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Fantastic Rocky Mountain hike . This is my first hike in this area ! I am impressed !
It was hard trail to the lake but well worth!

Hiking up to the peak is beautiful, but the sawtooth from south trailhead to the peak has a lot of direct sunshine and it can get very hot. The trade off is a magnificent westward view.

Nice hike with not too many people on a Friday in summer, but be aware that Jasper Lake (a reservoir) gets drained this time of year (like Lake Isabelle up in Brainard Lake Rec Area). We found a nearly empty lake when we arrived, but had planned on continuing to Devil's Thumb Lake anyway, which was quite nice.

The hike, while a little long, is pretty moderate throughout with a bit of rockiness in many areas, so watch your footing. It is in and out of the trees, so a good mix of sun and shade, and no issues with exposure/dropoffs.

Overall, I recorded round-trip stats of 13 mi/2,600' elevation gain from the 2WD TH to the end of Devil's Thumb Lake.

My girlfriend and I hike to Jasper's lake 5/25-5/27. We intended to do the whole loop but there was to much snow. Snow made it a little miserable but also fun. At some point there wasn't a trail just branching paths of foot prints. We got lost two or three times but nothing a little back tracking couldn't solve in a few minutes.

The hike to Jasper's was gorgeous. Will probably hike the whole loop at some point but when it's warmer for sure.

This was a beautiful hike. My wife and I did it in about a day and a half. We hiked it counter-clockwise, starting from Hessie. We left our car at 12:30, and camped at Devils Thumb lake that night, arriving around 6:30. The next morning we were on the trail at 6:30,and back to the car at 2:30.

As some others have said, I felt that the north half was the prettiest, but the whole thing is great. Also, aside from right near Kings Lake, and the first mile of the trail, we didn't see too many people.

I would definitely do it again. And splitting it up the way we did was nice, because we didn't have to do the whole climb up to the continental divide in one day.

I loved this trail! The scenery was spectacular, the trail well marked and the wildflowers in abundance.
One of the best hikes I’ve done in awhile and I would highly recommend it.

BOTH DOGS GOT BITTEN BY RATTLESNAKES DO NOT GO IN THIS TRAIL, ALSO NOT A SPECTACULAR TRAIL SO DONT BOTHER

Beautiful trail. The hike to Coney Lake was pleasant and never too steep, saw a mama and baby moose near the 4WD trailhead. Lots of used toilet paper at the trailhead too, so please try to be a decent human if you're going to visit these places and PACK IT OUT.
One thing to note. Getting to upper Coney Lake was a nightmare because I followed internet advice which told me to try to follow the inlet stream. Do not do this. The willows are terrible. If you want to go to upper Coney Lake (and you should - it's beautiful!) stick to the talus on your left and you can rock hop all the way there and back without too much willow bashing.

Hiked only to the falls. Great hike.

hiking
2 days ago

Very rocky trail, too many people and a drained lake. It should be called a reservoir not a lake. People should be TOLD when getting a permit that the lake has been drained. Huge disappointment. (see pic of Jasper pond)

This was a great hike, but difficult due to length. If your car can get up the road it will cut the hike in half. It was awesome being up on top of sawtooth mountain- a mountain that you can clearly see if you are traveling 36 westbound into Boulder. It was a gradual incline that got more difficult as you head up Buchanan pass. Great views of all the mountains, you feel like you are right in the middle! Definitely recommend!

so pretty! lots of fun things to see along the trail. I loved the many creeks, lakes and flowers.

Did a one-nighter here. Absolutely gorgeous. Hiked in about 4 miles and set camp and then did the rest of the ascent without packs — definitely more enjoyable than camping at mirror lake itself (bugs were awful).

hiking
5 days ago

Ended up here randomly after the line at Mitchel Lake was at least 30 deep and not moving to pay $10 to be crowded on that trail...

