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definitely worth making the extra miles!

hiking
1 day ago

Was absolutely gorgeous!! The views were amazing after the first 3 miles. Overall it was 12 miles.. Was definitely a hard hike. You could feel the elevation from the first few steps on the trail!!! Was just beautiful, would do again!

hiking
2 days ago

A great hike to a wonderful lake on Monday, 8/13. I originally planned to get to bluebird lake but called it at the junction and decided to partake in just Ozuel - it didn't disappoint! Note that there's not a lot of shore space to sit down.

I'd read on here that it tends to get hot in the treeline areas which is kinda true. It's not very shaded about a mile past the falls but it's less than 10,000' feet (read: not above treeline). The lack of shade is due to a fire in the late 1970s (Google Ozuel Lake Fire for interesting information on RMNP allowing the fire to burn naturally) and therefore a lack of mature shade trees.

All in all, a really neat hike with great views of Longs and Meeker. Lots of people to the falls and thins out a bit afterwards.

A few notes:
-From GAIA GPS: 10.00 miles, 5:27 hours (58 minutes stoppage time), 1545' ascent
-I arrived to trailhead at 9:30am and there were about 10 parking spots left
-Saw two big ol' cow moose alongside road between entrance station and trailhead
-As others have said, be sure to take small trail to left of large falls to see 40' falls head on

Great hike with beautiful views! Worth it to go to the upper lake. Left at 7:30am on a Sunday morning and on the way up only ran into a few people. On the way back, once you get closer to Beaver Lake, lots more traffic. Took us about 6.5 hours starting from Beaver Creek / Five Senses Trail. Out and back was about 16 miles. Trail is easy to follow.

Beautiful views: mountain-backed lakes, harsh ridge lines, and wildflowers. Well-marked trail.

We hiked clockwise, three days, two nights -camped at Bettie Lake and Devil’s Thumb Lake, felt alone at both. Jasper Lake looked like a popular camping spot, and there was a site by the stream right before the off-shoot to Bob and Bettie Lakes if you don’t want to leave the loop. We were skinny-dipping at Devil’s Thumb and realized there was a lone fisherman across the lake getting a great show, haha, but otherwise, camping was very peaceful.

I was thankful for layers because it was really hot during the day, but surprisingly cold as soon as the sun dipped. We made Nalgene hot water bottles to supplement our 20* sleeping bags.

We hiked mid-week (Aug 8-10) and saw more hikers and trail-runners than backpackers. Some people struggling, but then also an older couple of women crushing it, and a Dad with two young kids. I’m a beginner with a heavy pack and ended each day smiling.

Brought my 35lb pup - she wore off her front pads chasing marmot in the rocks... which wouldn’t have been a problem if I had kept her on leash. She loved it. Didn’t see many (any?) dogs out towards the peak, but lots at the trailhead. Leash definitely required for the first bit.

Elevation is no joke, but plenty of places to refill water, so keep drinking!!

Side note: we stopped in Ned on the way home and ate at the Thai restaurant - killer $10 lunch deal!

hiking
3 days ago

An amazing trail with breathtaking views, especially for those from the flat Midwest. The first 1.5 hours gets you to Booth Falls, which are pretty small this year due to the lack of snow and rain. This is where most of the inexperienced hikers will stop, but beyond that is the true beauty of this trail. Highland meadows with wildfires, marmots chirping everywhere, and oh yeah....a pretty sweet mountain lake at the end. Plan for ~3 hours each way with plenty of water for the elevation change. Also this trail isn’t the most remote after the falls, as I ran into people every few minutes, but it’s also not so overcrowded you can’t escape. If you find yourself in Vail I hope you find time to do this awesome trail!

Arrived at 5:15 am on Saturday and there were a lot of cars parked on the side of the road but still plenty of space. People can't seem to agree on which way to go- I decided to go counterclockwise and I'm very glad I did.

I have been up to Jasper Lake a couple of times but this is the first time I tried the loop. In my opinion the north side of the loop is more scenic. It's best to do it in the morning when the lighting is better and you still have energy. Also I like steep inclines more than steep declines as they're more exciting and less stressful on the knees. Saw a bull moose about halfway up to Jasper Lake. That was pretty terrifying as he was only 25 yards or so off of the trail hidden behind some trees. I snapped a quick picture and got out of there.

The trail is pretty easy. The distance is the hard part. I was feeling pretty haggard on the last 3-4 miles. Got back to the parking lot a little before 3PM. I probably could of finished at 2 if I hadn't of taken so many pictures.

Overall an awesome hike! My favorite one so far

hiking
6 days ago

Terrific hike. The elevation is challenging but was quite doable for us and our boys, who range from 11 to 17. Took five hours total. 8am start was perfect to miss some of the traffic and get a cool start. Look for the goat at the lake.

I and a coworker hiked up on a day off.

As previous reviews have stated, the most technically demanding portion of the hike is getting to beaver lake. The beaver lake portion is heavily trafficked, and while nice, it in no way compares to the second portion of the hike.

Once you pass Beaver lake the tourist traffic dies down immensely. It’s very serene, much less physically taxing and overall a much more enjoyable hike.
It’s another 4-5 miles to get to turquoise lakes but you cover ground much quicker and believe me, the payoff is SOOOOO worth it.
I highly recommend continuing on to the second lake as it’s very close and it sits directly under the mountain.

This next portion I highly discourage without previous experience with scrambling loose terrain, but I still want to tell about it.

