We went on Oct 5 when snow had covered the trail. It was cold and windy in parts, but much of our route was well shielded. The views from the continental divide trail were spectacular.
Note: the coldest and most windy part was on the overlook itself. The trail is actually more friendly, from a wind perspective.
Great views and amazing flowers. My son and I hiked back about three miles before the clouds (and thunder) started rolling in. It's mostly downhill, so prepare for the uphill trek back to the microwave station. It's a quad burner back up for sure....But well worth it.
The lake is amazing. It is peaceful and unbelievably beautiful. The water from it tastes sweeter than any water I've ever tasted.
The trail is sometimes difficult to follow and isn't very well maintained. Watch closely for small cairns and be cautious you don't follow a false trail.
This is a fun trail with about 2500 ft of elevation gain at the front. It's beautiful and Ruybalid lake is well worth the hike. However, if you're looking to follow the trail past the lake and hook up with "No Name Lake" trail be prepared. The trail after the lake is non-existent. Even with a good map, compass, and GPS we weren't able to find the trail. We ended up bush wacking our way through marshes and thick forest to get to No Name Lake.
bonus: less than a mile up there is a detour to some of the most amazing falls I've ever seen. Definitely take it.
Shawna H. on Zapata Falls Trail
This is the second time I've been to the Falls. The hike wasn't bad. I was in my low healed, open toed sandals and thought it was doable! I went barefoot into the water to get to the falls. My first time going, the "cave" walls were covered in thick ice and the stream was more shallow. This time, no ice and deeper, faster water.