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Beautiful area. Attempted this on December 15th. You can't drive all the way to the trail head. You can only get to about a mile from the trail head. Temps were in the teens to single digits. Needed snowshoes for significant portions of the ascent and descent. Micro spikes worked fine for the majority of the ridgelines. I was with others that had crampons and I believe they had an easier time. Winds were the worst I've ever encountered. 40+ mph sustained all day. Gusts were easily 60+ mph. Was knocked off my feet a few times. Made the day very very cold and difficult. I only made Bross and Cameron. Lincoln was visibly windier than everywhere else...just so exposed. By the time I got around to Democrat, I was just beaten up by the wind so came on down. Will definitely go back and give it another shot. You can't blame the hike for the conditions.

Did this guy over the summer with my family. It was their first 14er and they weren't too happy about it... but I absolutely loved it, especially since you can hit 4 peaks in 1 day. One recommendation is hiking the trail counterclockwise. Bross is a nightmare. I felt bad for the people descending Bross

My brother and I have visited this trail twice. The first time we only made it to the first lake because of weather we had to turn back.

We returned on Sept 2018 to backpack the whole 14 mile trail. Taking our time to enjoy the beautiful views and as well as cooking and drinking coffee we camped 2 nights. This was an amazing trip that sparked a huge love for backpacking. With encounters with birds who became our friends ( even eating from our hands ) going inside creepy bear caves and also being woken up by a family of mountain goats. We posted an awesome video of our trip if you want to check it out. https://youtu.be/6wEVmrBTh1M

Absolutely stunning hike. I hiked this alone and ran into only one couple the entire hike. I would recommend this over the West Maroon Pass Trail if you're looking for a hike in the Maroon Bells; the views are stunning and it is much less trafficked by people (perhaps because the trail head is in a more secluded location). Overall it was mildly challenging hike, due to the elevation gain, but otherwise the terrain is forgiving and the trail is well maintained. Gorgeous view from the top of the pass.

Climbed on Thursday 11/15. Did Quandary the day prior. Sherman was much more of an adventure. Only had microspikes; no snowshoes. The forecast called for sunny skies, a high of 19F degrees and 10 mph winds (the saddle and summit ridge were a different story). The road was plowed until approximately 11,200 ft. We had an AWD vehicle and didn't have much trouble getting up to that point. I don't believe anyone had been on the mountain in a while as we did not see any footprints (old or new) the entire day, with the exception of some snowshoe prints on the way back to the car at the end of the day. The snow was about 8-12 inches deep leading up to the gate. Nothing too bad. However once past the Dauntless Mine (12,300), the snow was much deeper. In some places I tried submerging my trekking poles into the snow and could not make contact with the ground. We eventually made our way to the Hilltop Mine and then post-holed our way up to the saddle between Sheridan and Sherman. As soon we crested the saddle, we were greeted by the strong winds Sherman is notorious for, probably anywhere between 20-40 mph, most of the way up to the summit. The hike up the southwest ridge wasn't too bad though. Very windy but the views were breathtaking. I did see some animal footprints around 13,400 ft. I decided to turn around prior to most difficult section on the ridge (my highest gps reading was at 13,697 ft). It was getting late in the day and my buddy, who was moving much faster than me, had already summited. I decided to wait for him by the notch at 13,600 ft. He said the section past 13,700 was very wind and extremely cold. However, the summit was calm and enjoyable. The descent was a lot of fun as we slid down from the saddle. We saw some snowshoe tracks on our way back to car. I believe they made it up to the Hilltop Mine and decided to turn back but not sure since we didn't run into a single person all day on the mountain. All in all, the climb was a lot of fun, especially compared to the relatively straightforward climb of Quandary the day prior. No one had been on the mountain since the last major storm and it was amazing being out there in those conditions. Can't wait to go back and bag that summit!

Beautiful hike with lots of lakes and pretty views. Hiked this back in September. Saw mother and baby mountain goats. Not too many people on the trail, but definitely some traffic.

Hiked this 3 weeks ago and needed crampons to make it to the top. There are two ways to make it to the lake. One of them requires a rock scramble; but both are a steep climb. It's beautiful country and worth hiking it in the snow.

Gorgeous little area, nice view from the top! Had my blood pumping but was still easy for sure.

