacking. The ins and outs have been covered here as far as the fee for crossing private property etc. but one thing I must add to the previous reviews is how varied the little "forest villages" are as you progress up the trail. While you may be on this trail to get to the 14ers , I implore you to take your time and notice how the ecosystems change literally from one large swale to the next. As you gain elevation, you will begin to anticipate the large leveled valley ahead which affords expansive views of some cool mountains, Mount Emerald being my personal fave. Lot of campsites, and plenty of water for your filtering pleasure.
A great place to explore and the trail winds all the way to the Missouri Basin, past an old cabin, and several waterfalls, meadows, vistas. Take your time, be nice, and leave no trace. And if you see some litter, go ahead and grab it, it's good karma.
Awesome hike a little tough getting up to the top over looking Native Lake but well worth it. This trail has three points of interest and can take you all the way to the base of Mt Massive where there is two beaver pounds or just down to the Lake itself and back so the Mile listing out and back can vary.
Great hike that goes through about three different types of terrain/biome. 3rd weekend of July in 2015 I counted 14 different species of plants that were flowering. The creek was vigorous, but not high, though it looked like it had been at flood stages the week before. The trail was not crowded (and only 9 cars at the trailhead on a Saturday). The first half mile crosses private property and they ask for $1 per person or $2 per dog or horse to be left in an envelope at the trailhead. The trail starts out on an old road with drier soil, scrub brush, and conifers probably about 20 years old. A little over a mile and half the road becomes a narrower trail and the forest thickens and is probably between 80-100 years old. Eventually the trail enters the wilderness and meets up with and crosses the Colorado trail. There are many camp spots here, (although you can find spots all along the trail, so there is no concern about finding a good place). Past this point the trail follows the creek through wide meadows with beaver dams (there are definitely fish too). There are some old cabins in places. Overall an enjoyable trail with wildflowers, views, some wildlife, and not a lot of people. I will probably do this trail again in the future. Look at the map for the road to the trailhead. It is County Road 288 and is right off of HWY 24, which is different from the directions in the listing. If it's important to you, you can get a cell signal at the high point about 3 miles in (N38 58.128', W106 14.903') for ATT or TMo and there are places to camp nearby. After this, no cell signal for the rest of the trail.
Visiting Leadville for a few days to visit family we were looking for a beginner-friendly trail to spend the morning/afternoon and loved this one. There are so many beautiful views throughout the entire length that made this worth it. We're both new at hiking but are reasonably fit, and struggled a bit at the beginning of this one--it's fairly steep and rocky for the first quarter mile.
We hiked to the top that looks down onto Native Lake (arriving around noon) but regrettably did not head down to the lake due to some rolling thunder coming in. It took us about 1:15 to get to the top. The view there was amazing and is absolutely worth it, you'll hike about 15 minutes over a stretch of open field after getting out of the forest/switchbacks. The walk down was much easier and took us about 40 minutes.
Overall we had a great time. The trail was a bit difficult to find (you'll drive about 5 miles on a dirt road, and there is very little signage) but well worth it for the views.
Chris B. on Mount Massive Trail (via South East...
Great hike, awesome views! I hiked up one side then continued on along the ridgeline in a loup over a few other mountains and came down on the back side of Massive where there's several ponds and meadows. There's a trail I found once you get to the meadow/pond area. Unless you're really feeling your oats and are in really good shape I wouldn't do what I did with a full pack. I started in the late afternoon/evening then hiked to the treeline for camp. Basically had too as it was pooring rain and getting dark by then. Next morning was amazing, great sunrise, crisp air, on and on. I would recommend camping up there then continuing your hike. Plenty of water sources along the way so you can start with some water and refill throughout your hike if you time it out right.
I've hiked this mountain several times, you can easily do it up and back in a half day assuming you're in good shape. If you haven't done this mountain, put it at the top of your list! It's a good one.
My first 14er and I must say it was an amazing feeling reaching the summit. Spectacular views were well worth the long hike. We left at 6am and were back by 6pm. Like most people mention, start early because you don't want to be stuck above the saddle when the early afternoon storms come. If they do hit get below the treeline asap. On the other hand if you summit and don't see a cloud in the sky you can stay up longer. Take LOTs of water, LOTS of food, and don't worry if you get tired often. Take breaks. Getting to the tree line is easy but once the air gets thin, you slow down considerably so take short breaks often. And in case your curious or coming from the Colorado trail, there are two streams to filter water. One at apprx 2 miles and the other at appx 3 miles out. The second is definitely the larger/better.
Ps. Towards the top there is just a little bit of scrambling. Nothing crazy but you do have to some very light "climbing". It's fun as hell.
Marge B. on Mount Massive Trail (via South East...
A very long round trip day. It took 9 hours including lunch at the summit. Beautiful views.