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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We went during the week back in August to avoid the crowds. Bumpy road going up in a Jeep. Views are stunningly beautiful. Gentle stroll at first then slow ascent. I’d barely call this moderate.....more like advanced easy

Wonderful hike! Took my 60 year old parents on this and they loved it. It is very steep for the last half mile, but otherwise a very gradual income. Being a jacket for the lake, the wind has quite the chill. Perfect amount of sun and forested shade on the way up.

WOW this trail is one of my favorite trails. i absolutely love the alpine tundra. one of the best things about this trail is watching thunderstorms and clouds roll over the mountains in the distance. some of the most amazing views i have ever seen. it is extremely rocky so watch your step and the high altitude and fast winds might make it difficult for some but the views are so worth it.

off road driving
15 days ago

Beautiful drive especially in the fall, but should not be rated easy...definitely moderate. Coming back down was much easier. We saw a Moose on the way up which was really cool! Only about 3 areas that were tricky. The entrance being the worst of it. Coming back down was much easier.

The three seniors in my group, 79, 83, 83, found this trail very difficult. I used the elevation readings from my iPhone to calculate an elevation gain of 1,080 feet.

enjoyed this hike however, be aware the trail around the lake can be difficult to keep track of.

Great hike for beginner backpackers staying the night. Great spots on the entire south side of the lake. Found a spot that was fenced in by trees to camp with a nice fire ring. Great for teaching a pup off leash. Weather was incredible

Fun, easy, forested trail with several good look out points over the river. Lots of sweet dogs and a few nice people. Went in late September and the Aspens were amazing!

Great trail. Rocky at first then it eventually evens out more. Great views of the mountains. I only went about two miles, or so and turned around because we started late. No water sources that I came across. No snow. No bugs. Saw a few chipmunks. Great sunset views. Nice hike.

hiking
25 days ago

This was one of the most fun hikes we've been on. It was a perfect out and back with beautiful views, and lakes to stop and enjoy.
at the third lake we took off our boots, and waded out into the cold water. Their were quite a few people on the trail, but it wasn't over crowded by any means.
we will definitely do this hike again in the spring.

Lovely, fairly easy hike to a beautiful clear lake. Def take the trail around the whole lake. It’s worth it! Beautiful day on 9/21. Didn’t arrive at the trailhead til noon and made it up pretty quick. This is a great trail for families.

no way this is a easy kid friendly trail

Yes, the drive up is long and bumpy, but the hike is so worth it. Fall colors were absolutely beautiful and view over the lake and mountains when you first start is breathtaking. Not a challenging hike at all with just a slight incline and some areas where you have to climb over some rocks. Totally fine to take kids on. There was quite a crowd when I was there, but you can park along the road, so don’t worry too much about that.

Beautiful trail in the fall, even if you just go to Independence Lake.

Beautiful wander through the fall woods.

Beautiful hike through the forest, 9/21 the trees are just about done changing, unfortunately we missed the golden aspen covered mountain most of the leaves were gone, but there was still a few left to enjoy! (Pictures posted) You hike 2 miles in to view the scenic mountain side, still worth the trek though because who doesn’t love walking through the forest. Parking lot and street parking were full, trail traffic was moderate.

Along the ridge trail, beautiful aspen colors. Saw moose near winding river below. Several streams with logs to walk over. Waterfall minimal due to dry season

Absolutely beautiful fall hike! The aspens are gorgeous, and the mountains are spectacular!
The waterfall/creek at the end is nothing to write home about.
Little shade coverage, even when you’re in the trees.
The dirt road is about 5 miles and VERY bumpy- so make sure your car is ready! It’s fine in lower clearance cars as long as you drive nice and slow.

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful fall hike! Like others said, you have to hike maybe 2-3 miles in before you start to get views of the really spectacular solid sheets of aspens covering the hills. After Helms Lake you don't see aspen, and the trail is a little hard to follow through the bushes (willows?), but they add some nice yellow color to the beautiful mountain views. My phone and FitBit both measured 18.9 miles round trip to Abyss Lake, quite a bit longer than the 15 miles All Trails lists.

Did this hike about 5 days ago. The Golden aspen were striking and views of mountains ahead and on either side were magnificent. The falls are nice as well. It is quite sun exposed for much of the walk. We went early in morning but even then it was a hot day, but very lovely

Absolutely stunning in the fall! The aspens are perfect shades of yellow right now, 9/17, and in order to see them blanket the mountainside, you need to hike about 3 miles in. Totally worth it. And it's nice and shaded all the way until it opens up...you walk through a few aspens in the trail, but holy moly, that mountainside. There's a beautiful stream, too. I've shared some pictures :)

The trail road to Camp Dick was a little hard to find coming from Lyons. Saw a large sign that said Camp Dick and thought to turn there, but there was a closed gate. The road is just a little further South on Hwy 72. The road is a one vehicle paved road, so be prepared to move over onto the side to allow other vehicles to pass. There were a lot of 4 WHL vehicles going up the trail and the hiking trail was hard to find. No maps or markers. Found a trail to the right of 4x4 road and followed it to the bridge, then a clear trail way to follow, but no markers. Overall a very easy trail to hike and going in has a light incline with lots of rocks and muddy areas, but shaded and pretty quiet. The waterfall isn't much to see since your up high on mountainside, but cool too listen too. Finished the trail and came back, easy hike down. My only complaint is there were several dog poop bags left on the side of trail! Come on Boulder, what's up with this? Also, dogs are supposed to be on leash and 95% weren't and spooked us and our puppy! They were good dogs though and not aggressive, so I guess that's ok. Overall, an easy hike and saw some young children, enjoyed the shade and secluded lunch by the river with my boyfriend and dog.

Finally did this hike last weekend as a solo day-hike. Started the hike around 11 a.m. and and passed maybe 20 people on their way down. Had the lake all to myself once I got to the top! Abyss Lake itself is nothing overly special, but it was pretty cool to see the backside of the Sawtooth between Bierstadt and Evans. Very steady elevation gain. This is an amazing hike to do in the fall to see the foliage! The leaves were just about at peak last weekend, so I imagine this week to go if you want to see them in their prime!

Amazing fall colors today!!! Love this hike!

Beautiful hike with golden aspen hills, blue skies, and majestic mountains in full view. Toughest part of the day is the drive to the walk. We made it in a non suv, but it’s slow, bumpy, and dusty. You are exposed in sun for most of the hike, so come early or enjoy the heat (and the crowds). But despite all that one of the most beautiful hikes ever

hiking
1 month ago

Loved this hike. Started at Lost Msbn TH and walked up to what might be described as the head of the valley about halfway before turning back. Pity this 'loop' trail doesn't end back at he same spot. A real walkers hike rather than a climb at least for the part I did. Super views and open all the way. Saw one person on the way back in the afternoon, a hunter looking for deer. Hope he didn't find any.

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.

great hike for acclimating. lots of solitude.

Wonderful hike but LONG!!

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.

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