Grays Peak Trail is a 7.9 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Idaho Springs, CO that features a river and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible from April until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail.
cross country skiing
The trail is great for hiking and normally takes a full day. This is a spectacular hike and has plenty of wonderful views along the trail! I brought my best friend (dog) and a girlfriend with to enjoy this fine birthday of mine. It turned out to be an amazing day and hike! My dog didn't have any problems with the hike or the elevation, although he is in phenomenal shape.
It snowed when I was there in July a couple of years ago, so didn't get to do the two-in-one of Gray's and Torrey's. Went later on Torrey's and had gorgeous weather and wildflowers everywhere!
Nice 14er. The last 1500 ft climb is steep, but doable with rests along the way. You can connect with Torreys Peak and do two 14ers in one day. The road from I-70 to the trail head is really rough; you don't need 4WD, but you do need clearance.
Married on top on 9/10/11!
My wife and I hiked our first 14er yesterday (Gray's). We believe this is a great first 14er to do as the trail is very easy to follow, especially when hiking with 250+ other people out on the trail. There are some steep sections that will likely make you take more frequent stops, especially if not use to the altitude.
A few notes:
1) Don't assume there are not more parking spots closer to the trailhead when you start to see cars parked on the side already. We learned the hard way (extra 4 miles round trip).
2) Conditions - There is hard snow pack above ~13,250ft. If you don't have traction, don't worry. It was doable. Plenty of rocks on the side to step onto if needed.
3) Weather - Was changing every 15 minutes yesterday from sleet to sunshine to rain. Be prepared with layers
4) Most importantly, enjoy it!
Could be considered "easy" because of terrain, but the altitude definitely makes it tough. Start early, before 7 am, and you should beat the thunderstorms. Be safe and take a partner!
Really good hike!
This was my second 14er and was not too bad. I work out regularly and hike a few times a month, so I've been preparing. I did this yesterday 8/28, the weather was not too bad about 50° while climbing and 30° on the summit. The last 1.5 miles to summit were snow-packed, I'd definitely recommend wearing yak-traks and having walking poles. It was too slick and steep to make our way to Torrey's. It's a nice hike with beautiful views all the way up, very open. We began at 6:30am and had finished by noon. I think the snow added another hour to our time. Also, true what the other reviewer said about 4WD to get to top parking area.
I know it says "easy" but it was the most physically demanding thing I've ever done. (My first 14-er). I moved to CO 7 weeks ago and still have some flat-lander in me. It took us 3.5 hrs up and the same back down. Was very snowy and slick. Yaktrax highly recommended. Beautiful at the top.
About a mile or less away from Grays Peak. We had to go back due to the amount of snow and force of wind.
Just summited both Grays and Torreys Peak yesterday. The trail is very easy to follow. I recommend summiting Grays first then going along the ridge or saddle to Torreys Peak. You need a higher clearance vehicle to get to the top parking spot. I was in a Subaru Forrester and we parked at a lot about a mile up the road and were able to make it just fine, but slow. This added more miles to our hike however. We started our hike from our parking spot at 8am, the trailhead by 8:45, and summited Grays by 11:10. Torreys by 12:00. We were back down to our car by 3:30. The weather was perfect!
So much fun on this hike. Great if you're just starting out hiking 14-ers. Very easy to follow trails. I got there at 5:30 am and the lot was close to full. On the trail by 6 and summited by 8. Traversed to Torrey's in about 30 minutes. A little scrambly at the top but unbelievable views. If you get to the top of Grays, push that extra bit and go to Torrey's as well!!
Great summit views from both Grays and Torrey's. Suggest this time of year (August 18) starting no later than 6am (daybreak ) due to predictable afternoon storms. We summitted Grays by 8:30am (only 3,000 ft gain from trailhead), spent 20 minutes and summitted Torrey's by 9:30am (a bit of down and up, 700 ft gain?). Left Torrey's at 10am and were back at trailhead by Noon. (Six hour round trip). Thunder started by 12:15pm at the trailhead and by that point dark clouds were at the peaks. I am a fit 56 and was with four twenty somethings (nieces and nephew) so the timing should be doable for most hikers. Technical climbers (there are some routes off of Torrey's) started earlier as did campers at the trailhead, presumably due to the same weather concerns.
Started at 4:45 am and was down by 10:30. This was my first attempt at a14er. I didn't make it to the summit because I started to get dizzy and the trail got steep and a little scary to me because of my fear of falling but I made it to the point of all the switchbacks at the top. I strongly recommend this trail. It is gorgeous. There is a point after a bend where you have the best view of both peaks! The road up to the trail was pretty brutal so I would recommend using a 4 wheel drive.
Beautiful day on Grays and Torreys!
we started around 5am. The road to the trailhead was pretty rough, but our minivan made it!!! (I don't recommend it) Gary peak was gorgeous with full visibility, so was Torreys. it's one for the books for sure.
Did Grays today - left the parking lot/trail head around 5:40 am this morning. Was able to park in the parking lot. 4x4 vehicle recommended for the drive to trailhead. Steep first mile then it levels off for a bit. Visibility was poor - once up around 13k feet I couldn't see 30 feet in front of me. Zero visibility at the top of the peak and not many people heading to Torreys. Decided not to head over to Torreys to get a two-fer. Rain and mist for most of the way down. No thunder or lightening. Probably below freezing at the top. Minimal wind. Rocks were slick. Back to the parking lot by 10:25 am. Live in Denver and am active and still took 4+ hours to complete. Don't be fooled by reviewers saying this is an easy hike. It's not easy, but be smart and take your time - you'll get to the top!!
Longer and a bit more difficult due to altitude for an east coaster who runs 5K's than the reviews indicate. Vertical climb around 3400 feet. Will need endurance, this will take normal people who lightly exercise around 5-6 hrs. All day activity from vail with drive there. Some mountain goats and other wildlife. Trail well marked and many hikers, no way to get lost. Road up truly will destroy the average "car". Only try if you have a medium clearance SUV or higher. Road has big ruts, of course you can walk another 3.5 miles to get to the trailhead but wouldn't recommend.