Explore backpacking - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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hiking
2 days ago

Rough terrian but 100% worth it!

Tough hike but very beautiful. The road to the trailhead was a long dirt road but not bad as far as clearance goes-- only the last mile or so was uncomfortably bumpy/slow, I imagine most vehicles could make it up. The beginning of the trail is steep, then it levels out a little with less dramatic gains. Don't be fooled by the first lake you come to... continue up about another 1/4 mile ish to see the bigger lake, it's worth it! Gorgeous water color and mountain backdrop. Highly recommend this for a great workout and views. Not too much fall color change on the hike bc of the tree composition in the area, but the drive from Minturn was stunning with tons of aspens.

hiking
2 days ago

The bluest blue water that blew my mind! Most of the hike was not too bad until the last 45min. Completed the loop rather than out and back.

This is one of the prettiest areas in Colorado. Getting all the way to the lake is only possible for a few months during the summer, but still worth the hike even if you get stopped by snow near the top (as I did in May). Be prepared to encounter some gorgeous waterfalls and mountain panoramic views on your way up.

Challenging but so beautiful! The scenery was incredible - glad I made it to the Colbert blue lake!!

A must if you are in the area! The lake was unbelievably blue and beautiful! Felt like a straight up and straight down hike with only a very small portion that was flat. Seeing ice lake at the end makes every step you have taken worth it though!

Great views the entire time and will do this hike again when I'm back in Silverton.

Hiked this trail on a Thursday. I saw only two people and that was on my return. It was a gorgeous sunny day and the gold leaf aspens on the side of the mountain were beautiful. The lake was great and trail around it is a single track trail that gives you great views of the lake. I thought this was a nice and easy trail. Bring a lunch and eat it on a rock by the lake.

backpacking
6 days ago

Extremely difficult but equally rewarding

backpacking
6 days ago

I never been hiking before but, this trail changed me. Greatest trail I’ve done within my two weeks of being in Colorado. It was difficult but, worth it.

Beautiful Hike - every turn you take you either have an awesome viewpoint or eyes on a waterfall. Hiked this in last August while a storm was rolling in. It was overcast, but I imagine on a clear day you will be hot and in the sun for most of the hike.
Any 4x4 car will make it to the top of Bridal Veil Falls (no need for high clearance). The first fork in the trail: Right will take you to Silver Lake. Second fork in the trial: Left will take you to Blue Lake, Right will take you to Lewis Lake

My favorite hike ever! I hiked to Ice Lake for the 3rd time on 7/19/18. The wildflowers were in full bloom and absolutely stunning. We hit the trail at 6am and it took us 2 hours and 45 minutes to reach Ice Lake, including many stops to take photos and catch our breath. The hike is very strenuous but worth every step Don't layer too much because the incline will have you sweating 10 minutes in. Absolutely make time to continue to Island Lake as well.

backpacking
9 days ago

We completed a overnight backpacking trip this past weekend, and it was absolutely perfect. It stormed a bit at night, but was perfectly clear by morning. There were plenty of other people staying overnight, but there are so many nooks to camp in that it was easy to feel like you were nearly alone. Incredible views and many places to scramble and explore around the lakes.

I hiked this trail on 7/21/18 and it’s probably one of the prettiest hike I’ve been on.
The weather was perfect at this time of the year but I would suggest to go as early as possible in the morning cause it usually thunderstorms in the afternoon. We got to the lake around 11, and the storm was already brewing so we didn’t get to stay as long as we wanted to. There are also different trails to lakes around the ice lake you could visit. There’s one particular one called island lake I wanted to visit but didn’t get to. Next time, though!

The lake was so so so beautiful. It was so blue. One of the guys jumped in the lake and said it was freezing.

The whole trail was pretty tough with the elevation gain but you don’t notice the difficulty cause every second of the trail had such an amazing view.
I would definitely do this trail again.
On the way up fresh wildflowers were blooming right and left. It felt like one of this magical Ireland hikes.
20/10 would recommend! :)

Easy hike. Make sure when you see the secondary trail spurs you venture out, usually 20 yards. Great views from these advantage points.

Great views nearly the entire time. Friendly hikers and good footing. Less strenuous than Columbine Lake but still a good workout.

