South Colony Lakes Trail is a 4.7 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Westcliffe, Colorado that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.
From Westcliff, go south on hwy. 69 to Colfax Ln.,go south on this road to South Colony Rd., turn right(west) and follow this road to the end where the trailhead is located.
Tough hike. Made it to the upper lake but not to Humboldt Peak due to heavy wind and rain. Got a ride to the trailhead. Will be back to attempt Humboldt again.
I absolutely loved the view at the lower South Colony Lake! However, THIS IS NOT AN EASY HIKE. I've been doing backcountry hiking for years all throughout the Rockies in Montana, Wyoming and Colorado, and this is the hardest hike I've ever done. I think if my expectations had been on target it wouldn't have been so frustrating. I will say it would be a bit easier if you have 4 wheel drive and can drive up to the first trailhead, but if not, honestly don't go. We had to park at the very bottom before you get into the trees, which added almost 3 miles into the already 4 or 5 mile hike. Also, it's ALL incline to the lake so it's exhausting.
From where we parked we hiked almost 3 miles up a road to a parking lot for those with 4 wheel drive. Then from there it's 3 or 4 miles to another trailhead that splits into 2 directions. We went to the left and couldn't even make it to the lakes before dusk, so we found a camping spot maybe half mile from there. In the morning we hiked about a mile to get to the lower lake and it was GORGEOUS! We were too tired to make it up to the upper lake and had the whole hike back down.
It's a great view, but be prepared and learn from my experience! Only go if you have the vehicle that can get you up to the second lot! Again, I would rate this at least a medium, but definitely a hard when you are hiking in with gear.
it was a very pretty hike, unfortunately we got rained out a mile away from the lake and had to come back. The trail is about 3.5 miles one way to the lake but getting to the trailhead is hard unless you have a high clearance vehicle with 4 wheel drive, there is private property between the base (parking for those of us in small sedans) so you cant try to make your way up and pulll over somewhere to park. From the parking lot to the trail head is maybe 3-4 miles. the whole trail is pretty rocky but there are spectacular views going up and tons of aspen groves.
This trail starts a few miles up South Colony Road where the road ends and the trailhead begins. You walk up the road a few more miles to where the trail begins. The trail heads up to the lower lake, where there is a nice waterfall below the lake. We have seen Bighorn Sheep around this area also. The trail continues on up to the upper lake which sits at the base of Crestone Needle and Crestone Peak, with Humboldt Peak to the other side, all 14er's. The lakes have good fishing for cutthroat trout. The whole area around the Lakes are very scenic with other trails to the top of the three 14er's.