This was the first trail parking lot on the road to Rainbow lakes so I stopped around 2pm. This is a heavily forested hike that snakes upwards through several different layers of trees. I made it just past the 3.9 mark on the map before i turned around at 5pm. This was not a "Hard" hike by any means unless they were speaking of the length of the trail itself. This was the 23rd hike i did this season and I found this to be more "moderate." There were very few actual views through the trees and there is a site with ruins of some sort up by the environmental testing site. Lots of wood piles and old rusted metal cans and glass.

Minimal activity along trail. Secluded most of the hike.

Again seeing people just leave their bags of dog crap right along side the trail multiple times. Does someone come and pick this s-it up because it didn't seem like it. Why do people leave trash on the trail? Leave no trace? Disrespectful. Don't bring a dog if you can't clean up after your mess.

Was a good endurance hike. Would have gone further if i had started earlier. Gave it 3 stars because of the limited views and dog waste.

completed 08.11.18, all gates open and water crossings down to a few inches.

If you are looking for a challenge you will find it! narrow, long, steep and full of obstacles. I ended up with some new scars on my skid plates but with my ego intact. signed the guest book at the empire Hilton. -remember as you go up that you have to hit all the same stuff coming back down!

'13 Wrangler sport, 3.5-inch AEV kit, 35's aired down to 11, novice driver.

Beautiful views: mountain-backed lakes, harsh ridge lines, and wildflowers. Well-marked trail.

We hiked clockwise, three days, two nights -camped at Bettie Lake and Devil’s Thumb Lake, felt alone at both. Jasper Lake looked like a popular camping spot, and there was a site by the stream right before the off-shoot to Bob and Bettie Lakes if you don’t want to leave the loop. We were skinny-dipping at Devil’s Thumb and realized there was a lone fisherman across the lake getting a great show, haha, but otherwise, camping was very peaceful.

I was thankful for layers because it was really hot during the day, but surprisingly cold as soon as the sun dipped. We made Nalgene hot water bottles to supplement our 20* sleeping bags.

We hiked mid-week (Aug 8-10) and saw more hikers and trail-runners than backpackers. Some people struggling, but then also an older couple of women crushing it, and a Dad with two young kids. I’m a beginner with a heavy pack and ended each day smiling.

Brought my 35lb pup - she wore off her front pads chasing marmot in the rocks... which wouldn’t have been a problem if I had kept her on leash. She loved it. Didn’t see many (any?) dogs out towards the peak, but lots at the trailhead. Leash definitely required for the first bit.

Elevation is no joke, but plenty of places to refill water, so keep drinking!!

Side note: we stopped in Ned on the way home and ate at the Thai restaurant - killer $10 lunch deal!

hiking
5 days ago

8/11/18 - Hiked this amazing trail. My Inreach Exploer tracked 14.0 miles. The trail is well marked until the last .25 miles or so. The last .25-ish mile is traversing up rocks. Very step is well worth it. Love it - lots to see along the way. Beautiful wild flowers, water falls and more. The lake is stunning. I will do this hike again for sure.

This hike starts with a gradual incline for about 1.5 miles through the spruce and fir forest. Once you break out of the trees at timberline, the rest of this hike (4 miles or so) is exposed high tundra hiking. IF YOU HAVE ARE BRINGING A DOG...there is no water at all on this trail. Just FYI. After treeline you get your first big views of north Arapahoe peak and Apache peak. You are also able to see the lakes down on your right associates with the Boulder watershed. The hike begins to climb from this point up the tundra with a few different switchback sections. You then end up on the south side of the ridge where you have great views of eldora ski area, Mt Evans, and all the mountains on the continental divide looking towards winter park. We could also see Grays and Torrey’s, and Bierstadt, and Pikes peak way off in the southern distance. You head along the ridge here for a couple miles at a pretty even grade until you meet up with 4th of July trail. At this point you can see the peak to your right which is the way to south arapahoe peak. This is why the trail has a hard rating in my opinion. It’s a steep rock scramble up to the top but well worth it.

