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I agree with previous post. The trail is icy; poles and crampons recommended. Two days ago I left a blue dog leash on top near a bush. If anyone finds it, I would really appreciate it if you left it at the Academy Visitor’s Center at the base of the trail. Great hike!

awesome challenging hike! but take it slow if you're going in the next few days. the packed snow on the trail has made for some very slick, treacherous areas. hiking poles are highly recommended.

9 days ago

Did this hike 8/22/18...for my friends 70 b’day challenge. Very enjoyable hike with wonderful views . We started st 5am to avoid afternoon showers. Trail well marked and thank goodness for the carens as we traversed the boulder field at the top. The donuts tasted soooo good when we reached the top... and yes, lots of people st the summit!

trail running
12 days ago

Fun trail. Good grade for trail running, but there can be crowds. Was lucky enough to catch a rainbow on my run.

trail running
14 days ago

10/29/18 Beautiful trail. There were some icy spots but not too bad. Was able to run most of the trail, but ended up stopping several times to take in the waterfalls.

First hike in about six years but it was totally excellent. Weather at the peak was about 40 degrees F and a bit windy. The rock outcropping for the final .3ish to the top is tough but not impossible. If you’re not a hiker like me, take it slow and enjoy the journey.

Tough but beautiful!!! worth the work!!


absolutely beautiful!

21 days ago

We went on this trail on (10/15/18) after a big snow and it was awesome. THE MOMENT we stepped out of the car we saw a huge moose about 100 ft away. Immediately turned around and walked towards the trail. About 20 steps into the trail there was an even larger moose, about 50 ft in front of us. We were pretty spooked and almost just went back to the car but we waited a bit and he went on his way, so glad we continued. We went up and turned onto the first lake trail (I forget the name) and it was frozen and beautiful.

23 days ago


Great hike! 85% of the trail was ice covered. Make sure you pack some crampons!

Good hike. Great view at the top. There is some rock scrambling which made it fun. The fall color is about done but the aspen grove near the top would have been gorgeous a few weeks earlier. It’s more just under 4 miles round trip because you have to park at the visitors center and go up the road a bit.

This has taken the top spot for my favorite hike in RMNP.. We hiked it on Oct. 9th. The Ranger Station there has been closed for the season for several weeks now. Decent size parking lot but even with the cold, snowy, slushy conditions there were quite a few cars there and people on the trail. We did not need our spikes this time. The scenery is breathtaking under fresh snow. Copeland Falls is .4 miles in. Take the side trail to lower falls and follow it to upper Falls. There, you can connect back to the main trail. About another mile or so is Calypso Cascades. The trail gets a little steeper from here up to Ouzel. When you reach Ouzel, walk to the left side before the bridge down by the big rock and step out to the right to get a better view of the top of the Falls. You can’t see if from the bridge. We read about the trail up to the top of the Falls but weather conditions did not permit us to locate it. We took our time going up and MANY photo stops. Ascended in about 2 hrs 20 min. Hung at Ouzel long enough to eat a bite of lunch (it was really cold) then descended in about 50 min.
Loved every minute of it.

1 month ago

1 month ago

Upper and lower Copeland Falls are a short easy hike less than half a mile in. Calypso Cascades is about 2 miles in and is slightly more uphill. Both are beautiful!! We arrived at the trailhead about 3:30pm and there were several spots to park. If you hike past Calypso Cascades about another mile you'll find Ouzel Falls. Much steeper and took about another hour up. Beautiful!! Took us about 3.5 hours round trip.

1 month ago

If you like mountain streams, this is the hike. Actual
Hiking time to Ouzel Falls and back was a shade over 4 hours. We spent another 90 minutes enjoying the views and talking to people. My wife and I are 52 and walking poles a good idea for this trail. You will need them to go to the top of the Ouzel Falls. You can get really close to where the falls spill over the mountain. We were there on a Tuesday in late September. Main parking lot was 80 pct full. Very popular.

1 month ago

Very cool falls.. had lunch on a big rock on a beautiful day.

great hike today.