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked this trail yesterday 10-27-18. Very snowy like the previous poster said. After the first lake it got really deep and we had to turn around. It was also pretty slick after everyone had compacted the snow and melting then refreezing at night. I would be cautious, there were a few parts that were a little touch and go. On the other hand, beautiful beautiful hike!!

hiking
1 month ago

My first Colorado hike, back in August. The whole experience was nothing short of amazing! The views were impeccable, and the journey to the summit was clear, with views for days!

I hiked this trail on 10/21/18. Very beautiful area. However, this 7.2 mile out and back turned into 10.5 miles due to the snow. 80% of the trail had between 2 inches - 2.5 feet of snow. The snow and ice made the hike very difficult. Unless you’re experienced with snow hiking and snowshoes, I would not advise the hike until the snow melts. In the end, the snow got so deep, we couldn’t even make it the last 400 meters to grand lake.

One note though is that the first mile of the hike is easy (if no snow) and takes you to a beautiful small waterfall and small lake.

The BEST hike, I did it in July in 3 days and it was the hardest but most fulfilling thing I have ever done in my life.

Get a good water filter, tent, rain gear (a must), the usual. We had to have a beat canister when we went and it was SO heavy, and doesnt get much lighter throughout the trip due to "bring it in bring it out." Next time we will use those bear bag type deals, much lighter and you're still able to rent those.

Its amazing, I am not in the best shape but not in bad shape and it was hard but not discouraging by any means! Have fun!!!

Beautiful views wherever you go! Challenging backpacking!

I’m new to backpacking with this being my second trip ever. My son is an experienced hiker and he is the reason I got into doing these types of trips. We like the ease of hiking loops from a logistical standpoint so when we found this one, it was a no brained that we had to give it a go.

This trail was very difficult for me. I am not in the best physical shape but I am mentally strong which I believe is a good part of being able to successfully complete a hike like this one. There is thin air, cold, rain, hail and tough elevation changes. This can all beat you down if you can’t handle the mental aspect.

We completed the hike in 4 days in early August. Other than the rain on a couple days and the hail coming up over the passes, the weather was ok. I’m not sure there would have been a better time to hike this.

Would I do it again? Not sure. It took my knees a couple of weeks to recover from the beating they took going down the passes. The views were breathtaking and as is usually the case, pictures just don’t do it justice.

I hiked this trail CCW from 11-13 Sept 2018.

Flew into DEN and rented a car - beautiful drive, but budget 4 hours as an absolute minimum. Overnight parking is very limited at the TH, so unless you get there very early in the morning, you'll likely have to take a shuttle from town and pay for parking.

I left the TH at 1.28p on the 11th, and camped near mile 6.2 on this map. Plenty of h20 heading toward buckskin, but it got a little thin on the way down until you reach the meadows. Excellent view on buckskin, but it was quite windy, so I didnt hang out long.

After trail rider pass there is a little water at a pond, nothing else until ~ mile 11.7.

Beautiful waterfall near mile 13.5.

Camped near mile 15. Sites near water are nearly impossible to find. I just took what I could get & camped on a slight angle, then hiked several hundred yards to water.

Frigid Air pass was so beautiful in the early morning light. Hiked 3.5 hours without seeing another person.

Everywhere I read said no water between FA and Maroon passes - thats not true. I passed several great streams to get water. Beautiful basin.

Maroon pass took me about 6 minutes to climb. Literally. All of these passes with exception of Buckskin LOOK a lot taller than they actually are.

Lots of great campsites between MP and the TH. Water between MP and ~mile 21 is sparse.

One of my favorite trails. Have fun! :D

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful hike. The hike is pretty steep from the very beginning and doesn't let up much. There is some snow from about 12,000 ft onward, but you can still find the trail as of this posting. The saddle between Belford and Oxford was crazy windy today! We spent a lot of energy leaning into in hopes of staying on the mountain (not that we really would have been blown off).

hiking
2 months ago

A perfect hike and the climb is well worth the views. I started in the morning on a Saturday and by the time I made my way down (near noon) the trail was much busier, so if you’re looking for less people on the trail, go in the morning. The road leading to the trail is a pretty well maintained dirt road, my small Toyota Yaris was able to make it driving slow. The incline is good, a nice workout. Towards the top the trail gets a little confusing and seems to branch off into different directions but they all lead to the top. Great hike and I will definitely do this one again in the future!

The upper lot is a little over a mile above main lot. Trailhead signs point to Spruce Creek and Wheeler trails. Made it to next lake above lower Mohawk then turned back due to weather, about 3mi into hike. Upper lake another 1mi. A strenuous beautiful hike. Easy to lose trail past lower lake—follow AllTrails map closely. Interestingly the Burro trail from base of Peak 9 finishes about half way between upper and lower lots.