Arrived at 5:15 am on Saturday and there were a lot of cars parked on the side of the road but still plenty of space. People can't seem to agree on which way to go- I decided to go counterclockwise and I'm very glad I did.

I have been up to Jasper Lake a couple of times but this is the first time I tried the loop. In my opinion the north side of the loop is more scenic. It's best to do it in the morning when the lighting is better and you still have energy. Also I like steep inclines more than steep declines as they're more exciting and less stressful on the knees. Saw a bull moose about halfway up to Jasper Lake. That was pretty terrifying as he was only 25 yards or so off of the trail hidden behind some trees. I snapped a quick picture and got out of there.

The trail is pretty easy. The distance is the hard part. I was feeling pretty haggard on the last 3-4 miles. Got back to the parking lot a little before 3PM. I probably could of finished at 2 if I hadn't of taken so many pictures.

Overall an awesome hike! My favorite one so far

I usually love this hike but the lake was about half drained, almost no water.

Incredible trail with great views. Took a little over 7 hours but wasn’t really hurrying to get through the trail. Would definitely do again. Be sure to bring enough water.

I started the hike at long TH. Was able to find parking at 10ish- someone was leaving. Not sure if I made it all the way to the Glacier because I also wanted to do Pawnee. Hiked to the end of the lake. Climbed up and my dog played in the creek and snow. Must do hike! If you are crazy. You can do this and Pawnee. This hike was easy to moderate in the opinion someone in their 20s who is a hiking machine. Pawnee is much harder.

Probably one of our favorite hikes ever! Beautiful trail from start to finish! Hiked on August 9, 2018.

backpacking
8 days ago

Backpacked in to Helms lake 8/6 - 8/7. A bit marshy getting around helms lake but the trail was in good condition and relatively easy to follow otherwise. Lost a blue nalgene somewhere in the helms lake area.

backpacking
8 days ago

Awesome trail with dispersed camping spots easy to find. Light elevation gain for first 2.5 miles and then it increases significantly thereafter. Excellent camping right after the first creek crossing at 2 miles in. There are flattened logs to walk across so no getting wet during the creek crossings. We went further and camped just short of Helms Lake (5.25 miles in) in the tree-covered area. Wonderful views and a few dispersed campsites easy to find.

I love this trail. beautiful views, not too far from golden.

My friends and I spent 3 days, 2 nights on the trail for our first time backpacking. This was definitely a hard hike with our packs, but we also packed a little too much. This is doable for a one day hike, our last day we covered 8.4 miles in about 5 hours with our backpacks. Great hike with numerous stops for great scenery

what an amazing hike! so lush! waterfalls everywhere and wildflowers to brighten your experience! One of my favorites for sure. This hike is marked moderate but it's really easy except for 1 mile of climb. Also bring good shoes to deal with the awkward rocks all over the trail. Shank shoes are much better than running shoes. The 2nd devils thumb junction is unbelievably pretty. Cascading waterfalls dot the whole trail. So much water! There's a steep bit after the 1 mile easy stretch then it levels out. Nice shady trail. I switched to the other devils thumb trail (the 1st junction on the approach) on my way out and it was dry but much easier to walk since the trail was soft and dirt. Nice to walk out on this trail because the meadows are expansive and you can see for miles all around. Highly recommend and great for dogs!!

August 6th 2018: We are a fairly fit family (runners and cyclists) that hiked to Crater lake and back covering 15 miles in about 8 hrs. This included time for stopping to take in and photo the amazing sights along the way and stopping for lunch for about an hour at Crater lake. For a hike it really doesn’t get much better than this. This trail throws the most amazing smorgasbord of scenery at you with of course the reward of the spectacular views of Lone Eagle Peak at the top.

We did about 5 miles out and back of this trail and it was a really beautiful hike, nicely forested and at least the first part wasn't too strenuous. Not many other people on the way out as we went early enough. I definitely hope to go back to do a more extended version of the hike.

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