Explore Been there! - 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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LOVED this hike. Took about 2.5 hours round trip and it was so worth it.

It’s a beautiful overlook. Steeper than you think but short. There’s street parking at the trailhead.

Great hike this time of year, be aware THE LAKE HAS NOT BEEN DRAINED. The water levels can get low this time of year especially with dry conditions, but Red Pine and White Pine do have water in them.

Nice short hike to the falls. Trail is shadded well and not super rocky but it gets over crowded real quick, so go early to avoid the crowd and to have the falls all to your self.

Super easy hike. The cave was beautiful. There was very small stream at the waterfall in August

hiking
2 days ago

Saw 5 different moose, a porcupine, and lots of deer! We started at the trail head at 530 AM ! Got to the top around 630 AM and watched the sunrise ! This is my favorite hike ever! So beautiful! Accurately labeled moderate!

great for the dogs. Best to do in the morning or evening because it is very exposed.

a fun and easy trail

Short and easy hike. The only tough part was climbing the rocks to get a better view of the falls at the top. Saw a moose (!!!!) and tons of chipmunks along the way. I went on a Sunday around 11am and it was pretty crowded, but there were still plenty of parking spots on big cottonwood canyon road. From there I walked the .75ish miles on the paved road (FR019) to the trailhead.

This is an awesome trail for a quick hike.

Anyone giving this a bad review probably just has a bad attitude.

The falls are beautiful, and there are some great views.

Sunday afternoon was a great time to do this. I only ran into a few people.

Maybe a bit more moderate than easy going uphill, but it was a beautiful trail. The first Lake was so big and peaceful. Nice quiet trail but definitely more traffic on it by early afternoon.

hiking
3 days ago

I hiked up this morning. Be forewarned - they have drained the lake. It is currently a much smaller, much less attractive lake. I'd skip hiking here until it is refilled. And I don't know when that will be.

We started our hike at 8:15 this morning and didn't see many people. Tip: you can park at the trailhead though this app directs you to park along the Big Cottonwood Canyon road. If you go early there will be spaces; otherwise walk a mile to the trailhead. Bold ground squirrels were entertaining.

birding
3 days ago

We hit the trail around 8:45am and saw a smattering of people now and then. This has lovely views on the climb, with lots of wild flowers and the lake is peaceful when loud talking people are not there. Why do people talk so loud? On the way down we stopped at Dog Lake which is small and more peaceful. We spotted a moose couple near the end of the hike which made our day; we couldn't miss them they crossed the trail.

Great hike. We camped at Emerald Lake and it was a beast with camping gear. In the morning we threw on day packs and hit the summit. Amazing views.

Very nice hike. The views are incredible. And to have the stream right along the trail was awesome! Will definitely do this hike again

hiking
4 days ago

They say it's hard. How hard can it be, you think? They're not lying - it's HARD. To the saddle it gets hard-steep but not hard-technical about 2.5 mi in, where for the next 0.6 mi you climb 1,000 ft and it's RELENTLESS. You go up rocks (imagine the rocks in a mountain stream) rather than a dirt trail. It definitely gets your heart rate up and your legs wobbly. It would be ok up to the saddle with a kid but challenging: a lot of times you have to step up higher than adult-knee high so for a kid it would be very tiring.
Once you get to the saddle, the way up to the summit is 500 ft up in 0.4 miles, and very technical. I would think twice about taking a kid there, or even someone who is not very sure-footed or who is scared of heights. Look in the photos for a picture by Christine Cote that looks straight up: that's the way you're going. You really have to look for footholds at every step. Going down is equally challenging.

Once you get to the summit though, you're on top of the world. No picture can do justice to the view there. You just don't want to leave.

Note that mid-August the streams were dry; no point in bringing a filter. Just bring plenty of water; I went through 2 L and ran out with about 1.5 mile to go.

1:56 ascent not stopping and at a solid pace, 1:36 descent jogging at times.

nature trips
4 days ago

Gorgeous. Loved every minute! It was a great day for hiking too!

great hike with a great view of the valley.

great all around hike not to difficult unless you want to climb up to get a closer look at the falls.

good short hike and very nice falls.

beautiful hike all the way through and the prize at the end the waterfall perfect.

did this hike today. very steep in places very beautiful wooded hike with the sound of the river always near and the falls at the end was amazing. well worth the hike.

Fun & easy hike. We parked near the main road & had to walk in on the paved road, but it was still fairly easy. You can try driving all the way to the trailhead to see if you can get a parking spot - be careful not to park in a marked spot that says no parking at any time or you’ll be ticketed (even on Sundays)
My two year old hiked all the way in with the exception of a couple rocky spots. Come willing to get a little wet & you’ll have a good time.
We hiked up to the top where you can see the actual “donut fall”. Brings lots of water & maybe even some snacks.

4 days ago

Steep for beginners like me, but gorgeous. Lovely lake! Please be courteous and remember that swimming is not permitted.

did this hike last weekend. never found the falls but still a very fun hike.

Gets your calves burning. Great for dog, please don’t bring your non-dog friendly dogs though and let them off leash. Please just be considerate of people with dogs on leash just trying to get one with nature.

hiking
5 days ago

It’s really pretty worth the hike ...the only problem today was all that SMOKE !

I agree with Chris, this is more of a moderate trail. By the end my friend and I were very sore. The pain was well worth seeing the falls. Take lots of water!

Entire summit was about 17.3 miles. We hiked it from 10am until 7pm. Very difficult but definitely worth it (especially seeing the mountain goats near emerald lake on the way up and way back down)! The air quality is really bad right now so the views are pretty hazy. But you should still make it to the shack for that overall sense of accomplishment! We saw a lot of people backpacking in around 6-7pm with hopes of camping. There didn't seem to be a ton of places to camp so that was interesting. A fellow hiker told us the chipmunks are so bad up there, they'll eat through anything you have. Anyways, do this one. You may hurt the next day but it's worth it!

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