If you have time for only one hike in the area and are in good shape, this or Columbine are it.

on Ice Lake Basin Trail

hiking
13 days ago

Great hike with a few areas I consider difficult. A beautiful reward awaits you at the top!

hiking
14 days ago

The views are worth the climb! Beautiful! The trail keeps a consistent incline the whole way. The section from the lower to upper basin is definitely the most strenuous, but you're rewarded with the most amazing blue water once you get to the top. We started our hike around 7 am and reached the lake around 10 am. It took us about 5 hours round trip including stopping for pictures along the way and a snack break at the lake. I would definitely recommend starting before 8 am to beat the crowds - we passed a lot of people on our way down.

hiking
15 days ago

This is definitely my favorite hike ever. The trail is varied: it goes through a forest before getting above the tree line and opening up into tundra, and the lake is the most amazing alpine lake I've seen. It's easy to access (our Mazda did fine on the dirt road), and we got an early enough start (8am) that we had the lake to ourselves for a bit. We got caught in a hail storm that forced us back down the mountain, but it passed within 20 minutes.

Amazing! Lots of people, but never felt crowded. 9 and 11 year old did great, but was a challenge for us all. It's worth taking a dive, the water is even more brilliant while wading. Just be sure to rest before you jump in, as it is aptly named and one wouldn't want to cramp up or induce a heart attack after a strenuous hike. A must do hike, we'll be back again!

After reading about this hike we decided to make the drive from Breck to give it a go. We weren’t disappointed. A good bit of the hike follows the creek with a few bridges over the water. We covered about 8 miles total as we spent a good bit of time walking around the lakes. The lakes were really nice with good clear water. Great place to camp and we talked with a few folks that were staying the night. Only caveat would be that the trailhead is around 10 miles down an unpaved road but most any vehicle should be able to make it.

backpacking
16 days ago

Great trail with a variety of scenery from meadows, to waterfalls, small gorges, alpine lakes, streams etc. We camped at the larger lake, it looked like there were 1 or 2 other groups there and a couple more at the lower lake.

Absolutely gorgeous hike! Starts off flat, with very steep last 0.5 miles or so to get to the lake. The end was a bit too difficult for my parents, who are not experienced hikers/do not live at altitude. Rocky footing on the trail throughout that can be slick when wet. Your shoes will definitely get wet if you plan on walking around the lake.

Worth every step. Steep inclines but once you make it to the top you can see why so many people recommend this hike. My 9 year old had a blast! Beautiful country from start to finish.

hiking
16 days ago

Considered this hike hard. Continous incline until reaching the lake. Unfortunately the day was overcast and the lake wasn't as blue. Great views and waterfalls. Took us 4 hours to complete

hiking
16 days ago

This was a great hike - easy to access - No 4X4 needed. Lots of variety and an amazing reward in the end when you finally see the royal and turquoise blue lake. We did not do the loop but took the left at the "Y" and went directly to Ice Lake. The last uphill, which took approximately 1 hour from lower basin was long and hard - I thought when I finally got up over the ridge that I would finally see the prize and it was a few more hundred feet of walking before it finally came into view. Well worth the effort to get there. We started about 8:30 and there was a steady stream of hikers going back and forth, so it could be done alone on a weekend if you want to see other hikers in case of an emergency. If looking for solitude this is not the hike. We were coming from 2000' so the elevation gain was tough for us but seemed to give the locals no trouble at all.

Amazing hike, beautiful views the whole way up. It is quite steep and makes for a difficult hike but worth it. The lake is unlike anything I've ever seen. It has over 400 5 star reviews for a reason. Definitely a lot of people on the trail.

Great hike, you get a little bit of everything. Some solid uphills on the way up thru trees on dirt, up in some rocky areas, and then some tundra-ish marsh to a pretty cool lake. Fantastic views the whole way up. GPS is going to vary, funny watching people post the various distances. I got 4.7 one way on mine. Wasn't terribly difficult. Hour and a half up, hour down. As every hike, moderate and difficult is going to be a personal judgement. Its around 3-3200 ft elevation gain up in somewhere between 4.5-6 miles. If that seems hard for you, its going to be hard. If that seems like a day in the park, you'll breeze through! I thought the actual hike was more enjoyable than the destination, but that's just me. Not that the lake was a disappointment by any means. Lots of marmots prowling around the path leading up to the lake. I went and it was sunny - a little overcast, very enjoyable day on the trail. Well worth the time to check out, even if you don't go all the way. The falls are also pretty cool. Little rock hopping thru a very short slot canyon. If you don't have good balance, you may want to wait until after the hike in case your feet get wet, or bring some grippy water shoes.

hiking
18 days ago

My dog and I drove up for a day hike and spent the night next to Lost Lake Slough. It is an easy loop route around all three lakes and there is a nice spot for camping on the shore of Lost Lake Slough.

Nice hike. Heavily used. Drones flying at Ice Lake not cool.

We did this hike two weeks ago. “Everyone” is right! Best hike I think I’ve ever done. It is not technical, it is also not that hard, but the terrain is varied, and beautiful. Our dog had a great time too. Lots of water and wildflowers.

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