Gorgeous hike! Has everything: wildflowers, wildlife (big horn sheep!), waterfalls, and alpine lakes. It’s a bit beat at the higher altitudes to that point you question if you’re still on the trail at the rockier spots nears the lakes, but I found it to be an ‘all paths lead home’ situation. Enjoy.

Lotsa tree roots in this hike through the woods but worth the side views of the creek.

Better than I thought. I went on a Monday so there were fewer ppl. I less than a day if you start around 6:30. You could drive to Quandary or something and get that one done too if you have a good pace. It is a rocky and the abandoned mines are pretty neat. Overall I enjoyed what it had to offer.

Truly an awesome experience. So glad to do it. And the dogs loved it too. Moderately full lot. Don’t go all the way to the top of the parking lot without high clearance. Keep an eye out for active mines on the road up and ruins of mines throughout the hike. Perfectly sunny day but it was entirely above 12,000 feet on the last day of September so I wore ski hat, ski mittens, ski pants and a fleece the whole way. Started up Democrat at 730a. Democrat is pretty steep. About 1 3/4 hours to that summit. Went back down to the saddle then up Cameron. It’s tough but not as tough as Democrat. Cameron has several false summits. Only about 900 vertical instead of 2,100-2,200. Another 1 1/4 for that leg. Cameron is a weird domed summit and then you feel like you’re taking a leisurely walk down to the Lincoln saddle. You don’t even feel like you’re descending but you do about 200 feet. Lincoln is by far the most interesting looking of the mountains and you can ram up the 250 feet or so on a very well worn trail in 20 minutes or so. Take the same trail down Lincoln and take an easy traverse around the side of Cameron to Bross. Another gentle trail brings you up Bross. We headed down the trail from Bross at noon (4 1/2 hours) and oh crap that’s when it gets hard. I forgot my poles at home and really regretted it. Don’t be that guy: bring your poles. I read other reviews on this site about the scree field going down Bross and thought people were exaggerating. They’re not. This was an hour and a half of making sure each step doesn’t send you sliding off the mountain. I loved it once I was done as that descent was one of the more challenging experiences of my life. But I could see where many people would only want to do Democrat and Cameron (once you go down Cameron to the Lincoln saddle, you either have to descend via Bross or summit Cameron again). A perfect day for me and the dog did fine, but this full loop is not for everyone.

hiking
2 months ago

A seemingly normal hike but ended up with incredible views once you are along the ridge! A fairly steady incline but nothing that is not doable. Once you get to the top of the ridge, you can go right or left depending on your mood. We went right and had really great views of rock formations as well as mountains for miles(blue sky day with no clouds). Did not have enough time to check out the other side but I presume it gives a better look at Mt. Holy Cross. Easily one of the better hikes if you just want a short moderate trail.

Beautiful upper Mohawk lake . The sun rays reflected from the lake’s surface seemed like little sparkling stars . The trail itself is a tough one especially for those not accustomed to the elevation. We also parked at the bottom parking lot but we did not mind hiking through the woods . Also the effort is only worth it if you go all the way up to upper Mohawk lake . We took snack breaks at the lower lake and the two waterfalls to keep us going.

trail running
2 months ago

Amazing trail, the lakes and creeks are gorgeous.

The views made it all worth it! A steady climb from the beginning to a rocky last 45 minutes of the hike.

A nice start in the woods. Trail was clearly marked. Beautiful vistas!

Got a late start and made it to the second lake 3.4 into it. Epic Mountain View’s, Beautiful Lake had a nice lunch and soaked it all in. Then hoofed it back. If you have 4x4 and are limited in time I would recommend driving further up and hiking the rest of the way to the final lake.

Beautiful hike very scenic at every turn, especially beautiful wildflowers in the spring.

Was really windy. Got to the trail at 5 and climbed bross route first. It was a bit of scree and loose rocks. We made it for sunrise. It's nice to have the wind shelters on top. We left and got destroyed by wind on our way to Lincoln. Wasn't to hard to grab the second one, we were done with that and then Cameron at 8 or so. then came down to the base of Democrat ate some, and were up to the top at 10. Down to the car at 11. So about 6 hours total. bring Lots of layers because of the wind, heat, cold. Amazing views, most of the work is at the beginning and end.

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