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It was an interesting hike . There is a lot of forest(roots) to get through to get to the pretty sites above the tree line. It takes about 1 hr 45 min to get out of trees into meadows and above tree line which is really nice. It took about 2 hr 5min to get to the lake. But guess what? If you hike up that ridge on N side of Lake there is another Lake twice the size of the main Lake. Also, if you have time recommend the hike up to the top of the Pass which takes about 45 min from Lake. The views are amazing and the switchbacks are well maintained . You can see the winter park complex and valley as well as both lakes. If you go to the top it is about 5 hr 30 min total trip plus time you eat and relax at top. If you just go to Lake it’s about 4 hr 15 min plus how long you hang at the lake. If you aren’t going to fish or going to hike to the top, there are shorter, prettier Lake hikes like diamond lake, brained, ect....

backpacking
16 days ago

This was my first time backpacking, and it was a great way to get broken in! Gradual elevation gain until the last mile to Heart Lake. Without a pack, this is a very doable day hike up and back. Beautiful views all the way. Set up camp at Heart Lake, and hiked up to Roger’s pass the next morning. Only problem I had is we didn’t stay long enough!!

This was a long hike, but worth it! Started at Panorama Point, Raccoon Trial and continued on to Mule Deer. The first half was mostly meadow, but beautiful. Stopped at the Old Barn picnic area for lunch then crossed the street to continue on Mule Deer. Very easy at first, then some switch backs which makes it moderately difficult. Opens up to some beautiful meadows and the fall colors are beautiful right now. At Frasier meadows you will come to several paths, take the one labeled Coyote and Mule Deer to continue. The next fork was not labeled when we got there. Go LEFT to continue on Mule Deer. Depending on how fast you hike, Panorama Pont is 1.5-2 hours away.

We did a night hike under a full moon. It was pretty though, but the trail was pretty well maintained and there are a good number of campsites once you get closer to the lakes.

Phenomenal! The trails are beautiful to behold and the views of the valley are spectacular!

Phenomenal! The trails are beautiful to behold and the views of the valley are spectacular!

A busy trailhead with a significant crowd until the split with Crater Lakes. The last push from Heart Lake to the top of the pass is steep but rewarding. From there, you can saddle north or south along the ridge to enjoy views down on Winter Park. Passed a young bull moose in the woods on the way down—keep your eyes open—he was in an unusual and unexpected spot for a moose.

One of my favorite hikes in Colorado! Great for an overnight backpacking trip. We arrived to Roger Lake and were pretty tired. We set up camp, where there were many other campers, much more than we expected. You can hear people talking around the lake, but it didn’t take away from the beauty. The wildflowers were just gorgeous and the lake was great for fishing! Hiked up to Roger Pass the next morning which offered amazing views!! Highly recommend.

Be ready for a long hike! It was a good hike, lots of different terrain. Some of the signs (I felt) were mis labeled with the distance to go to get somewhere.
The panoramic view was beautiful.

Great backpacking trip for those looking for a challenge and adventure!

bring bug spray!!!

Dense forest most of the way up but the tree line appears pretty abruptly as you approach the lakes. Beautiful streams most of the way up as well. The views hiking up to Roger's pass were incredible! One of my favorite stretches of trail so far. If you have some extra time and are feeling adventurous try hiking up James's Peak to the south (Elv. ~13,300'). I'm writing this review over a month past the fact but I think it took me an additional 2.5 to 3 hours or so round trip from the pass. Trail was easy to follow with a brief scramble near the top (I think that's the term). So if you want to do James's peak I would suggest starting your hike before 7am. I think I left around 6:30AM and got back to the parking lot around 3:00 w/James peak. One of the best things about this location is the ample parking near the trailhead. You'll never really have to worry about that.

Absolutely stunning hike! The parking lot was very busy (got there at 8am on a Sunday morning) but like others have mentioned, the trail cleared out once you get past the split for Crater Lakes. Well marked and fairly easy to navigate. My phone logged 10.5 miles, but I did walk around the lake for a bit. Overall took about 5 hours with about 45 minutes spent at the lake and taking my time on the way down.