Got lucky with parking and beautiful day. if you like stairs you will love it.

1 month ago

We only hiked about an hour into this trail but it was very pleasant. It was a Monday afternoon so there weren’t a lot of people on the trail. The trail itself was rocky at some points but was otherwise very easy, flat. We got to a fork and went left, that brought us to a waterfall and paths through the changing trees. I would definitely do this train again, and go a little farther to see what’s out there.

Absolutely beautiful hike! Recommend going early to beat the crowd. Would definitely do it again

1 month ago

Great trail with many great views of cascading waterfalls down a small mountain stream with a spectacular finish at Ouzell Falls. Copeland Falls was also better than expected. Ouzel Falls offers as good of a view as there is in RMNP in my opinion. We took the extra time to hike to the top of Ouzel Falls and it was well worth it. Great views of the aspens changing colors and sounds of running water as the trail follows a mountain stream throughout the hike. Also came across a full grown moose on the return trek. The trail took us just under 3 hrs including a 30+ minute detour to the top of Ouzel Falls. Highly recommended and easy enough for the entire family to enjoy.

1 month ago

1 month ago

Did this one in August, beautiful views. Long hike with a steady incline but not incredibly difficult. Bring lots of water and be prepared for the summit to be buzzing... with people who drove up : |.

1 month ago

Beautiful drive from Lyons.
$25 NP entrance fee. Consider buying annual np pass if you will use any other np.

The river is gorgeous the entire way up.
Take the Copeland falls upper and lower loop as it’s inviting and parallels the main trail so adds no distance to route.
Total elevation gain is measured at 870 feet From 8500 at trailhead to 9300 at falls but printed map said 270 feet gain. Typo? In any case was a pleasurable ascent.
Took us exactly 3 hours total at leisurely pace.
Trail crosses the Cascades waterfalls and then Ouzel falls. To see the falls up close, take the unofficial trail to the left , just before the bridge where the sign says “ouzel falls”. It’s just a few hundred feet of exploring to see the falls from Best viewpoint.
Must get there early. By noon we had to wait 20 minutes for a spot to free up.

Take a picnic lunch, Tevas and a bathing suit and take the day to savor the swimming holes. But be smart where you swim so you don’t get swept away!

Very rocky but great trill

2 months ago

Beautiful trail! As a lot of the reviews mention, go all the way to Lost Lake! It’s a half mile up after the end of the Hessie Trail.

Huge tip to not get lost: Download the map if you have Premium version of All Trails. If you just have the free version, keep the app open on your phone. When you get there, go to the trail on All Trails and click on the trail map. When you’re in the area, your phone will show a blue dot with your location on the map. Just follow the red line to stay on the trail. When you reach the end of the Hessie Trail, follow the dotted lines to Lost Lake.

When you get to the fork where you can either go left to go to Lost Lake, or go right to go on a different trail, make sure to take a right first, walk about a quarter mile til you get to a wooden bridge that goes across a stream. That valley over the bridge is gorgeous! We were originally going to just take a left to Lost Lake, but another hiker recommend we walk down to the valley first. After you check out the valley, turn around, go back the way you came, then go left when you get back to the fork to go to Lost Lake.

The hike itself isn’t hard, but it does get rocky after the Hessie Trail ends. The elevation is the only thing that makes it somewhat difficult, it’s at 9k feet. Other reviews said it’s probably not a good hike for out of towners, but I disagree. There were 6 year old kids on the trail and they were making it just fine. Just make sure to bring lots of water.

Also, about a quarter mile before you get to the end of the Hessie Trail you’ll hear a waterfall. Follow the sound, and it will take you to the beautiful stream that turns into a waterfall. It’s where the pictures of people in the water were taken on this trail description. Must see! Water is freezing, but very refreshing on a hot day.


Awesome views of Pikes Peak, Stanley Canyon and Colorado Springs. You do have to work for it though. it's all up hill and gets steeper as you go. In comparison, we did the Stanley Canyon hike that's almost twice as long in less time.

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