I (being the adrenaline junkie I am) decided to climb straight up to the ridge-line of the mountain and the payoff was a magnificent view of the next mountain range over as well as access to the summit of Mount Jackson.
But once again, I highly discourage this unless you have experience ascending steep loose terrain as the route up needs to be carefully picked.

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

hiking
9 days ago

This is a moderate trail with some beautiful spots. If you see signs for Windy Peak, keep in mind that’s a side trip that is off of the Mountain Lion trail. The trail markers end once you decide to take the Windy Peak detour, so it’s easy to get turned around.

We didn’t encounter any wildlife on the trail, although we started later in the morning around 9. It’s a great workout, but there’s no “wow” view that makes it feel like it was worth the trek.

As others have mentioned, this is a beautiful trail. We started at 10am and thought that to be a late start, parking lot was about half full, and we were between several groups. On our return at 1pm (we only went 3 mi in/out), there was a gaggle of humans parading onto the trail. Lots of fly fishers trying their luck on the adjacent river, which really was kind of pathetic - as the trout were no bigger than 6" and should've been left undisturbed.

Pro-tip: start *early*, i.e. 8am anytime between June and Labor Day.

10 days ago

Up hill all the way plus high altitude does make this trail hard, but the trip to the lake is amazing. We even got to see a goat.

Amazing trail. Somewhat difficult in spots but the views are worth it!

hiking
10 days ago

I really enjoyed this hike despite how heavily trafficked it was. Has about everything I would want in a hike.

bring bug spray!!!

Great trail and perfect weather! Easy until about half way through then it got a bit steeper but definitely not difficult. We went counter clockwise. Lots of water passing for pups to relax and drink from.

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.

hiking
11 days ago

Did this hike with my family and my mom said that it was her favorite hike she has ever done. It is a steep incline but not terrible and the view of the lake at the top is amazing. We hiked up and back in about 4.5 hours and spent about a half an hour at the lake eating lunch. (so total time about 5 hours) This is a great hike and would do it again!

*keep in mind this is a state park so you will need a pass! $7 for a day pass at the visitor center 3 miles down the road!*
Started off counter clockwise as I wanted more shade on the incline. It was a nice hike with plenty of shade. Took about 3 hours to complete the loop which includes a stop for snacks. No mountain lion siting but did run into a couple snakes! Enjoy!

pleasant, not really challenging. was a rainy day when we did it so I think we missed out on some of the views, but I think on a clear day it must be gorgeous at the point.

hiking
15 days ago

We backpacked in and camped just below the lake (rains came in before we got to the lake, so we set up camp early). Tough but rewarding hike (with 30-40 lbs anyway).
Parking is limited and no overnight at the TH, you will need to park by the school. Vail PD told me its by permit only when school activity is happening, but we were able to park free no permit.

hiking
15 days ago

July 30-th 2018
The night before I saw a dream, that I met a black bear on this trail, so I woke up and couldn't sleep. I arrived to the trail at 6am. There was only 1 car on a parking lot.
I did not see the black bear, but I saw a moose with a calf on a very beginning of a trail and there was a mountain goat on the end, next to the lake. Nobody else was there, just me and a goat. How wonderful !
The trail is exactly 9 mi. according to AllTrails app and it is HARD, one of the hardest ones, that I did so far(I hike a lot)
You will cross creeks at least 5 or 6 times, so don't need to bring tons of water if you can drink from the creek( I do), but for sure bring some snakes
Didn't need GPS or comas, as it would be hard to get lost on this trail even if you want to. Didn't use my mosquitoes spray, didn't see any mosquitoes or bugs.
I was the only one hiking up, but on the way back there were a lot of people ( hundreds of them)
The parking lot was full
The trail is beautiful, the waterfalls are amazing and the lake is awesome.
Now I need a new hiking boots :)

Did this on gaited horses yesterday. Great loop awesome views of different types and all kinds of terrain. Tracked on 2 gps and it was more like 29 miles, not sure where 21 came from.

16 days ago

Difficult but worth it. You get to see a waterfall, alpine meadow, and lake. Agree with rating it as hard (two people in our group turned around at the falls), but I’m not a fast hiker and I managed to do it less than six hours - you get a lot of bang for your buck.

Bonus points because the trailhead is accessible via public transportation.

Very steep but great views. Backpacked in and camped just below the lake.

Absolutely amazing trail. We backpacked in to Slickrock campground. This was approximately 6.5 miles in. It took us 30 minutes to hike to Lake Verna the next morning. We swam in the river along the trail, in Lone Pine lake, and in Lake Verna. Do yourself a favor and jump right on in to the glacier water. It is well worth your time :). We even saw a moose!

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.

backpacking
23 days ago

Recently went on a backpacking trip; we went counterclockwise, starting at Goose Creek, forking left onto McCurdy, left again at Lake Park, and final left at Hawkins Pass. Around 24 miles total. Here's my review for our experience coming one way down Lake Park trail and Hawkins Pass.

On day two, we continued our ascent for about a mile on McCurdy, and then had a break with a descent for the next section. We decided to fork left for Lake Park trail, which had serious elevation gain during some parts. The constant uphill finally came to summit and our group continued to go downhill to meet up with Hawkins pass. No water along Lake Park trail, bring what you need. We really enjoyed the landscape of Hawkins, which included some thick forest and aspen groves. Some shallow streams along Hawkins if you're in need of water there. Happy hiking!

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....

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