So, this is the third hike I have taken based on the misleading reviewers and this website, that was NOT what is listed in the description or reviews. I write this because of the young couple that were mislead if they had not spoke to us at the parking lot trail head. They were hoping to get to the two lakes, leaving at 4:00 pm, thinking it was only going to take 1.5 hours to traverse based on the "distance" and peoples comments. Agree that this is a moderate hike, I would consider this on the higher end of moderate.
There were three of us that left the trail head parking lot, bound for a 4.4 mile out and 4.4 mile back hiking for the lake. WRONG!! The average distance in total was more like 11 miles with a round trip of about 6 hours, with an hour of farting around at the two lakes. This was based on the average of three different pedometers and of people with varying gait.
The path is shaded, and it runs along the streams, along with some nice water run offs, (not waterfalls). A lot of nice wild flowers as well.
Next agree that there is an elevation gain of about 2K+. Once you get past the first uphill mile, the trails are VERY ROCKY and heavy with tree roots. There are parts that look like a rock slide and you have to negotiate for several hundreds of yards.
There is a hill climb to Roger's Pass Lake about a half mile or so past an open meadow. You might get lucky and see a Moose or two... *thumbs up to that!*
Once you get to Roger's Pass Lake, there is a trail to the RIGHT that will lead you up a STEEP climb to Heart Lake. Keep in mind you are now at 11K' in elevation. This is nice to see, but it's just a lake, none the less. Am I missing the beauty, maybe.
The climb down took about 2.5 hours, were we slow, maybe, but it is what it is.

This is my honest review. I did it, but will seriously reconsider the reviews on this website and I warn others as well. That young couple could have been in some trouble should they have hiked to the top and get stuck coming down in the dark....

beautiful hike today with lots of wild flowers and waterfalls.

Amazing backpack mid week, only saw two other tents. Gorgeous wild flowers, gorgeous alpenglow at dusk.

So nice! Beautiful meadows and wildflowers. We did have some difficulty at Panorama View with the trail markings, but it was quite a lovely hike.

We finally made out to James Peak Wilderness this weekend. The start of the hike was ok but the higher we got the prettier the views! The wildflowers were amazing along with the views. We will definitely go back and explore more.

Took my husband in his first backpack trip. Was well worth it as the flowers are in full bloom. Trail is well maintained. Rocky and lots of tree roots but the beauty makes up for it. We had perfect weather and were able to sleep under the stars.

Still my favorite hike in The Front Range even though it’s gotten more crowded over the past year. Did the hike on 7:14 and beautiful wildflowers all around the lakes! (There are three easily accessible! Don’t miss the first to the left behind the trees)

The first several miles run along a stream with lots of great waterfalls and plenty of shade. The first lake below Heart Lake has a great field of wild flowers and the views are amazing. Heart Lake is just as pretty, and well worth the hike. I would suggest going all the way to the Pass, as the views from the top are absolutely amazing. If you go to the right along the ridge, you can see Crater lake and both glacial lakes from above. There weren't as many people above Robert's Pass as below, but it never felt crowded.

This trail has the best smells and the best views. So many water falls and babbling brooks!!Definitely bring bug spray and ready your legs for a rocky terrain. The views at Heart lake are definitely worth it!

Truly idyllic hike - several waterfalls, and the wildflowers are exploding right now. There are several good shaded camping sites down by the lower lake (I'm not sure of the name.) Less up at heart lake, but it also seemed less crowded up there. And the views within the basin are breathtaking! Highly recommend this hike for a day trip or short backpacking adventure. Only downside was the bugs - there are LOTS of flies and mosquitoes.

hiking
2 months ago

Very nice hike! I started at the Barn Knoll parking lot, crossed the street and started on the trail there. I would rate the trail as easy-moderate. There are two slightly steep areas and the length of the trail gets the moderate rating. The rest is a very gradual incline, down, or flat. Lots of different scenery. I really liked the Frazer Meadow portion of it. At the panoramic overlook, finding the trail again to continue is confusing. Exit the platform to the right and find the raccoon trail and take it left. To the right is a raccoon loop that will add 2.0 miles to your hike. A little ways down after you went left it indicates that you are on the the mule deer trail (and raccoon trail) and on the way back to Barn Knoll parking. This portion of the trail is very single track and surrounded by high grass. It almost seemed more like a horse trail than a hiking trail, but was okay for the 1.5 of it like this.

This trail is gorgeous. The elevation gain is gradual which makes the hike much more manageable than the description would indicate. Lots of water and streams up to the lakes with wild flowers. Would definitely recommend.

Gorgeous trail with lots of wildflowers, water features, and great views. Not too many people on this trail since most seem to turn off for crater lakes. Ample parking at the trailhead is a nice bonus. Will definitely be back.

Tons of snow about half mile after turn off for Crater Lake! Not a lot of views on this trail, more in the trees style. I recommend walking pole and crampons as of 6.3.18!

Best hike so far, we did the 10 mile loop, intense at times to get your heart rate up, then moderate level to catch the views!

backpacking
3 months ago

Was there on 5/26/18 and it had about 2ft of snow on the trail after the first couple of miles. Not so bad with day packs but hauling a 3 night bag up there had me post-hiking most of the time. Slept on the snow and woke up to a beautiful landscape, the view is worth the hike but make sure you have the right gear if you are gonna spend the night!

Beautiful trail with great views! Pretty easy to access and lots of parking at several trail heads. Some parts of the trail aren't well marked and it could use a bit more upkeep.

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