We actually took Queen Gulch Rd up to Leslie lake, and on up. Very Strenuous, wide road, but rocky with lose footing. Not much switchback. Mostly steep incline! About an 8+ mi hike. About 5 hrs total with many breaks as we had a 76 yr old with us. Beautiful views!!! We loved the old abandoned mining town Elkorn before we got up to the trailhead. Looks like some people still live there, but not many. Definitely takes you back in time!! I highly recommend any of these trails.
Majestic forests with bright colored leaves carpeting the Tim Burton type curling grey trees.
Cute quaint little cabin about mid-way up with an old wooden tree swing to sit and rest and enjoy the sights.
Very challenging peak. Very large boulder field to the tippity top.
The view is well worth the climb.
Awesome hike. Road getting there can be a little rough in spots, recommend bringing an SUV or truck for that extra ground clearance (my Subi Impreza did just fine though). Hike is nice and moderate, a little steep the last mile or so but it's worth it once you get to the lakes. Really gorgeous, lots of little lakes in the area you could probably spend a day or two just exploring. I regret not bringing my fly rod! The trout were feeding like crazy in the Trask lakes. Completed August 2016.
Tami S. on Rainbow Lake
Beautiful hike. I stayed the first night at Johnson Lake and the second at Rainbow Lake. Both lakes have good fishing. The view from Rainbow Pass makes the climb totally worth it. I think the round trip distance is closer to 18 miles than 14.
Great training mission, went with Dr Dave, a slightly younger, stronger friend, made the mistake of letting him lead!? Ya he put the hurting on me. I'm thinking we could have taken 4 hours instead of 3 and been comfortable. The last 500 feet was all head for me,Dave cruised it. Beautiful sunny day, but very cold with 30 mile gusts above tree line. Funny how much easier it was coming down, and much faster as well. PS I will be 69 in 2 weeks
Geocache box at Elkhorn peak was getting full, so friends and I hiked up to the peak with a larger box and then transferred everything over, took the old smaller box over to Crow peak and left it there since the box on crow peak was way too small for what was in it. Great hike, glad to check Crow Peak off my list. For those hiking to Elkhorn and wondering if Crow peak is worth the effort, it absolutely is! Just make sure you don't do so late in the year like us, it took us 2 hours to get between Elkhorn and Crow, and another 2 hours back because the rocks that are already so treacherous to climb were also rimed with frost and loose snow. Not a good combination, took alot of nasty falls. Came out with nothing broken, but would not try again this late in the year.
My wife and I summited Elkhorn peak on 10/12/15. The easiest way to get up to Elkhorn is to take an ATV from the town of Elkhorn for 3.5 mile up the iron mine road (aka Diego Town Road, aka Muskrat Creek). From there it's about .8 miles with an 800 foot elevation gain travelling SE to the summit. Unless there's a tree across the trail at the 2 mile mark...which there was. So we had 2.5 miles to the top with 2000 foot elevation gain. That took us about 2 hours to the peak. The last 300 vertical is rock scrambling. The views are phenomenal. There's an ammo can with a log book and someone even left a pair of binoculars in the can so you can enjoy the views. We stayed about 5 minutes because the wind was howling and we had dropped our packs at the bottom of the rocks so we could make a quick ascent to the 9381' peak. You can go all the way to the end of the main road and head up, or you can turn on a well defined trail as the elevation flattens. This takes you to a locked gate that allows non-motorized use, goes by a recreation cabin and the trail is well defined until you hit treeline. From there you can see the peak so just keep going up.
Went a few days ago,without the dog this time, and made it to the top of the peak. Signed the log book and added some stuff to the geocache box. Didn't bring my camera which is unfortunate because the views from the top of the peak is beyond exhilarating. Able to see Helena Valley, Townsend Valley, Whitehall Valley and the Elk park area near Butte. You have a completely breathtaking view of every mountain range within 100 miles. Enjoyed lunch and a celebratory beer atop the peak before heading down. Plan on doing it again with the camera.
Hiked the trail again and finally made it to the peaks. Was a beautiful hike, and made it to the base of the peaks with the dog in about 3 hours. Both the dog and I attempted to ascend the last few hundred yards up to the peak, but were defeated by rocks repeatedly rolling under our feet, so we turned back in the interest of not having broken ankles. Glad to be able to check this one off finally, I've hiked it a few times but had never made it to the peaks.
Just a word of advice to those hiking up here, hike slowly and give yourself time to acclimate once you get near the peaks. My hike down was pretty miserable due to altitude sickness, having to stop numerous times to catch my breath, puke, or sit down till I stopped being shaky.