This section of the Rocky Mountains has ecosystems varying in elevation from the over 150 riparian lakes to Montane and subalpine forests to the alpine tundra. Large wildlife including mule deer, bighorn sheep, black bears, and cougars inhabit these igneous mountains and glacier valleys. The fourteener Longs Peak and Bear Lake are popular destinations.
The hike up was great. Once you get to the peak you realize why it's called Flattop and there's really nothing to see. It's more for the satisfaction of knowing you got to the top...Most of the views are all well before the peak. We hiked towards the end of September and the weather was nice, it was jacket/sweater weather up until we got to the top where it was extra windy. We threw on our hats and gloves and face protection, and probably could have put our coats on too. Overall, it was great experience!
I have a question concerning this trail and the connecting trails around it.
I'm attempting to plan a trip that connects Longs Peak to Waterton Canyon in Denver in order to mountain bike from Longs to Waterton Canyon and then the remainder of the Colorado Trail. I mainly just want to begin by summiting Longs Peak then hopping on the bike and heading down highway 7 until I'm out of RMNP and beginning a link of trails and gravel roads until I reach the Colorado Trail trailhead in Denver.
Is mountain biking allowed in this area? I'm from Oklahoma so I apologize for sounding uneducated about all of the regulations regarding mountain biking in certain areas in Colorado. I've been doing some research and have found that some people have mountain bikes some trails in this area, but I haven't found very conclusive answers on many of the trails.
If anyone would please help me out I'd really appreciate the help!
we did this hike at the end of October. weather was fine until we got to The Loch. then the wind picked up. once we made it over the more scrambly section leading up to the Lake of Glass, the wind and sleet started howling. had to turn back, but we'll definitely be doing it again, maybe on snowshoes. highly recommended.
Great place to take out-of-state visitors. Not too strenuous (if they survive the initial ascent switchbacks). Nice tall spruce forest around the lake. Didn't test the lake ice, having heard some significant ice groaning that day, Excellent views of swirling snow updraft off the higher peaks.
Hiked this on 15Nov16 on a beautiful sunny day. Along the way you have some great views, and at the lake the view is spectacular. The trail is generally easy to follow, although when you reach the boulder field surrounding the lake it's not obvious where it goes. Take a little side trip to see Dream Lake, where you have a great view of Hallett Peak and the Tyndall Glacier rising above the lake.
This is by far my most favorite hike ever! We did have to park a mile from the trail head due to so many people so arrive before 10 am. There were small waterfalls everywhere along the sides of the mountains along the trail. Bring bug spray, we got chewed up by flies and mosquitoes. We did see a moose as well. It is a gorgeous hike and can't wait to do it again. We did encounter a small patch of snow on the path, but it was no problem. Hiked this July 8, 2016.
Great variety in terrain and surroundings throughout the 3-4 different major sections of the hike. All absolutely stunning. You will work hard for a great reward if you take this route all the way to Longs Peak.
Incredible wind once your above treeline when I went, and it was cold enough mid morning in early August to practically freeze the energy bar I had brought as a snack. I will pack more accordingly next time...