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A beautiful hike and yes come prepared with plenty of water and sun screen. Took the fire trail cut off on the way back and saved 0.5 miles

Went a couple of weeks ago. Amazing hike. Very strenuous and lots of exposure. Bring lots of water!!!

So beautiful! The most beautiful and the most difficult trail I’ve ever done. It was an all day experience so wear your hiking boots, bring sunscreen, insect repellent, and a Camelback of water. SO worth it! The entire trail is beautiful but it’s worth it to keep going until sky pond!
My husband and I are moderately fit but not acclimated to the altitude and it took us 8 hours, we took quite a few breaks to take pictures and enjoy the scenery.

hiking
19 hours ago

Great trail! Beautiful lakes, wildflowers, wildlife and mountains. It’s a push to the final lake, and save food, water and energy for the final mile back to the trailhead because the hike down to the creek is tough to hike back up at the end of 10 miles! We started early to avoid the heat, but there were people headed out as we finished with one 12oz bottle of water! Please be prepared with at least a liter of water, electrolytes and snacks...we live in the mountains and we needed all these...flatlanders will really need them!

First hike ever in CO. I am from NE. stunning views of the continental divide ranges flowing creek throughout the trail, wonderful wildflowers and a small lake at 12k feet. There a multiple different approaches off the trail too. We went off trail at the lake to go up another 1000' vertical and you can see all the Rockies as far as the eye can see. This hike had everything. Bring plenty of water and I mean plenty you will need it. Fantastic hike.

So beautiful! The most beautiful and the most difficult trail I’ve ever done. It was an all day experience so wear your hiking boots, bring sunscreen, insect repellent, and a Camelback of water. SO worth it! The entire trail is beautiful but it’s worth it to keep going until sky pond!

Pretty easy going trail, great for out of towners or a quick hike if you have other plans in the afternoon. We did this trail on the 4th of July and it wasn't too crowded. Also yes there is a dead horse but we thought it was interesting, so to us this trail will forever be known as the dead horse trail.

hiking
23 hours ago

Went to hike this today and the trail was closed due to trail damage I assume from Mudslides.

We love this trail! Right now the wildflowers are blooming and it’s really pretty. Definitely park in the lower parking lot unless you have a 4 wheel drive. It can be a little chilly on top.

hiking
23 hours ago

Completed over the weekend mid-June. The lake was still frozen at the top, and we weren't expecting it. Beautiful hike, steady climb all the way to the lake. More like 8 miles than the listed 6.3 miles. Would love to do it again in late July or August for even more flowers and a summer alpine lake view.

I’d say this is one of my favorite hikes I’ve ever done. I did this on a Wednesday afternoon (began hike at 12:30pm) and it took me about 4 hours after spending 45 minutes at the peak. I only saw a few people total which was great. I’d consider this more of a moderate hike not hard, because it’s only about 6 or so miles. But, there are tons of boulders and a nice scramble towards the peak. The water was amazing at the Final lake and I spent 10 minutes soaking in the ice bath with my dog.

So beautiful! Worth the mini rock climb to get to the top!

backpacking
1 day ago

Did this hike and overnighter backpacking trip July 14-15, 2018. We had previously done this hike May 2013 and the ground still had some snowy patches that made it difficult to find the last steep part of the trail past the lower basin (if we had GPS, we would have found it just fine). Did it again July 2014 and made it to Ice Lake, but didn't do the full loop due to a storm with hail. This time we did the full loop to visit all three of the big lakes and it was MUCH more crowded than it used to be only a few years ago.

We started our hike at 7am and there were already several cars at the trailhead. We arrived at the lower basin shortly before 9am and that was with only one quick 5-min water/snack break. Set up camp in the lower basin before we continued on with our day packs. Weather forecast for the weekend was predicting a decent chance of rain all weekend and we've been up in these mountains several times with storms that produce small hail, so we didn't want to camp or set up our tent in such exposed weather by the lakes (but other braver people did).

As far as setting up camp in the lower basin, I would highly recommend venturing out far left (south) of the main trail. It's difficult to follow the rules and set up camp 100 feet from lakes and streams because it seems like there are streams all around in the lower basin (and where there aren't streams and the ground is flat, it seems like there is thick vegetation), but if we hadn't been as hasty to find a spot and hiked further away from the main trail, I think we would have been able to follow the rules properly, so we regret that. I also regret setting up camp so close to the trail as I didn't realize (as a girl) was that if you don't set up camp away from others, it's extremely difficult to find a private spot to pee. There were campers above us, below us, and beside us, in addition to people hiking through the basin that had a great view of the campers like us that didn't venture out further. Du-oh!

The hikes to the other two lakes, Fuller and Island don't compare at all to Ice Lake. In fact, there are several tiny lakes near all of the main lakes, but none of the smaller ones are clear or blue at all. It was cool to see the other main lakes just once, but if we went back, I would definitely spend more time at Ice Lake. Indeed, the other two main lakes are much more quiet though, if you are looking for solitude. We hiked up to Fuller Lake after Ice Lake and Fuller was not blue at all, but it had a really awesome waterfall shortly before it, along with several beautiful marshy streams on the easy trail up. After Fuller Lake, we backtracked to Ice Lake and hiked up to Island Lake (which was a steeper trek than Fuller) and Island Lake is only somewhat blue (mainly green-ish). There is a very obvious and steep trail up to the peaks above Island Lake, which would give a pretty awesome view of Island Lake if you were up for the extra trek; but again, we were worried about storms coming in and missed out on this cool option.

