Explore Camping - 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
7 days ago

Great day out. Very few people, but trail was well packed. Boots and microspikes all the way to the lake, but snowshoes to cross the lake as the margins are pretty wet and soft.

11 days ago

12/8/2018 - A good amount of ice on the trail, so I would recommend spikes at minimum, but a fresh dusting of snow left the trail impassable with about 0.7M to the end (~1.5ft of snow, and I only had spikes on). Most of the snow on the first half of the road had melted, so not ideal for XC skiing or snowmobiling anymore I’d imagine. Only option for parking is illegal street parking.

hiking
15 days ago

Great winter hike! Did this one today, and there is a ton of snow, but we managed with just spikes. There were a lot of people snowshoeing and cross-country skiing -- good trail for that as well. The lake is completely frozen over, but the views are amazing.

This trail is our favorite of all time - so dynamic. From lakes to a smooth ascent over the Divide to the High Lonesome trail and the incredible reward of King Lake, it truly is awe inspiring. We wandered around a bit and ended up closer to 20.0 miles but still completed before sundown. Be sure to bring lots of water and fuel as high lonesome trail is exposed and a long stretch of the hike.

hiking
2 months ago

Hiked up to the lake today...only needed hiking boots with microspikes and gators..upper 3/4 of trail snow covered...mostly packed trail and hiking thru 2-6" of fresh snow on top...a little postholing when reached the lake.. big time wind..be sure to bring layers and maybe a stove and something to warm up with... Part of beach blown free of snow. No other people encountered. Glorious. Approx 5 hours RT.

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful views! I brought my dog to hike and she loved it- we met several other people with dogs too who were all very friendly. I didn’t wish I had snow shoes until the end when I started sinking in waist deep snow and my dog started disappearing completely under the snow- it was moderately challenging but well worth it!

on Sandbeach Lake Trail

hiking
2 months ago

We broke the trail and encountered 4 other parties coming up as we were going down so the trail should be decently worn in now. Traction devices might be helpful -- as would snowshoes in the last mile or so, however we did the whole trail with boots and gaiters, which kept our pants nice and dry.

The snow made the hike more challenging, but nice nonetheless.

hiking
2 months ago

We really enjoyed this hike. We encountered only one other trail user. We used winter hiking boots with crampons. This was sufficient to make it all of the way to the end of the trail. No need for snowshoes or backcountry skis today. It snowed throughout our hike and was windy, especially when nearing the lake at the end. There's a waterfall flowing into the lake which isn't frozen over yet. A thin layer of ice currently coats most of the lake. A standard car with good all season tires can make it to the foot of the trailhead.

hiking
2 months ago

Went oct 19. we didn't expect the snow and hard packed ice so that slowed us down like crazy. but the few miles we did get to we're outstanding! so many great views and lookout spots! highly highly recommend!

off road driving
2 months ago

Stock Wrangler JLU up and down with ease in 4wd High at the end of summer. Fun trail with great rewards; more to explore in Jeep and on foot. Nonmotorized use allowed year round according to gate’s sign in the AllTrails photos, Sean D, but it also says no parking at the gate.

Trail is boot-packed snow and ice the entire way, so yaktrax were helpful. Helene and Odessa were both frozen over, but still well worth the views. Trail earns its moderate rating as you ascend back up to Helene after Odessa (I can see why people one-way this trail and include Fern Lake). This is definitely a less trafficked trail out of the Bear Lake area—didn’t see a soul for over two hours with a sunrise start.

Question - can you still hike to the lake with the gates officially closed?

off road driving
3 months ago

closed for the season as of Oct 18, 2018. disappointed. I took my stock Raptor up, zero issues... not even close to breaking a sweat. With a stock half ton truck, you will likely bottom out in a few spots, especially the first rut. Subarus won't make it without damage, end of story. looked promising but the gate was closed about 3/4 mile up. tight turn around.

hiking
3 months ago

Hiked the whole road, though most people opted to off-road in vehicles. Pretty and scenic; the waterfall at the lake was beautiful. It started snowing while I was there and the fall colors looked beautiful with it.

off road driving
3 months ago

Not sure why this is rated moderate. It's pretty easy for any 4x4. Did pretty much all of it in 2 wheel. Only need a little bit of clearance for the rocks. Great views, and only saw one other person on a Wednesday afternoon. 4/5

off road driving
3 months ago

Loch Lomond is a classic that's easy to get to. The trail is very bumpy but is easy. Once at the top the views are fantastic. Not a lot of Aspens but the bushes turn yellow and it's still very nice to look at haha. If you'd like to see a video of the run I have one up at:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5oGcy1MWOvY

Have fun out there!