If you do the full loop trail and choose to keep going past Island Lake instead of going back the way you came from Ice Lake, this will be a good short cut if you're headed back down to the trail head, but if you're headed back to the lower basin for camping, you'll end up adding a tiny bit of extra mileage to get back to the main trail (but the part it spits you out at on the main trail is the part where it starts to get flat leading up to the lower basin, so you at least don't have to worry so much about trekking uphill again). We took the trail past Island Lake to get back to the lower basin and appreciated that it was much quieter and there were some cool views of the peaks in the distance. Some reviews said this trail was much steeper, so I had envisioned having to scramble down the trail, but that wasn't the case at all. It didn't feel any steeper than other uphill parts of the trail.

Awesome trail. Pretty difficult unless you hike trails on the regular. Lots of wildlife everywhere as well. We hiked down from summit lake to the Chicago lakes.

What an amazing day. Arrived at TH 0730, got one of the last pkg spots. Surprised how busy the trail was for a Monday but once you start hiking you realize just how lucky we are to live near such a gorgeous place! Crowd thins as you hike past Isabelle Lake on way up to glacier. Becomes more challenging the further up the glacier you go but every bit is stunning. All Trails mileage: 10.8. We marked it at 9mi.

hiking
2 days ago

Started at 8 am on a Tuesday and the parking lot was surprisingly 1/2 full. Beautiful hike, tons of wild flowers. Definitely recommend doing it in summer and winter! We’ve snowshoed this trail in the winter and its always a great work out. Start early this is a pretty popular trail with high traffic

Hiked this last week. Only saw one other person on the way up until the trail met with the one coming from 4th of July trail head. This review is for the part of the trail starts at rainbow lakes TH- way less crowded but it does add 4 miles. The trail was well maintained. Long with pretty steady elevation gain. Mostly hiking above tree line with gorgeous views. Windy on the way up. Definitely recommend. We started at 7 and were down around 1. We did not do the scramble up north Arapahoe peak but did see plenty of people up there.

Great hike. Pretty easy but tons to see. Didn’t realize there were a few waterfalls as you hiked along the stream. Great place for a picnic at the lake. Plan to come back and snowshoe this one.

Absolutely beautiful. Had a bit of bouldering to reach the peak.

hiking
2 days ago

One of my favorite hikes close to Denver. Great views and the Lomond is beautiful.

One of my favorites. This hike has it all. It’s a good workout with steady incline in beginning and end. Lots of wildflowers, trees, meadows, water and views. My GPS said 7 miles. Ends up above tree line. Get there early if you want to avoid people, even on a Tuesday.

hiking
2 days ago

This is a really nice moderate hike. I completed it in about 4 hours with lots of stops and a long break at the top. There is a steady incline at the beginning and very end that can be tough. Hiking poles are recommended. There are lots of people (parking hard to get), but everyone was friendly and I didn't find it a nuisance or like I wasn't in the wilderness. the views at the top are spectacular! This hike is good if your looking for a bit of a liner hike with great views. The wildflowers are in full bloom, and conditions great. Highly recommend and a new favorite!

Grueling yet amazing hike. 1.85 miles straight up. Totally worth it. Views were amazing.

did this hike last weekend and was surprised how really beautiful it was!! wildflowers for days and gorgeous views at every turn. The top (3rd) lake is the prettiest and not as many people. Took my Rav 4 up the 4WD road to the trail head....not too bad. :)

I loved the hike. Only went as far as the reservoir because we started late. Go early to avoid the heat because you’ll need it for the incline areas. It was a “good” hard hike. The difficulty was due to the incline at altitudes of 10,800. But we’ll worth the challenge...you will say that at the end. Careful bringing dogs..,lots of rock I would believe to be hurtful on there pads.

hiking
3 days ago

Gorgeous wild flowers, good steady incline. Mix of shaded areas and open, sweeping views. Very dog friendly. A must do!

hiking
3 days ago

If you do one trail while you're in the San Juans, this should be it. 2WD accessible trailheads are hard to come by here! Wish we had known about the loop, but our guide book was old so it didn't include that option. Island Lake is breathtaking. The altitude and gain make this a difficult hike but there is only one small scramble section up to Island. Trail easy to navigate.

Awesome trail with great hikers. 0 trash found and overall well maintained. I brought and out of town relative here for an overnight. couldn't have asked for more. Camped at the lower lakes then hiked the upper before breaking down camp for the hike down. it's got fair traffic but overall does not take away from the experience. I will definitely do this again in day hike format.

There is another listing on AllTrails that has this trail listed as MODERATE. It is not moderate but HARD. Great hike that will leave you feeling tired/sore but like you accomplished something! Very rocky trail (feet were sore after hiking on so much rock). Its a long hike and weather changes quickly. Take rain gear. Beautiful day when we started then black clouds and thunder rolled in. We hiked at a very rapid pace back down to treeline trying to get cover from rain since it looked like it was heading our way. Wind changed directions at last minute and rain missed us. We were lucky! Very exposed trail above treeline, can get very windy. I loved the adventure of this trail. Definitely not boring!

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