Went yesterday & today. I camped at Lost Lake last night. About 2 miles in from where you park. Woke up this morning to about 22 degrees. And it had rained just a bit last night. Ran into a bunch of people on the trail as I was heading to set up camp who saw moose.

So I went clockwise. This was the right choice for me as the climb is more gradual (and I just got off a plane from Florida yesterday :)

Was gonna camp one more night (tonight) at Jasper Lake but....it was gonna be 20. And was only 5.3 miles to the car at that point. So I humped all 15 today w my 25lb pack.

And - I’m sitting at the noodle restaurant now haha. Yes, delicious.

Alright hike great fall colors great view of little Matterhorn

If you are planning to complete the loop in a day , I would recommend start early. If you are not acclimated to the high altitude then it is a lot harder then it seems. Take plenty of breaks and drink a lot of water.

Just did this trial at the end of September with amazing weather and views.
Keep an eye out to the left once you reach Andrews creek campground to stay on the trail. I lost the trail here for a bit but following the creek up was able to reach the trail again.
The trail was a bit more strenuous than I thought it would be once reaching the rock field. There’s plenty of cairns up to help mark the way but you could still easily wonder off trail if you’re not looking.
Once you come up over the tarn the view of the glacier and pond are absolutely amazing as well as looking back down into the valley. There was a very noticeable increase in wind as well right as you come over the tarn so be ready for another layer if needed.
Highly recommend this route for the more adventurous hikers out there!

We parked at the sign and hiked up instead of off-roading. Beautiful views, and I would love to continue on to the upper lakes next time!

hiking
3 months ago

This was the most beautiful hike I did in Rocky Mountain n.p. Mills Lake and Jewel Lake are spectacular, however, don't give up and continue to the Black Lake. The last part of the trail is moderate to strenuous but Black Lake worth it!

Such a nice, smooth trail up, over and along the Divide. Always love this one!

We started at Bear Lake trailhead to Odessa and then back to Bear Lake. This trail had some outstanding views, and Lake Odessa was gorgeous. I also really enjoyed this because there wasn't a huge crowd on the trail either. Although there was some great scenery, a decent portion of the trail was a bit boring in comparison to other hikes you can do close by. I highly recommend this trail, but after trying Sky Pond and Black Lake.

Absolutely gorgeous lake! I agree with others stating this trail is more moderate than “hard”. I’d say the first 3.5 miles is moderate and the last push to the lake is moderate+. You spend the majority of the hike on a tree lined trail but there are a few moments where you get a great view of Wild Basin. The trail is OK (for RMNP), the lake is worth the trek though! Also, aspens are almost done so get up here quick!

hiking
4 months ago

Loved this hike. It was my first hike in Colorado, so I definitely thought it was 'hard'. The ending at Sandbeach lake is beautiful and the hike along the way takes you through beautiful terrain. Highly recommend - especially coming from Denver.

We only hiked about 4.5 miles of this trail since we got on the road a little later than expected. Still a beautiful hike, is mostly a steep incline for the first couple miles so I would recommend being prepared for that. There’s a really pretty waterfall around mile 2(ish) off to the side. Would definitely like to go back and go backpacking!

off road driving
4 months ago

Very easy trail, heavy foot traffic. A little bouncy, but good for any 4 wheel drive vehicle. We decided to hike to the upper lakes, and the views did not disappoint. This is a very good family outing!

One of our most favorite hikes. Started at Bear Lake, sun just rising and the Aspen were “on fire.” We’re flat landers from Ohio and seniors, so took our time and enjoyed it immensely. The only tricky part for us was the last mile down to the lake. Pretty steep with lots of loose rocks. The lake is pristine. Enjoyed our lunch on the shore and headed back the way we came. AllTrails said 8.6 miles and took us just under 5 hours. Lots of rest breaks and photos. Highly recommended.

off road driving
4 months ago

loch lamond lake! Nice trial! my first one..all ways easier on the way down..lol definitely a slow and bumpy trial! High clearance vehicle would help....Lake was gorgeous well worth the trip. 2014 Xterra stock BFGTK 02 TIRES

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